What is a Cloud Backup Service?
If you are going to ask an IT staff who handled data backup duties before the cloud, you would probably be met with uncontrollable shivers and sudden anxiety attacks. Why is that you may ask? Because nobody wanted to do backup duties in the past.
Before the best cloud backup services came, installing the backup software is a pain. It requires complex drivers and proprietary software that has to be installed manually in each device that needs to be backed up.
You’d think that you can start backing up files from there. Nope. You have to map out how much data is in each device so you will not exceed the allotted space in each tape, which is the backup storage of choice in the past.
It is so tedious that a lot of IT staff designated to do this just pretend that they have done it, but are actually just praying that disaster does not fall on their network because the company data is not actually backed up.
Fortunately, the cloud changed all that. Cloud backup service refers to a third-party backup service that replicates copies of your data in a secure and separate remote cloud server. No more tape drives.
How Does Cloud Backup Service Work?
Cloud backup services work through third-party providers who operate and maintain their own virtualized storage infrastructure. This allows providers to have a large data center, capable of handling large amounts of data. They can then offer parcels of their data centers to business customers for their own use, including data backup. Aside from data storage space, these providers can also automate how your data moves between their customer’s storage to their own data center. This removes the need for manual backup, which also reduces the burden on your own IT staff.
What are the Factors when Choosing the Best Cloud Backup Service?
Consider the Operating Systems Used by Your Business
There is no sense in having a cloud backup service if it cannot work with the devices and servers of your company. So even before getting in contact with any cloud backup provider, it is probably a good idea to familiarize yourself about the operating systems that your business is using.
Typically, laptops and computers are either running Mac and Windows, but there are also a growing number of Chrome laptops that are purely cloud-based. For servers, Linux and Microsoft Windows Server are the most common platforms.
You should also probably consider the mobile devices used because more and more businesses are going mobile. The top mobile Operating Systems right now are Android and iOS.
App Specific Cloud Backup Options
Your business might be using certain applications that may require special capabilities for backup and restoration.
This usually applies to complex database driven applications like your customer relationship management (CRM) software, business intelligence (BI) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications.
The best cloud backup service provider should have built-in support for backing up and restoring these applications and their data.
If not, you will probably have to come up with a solution on your own and it will defeat the purpose of getting a cloud backup provider altogether.
Configurability of CloudBackup Automation Options
Cloud backup providers have their own backup application or software that businesses can use to configure the settings of their backup process. From there they can set the type of data to be backed up, when it will occur, and how often it will happen.
Make sure that the cloud provider you choose has an easy to understand user interface so that even without their guidance, you will be able to configure and customize the cloud backup service based on your needs.
Recovery of Cloud Backup Data
In the event of data loss or damaged data, you want to recover the backup copy as soon as possible to avoid long downtimes.
However, downloading copies of the backup data can take days especially if you are getting a large sized file. Ask your providers about the length of the recovery process. You can also inquire if they have options for overnight recovery process or if they will be able to hand deliver a hard drive copy of the critical system data.
You are entrusting your critical data to a third-party provider so it is important that they guarantee you, as their client, that they are there to assist you with any issues or concerns regarding their service.
The best cloud backup service provider can be contacted anytime at multiple channels, including email, chat, phone, and even social media.