The goal of SQL server backup creation is to enable a user to recover his/her database in case it is damaged. It’s part of the SQL recovery process. This post gives an overview of underlying strategies and most important things to consider while creating them.
Overview of Backup and Restore in SQL Server
Backing-up and restoring data in SQL database has to be customized to a particular environment. It also has to work with the resources available. An intelligently designed strategy will help in minimizing the loss of data and maximizing data availability while also taking into considering a business’s requirements.
Attention should be paid to the fact that it’s important to have database and its backup on different devices. It’s because if the device that contains the database suddenly fails or stops functioning, then no backups will be available. Having your data backups on different devices improves the I/O performance in terms of producing and creating backups of database.
2 Segments of Backup and Restore Strategy:
There are two segments in a backup and restore strategy. As the name implies, the first is about creating backups and other one focuses on restoration of data.
- The first part of the strategy is concerned about defining how frequently backups have to be created and their types. It also defines hardware speed and nature required for backups, how backups have to be tested, as well as where and how the backup media is to be stored. All these things are defined while also taking into account all of the security considerations.
- The second part of the strategy which is the restore part defines who will be responsible for restoration and how it will have to be performed. All these things should be in line with the goals of database availability requirements and data loss minimization. It is recommended that a user maintain documentation of the entire backup and restore process and keep a copy of it in the run book.
A lot of planning, implementation, and testing goes into creating effective backup and restore strategies. In order to test the effectiveness of it, the whole strategy has to be tested multiple times. A strategy for restoring data cannot be finalized until it has proven successful in various combinations that are part of it.
A lot of factors are considered while designing and testing. Some of those are discussed below:
- The first and foremost consideration is that the user should be clear of the goals of database. It is particularly important to be clear on the requirements for protection and availability of data from getting lost.
- The user will also have to consider the nature of all the multiple databases. This will include usage patterns, size, type/nature of content, requirements for the data, etc.
- Another consideration is the constraints of the resources. The constraints can be related to personnel availability, hardware, space required for storage of backup media, security of stored media from physical damage, and so on.
An Important Consideration for SQL Server Backup and Restore
SQL server on-disk storage follows the same format as it does in the 32-bit and 64-bit environments. That is why, backup and restore strategies work across both these environments. A backup that has been created for server instance in one environment can also be restored on server instance that belongs to another one.
Peter Song is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including outlook recovery and PDF recovery software products. For more information, visit www.datanumen.com.