The Google Cloud Backup and Disaster Recovery (DR) service was introduced in September 2022, which enables centralized management of backup and DR directly from the Google Cloud console.
Wiseman categorized bikers into two main groups: those who wear protective gear and those who will eventually experience accidents. Similarly, companies can be divided into two groups when it comes to data protection: those who learn from the experiences of others and take precautions, and those who disregard the risks posed by hardware failures, site crashes, malware, viruses, software malfunctions, and human errors.
Some individuals or companies take measures to prevent data loss because they have heard stories from those who couldn’t recover from such incidents (approximately 80% of those who have experienced data loss). Additionally, larger companies face even fewer chances of successfully dealing with data loss.
In the modern business landscape, data security and protection are paramount for organizations worldwide. Numerous threats can result in data corruption, destruction, or loss. While it may be challenging to anticipate these factors, preventive measures can still be taken. This is where Backup and Disaster Recovery (DR) options come into play, ensuring the resilience and recoverability of data even in the most unexpected circumstances.
In this blog, we will explore the Backup, DR and Google Cloud solutions and delve into the establishment of a robust infrastructure that enhances data security and protection in the face of malicious activities.
Backup and Disaster Recovery Definition
Let’s begin by understanding the concepts of Backup and DR.
What is data backup? Backup involves creating copies or archives of critical data and storing them in an alternate location, allowing for recovery in the event of data loss or corruption. Backup options in cloud services and on-premises infrastructure should possess the following characteristics:
- Centralized backup management across various workloads.
- Efficient utilization of storage to minimize costs.
- Minimal recovery times.
On the other hand, disaster recovery (DR) refers to the processes and measures implemented to ensure the continuity of operations and the restoration of vital infrastructure following an adverse event.
When discussing Backup and DR, two essential metrics come into play when assessing the likelihood of recovering from natural or other disasters:
- Recovery Time Objective (RTO): This is the maximum acceptable downtime for applications as per your service level agreement (SLA).
- Recovery Point Objective (RPO): This indicates the maximum acceptable data loss duration from your application due to malicious activities.
In September 2022, Google introduced the Google Cloud Backup and DR service, which enables centralized management of Backup and DR directly from the Google Cloud console. Now, let’s delve into the key features and Google Cloud benefits for workload Backup and restoration.
Google Cloud server backup
Google Cloud offers its users a straightforward approach to setting up, restoring, and managing disaster recovery (DR) and various cloud backup strategies.
A key focus of the GCP backup solution is to provide a centralized management experience. What does this mean? It means that you can reduce the time spent on management and control by having a comprehensive view of your data protection.
With this capability, IT administrators can create application- and crash-consistent backups for virtual machines (VMs) on Compute Engine, VMware Engine, or on-premises VMware, as well as databases and file systems, all from a single interface. Your data will be stored in its original format, ensuring its readability for applications.
By leveraging data protection in the cloud, you can store all your valuable information in one backup storage, in a cost-effective format, without extensive translation or transition efforts. This reduces the time required for recovery and allows critical business operations to be restored more quickly.
To minimize the total cost of owning a backup solution, Google has developed a space-efficient technology called “incremental forever” storage as part of Cloud Backup and Disaster Recovery. This solution follows the principle of paying only for what you use and need. Here’s how it works: once you have your initial backup, Google Cloud will store subsequent backups by capturing only the block-level changes since the last backup session.
This approach enables faster backups, reduces the impact on production resources, minimizes network bandwidth requirements, and lowers storage costs by optimizing the amount of storage consumed by your backups.
Additionally, Google Cloud offers flexibility in terms of cost and data retention. With Google Cloud Storage, a managed service for storing unstructured data, you can choose the storage class that best suits your needs, balancing business requirements and cost efficiency.
For example, Archive Storage provides the lowest-cost option for highly durable storage, suitable for data archiving, with low-latency access, online backup, and disaster recovery capabilities, ensuring that your data is available within milliseconds.
Key benefits of the service
Many people mistakenly assume that storing data in the cloud automatically guarantees its safety in the face of disasters or threats like malware. However, it’s important to remember that simply using the cloud does not guarantee sufficient data security. It’s crucial to assess what backup and disaster recovery capabilities your cloud provider offers.
Here are the benefits of Google Cloud Platform (GCP) backup and disaster recovery:
- Streamlined data management and restoration: GCP provides centralized data management, allowing you to set up, monitor, and manage multiple workloads from a single dashboard.
- Minimal Recovery Point Objective (RPO): Google Cloud Backup and DR services are VMware and application-aware, supporting a wide range of databases such as MS SQL, PostgreSQL, SAP DB, Oracle, and MongoDB. This capability enables you to significantly reduce your RPO, potentially to as low as 10 minutes, without overloading your systems due to the always incremental concept.
- Instant recovery to eliminate downtime: With GCP, you can instantly mount your backup data to hosts, avoiding the need to wait for lengthy database restoration processes. This feature ensures that you can get back to business immediately. Additionally, if you are on-premises, you can leverage the onsite cache to restore your VMware and mount the data locally, resulting in lightning-fast recovery. Moreover, you can access any 10-minute slice of data since you started using the service.
- Snapshot functionality for various purposes: GCP allows you to instantly mount any slice of data as a writable snapshot, facilitating activities such as analysis, audit, legal processes, or testing.
- Cost optimization: Google Cloud Backup and DR Service charge you based on monthly usage, enabling you to pay only for what you actually use. The pricing is competitive, starting as low as $0.03 per GiB per month for regular data and varying for different types of databases. Additionally, Cloud Storage offers affordable space. There are no prior reservations required; you only pay for your actual data.
- Efficient storage utilization: GCP’s backup solution leverages incremental changes added to your initial backup, reducing the need for duplicating data. This approach saves both time and costs.
- Simplified infrastructure restoration: GCP allows you to restore your infrastructure with a single click. You can script complete data restoration to another region or migrate your on-premises infrastructure to the cloud within minutes, all without incurring additional costs. This feature enables you to save money while ensuring your data is highly protected. Additionally, you can schedule backup and DR testing, paying only for the target infrastructure during the time needed to restore and verify data and application integrity.
In summary, GCP Backup and DR solutions offer unique features that protect your cloud workloads from unforeseen events. They also provide a secure backup solution for on-premises data by storing it in Google Cloud. By leveraging these capabilities, you can optimize costs and benefit from efficient disaster recovery options in the cloud.
Compared to traditional legacy software and new entrants in the market, GCP’s Backup and DR functionalities stand out as a comprehensive, unique, and reliable solution.