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Crump: Backup and data protection trends in 2014

Those in charge of the backup process are just overwhelmed with all that it entails, according to George Crump of Storage Switzerland.

Crump, who is leading TechTarget's Backup and Data Protection seminars, said the biggest backup and data protection trends this year involve the massive amount of data growth and how to manage it.

"They're overwhelmed with unstructured data growth," Crump said. "They're overwhelmed with virtualized backup and they're still struggling with how to get bare-metal backups done and vendors are flooding the market with new backup technologies all the time. Backup administrators are trying to figure out which ones they use, and when and how they use it is really becoming a big nightmare for them."

Crump noted another of the backup and data protection trends he's noticed this year.

"We're definitely seeing the backup responsibility being pushed somewhere else," Crump said. "It's the job nobody wants to do. Clearly, in a virtualized environment, we're seeing that fall on whomever might be in charge of virtualized infrastructure. We're seeing database administrators take that responsibility. Bare-metal backups still fall on the actual backup administrator.

"There are a couple of ramifications to this: Nobody knows who is backing up what. How do you recover? Do you get the right copy of data?"

Crump said there are real-world consequences to making the wrong decision.

"I tell a story in the workshop where a major health care provider picked the wrong copy of data, which was three days old, and it shut down the entire hospital. If they picked another copy, it would have been only an hour old. Knowing that stuff is really critical."

The other thing he's seen at the seminars is fortuitous.

"We're actually seeing people get promoted from going to the seminar. That's not a guarantee, by the way, but we're teaching people a process by which they can manage their data protection infrastructure better and the other thing we teach is how to promote the use of the process."

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