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volume 10 number 7 july 2005 TipSheet

Welcome to the July issue of MicroMetric's TipSheet.

This monthly newsletter is targeted at addressing the needs of our customers.

This month we'll return to the subject of Backup's, as we had three customers lose data last month, because they either didn't have backup procedures or didn't follow them.


Nobody wakes up and says "Oh good, today's my backup day! At least the people I know have a totally different take - "Oh drudge, not backups. Maybe I can come up with a way out - like going to the dentist.

But every month, we get calls from customers that have lost the digital vacation pictures, an important email from a long lost friend, a recipe they were planning to use tonight, or their checkbook information from Money or Quicken.

Eight years ago we published a four page TipSheet with twenty tips on Backups. This was Volume 2, Number 10, Tips 111-130, and they are archived on our web site. To view them, just go to http://www.micrometric.con/tsv02n10.htm. In writing this issue I've reviewed them and found the information is as relevant today as it was then, but it could use some updating.

Back then, the primary media used were floppy disks, removable media, and tapes. Today most people use writable compact disks (CDs) and digital video disks (DVD's) as the media of choice for backups. CD's will hold about 680MB of data while DVD's capacity range for 4.7GB to 17GB. Both types of media come in single write or re-writable versions. Single write media is good for data that changes infrequently or for a snapshot of the data in time - accounting end of year to be retained or the summer vacation photos. Rewritable media is great for changing data such as all of your files at the end of each month. After a month or two - when you have more recent backup - you can rewrite over the earlier backups.

The two types of backups we most frequently recommend to home customers are those using DVD media or an external hard drive, and either a bundled software solution or one such as "Backup My PC" by Stomp


Last month, on a Friday afternoon, we received a call from a customer that started "We've got a BIG problem....". They had, due to an involved set of circumstances, lost the partition tables on their server's RAID 5 disk storage. And they had no recent backup of many of the accounting files, as the backup files selection had been changed and they were not included.

By the next Wednesday the customer had decided that the lost data was business critical The drives were shipped to a data recovery firm on the West Coast. They were successful and the recovered data was reloaded to their server eight days later. Downtime? Almost two weeks. Direct cost? Over $15,000!

In this case, the data was business critical, and cost was well worth it. But..... What if the data recovery firm had not been successful? What would the costs have been then, or could the company even have survived?

Backup solutions for business can be as simple as those for the home. However, business may have multiple systems that need to be backed up, including servers. The short answer for business customers is to look at the multitude of backup options available to find the best possible solution. It will usually require a combination of approaches to reach one that is economical, easy to operate and as failsafe as possible.

Give us a call and we will be happy to evaluate your situation and recommend a solution for you.

Copyright 2005, MicroMetric, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Permission to copy in total, with this statement and copyright, is hereby granted.

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