Backup and Recovery
While writing this book, I had a mishap. In trying to up-grade my system disk, I changed the settings that inadver – tently made the data disks unusable. The system disk had Windows 7 on it and the data disks had been configured as RAID 1 storage (one disk mirrored the other disk so that if a single disk were to fail, I would still have data on the other). My manuscript was stored on the data disks. Because I had fresh backups on my backup server, I went ahead and reconfigured my data disks and formatted them. I then tried to copy the files from the backup server to the data disks. That is when I ran into a major problem. The software that I used to restore the files copied only some of the files and deleted all the files from the backup server! I now had no manuscript! Although I was able to recover a few files (each chapter was on an individual file), most of my work was lost. If I had used a cloud service provider as a backup, then I would not have had such a problem. Ad-ditionally, because my backup server and my workstation are at the same location, there was then still the risk of losing my files had a different type of disaster, such as a fire, occurred. The cloud service based backup would have a backup location that different from that of my own local workstation and backup server. The disadvantages of the cloud based backup are (1) risk of a security breach at the cloud service provider whereby a third-party can obtain your data, and (2) employees of the cloud service provider having access to your data. One way to overcome these dis – advantages is to use a strong encryption mechanism and backup the encrypted files.
From a different perspective, let us suppose that you use a cloud service provider for data storage. It would make sense to appoint a different cloud service provider for backing up some or all of that data. There are two main reasons for using a different cloud service provider for backups: (1) you have a second location for your backups,and (2) you will retain access to your data if one provider had an outage or went out of business. A form of integra-tion, or a simple application to backup and restore, would be needed between the two cloud service providers to en-sure unrestricted data flow. One way to achieve this would be to synchronize the data between the two repositories using software such as freefilesync, rsync, or bit-torrent sync. Some of the commercial offerings available currently for backup include CrashPlan, Backblaze, Spideroak, Car-bonite, Bitcasa, and Amazon Glacier. The latter is much more of an archival solution but can be used for incremen-tal backup snapshots that you create once a month and plan to access only infrequently. The appendix at the end of this book provides a discussion of backup schemes.