Nowadays, you can hardly find a company with no backup or DR strategies in place. Data is becoming the most valuable organization’s asset so making sure it remains safe and available is becoming a key priority. But does it really matter where your backups are stored? Well, Veeam actually answered that question by bringing in the “3-2-1” backup rule meaning you should have at least 3 copies of your data, 2 of which are local but on different media and at least 1 copy offsite. Sounds reasonable.
Lately, I often face people who prefer using snapshots, wrongly thinking that they can serve as an alternative to a proper backup infrastructure. This comes from a misunderstanding of snapshots’ real functions. So, I’ve decided to sort things out in this post and describe some basic operations you can do with snapshots in VMware and Hyper-V environments.
The term “snapshot” refers to the absolute copy of the particular VM’s state that allows you to roll back to it whenever you want. You can always take a snapshot of the VM, be it running or switched off. Though, if you capture a running VM, its disk activity gets suspended (for a matter of seconds but still…).
So, what’s the main point of taking snapshots?
We’ve all heard the expression “time is money” and you can’t put it better when talking about IT. Most businesses’ success and efficiency depends on their IT infrastructure. For real. We all want our applications to run as fast as possible and roll them out in a matter of minutes. Moreover, the more data you have, the worse the consequences are in the event of its loss. So, companies want to get back all their data and get it back as soon as possible in case something happens. That’s called Recovery Point Objective (RPO) and Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and the shorter they are, the better it is for your company. Finally, as your business grows, you want to provision it with the right amount of storage and capacity and in case you need to open another branch office, you want to deploy an IT infrastructure shortly without spending months for building it.