Azure – Always at Work in the Background
Microsoft’s Azure platform has been our backup program of choice for clients since Office 365 became a product for small businesses and home offices/users. We like that it’s a living system – one that continues to evolve and grow.
If you read the article Microsoft ‘Ignites’ Tech Initiatives, you couldn’t help but notice that Microsoft is throwing massive resources behind Azure as a technology platform. As we see it, Azure will become an even stronger backup resource as it helps you use your data files and apps more efficiently. That said, you need to make it your backup program – or at least one of your backup programs – if you want to take advantage of advancing technologies.
Backup is a misunderstood term in the context of IT services. We define a backup as an extra copy of data from a computer. Simply putting data in the cloud – even with OneDrive through Office 365 – is not a backup; it’s storage. Now, it can be useful – even vital – to store data in at least one cloud and on some sort of external device that’s separate from a computer or office server. But it’s not backup.
Why is backup critical? Two scenarios come to mind: 1.) a catastrophe that wipes out your computer or cloud-based server and 2.) a rogue employee or hacker getting into your account and deleting files. The big issue in both scenarios is recovery.
Azure solves the recovery issue for us because it works seamlessly with Office 365, including Outlook and its PST files for your email. For some, backing up email may be more important than backing up files.
As an IT professional, I like Azure’s ability to generate reports – with more capabilities coming online all the time. Microsoft constantly uses customer feedback to add more power to the platform. That gives us the ability to go back into our clients’ backup records to trace incidents and to restore files after a catastrophic event. That’s critical because it can be 90 days – sometimes longer – before a hack or data loss is discovered by a client. When that happens, we can go back in time through the power of Azure to find data files that help us help you recover.
As a set of powerful tools, Azure needs to have respect from users. Yes, you can go into Azure, but you can also create havoc with your systems and our work if those tools are misused. One of the things that drives me crazy is when we look like we don’t know what we’re doing when restoring files because somebody messed with the system.
That being said, we believe in educating our clients. If you want to learn more about how your Azure backup is set up and see what it can and can’t do, we’ll be more than happy to give you a remote tour. Call us – 973-433-6676 – or email us to book your tour of your system.