By Greg Wyman, VP Asia Pacific, StorageCraft // 8 April 2015 // Related Categories: Tips

Data is the most critical asset for all business regardless of size or complexity. If an organisation were to lose six months of data, including all debtors, it would certainly go out of business.

Market feedback suggests that relatively few organisations fully test the recoverability of all their servers nearly often enough – any many not at all. Yet those that don’t perform a full and complete recovery test every night, run a serious risk.

Backup is often likened to an insurance policy – a drain on Opex until an emergency occurs, then management wish they had invested in the premium solution that also allows recovery from corporate backups. Thousands of people each year find that some or even all their data is non-recoverable.

Those people need DART - daily automated recovery testing.

Their testing should be fully automated and require no manual involvement, whether the organisation has 400 virtual servers across 18 hosts and multiple locations, or it is a single physical SQL, Exchange or Windows Essentials server. Staff should begin each workday by checking a screen to receive assurance that their data, databases and servers are recoverable - because recoverability was tested overnight.

Recovery solutions that leverage the latest DART technology, such as WatchDog Software, take next generation sector-based real-time recovery backup, recovery and disaster recovery technologies and automatically test the recoverability of every server nightly without manual involvement. Recovery testing should cost less than $600 per year for up to 50 servers, or under $1,400 pa for testing unlimited servers daily.

For every entity that tests recoverability there are two or more that don’t. When a prospective customer tells me “We have a great backup, it cost $xxx,xxx and does everything,” I ask: ‘Do you test recoverability every night?”

Usually they respond: ‘Of course not, it is too difficult and time-consuming’. But if it is too hard to test recoverability, imagine what it will be like if and when a disaster strikes – ouch!

So recovery testing should be automated and occur every day / night. Disaster recovery with automated recovery testing can often be added to existing backup products, enabling an existing product to run between 7pm and 6am, and the real-time disaster recovery solution between 7am and 6pm to deliver real-time backups every 15 minutes and night recovery testing of all your servers.

Tell the IT team they are going to do a fire drill to check how long it takes to get t three critical servers back into full production. Starting now!  Once the colour returns to their faces, monitor how long it takes, how disruptive it is and then determine how much data would have been lost.  The figure how that would have impacted the business if the event had been real.

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