FACT: 100% OF HARD DRIVES WILL DIE. WHAT'S YOUR DISASTER RECOVERY PLAN? (Part 1)

FACT: 100% OF HARD DRIVES WILL DIE. WHAT'S YOUR DISASTER RECOVERY PLAN?

Got your attention? Good! Just because your computer worked yesterday and today doesn't mean it will be working when you turn it on tomorrow. Worst case? You know all those priceless photos of your kids or that huge business deal contract you are just about ready to close on? GONE. Read on for some suggestions on how to protect yourself from the inevitable.

A solid disaster recovery plan includes a backup strategy that can get you back up and running when, not if, disaster strikes. The rule about backups is that if your files aren't in three separate places, you aren't backed up. Today I'm going to cover a high level overview of one solution, called onsite backups, which means computer files are backed up inside your physical office location. Future posts will detail other backup options including offsite and cloud backups. Not sure which is right for you? Read on or connect with us for a consultation.

WHY DO I NEED ONSITE BACKUPS?

The quick answer is so you can get back up and running immediately after a disaster. Offsite backups, or backups stored outside of your office location, protect you from losing all your files if there was a fire or theft at your office. That's great, but downloading all your files over the internet takes days or weeks. Your business can't wait that long! With onsite backups, your files can be restored in a matter of minutes or hours, depending on the amount of files you have. Business keeps on going and life is good.

WHAT ARE MY ONSITE BACKUP OPTIONS?

Good question. For most businesses, the simplest option is a "file server" - a scary word that simply is the digital equivalent of a big filing cabinet that exists just to hold computer files. More complex options include "bare metal recovery", mirrored bootable drives, and other scary phrases like that. We'll explain the benefits of all those during our disaster recovery consultation.

One of my favorite solutions for this is called a NAS (short for Network Attached Storage) device (NAS wikipedia page). Check out an example of one we like here (Synology DS213). If you don't care about geeky details, just know it holds all your digital stuff and is super secure and reliable and works with both Windows and Mac computers. It is basically a black box that holds a collection of hard drives. Want more geeky details? Here's why we like it:

WHAT IS A BACKUP STRATEGY?

A solid disaster recovery plan includes a backup strategy that can get you back up and running when, not if, disaster strikes. The rule about backups is that if your files aren't in three separate places, you aren't backed up. Today I'm going to cover a high level overview of one solution, called onsite backups, which means computer files are backed up inside your physical office location. Future posts will detail other backup options including offsite and cloud backups. Not sure which is right for you? Read on or connect with us for a consultation.

WHY DO I NEED ONSITE BACKUPS?

The quick answer is so you can get back up and running immediately after a disaster. Offsite backups, or backups stored outside of your office location, protect you from losing all your files if there was a fire or theft at your office. That's great, but downloading all your files over the internet takes days or weeks. Your business can't wait that long! With onsite backups, your files can be restored in a matter of minutes or hours, depending on the amount of files you have. Business keeps on going and life is good.

WHAT ARE MY ONSITE BACKUP OPTIONS?

Good question. For most businesses, the simplest option is a "file server" - a scary word that simply is the digital equivalent of a big filing cabinet that exists just to hold computer files. More complex options include "bare metal recovery", mirrored bootable drives, and other scary phrases like that. We'll explain the benefits of all those during our disaster recovery consultation.

One of my favorite solutions for this is called a NAS (short for Network Attached Storage) device (NAS wikipedia page). Check out an example of one we like here (Synology DS213). If you don't care about geeky details, just know it holds all your digital stuff and is super secure and reliable and works with both Windows and Mac computers. It is basically a black box that holds a collection of hard drives. Want more geeky details? Here's just the beginning of why we like it and recommend it to every small business and home user who will listen to us:

  • sits in the corner, behaving itself and holding all your digital stuff like a good little boy. It really is a mini-computer that runs Linux but all you need to know is that it doesn't have to be constantly updated and it won't go all blue-screen-of-death on you.
  • use it as a shared drive in Windows or Mac
  • use it as a Time Machine destination for Macs
  • Tired of paying dropbox.com a monthly fee? Use it as a secure "DropBox" to share files between all your team WITH NO FILE SIZE LIMITS OR MONTHLY FEE!
  • VPN access means you can access it remotely from outside the office or check on it to make sure all your backups are OK
  • has mobile apps to access music, videos, and files, even security camera recordings, directly from your phone/tablet/mobile device
  • redundant RAID hard drives means that when one dies, all your files are still safe on the other drive
  • fill it up with 3TB hard drives for massive storage capacity - an 8 bay NAS with 3TB drives for example would hold 12GB of redundant data
  • lots more goodies

HOW DO I GET MYSELF BACKED UP?

So glad you asked! If everything you just read made sense to you, you are probably already searching online and about to click the Buy It Now button. Go for it! If you need some assistance determining your needs and a designing a backup solution that fits your business, that's what we're here for. 

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