12-27-21 | Blog Post

6 Reasons Why Your Backups Are Failing

Blog Posts

Regardless of the software that you use to back up and restore your system, you will likely experience failed jobs. Every error has the risk of resulting in data loss, which can have a severe impact on your business. Backups fail for many reasons, two being from hardware and software failures. According to a recent survey by ComputerWeekly.com, the failure rate for backups is an astonishing 37%, which is why investing in professional cloud backups is crucial to your organization.

Let’s walk through the common problems that cause the backup failures

1. Poor Monitoring Procedure

One of the most common reasons behind the failure of backup jobs is poor monitoring procedures. This could mean a couple of different things. Perhaps your team is not paying close enough attention to the frequency or success of their backups, or maybe they don’t have the right resources to perform strong backups. Weak monitoring protocols can trigger a domino effect that can lead to future failures. In order to effectively backup your data, you can automate the entire process of backup management, remote replication, and long-term retention. You can also use Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS). A large portion of your disaster recovery plan depends on your backup strategy. As we mentioned previously, many businesses do not have enough storage space available to support their backups. This results in either need to purge older copies or purchase additional resources. The best way to address this is to shift to the cloud and work with your team to develop a disaster recovery plan.

2. Hardware Failure

Hardware failures often cause data backup and restore to fail, and it has nothing to do with your backup software. According to Kroll Ontrack: 67 percent of data loss is caused by hard drive crashes or system failure. Thus, in a nutshell, the backup can fail because the drive fails. There are several components that lead to hardware failure such as Hard Disk Drive (HDD), Ram failure, Motherboard and more. When it comes to preventing hardware failures that affect backups, the most important thing is to create redundancy and following the 3-2-1 rule, meaning you have three copies of your data, stored on two different forms of media, with one copy located offsite.

3. Network Failure

When backing up via the network, a connection failure or disconnection may cause the backup to fail. Cloud-based backup solutions are very popular among businesses, but they are heavily reliant upon network connectivity. Therefore, if you try to extract data from a cloud backup and there is a problem with the network, it will more than likely fail.

4. Misconfiguration or Inadequate Resources

Misconfiguration can cause many problems in the operation of the backup and recovery of data. Problems arise when the scale of data and servers grow and eventually the overall environment changes that consist of recovery logs and becomes too difficult for an IT team to handle. These logs contain important backup data which are then entered into the database.

Misconfiguration happens when multiple overlapping backup sessions occur. As said before, problems like this are caused because of a lack of resources. When new clients have exceeded the limit, this results in a backup failure. More than likely, this occurs because an IT team does not have data backed up to the cloud, the knowledge of fixing issues when they arise or the manpower that is required to handle heavy loads of data.

5.Human Error

Human error is one of the main culprits of data loss and backup failures. It is a fundamental fact that humans are responsible for overseeing the implementation and operation of backup processes and, no matter how automated they are, there is always room for human error. For example, you may accidentally delete some critical files in your backups or accidentally click on the malicious link that can rapidly infect your network and damage your backups.

6. Software Issues

Both new software and outdated versions can cause backup failures. Problems include application errors, agents not installing the software properly, connection problems–even something you don’t think about like daylight savings time can have a tremendous impact.

The Bottom Line

Backup failures, while common, can be minimized by being proactive and by educating your employees on best practices.  Having multiple solutions in place is the best way to prevent failed backups from harming your business, as is performing regular test restores. Regularly testing your backups will not prevent backup failures but will help you with identifying and fixing the problem before it becomes worse. Additionally, having a strong team of administrators who have the proper tools and knowledge can be a huge benefit to your backup strategy. If you simply do not have the bandwidth to manage backups in-house, look into a 3rd party managed services provider, like Otava, to manage your backups for you.

If you want to learn more about how to back up your data and to ensure business continuity, contact us. We offer customized, high-performance and secure cloud solutions for data backup and disaster recovery. Although backup failures are not 100% preventable, taking the proper precautions and investing in professional backup solutions can be your saving grace. In addition to basic backup and disaster recovery services, Otava also offers 24x7x365 managed services, followed by a 99.99% uptime guarantee, giving you peace of mind and ensuring that your backups are always safe.

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