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Monday, March 23, 2009

Back Up That Data, and Test It

Okay, you’ve got offsite backup systems – but have you tested them lately?
If we’ve learned anything from the recent hurricanes, ice storms, floods and other national calamities that attack us from time to time, it’s that old Murphy was right – what can go wrong, will go wrong.

So, when was the last time that your IT people actually ran a test on your backup system? Something rigid enough to ensure that you really could restore your files from the back up tapes if your system went down in the event of an emergency?

We’ve learned that one of the most common causes of failure stems from back up tapes being used and re-used year after year – rendering them unable to read input data.

Obviously, any restoration attempt from defective tape is going to be a failure.

ACTION ITEM: Make sure that someone in your shop does a “live drill” and actually performs a backup using your current system and tapes.
And what about your and your desktop or laptop. When was the last time you backed it up? What if your laptop died, was stolen, dropped, or had coffee spilled on it? Where would it leave you?

We can say from experience where it would leave you... up the proverbial creek.

ACTION ITEM: Take a minute to back up your work computer. The time could come when you're really thankful you did.

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