Offsite Backups Add Additional Protection for Websites

  • Monday, 17th April, 2017
  • 00:00am

Great Lakes State Hosting Backups

We have four types of backups that are maintained for our customers: Daily Onsite, Daily Offsite, Weekly Offsite and Monthly Offsite. Each has its own place in the protection of your website or data. Let's explore the various the purpose and descriptions of the various backups.

The daily backup is for that quick access to recovery of something that may have happened during that day. This could be the accidental modification of a file without first making your own backup. It may also be that a file was deleted that shouldn't have been. Each day real early in the morning this daily onsite backup is made and is available for that type of recovery.

Offsite backups are also executed daily. Every folder and file within the account is first compressed, encrypted, and sent over a secure connection to an offsite data vault. As these backups are being transmitted, it is determined in which bucket they should be placed. On the 15th of each month the backup is stored in the Monthly Offsite. We maintain two of these copies so this backup can range from 59 to 91 days old. Unless the 15th falls on a Sunday then each Sunday the backups are stored in the Weekly Offsite. We maintain three copies of the weekly backup, so their age can be up to a month. Every daily back up that does not fall into either of the forementioned categories gets stored in Daily Offiste. We maintain six daily backups.

Having your site restored can range from us sending you a copy of your backup all the way to us performing the backup for you. Keep reading to learn a little about offsite data protection.

In computing, offsite data protection, or vaulting, is the strategy of sending critical data out of the main location (off the main site) as part of a disaster recovery plan. Data is usually transported off-site using removable storage media such as magnetic tape or optical storage. Data can also be sent electronically via a remote backup service, which is known as electronic vaulting or e-vaulting. Sending backups off-site ensures systems and servers can be reloaded with the latest data in the event of a disaster, accidental error, or system crash. Sending backups off-site also ensures that there is a copy of pertinent data that isn't stored on-site.

Although some organizations manage and store their own off-site backups, many choose to have their backups managed and stored by third parties who specialize in the commercial protection of off-site data.

Data vaults

The storage of off-site data is also known as vaulting, as backups are stored in purpose built vaults. There are no generally recognized standards for the type of structure which constitutes a vault. That said, commercial vaults typically fit into three categories:

  • Underground vaults - often converted defunct cold war military or communications facilities, or even disused mines.
  • Free-standing dedicated vaults
  • Insulated chambers sharing facilities - often implemented within existing record center buildings.

Hybrid onsite and offsite vaulting

Hybrid on-site and off-site data vaulting, sometimes known as Hybrid Online Backup, involve a combination of Local backup for fast backup and restore, along with Off-site backup for protection against local disasters. According to Liran Eshel, CEO of CTERA Networks, this ensures that the most recent data is available locally in the event of need for recovery, while archived data that is needed much less often is stored in the cloud.

Hybrid Online Backup works by storing data to local disk so that the backup can be captured at high speed, and then either the backup software or a D2D2C (Disk to Disk to Cloud) appliance encrypts and transmits data to a service provider. Recent backups are retained locally, to speed data recovery operations. There are a number of cloud storage appliances on the market that can be used as a backup target, including appliances from CTERA Networks, Nasuni, StorSimple and TwinStrata.

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