Information and the underlying technology infrastructure are the life blood for most businesses. And studies have shown that 93% of companies who lose data or access to their systems for just 10 days file for bankruptcy within a year while 50% file for bankruptcy immediately*. Data loss can be devastating and having a reliable backup and disaster recovery system can mean the difference between staying afloat or not.
FPA offers a reliable and cost effective business continuity suite for our clients. With our advanced system, you'll never have to worry about losing your information or access to your critical systems again. Our BDR solution is fast, reliable, secure, and most importantly highly cost effective. It provides the following capabilties:
- Backup with infinite restore points and rapid recovery
- Encryption of backup files using a 256-bit military grade AES algorithm
- Cost effective online storage in the cloud
- Secure online storage at redundant locations around the country
- Full server restores to bare metal, to dissimilar hardware or to and from virtual environments
- Fail-over to virtual servers within an hour (providing timely business continuity)
* Source: National Archives & Records Administration in Washington.
What It Does and How It Works
Using a Network Attached Storage (NAS) based device, our system performs backups at the hard drive block level where the actual digital 1's and 0's are captured eliminating issues caused by open files. And because our system operates at the block level, it is far more efficient than file structure formatted backups. Our NAS device can be configured for Windows 2000, Windows 2003, and Windows 2008 Servers by partition or by logical drives. A snapshot of the entire partition is taken at the block level so there is no file or folder exclusions, it's an exact reflection of your server(s). Which means database applications like Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Exchange Server are transferred in blocks eliminating failures when a file is open. Also, with our technology's fast virtualization capabilities, our NAS device can be temporarily configured to function as a replacement server if needed.
This unique device replaces management intensive, error-prone tape backups while providing much more…starting with peace of mind.
Key components of our BDR system
- Base Image - The first backup taken of a server is the base image — an exact copy of the currently used space on the server. The base image is taken for each volume (or partition) on the server. Once the base image is set all future backups are incremental (ie: only what is written to the disk is backed up)
- Remote Storage and Base Remote Backup Image Creation - Online backups are stored (in encrypted form) at two secure online data backup centers located hundreds of miles apart from each other. The BASE IMAGE is sent via a hard drive to the primary remote storage facility. Incremental back ups occur and are collapsed into the base image after the transfer is complete.
- Incrementals - Incremental backups take place at the frequency scheduled up to every hour.
- Incremental Forever Methodology -Incremental Forever Methodology differs from regular incrementals in that only one full backup or base image is required. This greatly reduces the time it takes to perform subsequent backups as each incremental takes only seconds to complete.
- Synthetic Incrementals - Incremental files are collapsed into synthetic incrementals (basically one larger incremental file). This is done to ensure chain integrity and to speed up restorations. The fewer hops from the current point-in-time back to the base image, the faster the restore will be.
- Recovery Options - Recovering files and folders is a simple process where the entire image is mounted as a volume on the NAS device. Files can then be copied to the destination server over the network. We can also restore files, folders, Exchange mailboxes or messages and SQL tables and databases.
- Virtualization (Physical to Virtual) Standby Server Functionality - The NAS device can “virtualize” failed servers while keeping the system in the same state as it was before the problem arose. No configurations are necessary. In addition, once virtualized, the NAS will resume the backup schedule that was in effect before the failure.
- Bare Metal Restore (Virtual to Physical) - When it comes time to restore the virtualized server back to physical hardware, our bare metal restore process allows restorations to dissimilar hardware.
- On-site and Off-site Solution with Multiple Restore Points - Multiple NAS devices can be placed on a LAN. Each NAS device, depending on the model, can be configured to backup one single server or multiple servers.
Protect Valuable Informational Assets & Keep Downtime To A Minimum
Our NAS device is a comprehensive Backup and Disaster Recovery solution (BDR) for Windows 2000, Windows 2003, and Windows 2008 servers. This all-encompassing solution for small-to-midsize businesses provides:
- very frequent backups (as frequent as every hour) with an onsite NAS Device
- online data storage at highly rated data centers
- the ability to restore downed servers in less than an hour!
- advanced restore options (file and folder levels) with Exchange message and mailbox recovery
- bare-metal restores to dissimilar hardware
- a highly cost effective integrated, reliable, and secure solution (as compared to tape, server imaging, and online backups individually)
NAS vs. Tape
As with any business continuity conversation, the fundamental question is: What are your restore or recovery objectives? If you're trying to pick the right backup solution and your business couldn't survive a day or two without quick access to your systems, how quickly can this solution get my critical data back up and running if I suffer a failure?
With our BDR solution the answer is: very quickly. Unlike tape, which typically stores data in a linear fashion (meaning you have to start at the beginning and run through it until you find what you're looking for) disk storage is more like a mirror, reflecting every aspect of your system at once.
All a tape does is store data, whereas the best NAS-based software can take a complete image of your OS, your settings and your applications. With our BDR solution, you don't have to search for media; you don't have to search for applications. It's all right there.
||A significant backup window is required to complete a full backup - time lost for access to vital systems
||There is no backup window... your critical business systems remain up and running.
||Systems are typically backed up every 24 hours. Are you ready to lose a day's worth of work?
||Data snapshots take place every 15 minutes... about the same length as a coffee break
||There's nothing automatic about restoring with tape. The process is time-consuming and labor intensive.
||Recovery is as simple as pushing a few buttons (or clicking a mouse). Systems are restored in less than a half hour.
||Tape is linear so data must be found.
||No winding or seeking to find information. Within backup applications this contributes to much faster backup and restore times. Hard disk access times are typically 10 milliseconds whilst it can take minutes to seek the the correct place on a tape.
||Tape is specified to have a limited number of cycles.
||hard disks have virtually no limitation in number of cycles.
||Require erase cycles and re-tensioning.
||Instant ability to write over data.
What Happens If My Server Crashes?
Because our BDR solution is a full backup and business continuity solution it takes snapshots up to every 15 minutes as well as runs virtualization software allowing a server image to be run if needed. We can choose a point in time shortly before the problem occurred and with just a few clicks of the mouse, activate it as a virtual server to keep business processes up and running while we diagnose the problem and plan a course of action for the downed server. This situation goes from a crisis to a mere nuisance and allows the proper time and energy to be spent on resolving the issue without a crisis response.
In the event of a catastrophic server failure, our BDR solution also includes a boot CD that allows us to perform a bare metal restore on new hardware in a fraction of the time of a typical server rebuild. And, this NAS device restoration will allow us to eliminate the hardware abstraction layer during the restore process so that the new drivers can be loaded on the server replacement, no matter which server brand is used — giving us quicker recovery options at the time of a crisis.
Online / Offsite Storage Facility
For additional protection in the event of a complete disaster, data is securely transferred to an off-site co-location facility on a daily basis. Then, in event of such an occurrence, we can provide a new NAS device imaged with your most recent data. The storage facilities are two XO high-availability data centers in Phoenix and Baltimore. They provide:
- Backup images stored at the data centers on a Storage Area Network (SAN) at the primary facility, then replicated to the secondary facility
- Connectivity provided by multiple providers with automatic failover capabilities
- Facilities provide two fiber optic network drops for our backbone
- Full physical security at each facility including security cameras and key card access
- Network is secured with high-end redundant, automatic failover firewalls
- Fire suppression and environmental control provided
- Automatic back-up power provided with on-site generators
Recovery after a Catastrophe
If a disaster results in losing the entire office — servers and on-site NAS included— you order a newly imaged NAS with the most current backup-normally the last daily that was done, to be shipped out via next business-day air transportation to a location of your choice. Depending on the NAS model used, multiple servers can be virtualized on one NAS even as the NAS continues to perform backups of other servers.
For more information about our comprehensive Backup & Disaster Recovery solution or to learn more about any of our IT Services, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or feel free to call us at 818-501-3390.