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Indeed, backup (or as I like to call it, operational recovery) continues to grow in criticality and priority (i.e. mobile data – http://searchcio.techtarget.com/news/2240022995/Mobile-data-security-spans-policies-budgets-and-backups ? ).   Still few understand the differences between it, disaster recovery, and business continuity ( http://blog.engagedconsulting.com/?p=162 ).

  Nonetheless, operational recovery remains extremely pertinent.


We have already seen the acquisition of a backup vendor (to remain anonymous to protect the innocent) by a storage vendor that has limited the market and stifled innovation.   This firm went from top tier provider with the likes of Symantec (VERITAS) NetBackup and IBM TSM to a non sequitur.  The industry has not really supported this kind of acquisition. The market share has fallen dramatically and been recognized as a mechanism to improve margins on the storage.

SMB, Fortune 1000, and Fortune 500 alike fundamentally rely upon traditional backup as a foundational element that is less expensive than primary storage. As previously mentioned, each vendor in the market today has their own pros and cons. The perspective from which you view their offerings influences your likes and dislikes. Simplicity, low cost, and primarily windows environment will trend towards one solution whereas feature rich, agile, flexible, powerful, multi-tenet integration, and diverse environment will trend towards another. 

Industry collectives have indicated a potential trend with great merit; to keep the operational recovery (backup) closer to the actual data. However, complexity creeps in if care is not taken to develop an enterprise architecture ( http://blog.engagedconsulting.com/?p=194 ) with service rich frameworks that incorporate archive, deduplication, encryption, data security, information classification, data loss prevention, and so forth. The inclusion of these elements in an enterprise architecture does not require the purchase of technology necessarily. It does however, require the purposeful and thoughtful deployment of policy, process, procedure, and education.

As much as many would love to simply not think about it, backup (operational recovery) continues to be a staple process of protecting data and organizational viability. Therefore, firms will continue to provide solutions in this space for quite some time. The players may change over time; however, the root of the problem continues to elevate in priority. Data protection continues to be more and more paramount as we become more and more of a digital society.

The question becomes, when will operational recovery get due attention and precision as a primary focus of core IT services (internal or external), instead of an after-thought?

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