Move over tape. Cloud backup is the future


Move over tape. Cloud backup is the future


We’re in the midst of a data boom. Data growth is accelerating and data requiring protection is unpredictable .

This challenges not only the rightsizing of your data storage, but also the suitability of your backup strategy.

After all, data is one of your most valuable assets, so you need to know that this information is being properly and securely stored should you ever need to perform a restore. That’s before you start to consider any requirements for the long-term retention of commercially-sensitive information such as intellectual property or financial records.

For a long-time, tape archives have been the go-to approach for long-term retention, but a desire to realise new efficiencies, remove complexity, and achieve more predictable, and crucially consumption-based commercials are seeing businesses turn to the cloud.

The cloud or tape conundrum

Until recently, delivering an effective cloud backup strategy for long-term storage, especially for those using on-premises infrastructure, was a challenge.

A lack of native integrations available to connect on-premises performance tiers with long-term backup environments held in cloud services from the likes of Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS) meant that these connections could only be achieved with the use of 3rd party resource, such as those from a Veeam Cloud Connect Partner, to deliver on the backup chain to a long-term object store in the cloud.

While this was and remains a viable option, the need to use additional platforms for cloud integration adds additional cost and complexity which may not have been viable for every organisation, and compromises many of the benefits sought from the implementation of a cloud solution.

This has seen many businesses stick with more traditional approaches, using on-premises infrastructure backed up to a disc-based capacity tier, before eventual migration to tape which may then be stored off-site.

But while this delivers on many long-term retention requirements, it comes with drawbacks of its own. Managing a tape archive requires human administration to manually switch tapes over so that these can be moved off-site. This was especially challenging during the Covid-19 pandemic, where businesses working remotely would still need staff to visit the office to manage the interchange of tapes.

Implementing tape archives can also be expensive, especially with the unpredictability of data volumes, and there are question marks over long-term reliability as it is not uncommon for media to fail in a recovery scenario.

It’s these challenges with tape technology that have seen businesses look towards cloud as an alternative, and why backup solutions providers have taken steps to enhance the viability of cloud solutions.

Capturing the cloud opportunity with Veeam

Veeam Version 11 has changed the game when it comes to long-term cloud backup. For the first time native integrations allow for the creation of scale-out, tiered backup repositories across cloud environments in both Azure and AWS, allowing simplified access to long-term data retention inside AWS S3 Glacier and Azure Hot/Cold or Archive storage.

With these enhanced integrations a single backup job can now be used to create a Grandfather, Father, Son (GFS) policy across every element of your backup chain without the need to create multiple jobs.

Automated backup policies can be implemented across each of the tiers ensuring that different datasets are backed up appropriately without the need for any manual administration.

This ensures that your data is backed up safely and securely into a cloud environment, reducing the infrastructure required for any local on-premises storage with the peace of mind that you can continually back up to a scalable cloud environment that can be extended should your business data continue to grow.

Strict data retention policies can also be enforced to ensure that your data is only retained for as long as is required. Once your archive data is stored beyond a certain point, this ages out and is automatically deleted leaving room for more recent backups and self-sizing your environment to avoid expensive over-provisioning.

The simplicity of Veeam’s integrations remove the previous obstacles to long-term cloud backup as there is no need for additional 3rd party assistance from cloud partners. Backup policies can be implemented directly from your on-premises environment to cloud, across both a short-medium term capacity tier, and a long-term archive tier.

With Microsoft Azure, you can also now take advantage of the reduced costs associated with hot and cold storage classification as an alternative to Azure Archive storage.

This also removes the dependence on traditional tape storage, and the associated admin headache, while allowing for simple self-service administration of your backup policy through an intuitive browser-based tool.

In summary, Veeam Version 11 means that businesses can now access the true operational and commercial benefits of a cost-effective, self-serviced, scalable cloud environment across all areas of their backup strategy.

Time to rethink your backup? If so, then talk to us

We’ve already helped a number of customers streamline their approach to long-term data retention and backups.

If you’d like to learn more about Veeam Version 11, long-term cloud backups in AWS and Azure, and how you can replace traditional tape solutions, get in touch with the team.