Cloud Backup

Although every company backs up its data store — its most important technological and business resource — one question that many organizations hesitate over is whether an external cloud backup service is worthwhile. Or is it sufficient to back the data store up on the same servers that the organization runs for its day-to-day transactions?

In our modern technological era, which is ceaselessly evolving, various types of cloud backup have been in use for years even among individual users. Through DropboxGoogle DriveiCloud, and numerous other services familiar to many of us, individuals send various types of files — video, audio, graphics, and text, in a range of formats — from their computers to a personal storage area[1] on the service provider’s cloud.


Why is cloud backup necessary?

Different users have different purposes for copying (or “uploading”) files to cloud backup. Some users want to share their files with other users (with ZippyShare, a user can upload a file of any kind, compressed into a *.zip or *.rar format), while others want to back up important documents and files for safety’s sake without sharing them.

At organizations and businesses, the question of whether cloud backup is necessary, or even worthwhile, comes up repeatedly because not every medium, even if suitable for individual users, is suitable on a larger scale. Large organizations typically maintain enormous data stores, including some confidential and sensitive information. Because part of the information is sensitive, and because the organization does not intend cloud backup as a means of sharing the information with the general public, dilemmas arise concerning the suitability and effectiveness of the cloud backup service in the business sector.

To answer the questions as their implications and importance deserve, we begin by explaining the rationale and the significance of cloud backup for organizations, along with the various benefits that it offers them.


What are the purposes of cloud backup?

Every organization and business has an ever-growing data store, and nothing is more vital than that data store in the office’s day-to-day activities. Because of the information’s importance, the organization must protect it from all threats and must plan in advance how to keep its quality, completeness, and accessibility unimpaired. Otherwise damage or loss, in a form that could slow activity down or even halt it entirely, is a possibility constantly threatening day-to-day operations.

In the past, an organization needed to purchase expensive infrastructures, employ specialists, and set up an in-house IT department even if the organization’s core activity was unrelated to digital technologies. The need arose from lack of an alternative. To a growing organization that wanted quick, efficient work processes, it was clear that the data store is vital to the daily work. There was no choice but to invest great quantities of time and money in order to preserve the data store.

The further the technology advanced, the more complications surrounded the task of keeping up with the modern conditions and standards that it dictated. On the one hand, the quick growth of technology gives organizations access to a larger clientele than ever, but on the other hand, it obliges them to make enormous financial investments in order to protect themselves and their intellectual/informational property from various forms of damage. Damage can come from industrial espionage, natural disaster, attack, physical accidents, and even keyboard errors. Those enormous investments are necessary if only to ensure that the infrastructure supporting the organization’s data store remains up to date and complies with current international standards.

For many organizations, a side effect of the complex conditions of recent years is decentralization. Some secondary work processes are outsourced — for example, by various departments whose work is not necessarily part of the organization’s core processes but is indispensable in order to support the central workflow.

In the global commercial marketplace, the alternative is to enlist an external specialist operating outside the organization — a provider that undertakes parts of its clients’ secondary processes. Once an organization enters into cooperation with such a provider, the organization can permit itself to concentrate on its core processes and on its strategic ambitions for the future, being freed from dealing with — and investing in — fields far removed from its professional expertise.

For the organization’s data store, IT infrastructure, access platforms, and indeed all its digital technology of every kind, external providers will always, by their nature, be much more up to date, modern, professional, and capable than the organization itself if the organization’s business is in a different professional field.

Professionalism and technical ability are a primary reason that it is natural for IT technology providers (in appropriate specialties) to offer cloud backup as part of their professional services to the business community — especially now that those services have won great success in the consumer market.


What advantages does cloud backup bring to an organization?

Cloud backup solves a large number of issues that cause uncertainty in organizations, and it provides many advantages:

  • Cloud backup frees the organization from various investments in infrastructure, professional staff, and the IT department. It saves a great deal of time, money, and other resources.
  • Cloud backup frees the organization from upgrading, updating, replacing components, and expanding and testing its infrastructure in order to comply with fast-changing international standards.
  • Cloud backup eliminates the fear that the organization’s valuable data will be damaged or lost, by copying (backing up) the data store continually from the organization’s servers to the provider’s cloud platform or by writing data directly to the cloud platform while concurrently and continually backing the data up on servers belonging to the provider.
  • Cloud backup solves the challenge of business continuity and of recovery speed related to possible technological disasters. The technological side of recovery is a vital part of any organization’s general DR (Disaster Recovery[2]) process.
  • From within the organization, access is quick and easy for all departments, branches, and individual employees, subject to authorization, so that data transparency is high and information is up to date.
  • From outside the organization, constant bidirectional accessibility for authorized users means that the organization’s investors, shareholders, suppliers, and business partners also benefit from the data transparency and up-to-date information.


Who should be using cloud backup?

Cloud backup is suitable, by its nature, for organizations and businesses that depend on a computerized data store. It is immaterial whether they are partially involved in technology (“Click & Mortar”) or completely based on some kind of technological media (“Pure Play”).

Thus most businesses in today’s world — or at least most businesses that run on electricity — can benefit from cloud backup. These are some criteria:

  • Does the organization need to ensure business continuity and stay prepared for all possible threats to the data store?
  • Does the organization want to concentrate on its core processes and leave the technological headaches to specialists?
  • Does the organization want to save resources but still want (or need) to stay technologically up to date, using a dedicated infrastructure suited exactly to its needs?

If so, the organization should consider cloud backup.


Cloud Backup Release 3 as a solution

Cloud Backup Release 3 is a simple, easy-to-use solution operated directly from the client’s MedOneCloud portal. It backs up the data store from the local servers owned by the client, or from the cloud platform that serves as the infrastructure for client’s data store, to servers in MedOne’s data center.

Cloud Backup Release 3 supports Linux, Windows 2003, and later Windows versions. It offers three plans: Essential, Advanced, and Enterprise. The plans provide the following features, among others:

  • Support for IaaS platforms (private, public, or hosted)
  • Monitoring of unexpected workload
  • Access to the client’s servers
  • Secondary backup at pre-specified intervals
  • Transparency of technical information and work status at any given time, and easy access for users
  • Option of choosing file backup or complete folder backup, for the client’s convenience
  • Various work reports (recovery, backup, summation, etc.)