Shortcuts Can Take You the Long Way

Just like there’s no free lunch, there’s no easy solution when you use a shortcut that cuts corners. Whatever time and money you think you are saving can easily be wiped out – at the cost of more time and money – when a failure occurs without warning. You can protect valuable data by taking the time to set up your system properly.

That advice was brought home to a client who received some bad advice from a bargain-basement IT support provider. The provider had moved away but still provided support. When our client – before we took over the account – contacted the provider to help with a database problem, things went from bad to worse very quickly.

In a nutshell, our client’s system had some built-in redundancies, all designed to prevent data-loss problems, but their failure had never been detected. As result, our client was walking a tightrope without a safety net. When called in, the former IT provider instructed our client to reboot the server, but the server never came back online. That was one problem.

Another problem was the failure of the hard drive, and we found a problem there that we consider totally avoidable. It began when the client started running out of space on the server’s hard drive. Instead of taking the time – and money – to back up the data and install a new hard drive, the IT provider repartitioned the drive using a compression program.

That step is something we never even suggest to our clients. In all the literature we’ve come across and in our many years of IT experience, it’s not a stable program. It’s just a bad shortcut to try to pick up extra space.

So, when the hard drive failed, it lost some data that the client had thought was saved. We tried several restore points, but we never could get the data that had been lost. That’s because the database had been corrupted at some point, and the client was backing up corrupted data.

Going forward, the client now understands that imaging a hard drive or partitioning the drive or using any other questionable technique to create more space on a hard drive will only expose them to more risk. It’s a lesson everyone should learn and heed. You can only stuff so much data onto a hard drive before you get distortions (corrupted data) and an outright failure.

If you need more data storage capacity, we can explore a number of options and find the one that best fits your office’s needs and protects the safety of your data. Contact us at 973-433-6676 or email us to set up an appointment.