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Small to medium-sized businesses may not have the IT resources a large enterprise has for ensuring systems and data are backed up and running smoothly. But an SMB shouldn't place its IT assets at risk by not having a suitable backup strategy and backup tools.
There are many SMB backup products and services available that can help protect critical IT assets.
Let's examine this subject by looking at two backup platforms for SMBs: on-site backup and cloud-based backup.
Many options are available for on-site SMB backup, ranging from removable flash drives to external disk drives to RAID arrangements. Given the low cost of networking technologies today, it's logical for an SMB to configure a LAN and include access to storage resources on the network. These can include external hard drives, storage arrays and dedicated file servers designated for backups.
An SMB can obtain many of these kinds of products at office supply stores, like OfficeMax and Best Buy. The business can also quickly locate numerous vendors of these technologies and others through a standard search engine.
Availability of cloud-based backup resources makes it possible to not only back up applications and data, but also entire servers and small data centers. Critical deciding factors for cloud-based SMB backup products include the following:
- price per gigabyte/terabyte of storage;
- accessibility to the resource -- in this case, the internet;
- security of the resource (protecting your data from possible hackers and viruses);
- warranties for the service;
- support for service-level agreements;
- ease of installation and service acceptance;
- availability of value-added services -- for example, disaster recovery testing; and
- term of contract for service.
The following is a short list -- in alphabetical order, not in any preference of capability or value -- of cloud-based backup service providers for SMBs:
- Acronis Backup
- Arcserve UDP Cloud Direct
- CloudBerry Backup
- CloudRanger, a Druva company
- Code42 CrashPlan for Small Business
- Jungle Disk
- N2WS, a Veeam company
- Vembu Technologies
Be sure to check out these SMB backup offerings carefully when making a change or launching a new or expanded data protection capability.
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