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Enterprise Backup Software: Backup Network Workstations, Email and Databases

A primary function of software designed for complete enterprise backup is automation of all backup processes in a corporate network. It is different from “common” backup of home computers, as it involves multiple computers and requires consideration of more sophisticated backup strategies. The main reasons of distinction of home and enterprise backup software are the following:

  1. Backup over network. Enterprise backup solutions solutions suggest thoroughly considered schemes of interaction between server and workstations and establishment of proper network architecture.
  2. Specific data to backup. Enterprise backup involves backing up different types of data that are never or rarely used separately from networks. These include interactive databases, mail services, and other data generated and accessed by multiple users.
  3. Data handling policies. Network backup must be performed in accordance with the enterprise’s data handling and security requirements. Read more about backup legal requirements

Network backup solution needs to be configured around the particular layout of the enterprise network. The traditional network architecture suggests a presence of one or several backup servers and multiple networked computers which grant access to their data. Backup servers are used to manage absolutely all processes regarding backup and restoration in such a way that employees (who exploit enterprise workstations) don’t have to do anything by themselves.

When you architect an enterprise backup solution, keep in mind the following features:

  1. Backup methods. Similar to common backup of a single computer, network backup may be files-based or image-based. Whereas files-based backup is copying of files and folders through common file system queries, image-based backup implies physical disk cloning sector by sector.
  2. Backup storage. Enterprise data transferred to backup servers from networked workstations needs to be stored in a safe place in accordance with the company’s data handling policy. Be it a tape, a distributed network, or a remote online server, it should satisfy the requirements of size, speed, security and availability.
  3. Types of data. An essential feature for enterprise backup software is capability to back up interactive data. For example, a lot of business communication and collaboration needs can be solved with the help of Microsoft Exchange Server, as well as many today’s businesses exploit the MS SQL database management system to perform commercial operations. Normally, you can’t backup MSSQL or perform Exchange backup without stopping the services, therefore some advanced technologies are required.
  4. Backup strategies. Generally, enterprise backup strategies are unique for each particular system. There are too many factors that affect the choice. It is a good practice to consider the strategy together with a network administrator who is aware of all strong sides and bottlenecks of the network. Do remember that backup strategies should cover all aspects of protection against hardware failure, software failure and against user error.
 
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