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Backup differences between large and small businesses

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  • Backup differences between large and small businesses

    No need. I'll make one more comment and then never say another word:

    I work for an organization with 150 servers and 700 million USD in yearly sales. 2 Data Centers, 3 System Administrators, 3 Desktop Support Engineers, 10 Developers, and 8 Business Analysts. 1 case of having to restore a complete system in 9 years. I'd hardly call us a "one man band".

    I apologize for taking this off topic, and again mean no disrespect.

  • #2
    Re: Backup differences between large and small businesses

    Post moved from this thread.

    Originally posted by Biggles77
    Joe, if you wish to discuss the differences between large organisations and small "one man bands" and their data restores, please start a new thread and I will be more than happy to debate it there.
    Joe, maybe the time of day has caused you to misread my post (god knows I do it often enough in my perpetual sleep deprived state), but nowhere did I say you worked in a one man band. The above quote states that a large organisation that has fulltime technical support staff is going to have a differnet view/strategy on backing up (and restoring) data to the "one man band" business that the OP (Boondock) supports.

    Originally posted by Joeqwerty
    I believe that my experiences with restoring data accurately reflects the majority of restores that IT professional are called on to perform
    I believe this above statement to be totally correct in that it relates to data restores in large organisations. It comes nowhere close to the "one man band" shops.

    The one man band business (especially one that has 5PCs ) usually has NO central Server. The only time the tech (Boondock in this case) gets called is when something doesn't work and "it is so important you have to come instantly and fix it". (That about right Boondock? ). The paper techs that setup these businesses usually put in no hardware redundency like RAID1 let alone RAID5, so when a HDD fails, ALL the data goes down the gurgler. Hence, a Full Restore and ALL the Incremental backups.

    When support techs like Boondock do get on site it is to fix a problem, little, if any time, is available to test backups. Installing SPs, Hotfixes and Updates is often a struggle so desperate techs will set Automatic Updates to run on Servers. Backups, if any, get dropped onto a single USB connected HDD that often overwrite themselves each night. If you are lucky you might have a set of Monday to Friday backups and then they get overwritten. One backup set and nothing goes off site.

    Your organisation on the other hand will probably have NAS/SAN/Tapes with the good old 21 day backup rotation (or even longer) with onsite, near site, off site media and maybe an online backup in a Data Centre and a high speed pipe to it.

    Have any of your 9 years included time supporting the small "one man band" type businesses that Boondock slaves over. Have you ever had to beg, plead, bribe, coerce the Owner/Business Manager/Accountant in trying to get them to part with enough money to replace an 8 port mini switch? (I supported a small organisation with 38 PCs. There was NINE different hardware platforms that made up the 38 machines. Imaging was such fun. Another one had 9 PCs and each one was different). I would guess Boondock's 5 PC client may even have 5 different platforms.

    I guess I am fortunate in having worked large corporate and in small business. I have seen how both work and it is compariable to a person employed in a Government job compared to a person employed in a factory. The Govt person complains about how hard they work whereas the factory person would see that job as a vacation.
    Last edited by biggles77; 12th April 2008, 20:14.
    1 1 was a racehorse.
    2 2 was 1 2.
    1 1 1 1 race 1 day,
    2 2 1 1 2


    • #3
      Re: Backup differences between large and small businesses

      Incremental sucks when you need to perform a full restore.
      I've done quite a few times a full restore and after this procedure I really really hates incremental backups.

      A better choice is using a differential backup after the full backup.
      The real advantage is, is that you only need 2 tapes to restore.
      1 tape for full backup and the last differential backup. (backup flag will be reset after full backup).
      With incremental you need all tapes after the last full bacup.

      However for small enviroments I rather go for a encrypted USB harddisks or better and still my favorite tapes.
      Personally I wouldn't go for online backups because I can't manage that environment.
      Who can really guarantee it's safe enough?

      However, all of this is not the case from the TS.
      A better question to the TS would be how is environment looks like.
      Where is the data stored?
      Technical Consultant

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      • #4
        Re: Backup differences between large and small businesses

        I am backing up locally almost 500GB data from 10 servers every weekend in Full mode and every weekday Differential. I have no problem with the backup-window, but I do need the restore as fast as possible. (For a comparison between the two, see here).
        I saw so many SysAdmins pulling their hairs out because one of the Incremental tapes was faulty ...
        Like everything else in the computing life, there are drawbacks everywhere. The important thing is to be aware of them, to wisely weigh the advantages and disadvantages and to choose what suites best your own needs.

        Sorin Solomon

        In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure.


        • #5
          Re: Backup differences between large and small businesses

          well, if you need a fast restore method - keep a local backup repository on hard drives in the LAN. the tapes are there for serious disaster recovery, like fire and theft, but if you have a couple of failed drives or a punctured array in a raid5, and a re-tag isn't possible, restoring from a local backup is the fastest way.
          for MS based networks you can get it as a bundle:

          Last edited by DYasny; 6th March 2011, 18:31.
          Real stupidity always beats Artificial Intelligence (c) Terry Pratchett

          BA (BM), RHCE, MCSE, DCSE, Linux+, Network+