Backup & Recovery Services

Backup is a critical part of any Information Technology plan. This cannot be emphasized enough. Without a clearly defined Backup & Recovery Strategy, any enterprise, large or small is at risk of being separated from Data and Files. Any IT Professional operating on a professional level MUST include information on how they will allow clients to recover from loss of data. In Small and Medium Enterprise, the most common cause of loss of data is user error, or more frequently, Crypto-locker virus activity. In order to better understand how backup and recovery strategies have evolved, it is important to compare the conventional approach with the contemporary. The conventional approach to backup relied on the following components:

  • Backup Software
  • Backup Tape Drive or similar device
  • Removable Backup Media (Tape or External Hard Disk Drive)
  • The services of an individual to swap media and rotate it offsite (the “Backup Operator”)

The conventional approach was typically cumbersome, prone to errors and lacked suitable guarantees against loss. Furthermore, the task had to be delegated to an individual who would assume responsibility for the tapes or external hard disk drives.

The contemporary approach is to configure a cloud-based backup solution. Cloud based backup relies on an agent installed on the server or workstation which automatically backs-up data to a cloud-based vault and does so according to the backup schedule.

Azure Backup and Recovery Service

Instead of investing in new backup device hardware and software and appointing a single backup operator to be responsible for the system, General Data recommends the use of the cloud in a contemporary means of backing up information. Adopting new strategies for backup involves adopting a change in thinking on the subject of backup. No longer are large amounts of time and money involved in cumbersome process that leaves one or two people responsible. Instead the responsibility is spread out among the staff with people in each department responsible for the data. General Data recommends migrating to Azure Backup and Recovery Services as the core component of any backup and recovery strategy. Azure backup and Recovery is an efficient and effective means of insulating against the loss of data. Because the Azure Backup and Recovery Services can be installed on Servers AND Workstations, the service is a good solution for client-server networks and peer-to-peer workgroups. In order to remain compliant with Canadian Privacy Legislation, Azure subscribers can create resource groups in Canadian datacenters (Windsor, ON or Quebec, PQ).

Microsoft Azure Backup & Recovery has several advantages:

1. Low Cost: pay-per-use calculated by the GB (IM has subscription “levels”)
2. Flexibility: Azure allows multiple server “instances”, backing up to one vault. IM requires you to pay a base price for each server “instance”.
3. Ease-of-Use: Azure allows the control of backup/restore operations from a familiar user interface based on the server. IM has an antiquated user interface based only in the cloud.
4. Ease of rollout: The Azure backup/restore utility runs also on Windows 7 and Windows 10 workstations and therefore opens up the possibility of rolling out online backup services to remote office workers not connected with the main office network.

Whereas Microsoft offers the entire Azure suite free for use for 30 days, General Data recommends moving to Azure, configuring backup from both servers and at least one workstation. General Data recommends backing up data for ALL company departments then taking time to review data usage in order to fine tune the backup routine and parameters. These decisions will ultimately affect the monthly cost.

Microsoft Azure Backup & Recovery: A Cloud based Backup Vault

Azure is Microsoft's portal of cloud-based solutions for businesses of any kind. Companies that wish to adopt a cloud-based solution for backup can subscribe to Azure, Backup from Multiple locations centrally and manage the operation through their Internet browser by logging into the Azure Portal and monitoring status on backups. Users manage Azure Cloud Services by way of the Microsoft Azure Login Portal. Portal access is offered for free for the first 30 days (the "trial" period). Once the trial period is over, the charge for services rendered is applied to a credit card on a pay-per-use basis; unlike other cloud services providers which allocate backup storage in incremental blocks, Microsoft charges by the GB.


“What is the Estimated Cost of Azure Backup & Recovery Services?”

Yes. Any individual seeking employment with General Data must have completed a qualifying program at a recognized post-secondary institution. The technical support analysts at General Data have all completed the EET Program at the New Brunswick Community College in Saint John, NB.

"As an IT Consultant, can you manage IT solutions for a customer if you are not there full-time?"

Yes. General Data will normally alleviate any issues by first conducting a no-obligation, on-site assessment. The assessment is always offered on a complimentary basis.

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