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Volume 32, Issue 3

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Thursday, 15 November 2007 21:55

Centralizing Server Backups: The wrong approach can cost you the enterprise

Written by  Kevin Koski

Put yourself for a moment in the CIO's chair at one of the nation's largest insurance firms. (This scenario is based on real events from early this year.) From corporate headquarters in the midwest, you manage information systems for a Fortune 150 firm with $60 billion dollars in assets, operating through 4,200 agencies across the country. Your IS department proposes centralizing your server backups. In other words, it wants to funnel backups through your mainframe to an automated tape silo in the corporate data center. IS has what appears to be a sound business case for centralizing: automation, cost savings, and improved execution. Foremost, says IS, the servers would be centrally administered and backups performed at one location, which would keep costs down. The silo itself would run as a "lights out" operation, so no need for extra personnel. The server backups would be near-line, so access would be fast and automated,