Data recovery takes many different forms. In the most traditional sense, data recovery can be as simple as copying data from an archive onto a new system. Whether your archive is a CD, DVD, USB drive, or a cloud server is irrelevant. Likewise, it doesn't matter if you're talking about a brand new server or a system with a new hard drive – the process is as simple as using an existing source to recover data to another location.
But there are some serious drawbacks here. Most notably, the act of recovering files from an archive could take a while – especially if you have a lot of data to copy. What if you don't have the time to perform a complete recovery?
What is Granular Recovery?
This is exactly where granular recovery comes into play. With granular recovery, you can restore only the most valuable and important files as you need them. In most cases, you can perform advanced searches to filter out files and recover the exact data you're looking for.
What is Granular Backup?
Similarly to granular recovery, granular backup gives you the tools needed to backup your most important and sensitive files. For example, there's no need to include all of the operating system's files in your day-to-day backups.
Not only does this make the whole process significantly more time-consuming, but it's completely unnecessary since these files are already located on the original installation disc or installation archive. Not only does it speed up your backup times, but it greatly improves your recovery times, too.
Other Issues with Traditional Backup and Recovery
Traditional backup and recovery methods have other issues, too. For example, recovering individual files from a guest virtual machine (VM) typically requires two complete and separate backups – one for the VM image itself and another for the files in question. As a result, users also require two client licenses to obtain the proper legal access.
Complicating matters worse is the fact that you'll still have to restore the entire VM before you'll be able to access the individual files contained within. In some cases, this could mean hours of system downtime.
With granular recovery, however, only one backup set is needed. Conversely, this means only one client license is required in order to complete the recovery. Not only does this require less storage space, since you're using only one backup set, but it requires far less time to complete when compared to two separate backup sets.
Granular backup and recovery is even useful in disaster recovery. Once again, this method lets you recover the most important files that are essential to letting you resume business as usual. Once these files have been restored and your business is operational, you can begin recovering the other, less important files.
As you can see, granular backup and recovery isn't necessarily complicated. However, it does require a bit of forethought and planning in order to maintain its effectiveness and become a fundamental part of your backup and recovery protocol – whether that's on a consumer scale or within an enterprise setting.
What is Granular Backup and Recovery?
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