By Chris Evans
The idea of having a day to mark data protection may seem trivial but addresses an essential aspect of modern life. We all depend on electronic data in some form or other, both in our personal and professional lives. As our interactions are increasingly digital, World Backup Day represents a marker to remind IT organisations and individuals of the requirement to ensure our data is safely protected.
In the enterprise, IT organizations continue to increase the diversity of their computing environments. SaaS platforms are now used for messaging (email, collaboration) and business processes such as CRM. Although still a relatively small part of overall IT spending, the public cloud continues to grow in double-digit percentages. Modern data protection needs to address all of these requirements while maintaining an eye on the heritage applications still running in the data centre.
The Long Game
Evolving backup to cater for diverse workloads is a significant challenge for data protection solution providers. Protecting data is a long game, with compliance and other regulatory requirements frequently demanding retention for decades or longer. Medical records, for example, are typically retained for the lifetime of the patient, plus ten years (in the UK). In many cases, the source data may be deleted, with backups providing a pseudo archive capability.
Ransomware has also changed the way we view business-critical data assets. A ransomware attack can lock users out of their data and cost a business millions of dollars in lost revenue and reputation.
The unlucky few may be put out of business altogether. So, we need to ensure recovery capabilities can restore data from a ransomware attack in a timely fashion, when not if it occurs.
One answer to dealing with application diversity is to implement many different point backup solutions. This scenario risks creating two problems. First, that of the “tail wagging the dog” where available data protection solutions dictate which IT services a business can use. The second is to create myriad data protection environments, with significant complexity in monitoring and ensuring backups are successfully taken across the data estate.
The other approach, the right approach, is to implement a data protection solution sensitive to the application environment and provide a joined-up view of the overall backup status.
This design is essential because it not only provides consolidated reporting but also enables new capabilities like search and e-discovery to be implemented across all data assets.
Backup needs to be holistic, and this is one of the underlying tenets in the design of Metallic, a SaaS backup solution that has been integrated with the Commvault portfolio. By having this holistic offering from Commvault, Metallic can be managed from the same pane of glass as a more traditional on-premises solution. Metallic protects SaaS, public cloud, and on-premises applications, including specific backup and recovery capabilities for popular applications such as Microsoft SQL, Oracle, and Active Directory. The Metallic platform also supports an often-missed category of data – endpoints, which include laptops and desktops.
Why has Commvault chosen to deploy Metallic as a SaaS solution? This decision is evident when we look at how new businesses use technology. Many are “born in the cloud” and will never run on-premises infrastructure. So, for those companies, an on-premises solution offers no value. In addition, SaaS data protection solutions solve the traditional scaling and infrastructure management challenges associated with running backup infrastructure.
Metallic, for example, seamlessly scales up and down automatically to manage new backup requirements. A third point to consider is the cost model SaaS data protection introduces. As a true service, Metallic charges are per mailbox, VM, or user. Files, objects, and databases are charged per TB of data stored.
One Click Away
With data protection so accessible, there’s no longer any excuse not to have backups in place for all aspects of enterprise data. World Backup Day is an annual reminder to review and revise your backup requirements, but companies can’t afford to be reminded only once a year. Why wait? See whether SaaS data protection is the right approach for you. Outpace change with cloud data management.