Imagine coming into work and your network system is down, you finally manage to reboot your computer, but you soon realize that all of your data and patient medical information has been erased. You have no way of retrieving that data because you didn’t backup your device or allow it to go through a disaster simulation. Fortunately, there is a way to protect your critical data and avoid a catastrophe like this.

By creating a data backup schedule, you can establish time frames to back up multiple systems, databases, network files and other critical systems and data.

There are several benefits and reasons for using a backup schedule. It can help with the following things:

· Disaster Recovery: The recovering and restarting of critical systems, databases and data files.

· Restoring deleted files: Sometimes our files get accidentally deleted, it happens, but having a data retrieval system in place can save time and energy. A backup system can be a precautionary measure just in case, work files or critical data are erased.

· Impact of data backup on medical devices: A recurring backup schedule can help keep production systems within medical devices or databases operating at peak performance.

Setting Up Your Backup Schedule

Organizations may need to perform incremental backups throughout the day, where some organizations may need to conduct less frequent updates. With the increased use of virtual machines or medical devices it makes timely and efficient backups more valuable so creating a schedule for your network and devices is imperative.

What Should Be Backed Up?

System owners should create a specific plan on what exactly needs to be backed up and the frequency of their backups. Traditionally, administrators should backup everything they have within the IT realm with varying backup days. Organizations or administrators should consider other factors such as the cost of backups and the impact of backups on system performance. It may be beneficial to replicate the entire system or important portions of the system on an alternate storage medium where they can perform incremental backups for that system.

Where Should Systems and Files Be Backed Up and Who Should Do the Backup?

It is important that the data backup administrator should be doing the activities discussed and approved by the system or data owner. Individual users can also back up their own critical data files as long as they are addressed by the IT policy for data management. Another important thing to keep in mind is where the systems and files should be located. They can be placed on an on-site server, storage device or a cloud-based backup medium.

Types of Backups

Here is a list of the different types of backups that can be useful for your organization:

· Day Zero Backups: Backups that are performed when a new system is installed and accepted by the system owner. This establishes the initial baseline for updates.

· Full Backups: Store all or selected portions of the systems and files within the system. Organizations should perform these backups regularly and they should also conduct backups when there is a major change to the IT infrastructure.

· Incremental Backups: Replicate all of the files that have changed since a previous backup.

· Differential Backups: Create a copy of all the files that have changed since the last full backup.

In conclusion, backup scheduling is a critical activity; it ensures the availability of systems and data which is important in the case of an emergency. As the frequency of backups increases, the need for a backup schedule should increase as well.