The courses are aimed primarily at people who are entrusted with establishing a backup system for a business but don’t have any background in this kind of technology. Douglas uses simple language and only occasionally slips in jargon, as in this statement from Lesson One: “Backup is always file or volume-based. It’s a common misconception to say that you’re backing up your hard drive. You back up the volume, you don’t back up the drive.”
The what? Okay, I’ve heard about volumes, and I know that you can partition a single drive into more than one volume or combine several drives into one volume, but how often do ordinary people, or even tech people, talk about their “C volume,” or “D volume”? The only time I usually come across the word is when I’m reformatting a drive so I can reinstall the operating system.
I have to say, though, I’m learning a lot just from listening to Lesson 1.
Backup School isn’t all that’s on the site, though. There’s a long list of links, including one to an a comparison of different backup strategies. Most of the articles are geared toward larger-scale setups than most independent professionals have, but it’s a site well worth bookmarking and returning to.
I’ll leave you with the Five Golden Rules of Backup posted by W. Curtis Preston in 2002:
1. That which has not been backed up cannot be recovered.
2. That which has not been backed up off-site will not survive a fire.
3. Any backup that has not been tested with a recovery is not a backup.
4. Ignored backup systems become poorly performing backup systems.
5. Back it up or give it up.