Business networks are expanding, incorporating the cloud and virtual environments in addition to physical desktops and servers. More small and medium-sized businesses are adopting virtualization in particular, and as such may need to adapt their server backup solutions in order to meet their data protection needs within the new infrastructure.
Traditional backup and recovery software may not meet the needs of a virtual machine, and as such, a company needs to make sure it updates its solutions to address the challenges of its IT environment.
Tip #1 – Ease of use
When dealing with alternative physical and virtual environments, it is important that any backup and recovery solutions are easy to use for both IT teams and other employees. One way to do this is to implement a virtual server as the main backup for the company. This makes it easier to re-establish virtual systems without complicating physical machine recovery after a disaster, and can help reduce IT costs for the business as well.
Tip #2 – Unity
Regardless of the percentage of use between physical and virtual systems, varying operating systems, and devices used, a business has to ensure that its backup and recovery software is able to operate at the same efficiency under different protocol requirements. This also means ensuring that the virtual appliances used conform to standards of use, like the Open Virtualization Machine Format.
Tip #3 – Image
Using virtual images is a surefire way to accurately restore virtual machines quickly and efficiently. Creating an image allows a business to simply reload the machine as it was, getting back to work while focusing on the recovery of data to physical machines next. Most virtual environments offer an image-creating solution that can be stored with other backups and be ready to deploy during the disaster recovery process.
Tip #4 – Testing and practice
Even with machine images and virtual environments, a company still has to ensure its employees are well trained in its business continuity strategy and able to recover data swiftly. This means testing the backup and recovery plan, practicing crisis scenarios, and training every employee on what his or her role is should a system go down or a natural disaster strike. Practice makes perfect when it comes to data protection, and virtual environments are no exception.