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Here's why to think twice before choosing a low-end file and folder backup product.

November 20, 2019

3 Min Read
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SolarWinds MSP's Carrie Reber

Carrie Reber

By Carrie Reber, SolarWInds MSP

Your larger customers probably know they need data protection, and they likely have thought about how quickly they need to be up and running again after a system failure or disaster. But what about smaller customers? 

A recent industry publication reports that about 70% of ransomware attacks in 2018 targeted small businesses, with an average ransom demand of $116,000. While antivirus and endpoint detection solutions are critical, the odds would indicate that some attacks will still find their way through your defenses. That’s where recovery to a clean, recent backup becomes critical. And $116,000 would pay for a lot of MSP-delivered small business data protection. 

What are your backup options? One way to handle those smaller, more budget-conscious customers is to choose a low-end file and folder backup product. If they never have a server fail or a full system fall victim to ransomware, that may do the job. Simple file-level recoveries with this type of product may be fine. But why take a chance? You may find yourself in a tough bind if a full system recovery is needed and takes days to complete.

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Meanwhile, your most sophisticated and technology-dependent customers fall on the other end of the spectrum. These clients demand the fastest RTO (recovery time objectives) and shortest RPO (recovery point objectives), and you may believe that only the most expensive, appliance-based backup product will do the job. But these products can introduce problems of their own. 

For example, if the appliance’s memory becomes full or there is a firmware problem, it can stop taking backups for some time before you’re aware of the problem. You don’t need this type of vulnerability, especially when it comes to your most demanding customers. 

What’s the answer to your backup problems? So what is the best solution? It’s like the children’s tale of Goldilocks. Low-end backup tools, though cheap enough, may be too lightweight to let you provide the service levels that even your smallest customers expect. Legacy backup appliances, while expensive, may still leave you vulnerable at recovery time while also reducing your profit margins. 

You need a data protection solution that is just right: affordable enough for small customers, and robust enough for the most demanding. An all-in-one product that allows you to manage all types of backups for all your customers from a single dashboard will save you time, adding efficiency and improving profitability. 

Don’t settle for a mix of too-small or too-complex backup products. Take a lesson from Goldilocks, and hold out for the option that’s just right. 

Carrie Reber is a senior product marketing manager for SolarWinds MSP.

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