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What is a workstation and why do I need it backed up?

Solving IT challenges

A workstation, when compared to a desktop, is usually more powerful, flexible, and reliable. Workstations are good to use if you need to crunch a lot of data or want to do serious graphics or video editing. The term “workstation” is pretty broad though. Sometimes people refer to workstations and don’t necessarily mean a more powerful machine, but they’re talking about a standalone desktop machine. In this sense, a workstation is an interface (desktop workstation, laptop workstation, etc.) where a person can do work. Each desk where your employees' work can be thought of as a workstation. Workstation backup is important because employees might not save their work on a shared server. If you encounter an issue that affects a specific workstation, then you’ll probably wish you had a workstation-specific backup.

 

Why is workstation backup important?

workstation and back up

We all encounter minor issues when using our computers. Usually, we’re able to fix the problem ourselves and move on, but sometimes, the problem can persist. Workstation-specific problems might not be as inconvenient as network-wide issues, but if a workstation has sensitive information, then the problem can cause some serious headaches. The usual suspects for workstations getting shut down are:

 

Viruses – A network administrator should make sure that anti-virus software is installed on every workstation, but even the best software can’t detect 100% of threats.

Ransomware – This is a type of malware that can lock down your files until you pay a fee (the “ransom”) to restore your files. If you have a workstation backup, then you can avoid having to pay.

Misplaced or Deleted Files – People mislabel or accidentally delete files all the time. Just because you’ve prepared for external threats doesn’t mean you don’t have to take human error into account.

Will my workstation backups be stored locally or remotely?

workstation backup

There are advantages and disadvantages to each method when you’re looking to backup your workstation. A local backup is convenient to use because a copy of your data will be stored on your business’s premises. If you need to restore your information, you’d simply plug in your local copy to the workstation that needs restoring. A local backup also requires less infrastructure and technical know-how than a remote backup system. The downside to a local backup is that the problems that can affect your workstations are also likely to affect your local copy, which could leave you with no data.

This is why a remote copy adds another layer of confidence in your data’s integrity. By using a remote backup, if all the data is lost locally, you’ll still have a copy in another location. You can even set up a mirror image backup, which will backup every single file on the computer. Sure, remote backups may take more time to update than a local copy, but using these two backup methods together will help guarantee that business can proceed as usual.

If I need to restore my entire workstation, how fast will I be able to do that?

workstation backups

The answer depends in part on how much data was on the workstation, how often you backed up your workstation, and where the copies are stored. Despite all these variables, the real answer is that it will be restored as fast as you need it. When we meet with our clients, we ask them how long they can tolerate their systems being “down”. Downtime is an inevitability, but we try to keep this amount to the bare minimum. Whether you can handle a workstation being unavailable for five minutes, or need it to be up and running in five seconds, we run extensive simulations that guarantee you can get back to work as quickly as possible.

 
 

Why should I use a managed service provider (MSP) to create and log my workstation backups?

restore workstation
If you’ve made a backup on your own personal computer, then you may be wondering why using an MSP is necessary for making backups. The answer is that by outsourcing your IT needs (such as frequent backups), you’re freeing up your time to focus on more important tasks. Additionally, MSP’s can offer better protection of your data than you might be able to. At ETech 7, we are experienced in the field of data security, so we’ll make sure that your information stays current and secure.

What if I want to restore a workstation’s data to a brand-new workstation?

log workstation backups

At ETech 7, we know that even the best technology eventually becomes outdated. Whether your workstation is running slowly or you just want to expand your workstation network, we’re able to copy a workstation to a new machine. Even if your old workstation had a different hardware/software configuration than your new one (HDD vs. SSD, new OS), we can migrate your data easily without having to go through a lengthy installation period.

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