Long Live the Backup Beat!

eLABorations: As needs and technologies evolve, it's become anything but dull.

When I first joined eWEEK Labs more than four years ago, backup and disaster recovery products were the most boring things in the IT universe and that beat, along with the UPS beat, was inherited begrudgingly by the newest employee.

At the time, I felt that this was a cruel and unnecessary hazing ritual and I hoped that we would hire another analyst quickly so that I could dump the backup assignments onto the next newbie. After all, this was the dawn of the Internet age. Everybody wanted VPNs, voice over IP and metadirectories, and they wanted them now.

Luckily for me, thanks to advances in SAN (storage area networking) and Fibre Channel technology, backup/recovery solutions have been anything but stagnant the last few years.

In fact, in recent tests I conducted with Veritas, I was impressed not only by the level of sophistication in new backup products, but by the attention to detail that must be expended to make sure that when all of your services and apps crumble, your backup will bring you back onto your feet in a timely manner. (Watch for eWEEK Labs report on the Veritas tests and the state of tape backup in the April 15 issue.)

As a result of the changes in storage technologies over the last few years and because of the phenomenal growth in storage usage, backups now more than ever became important entities.

With emphasis on uptime growing by the day, more and more companies are finding that they have to redesign their infrastructure not only to feed their new applications and services, but also to make sure these new investments are protected.

In the end, your backup implementation may not be the thing you brag about to your IT buddies, but it will the first thing you turn to when all of your other services let you down.

Senior Analyst Henry Baltazar can be reached at henry_baltazar@ziffdavis.com.