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General Chat Thread, Remote backup to a datacentre in General; What do EduGeekers think about schools running remote back ups to data centres. At first sight it seems to have ...
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    speckytecky's Avatar
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    Remote backup to a datacentre

    What do EduGeekers think about schools running remote back ups to data centres.

    At first sight it seems to have advantages in many ways: data encrypted, remote from school, saves IT staff the pain when current on site backup systems fail!

    Anyone using this service at present?

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    SteveBentley's Avatar
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    Do schools typically have reciprocal arrangements with another local (but sufficiently remote) school to each host a server or NAS box at each other's location to do offsite back ups to?

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    speckytecky (17th September 2010)

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    ^ That might be something we'll look at, hosting at another school

    Have had one trial of offsite backup from a company, and while I'm sure its great, at an estimated £8,000 a year, a server/NAS box at another site would be far more cost effective, and quicker, since the data wouldnt leave the WAN

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    speckytecky (17th September 2010)

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    speckytecky's Avatar
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    Crumbs - £8K gulp, the chap who mentioned it to me was talking in the lowly region of a couple of hundred quid!

    Quote Originally Posted by sidewinder View Post
    ^ That might be something we'll look at, hosting at another school

    Have had one trial of offsite backup from a company, and while I'm sure its great, at an estimated £8,000 a year, a server/NAS box at another site would be far more cost effective, and quicker, since the data wouldnt leave the WAN

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    speckytecky's Avatar
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    That's a good thought Steve - what do you reckon it would take to set it up and what sort of price would the kit be?

    The 2 schools I work at are about 100 metres apart.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveBentley View Post
    Do schools typically have reciprocal arrangements with another local (but sufficiently remote) school to each host a server or NAS box at each other's location to do offsite back ups to?

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    AIT
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    We are George Spencer School, Running Advanced IT Services(data centre) business, If you send me a pm I am sure we can work a reasonable price out for off-site storage for backups.

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    speckytecky (18th September 2010)

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    Why not take it further and remote backup to the cloud? You can encrypt the data and backup to Amazon S3. Providing you have a high bandwidth net connection of course.
    Last edited by somabc; 17th September 2010 at 01:41 PM.

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    CyberNerd (17th September 2010), speckytecky (18th September 2010)

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    Quote Originally Posted by speckytecky View Post
    Crumbs - £8K gulp, the chap who mentioned it to me was talking in the lowly region of a couple of hundred quid!
    How much data do you have? We're close to 2Tb if we wanted to remote backup the lot, hence the price. Though I guess realistically you wouldnt need everything offsite, just essentials, so it might not be that much.

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    I have to agree with somabc, Amazon does seem the way forward. Prices are reasonable Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) the data is held in EU, and encryption is possible.

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    speckytecky (18th September 2010)

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    Folks, funnily enough I was at a Cloud Security/SOA event at IBM yesterday, and the topic of sensitive data and the cloud was widely debated as part of the BCS's Information Security Specialist Group.

    The general consensus from the ISSG and IBM was that sensitive data in the cloud (however you want to define cloud) needs handling very (VERY) carefully, especially so if that that data falls under the DPA as well.

    The main concern is around data security and where the data might be stored, and how that might put you (the Data Controller) in breach of the DPA.

    Local data centre and encrypted backups are one thing, but Amazon S3, I would recommend anyone stay away from, until commercial and legal issues are resolved.

    Just my £0.10, and it's your data, but when the experts who want to sell these services tell you to hold on, I'd listen!

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    Sims server currently backing up to DAT72 - current data close on 37GB takes 4 hours to backup and system protesting!

    Quote Originally Posted by sidewinder View Post
    How much data do you have? We're close to 2Tb if we wanted to remote backup the lot, hence the price. Though I guess realistically you wouldnt need everything offsite, just essentials, so it might not be that much.

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    somabc's Avatar
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    I was at a cloud event too (for the Government Cloud) and they pointed out there is a spectrum of possible cloud computing depending on data sensitivity from the public cloud, community cloud, hybrid cloud and your own private cloud.

    Cloud computing - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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    I have always said to people when they have asked me this question, the first piece of information you should look at backing up is your SIMS/CMIS Databases (MIS) because this is something that you don't really want to be loosing. Obviously making sure that the way in which the data is transferred to the data centre is secure and when it is in transit if they should need to do a Seed First (which most do) it is Encrypted to the correct Standards.

    You can then look at remotely backing up other data that exist on your network, problem is for most people sometimes this can become pricey especially if you have a lot of it! although in all honesty it should not cost that much! seriously all people need to do is create a seed of there data which would go onto some form of Data Storage Device and then this would be transferred to a NAS in a data centre and then the bandwidth that is used would only be any change that happens on a daily basis and if you look at this properly you will find there actually isn't much as it's generally just Office Documents, Images etc. which in theory would be compressed again anyhow before transfer.

    If you were then in need to recover a few MB of data this could be done via the Internet although if you wanted to recover GB of Data it is normally recommended that the company in which you use to do this grab this from the data centre and bring it to you on a Storage Device for you to then Restore Locally /or!

    You have a solution which would make a local version of what is in the data centre so if you needed to do a restore of anything then it would not use the internet connection and bandwidth it would just use your local network to transfer the data. *only reason why this would be required is if people were thinking of getting rid of Tape Drives etc.*

    It's all good Fun!

    James.

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    Quote Originally Posted by speckytecky View Post
    That's a good thought Steve - what do you reckon it would take to set it up and what sort of price would the kit be?

    The 2 schools I work at are about 100 metres apart.
    All you'd really need would be a box at the remote location with plenty of disk space, and a fast enough connection between them that you do your backups in a reasonable amount of time. Something like Netgear RND2110 ReadyNAS Duo 1TB NAS Drive - FREE DRIVE | Ebuyer.com would do it, particularly with the RAID redundancy. Obviously you'd need to sort out security for the box but it's fairly standard stuff.

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    Quote Originally Posted by somabc View Post
    I was at a cloud event too (for the Government Cloud) and they pointed out there is a spectrum of possible cloud computing depending on data sensitivity from the public cloud, community cloud, hybrid cloud and your own private cloud.

    Cloud computing - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Indeed, there are many 'Clouds' (BTW I hate that term, a cloud used to be the private network infrastructure of a comms provider, but not any more), but the previous poster was talking about the Amazon cloud - and that's one to get very worried about.

    As for the Government Cloud, I really do shudder at the potential for data loss.

    The bottom line is still the same - YOU (by that I mean all of us) are dircetly responsible for the security of your data. If you decide to use external storage (or whatever type) be prepared to do your due dilligence, and accept the consequences if you don't.

    As IT professionals WE are directly responsible.

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