The Benefits of Continuous Data Protection

Posted by Ben Austin on Nov 12, 2014 9:04:00 AM


Let me quickly run you through a scenerio and see if this sounds familiar:

First you take the time to plan out your backup schedule days in advance. Then Friday hits and you stay at the office an extra hour or two late to set your backup to run over the weekend, giving your system all the time it needs to read through every bit of data as it tries to determine what has changed since last weekend’s backup.

If you're like the vast majority of organizations, you are amassing data at an exponential rate, storing it on hard drives that get bigger and bigger every year while maintaining the same performance and speeds. This means that those weekly incremental backups are going to constantly get slower and slower until that single backup window turns into a weekend-long fiasco, jam-packed with aggravating performance issues.

So then you arrive in the office on Monday morning with your fingers crossed, hoping that some 2 AM error didn’t crash the whole thing. If an error has occurred, your only option is to rub your lucky rabbit’s foot and hope that you can get through the week without a setback that forces you to roll back to that last restore-point… from two weeks ago.

Let's face it, that standard process of running server backups really sucks. Even if you're performing nightly backups, day-old recovery points will end up costing your organization more than you'd think. 

So what other options do you have? Well...

Continuous Data Protection

Continuous Data Protection (CDP) is a cost-effective solution to traditional, incremental backups. CDP is a method of conducting high-performance in any-time intervals with little impact on server or disk performance. Sound too good to be true? Let's take a look at how this method works.

The process itself starts much in the same way as a traditional backup - by taking a full snapshot of all your data. But this is essentially where the similarities end.

After that first snapshot, or initial replica, is complete, a backup manager continuously monitors changes to the data. Then, when you run a backup, only the files or blocks where information has changed will be saved. 

Let's look at a few of the major benefits of utilizing this technology to perform frequent backups throughout the workday:

Server Performance

Because the system only needs to read the parts of your data that have been changed, rather than re-reading all of the data each time you run an incremental backup, your server performance doesn't suffer. This enables you to run backups throught the workday without having to worry about the ulcer-inducing frustrations that come with nightly or weekly backups.

Saving Disk Space

If you need to keep a snap shot representing how your server looked at every hour of the last 24 hours, every day of the last seven days, and every week of the last four weeks, that's no problem. CDP will only keep the absolute minimum amount of data in storage needed to represent the unique disk sectors for those points in time. 

Because you only need to perform a full backup once, you are essentially recycling that data over and over again without taking up any extra disk space.

Less Data Loss

Continuous Data Protection allows for improved recovery point objectives by allowing shorter time intervals between backups. This means that if disaster does strike, you only need to roll back a few minutes or an hour, rather than a few days. 

Does Continuous Data Protection sound like something that could be useful at your organization? If so, there's no reason to hesitate - you can download a 30-day trial of R1Soft by clicking the button below.

Start a trial ▸

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Topics: CDP, Continuous Data Protection

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