Tag Archive for data storage

Weighing the Costs of Backup and Recovery

Weighing the costs of backup and recoveryWith technology critical to all organizations no matter their size, both profit and non-profit leaders are betting their company’s life on having the right systems in place at the right time. Some leaders look at technology as a mere accounting expense. Although one does not need to be a CPA to manage an organization’s finances, a basic understanding of the concepts is required to make sound financial decisions for the business. When it comes to technology the same applies in order to make informed decisions on the IT budget. For example, a basic understanding of data storage is important when projecting costs related to backup and recovery in case of a disaster.

As would be expected, storage requirements and protection of the data can range widely in price depending on the vertical market of the company (see Gartner IT spending forecast for 2013 below*). For instance, data storage needs differ greatly between a bank and a non-profit. In the former, high-availability storage is needed for fast access to critical data so speed and performance with absolutely no down time is imperative (requiring a higher investment); in the latter, stored data may be less critical and thus can be backed up on less expensive media with longer intervals between full backups.

Knowing the risk of data loss and weighing that against the investment in appropriate computer hardware and software is also critical. One just needs to look at the damage inflicted upon the telecommunications industry following Hurricane Sandy in 2012**. A lack of investment in infrastructure was to blame for widespread outages. The damage hammered the credibilty and was a financial blow to telecom providers; even spuring an FCC inquiry***.  Despite this, and other natural as well as man-made disasters, many businesses are still not implementing disaster recovery plans to ensure business continuity.

One way to get on track is to do disaster recovery and business continuity prepartion audit.  Many of my company’s partners can provide this service and I am happy to refer you – please email me here at tom@tomfedro.com if I can be of assistance.

Sources:

* IT Spending To See Modest Growth In 2013, Informationweek, January 04, 2013.

**Looking beyond Hurricane Sandy, CounterPunch.org, November 15, 2012.

*** FCC holds Hurricane Sandy hearings into telecom failures, fixes, NJ.com, February 05, 2013.

 

Platform Choices

By Tom Fedro

Past & Future Choices by Tom FedroI knew of a company. I’ll keep the names to myself to protect the innocent, although in truth, there’s nothing innocent about poor decision making.  This company developed tools and accessories for the video game industry.  At first glance, it seems like a great idea.  Video gaming is a solid segment and enjoys emerging market growth with mature market stability.  The problem, and it’s still amazing to me that they didn’t see it, was that they chose to develop on a platform that was rapidly approaching obsolescence.  They had cool technology, no doubt.  Special glasses could turn a 2D game into a 3D game.  Special controllers did all sorts of things to ensure yet another teen would never leave his room.  It didn’t matter.  It was like designing a brilliant sound system that only worked with Betamax.  No amount of brilliant design was going to make that company work.

We see similar activity today, although in more than just the video game industry.  The movement to mobile computing has created a great many opportunities for companies and a great many options for consumers.  As consumers transition their entertainment and document management from desktops and laptops to phones and tablets, the desire to get on a mobile device what was once only available on an immobile system is growing.  I’m excited that Paragon is playing a role.  Our Universal File System Driver (UFSD) is now working on Acer’s Android tablets.  This essentially means that a user can play media stored on the standard Windows NTFS formatted hard drive on the Android based tablet.

It’s the kind of product I like.  It’s one that doesn’t choose between competing systems and risk the loss of one or the other.  Instead, it fills a real market need and helps bridge the gap.  With this product embedded in the Acer Ikonia Tab products, all of the features of NTFS formatting are available to the end user.  The bottom line, the product doesn’t risk making the error of betting on technology that nobody will keep.  Instead, it allows integration of incompatible operating technology in a way that benefits all of the parties involved.

What is your company doing that relies on technology that might not last?  What is it doing to bridge the gap between incompatible but entrenched technologies?