March 31st is World Backup Day.

As we count down to the fun, I thought I’d contribute something that ties back to a pretty funny story on The Pepper (Spiceworks) called Sales Guy’s Backup Best Practices. Since there are five gems in this piece, I’ll focus on the first one and let some of my colleagues handle the rest:

  1. Don’t EVER Backup: Granted, backing up requires minimal effort. But it’s time and energy you could spend on a kick ass fantasy football roster… or napping.

Now given the time of year, I might have picked doing my March Madness bracket over Fantasy Football – as a Villanova alumni I actually have something to cheer about for once…although I’m a pretty pessimistic fan so we’ll see how it goes on Saturday.

But the point is the same. Wouldn’t it be great to be able to worry about other things besides backup? Wouldn’t it be even better if it really took minimal effort?

Obviously, you have to backup these days. Actually, even that isn’t good enough anymore. When you think about a continuity strategy for your company, you have to be thinking backup + DR + long-term retention. Honestly, they go hand-in-hand for anyone trying to keep their business running and prevent data loss, revenue loss, and…job loss.

So how do you spend minimal effort? How do you keep from worrying about it?

These days, cloud services – and even complete outsourcing to a managed service provider – are making that more of a reality. MSPs are now able to come in and offer services using reliable vendors in the marketplace and either their own or other partners’ cloud services to handle part, or all, of your continuity strategy.

Even if you wanted to control part of the process, you could offload very painful tasks, such as long-term retention, to a provider for a reasonable monthly or annual fee that completely takes away the burden of managing rotating disk or tape strategies. Instead, you simply have something installed locally and some storage that does local backup. Then, data just finds its way to “the cloud.” [Of course, bandwidth now becomes a key component of a successful cloud storage strategy, but hopefully the cloud storage provider won’t charge you for that – hint regarding Unitrends Cloud pricing. :-)]

How about full disaster recovery? It certainly can keep you up at night managing multiple datacenters and worrying whether the second one will work – or be available fast enough – if the @$#% really hits the fan. This is where cloud providers offer a great way to take the data that is replicated and leverage virtualization and recovery innovations to get you up and running in an hour or less.

But does that stop you from worrying completely?  Not really…unless you just pray it always works without any proof. Fortunately, you can find some providers that offer more frequent recovery testing as part of their services. Of course, it’s better if the testing is automated and you don’t have to lift a finger – otherwise, there goes that whole “minimal effort” thing we were trying to achieve.

The reality is…these solutions and service exist today and are being adopted more and more to make it feel like you Don’t EVER Backup…well…barely feel like it. When you need to recover, it’s there and you know it will be available fast enough to avoid catastrophe.

*Editor’s note – each day this week we’ll be responding to some of the tips that were suggested in the Spiceworks Pepper article in celebration of World Backup Day. Check back each day to see what the Unitrends staff thinks of these tips. We’d love to hear your thoughts about these tips, & our responses.