Final Thoughts on Online Backup -- One Last Rant

By Henry Newman

We have complained about what does not work, but what does work? If you have read my last three entries (see links below) I railed against some architectural decisions. I think what is needed is an SMB backup appliance that connects to the online Internet backup. The appliance will do the deduping, removing that function from each machine, and consolidating it. If there was a disaster with a machine, the online backup company could overnight a copy of the backup image of the machine and restore from the appliance, if need be. That way the backup company could control the backup images and make sure they work as well as have a consistent framework to inflate, or as I called it un-dedupe the data that was deduplicated. This archive appliance should support high data integrity (e.g., checksum everything validate everything); it should be able to dedupe data across the environment and get a copy off site over the Internet and get the data back and move it to the machine that failed. In addition, this appliance should be very secure, as all of the data from the business will be on the system.

Many vendors have parts of this architecture, but as of now I am not aware of anyone with a complete architectural solution that covers hardware software, dedupe, security and, of course, the online backup. It is possible that if a machine fails and the amount of data is small enough, you could send it over the wire faster than you could overnight the media to the appliance. There are many options with using an appliance, but there is the whole issue of design, testing and licensing that makes this a difficult problem.

Rant over.

Related Posts on Henry Newman's InfoStor Blog

This article was originally published on August 01, 2011