Top 6 Challenges with Traditional Data Backup and Disaster Recovery Solutions

What do you think businesses use as a leverage point to mint revenue and profits? It’s DATA. Companies now use advanced data analytics to launch their innovative products and services in the market, improve operations, or to make better decisions based on correct information. In short, data is the “HEARTBEAT” for businesses.  So it is understandable why they go great extents to protect it from corruption or loss.

Historically, companies adopted traditional data protection solutions, but with the tremendous growth of data, the ability to protect that data and ensuring a clean recovery for access during a recovery has become more and more dubious.

Failing to modernize their backup and disaster strategies have cost many businesses millions. In fact, a 2015 “study from EMC suggested that data loss and downtime cost a total of $1.7 trillion each year” (The Real Cost). Since data is becoming digital that number is expected to increase as time goes on. Let’s have a look at some of the severe issues they face:

1. Corruption and Revelation of Magnetic Media

Concerns arise for data integrity for the companies who are still deploying tape backups. Data backup tapes are built with magnetic media, which is extremely vulnerable to corruption and exposure. With data backup tapes, data is usually saved to the magnetic media and any exposure to a fingerprint or getting too close to a magnetized area, leads the data on the tape unusable, and you will only know about the corruption when you try to restore and find it isn’t there. There seems to be a significant failure rate on magnetic media, but still, people assume the data that is stored on their tapes is safe and sound.

2. Capability Planning

Data growth is unpredictable! Many organizations even today can’t anticipate the growth in the amount of data they require to archive and thus end up having a data backup system with less capacity. This, in short, leads to new investment above the initial capital expenditure.

3. A Backup for the Backup

Natural disasters and business disruptions are obvious to occur. When a major disaster occurs, specifically one that affects an entire region, your data may be safe and sound in an offsite storage facility many miles away. There are high chances that you get the backup tapes back in a few hours, but will you be able to restore the data from those tapes? In case if the backup unit itself was destroyed or damaged during the disaster, you will have to find a replacement unit prior to being able to restore the tapes. But, often after a disaster, compatible backup units are either very difficult or impossible to procure.

4. Disaster Recovery Challenges

Today, data protection being a high concern for today’s enterprises, businesses need to think about more than local backup and recovery, which is “disaster recovery.” When it comes to traditional backup disaster recovery solution, it limits a business’s ability to focus on disaster recovery due to the complexity and time it takes to restore data. As a result, businesses will employ less reliable disaster recovery plans and will face a greater risk in the event of a disaster.

5. Limited Cloud Usage

As we talk about long-term retention and data protection, cloud is the new normal!  But, there are companies still stuck in traditional backup infrastructures who never looked to embrace the cloud.  This has resulted in shortened usage of modern technologies and higher reformation time for data restoration.

6. Slow Recoveries

Traditional recovery time ranges from a couple of days to weeks, and in order to restore the last known state of the data center, each server node has to be re-initiated, with tedious installations of the base operating system and the entire application software, including all updates and patches. Additionally, the entire network configuration has to be restored matching the original settings, including VLANs, VPNs, DNS and firewall rules.

After doing all this, the actual backup can be loaded, either incrementally or at once including all user accounts, databases, documents and other elements in their latest state. In case, if the last backup was done several days or weeks ago, recovery can become a long and time-consuming process.  According to EMC, “For each hour of downtime, organizations tend to lose thousands of dollars. On average, businesses experienced 25 hours of unexpected downtime, with 36% of them reporting revenue loss and 34% reporting delays in product development due to the disruptions” (Downtime and Data Loss).

Protecting your data is equivalent to protecting money, it needs to be held somewhere really secure where you can easily access it in case of emergency.  We know a secure place for money is the bank and similarly, for data, it is in the cloud. Cloud backup and DR solutions are more reliable, fast and secure than traditional backup solutions. Zmanda is an all-in-one solution for backup and disaster recovery that protects files, servers, and entire data centers. This modern solution is designed for companies that have an extremely low tolerance for data loss, downtime, or risk mitigation.

Be sure to check out Points to Include in Your Disaster Recovery Plan



The Real Cost of Data Loss And How To Prevent It. (2017, May 24). Retrieved from


Downtime and Data Loss Cost Enterprises $1.7 Trillion Per Year: EMC. (n.d.). Retrieved from

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