With all the various tasks associated with data management, database restoration can seem like the least of your worries. But this isn’t the case.
In fact, database restoration should be treated as a priority. Without a solid database restoration strategy, you may not be able to bounce back from unforeseen events like hardware failures and cyberattacks.
After one of these events you may experience increased downtime, your organization’s reputation may suffer, and you may even suffer legal consequences.
For example, you may be found negligent of industry compliance standards or financially liable for a data breach.
This article will go through some of the challenges associated with database restoration and provide some recommendations for dealing with them.
Database restoration, while indispensable, is not without its challenges. Navigating these challenges effectively is crucial for ensuring a seamless recovery process. Let's delve into the top challenges commonly faced during database restoration and explore strategies to overcome them.
The software you use to back up your database matters. Many filetypes are incompatible with one another, and switching database restoration strategies could cause data loss if you aren’t careful.
Here are the most common filetypes:
These are compressed archive filetypes that are widely used across all fields and markets. Essentially, multiple files are combined and compressed into one archive file ending in .zip or .tar.
These files will save you some storage space, and you’ll almost certainly be able to open these files on almost any system. But they do have some disadvantages:
These files typically use the file extension .sql or .bak and they retain the database commands. This allows you to recover the structure as well as all of the data within your database.
SQL Dump files are great because they can move very easily to new systems, and they are quite easy to understand. This minimizes the amount of training needed to backup / restore your database.
This allows you to take capture the complete disk data of a virtual machine. This ensures that your data remains completely lossless and can be restored.
This filetype offers unmatched consistency across different systems, so they are excellent for data migration. They also allow for a total system recovery—not only will the data be saved, but also all your applications, operating systems, and settings/configurations will be saved.
There are countless other types of backup files, and they each carry their own set of advantages and disadvantages. Take the guesswork out of the equation by discussing your database restoration needs with a professional.
Another main challenge of database restoration is a lack of sufficient hardware resources. The process of database restoration requires extensive computing power.
As shown in the previous section, backups often have very large file sizes. Your system must have incredibly high memory and storage capabilities.
Because of this, many organizations turn instead to the cloud. Cloud-based storage solutions allow organizations to store their backups with a third party for a monthly service fee.
Although this may appear to be an unnecessary expense—most organizations feel they can handle their data internally—it actually can be a cost-saver in the long term.
You may consider buying a few external hard drives with sufficient storage to be a more cost-efficient solution. It appears at first to be a single cost instead of a monthly payment.
But these hard drives have much shorter lifespans than one might guess.
A typical hard drive has a lifespan of just 3-5 years. Not only does it become an expense to replace these hard drives, but there’s also a risk of data loss. Not to mention the time spent copying data to new drives, erasing the old data and disposing of used drives.
Consider using a SaaS (Software as a Service) back up firm to offer cloud-based solutions to your backup automation and database restoration.
Managing time can be the trickiest part of database restoration. Here’s a list of recommendation to ensure you are using the most efficient techniques of database restoration:
A final main challenge worth discussing is the legal aspect of database storage. Whenever your records include data about real people, you must be careful to follow all relevant data protention laws.
For example, those in the medical industry must follow all HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) guidelines that protect the confidentiality of patient records. Educators have a similar duty to their students according to FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act).
There are some regulations that cross multiple industries and fields, such as:
As this article shows, there are countless challenges to developing database restoration solutions for an organization of any size.
Not only can a mistake be costly and time-intensive, but it can result in legal consequences that can carry stiff financial penalties.
Prevent a headache by considering working with a company that can help you cover all of your bases.
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