The Real Costs of Backing Up Your Office from a Remote Location

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Supporting end-users is difficult at the best of times, but it’s far more difficult when IT personnel are separated from the people they’re supposed to help. However, the problems are even more significant when ensuring that users in remote offices have their data backed up. Because they don’t always do so. And when the systems do eventually fail, the company loses money.

Remotely backing up computers is a tedious operation for server admins. It’s even worse for everyone else, such as your company’s employees who work in remote offices and aren’t responsible for making the computer work. Stories abound of missing or blank tapes, unsuccessful backups, and failed restores due to a lack of IT skills at remote locations and complicated, error-prone, multi-step processes in place.

Yet, ultimately, making sure that systems are subsidized up (and restored!) is a part of the admin’s job.

Unfortunately, the hassle is handiest going to worsen for server admins. Among the motives will increase server facts workload sizes; there’s also multiplied retention requirements, a result of compliance and regulatory changes.

The enormous cost of remote office backup underpins this complication.

“Exorbitant prices? Really? Some server administrators respond, “But tape is inexpensive!”

However, tape costs are only a tiny part of the overall budget. So, let’s look at how much remote office backup costs.

Backup Solutions for Remote Offices on Multiple Levels:

The benefits of modern IT technologies, including virtualization, unified storage, and software-defined networking, are initially felt in the data center (SDN). On the other hand, remote offices are generally caught in the past, forced to trundle along with obsolete equipment that is expected to keep working indefinitely. A server backup is the most visible – and costly – example of this dilemma.

Backup procedures that had been established previously – sometimes more than a decade ago – have remained unchanged. The people have moved on, but the processes haven’t. New server administrators frequently claim utter ignorance of the backup processes they inherited, and with good reason. They are concerned about whether restoration will be successful when the time comes.

Several servers (maybe three to five) operate the local office’s workloads (file servers, database servers, and so on) that are essential enough to backup and archive for the long term in a typical branch office. Each of these systems has a backup agent installed that connects to a local backup server. The backup server then saves the backup data to a local tape drive or secondary disc storage.

Weekly full backups and daily incremental backups are the standard backup policy for these workloads. Local backups are kept for thirty days (either on tape or disc). The cassettes are sent offsite for long-term storage after 30 days. With today’s compliance and regulation needs, long-term archival of seven years or more as usual.

When a hard drive is utilized as backup storage, it adds an extra step: the data must be seeded to tape before being vaulted offsite.

The Explosion of Data Storage

Assume you have a corporate branch office with 1TB of data to back up. Assume a daily change rate of one per cent and a 20 per cent annual increase in source data. Given the backup mentioned above, 1TB of source data generates a considerable amount of target data, which comprises both local data and data transmitted offsite to the vault.

That 1TB of data had generated 13TB of onsite data and 56TB of offshore data by the end of the first year. More than 700TB of data will be maintained offshore by the end of Year 7!

What does all this value approximately?

Each of those portions introduces its fees into the overall picture.

Hardware: This consists of fees of the backup server hardware, tape force, nearby disk used for secondary garage, and the value of tapes. Also included are the setup value of the backup server and its infrastructure.

 

Software: This includes both the cost of the agents that are installed on each server and the cost of the management program for the backup software.

 

Offsite vaulting: This includes the cost of the “truck-roll” for the archival service’s weekly tape pickup as well as the price of keeping tapes in the archive.

 

Admin cost: Finally, there is a substantial administrative load. The company keeps track of all the manual tasks associated with maintaining the tape infrastructure and off-loading the tapes.

According to an international survey, backing up a tiny remote office and archiving the data for seven years costs about $150,000!

As a result, the multi-tier remote office backup method used by businesses today adds a great deal of complexity and cost, putting a significant strain on a company’s bottom line. There has to be a better way, more current and suitable for today’s atmosphere.

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