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Article · Oct 13, 2017

How to blend backup and high availability

Backup and high availability are both essential forms of protection that fulfill different roles within a data protection strategy.

Color illustration showing computer servers.

Backup and high availability are both essential forms of protection that fulfill different roles within a data protection strategy. So which type of protection is right for different systems? According to recent analyst reports, experts recommend a blended approach that aligns data protection with type of data. By aligning data protection with data urgency, businesses can ensure higher levels of resiliency and reduce demands on internal resources.

To satisfy demands for document retention, discoverability and recoverability, businesses should deploy backup for all types of data. Backup captures snapshots at periodic intervals and protects them according to a set retention schedule. A daily snapshot taken during off-peak hours and protected onsite will allow a business to perform rapid recovery from a specific point in time. A retention schedule consisting of the most recent snapshots—30 daily and 12 monthly—is usually sufficient to address most forms of data loss, including accidental deletions, hardware failures and malware. Large-scale interruptions like power outages, natural disasters and critical hardware failures, while less common, can be far more detrimental.

Backup protection should allow IT to perform both simple file and folder restore as well as full-system recovery for the worst types of data loss. Businesses also need to create a second backup copy and store it at a secure, offsite location, such as the cloud. Because regional outages can affect both the backup and the original, cloud backup allows businesses to recover server data remotely. Recovery time using backup is typically measured in hours or days, depending on the scale of the disruption and the time it takes to resolve the underlying issue.

High availability
Critical systems require urgent protection. An outage to an email server or transactional database could disrupt essential operations. This is where high availability comes in. High availability can share the same architectural structure as backup, with a copy onsite and one in the cloud. The difference lies in the frequency of replication, which has implications for system uptime and potential for data loss. A high availability solution mirrors server data in real time. If there’s a server outage in a high availability environment, the secondary server becomes the source and users failover to the replicated server. Recovery time in this scenario is measured in seconds. Workloads continue to run on the secondary system until the primary server is brought back online. The entire process can be automated or triggered.

As with cloud backup, if both the primary and secondary servers are affected, the cloud target is available remotely until the onsite disruption is resolved. Since the replication process occurs in real time, a high availability solution can ensure zero or near-zero data loss. High availability also allows IT admins to perform test failovers using real-time data without disrupting users or asking staff to work unreasonable hours. Anytime there’s a change to network topology, IT can test performance with a high degree of confidence.

Data-defined protection from Carbonite™
Carbonite offers a complete portfolio of data protection solutions with multiple options for backup and high availability for all types of data, including heterogeneous environments and dispersed networks. Carbonite Partners can deploy a blended data protection strategy for any hardware, software or virtual platform.

Carbonite Hybrid Backup
Carbonite Server Backup Powered by EVault satisfies the need to protect the three types of data that comprise a multi-tier protection strategy: historical, semi-active and mission critical. It also satisfies the need to protect data in two places: onsite and offsite. Onsite backup enables LAN-speed recovery of critical data while offsite backup ensures a secondary copy persists in the event of a local failure, regional outage or natural disaster. Flexible options allow our partners to deploy the right level of protection for any type of data.

Key features

  • Protect heterogeneous networks onsite and in the cloud with a single solution
  • Accelerate recovery time performance
  • Ensure flexible daily and monthly recovery points
  • Centralize protection for distributed environments

Carbonite Hybrid Backup is available as a software-only solution or as hardware with subscription pricing for organizations seeking to reduce or eliminate capital expenditure (capex).

Feature detail

  • System image and granular recovery options
  • Advanced 256-bit private key encryption
  • Dissimilar hardware restore
  • Central management via browser-based portal

With fully customizable scheduling and retention settings, Carbonite Hybrid Backup gives businesses options for addressing the speed of recovery, the point in time they wish to recover from, storage footprint and network bandwidth.

Carbonite Availability
Carbonite Availability Powered by DoubleTake provides always-on protection for critical, time-sensitive data and applications. It creates a perfectly mirrored secondary copy that assumes responsibility for server workloads the moment there’s a disruption to the primary source.

Key features

  • Replicate any source data to any secondary target in real time
  • Perform automatic or triggered failover with virtually no disruption in service
  • Execute tests with live data to ensure cross-dependent functionality
  • Simplify administrative tasks and eliminate disaster recovery fire drills

Carbonite Availability continuously replicates to the secondary target, eliminating the potential for data loss from changes that can occur post-snapshot. In the event of a disruption at the source, push-button or automated failover ensures uninterrupted access to application data from the secondary source. Once the issue is resolved, users fail back to the production environment, usually without noticing. The entire solution is managed through the console.

Feature detail

  • Real-time, byte-level replication for physical, virtual or cloud environments
  • DNS mapping
  • Software development kit (SDK) for seamless integration via API

All Carbonite solutions include complete documentation, online access to a user community and knowledge base, and award-winning global customer support from certified experts.

The data protection sweet spot
Confidence is the key to managing disaster situations. A blended disaster recovery approach—with high availability protection combined with backup—gives IT decision-makers confidence in their ability to mitigate disruptions to critical systems for users, and preserve historical data for compliance or business intelligence. It also simplifies administrative tasks and allows IT staff to focus on strategic initiatives.

Learn more about Carbonite Hybrid Backup and Carbonite Availability today.



News and views from the Carbonite team.

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