Michael Otey is president of TECA, Inc., which focuses on Windows and SQL Server product development and consulting. He is a frequent contributor to technical publications and the author of several books on database development and programming.

The Importance of Endpoint Backup

While almost every business has some type of backup processes in place for their important servers, many of these same companies have neglected endpoint backup. There’s no doubt that servers are more important as they provide a platform for the business-critical applications and services that the business relies on but they are not the only critical component to productivity.

Endpoints, like laptops and desktop, also require data protection measures to protect against system failures, disaster and user error. Endpoints can be hit with ransomware that can encrypt your files, the system can fail to boot up, or some important file might get deleted accidentally. Endpoint protection can be especially important for devices that are used by your corporate executives; if they fail you know you’re going to hear about it. While these types of events usually don’t impact the operations of the business itself, they most certainly do impact the productivity of the employees involved.

Endpoint backup typically has different requirements than server backup. Server backup needs to happen at least daily and frequently more often for critical servers. Endpoints require a lot more flexibility in the backup process. Endpoints, like laptops, are frequently disconnected and they can’t be backed up using a simple timed schedule. Some of the most important capabilities of endpoint backup include:

  • Flexible backup methods – Endpoint usage is variable between different devices and the ability to have flexible backup methods is important. The ability to perform an entire system backup is essential. It’s also important to have options to perform either volume-level or file-level backups.
  • Bare-metal Restores – Being able to perform a bare-metal restore of your endpoint is also critical. You should be able to restore your entire system to the same system or to a different system. To enable this, you need to be able to create recovery media on USB flash drives, SD cards or CD/DVD/BD media.
  • Individual file restores – Without a doubt the need to restore individual files is the most common type of recovery requirement and your endpoint backup solution needs to be able to restore a single file even from an entire system backup.
  • Export of backup files – Being able to export your backups into VMDK/VHD/VHDX virtual disk files can provide quick recovery to a local or cloud-based VM.
  • Backup scheduling and throttling – Endpoints like laptops need flexible backup schedules based on system events like the ability to backup when the system is connected or when the systems is locked or inactive. In addition, these events might occur when you’re traveling or in low bandwidth, environments making the ability to throttle back up bandwidth important.
  • Logging and notifications – You also need to ability to track the backup status and to optionally be notified if the endpoint backup has failed. Backup logging and notification enable you to take remedial action that will ensure endpoint data protection.

Endpoint backup is an often-overlooked area of enterprise data protection and neglecting it can definitely result in possible data loss as well as impacting employee productivity. When considering endpoint backup, it’s important to remember that saying that’s it’s not if you will experience failure but rather when you will.

Related Topics:

  • Backup & Storage
  • Mobile
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