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Old 03-12-2012, 09:37 PM
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Question How to deal with "Hard drive terrorist" - customer kills all storage methods

I've posted about this customer a few times and it is getting past the point of comical but work is work. I'm almost at a loss as to what to do with him as to how to keep his data safely stored as he owns a business.

He runs a landscaping business so I think almost all business use of the computer is for billing, quotes, some website management, emailing, invoicing (quickbooks, etc).

He asked about "the cloud" and I immediatly had a very bad feeling about this with his track record of destroying RAID's (controller corrupted everything), getting laptops wet, knocking externals off desk, etc. Now I know that he has intermittent Internet at times but basically he has good service. I'd like to see him keep things onsite.

My idea is to either setup a NAS or external USB2/3 or eSata drive and securely mount it to the wall, in a closet or somewhere well out of sight where it can't be damaged. Maybe even encase the drive somehow with a door for access. Ideally this external would be a RAID drive with 3 drives where he could keep one off-site at a safe location. My only question is how do these external RAID enclosures update when the drive is swapped out?

Also, should the drive which is swapped be rotated so all drives leave the office at one point or keep one drive as the constant and have the other bay as the swap bay.

Now, should I incorporate optical storage on a quarterly basis? It seems pretty easy to do and fairly inexpensive if DVD's are used.

If a customer has heard all this advertising about "cloud" security etc, how do you talk them out of it? I had a customer that lost all but 3% of his data using Carbonite and they over billed and provided no support or help with recovery. It was a nightmare that I was hired to help clean up and received the angry end of the deal. These are not things which I want to repeat.
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Old 03-12-2012, 09:46 PM
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Originally Posted by tankman1989 View Post
I've posted about this customer a few times and it is getting past the point of comical but work is work. I'm almost at a loss as to what to do with him as to how to keep his data safely stored as he owns a business.

He runs a landscaping business so I think almost all business use of the computer is for billing, quotes, some website management, emailing, invoicing (quickbooks, etc).

He asked about "the cloud" and I immediatly had a very bad feeling about this with his track record of destroying RAID's (controller corrupted everything), getting laptops wet, knocking externals off desk, etc. Now I know that he has intermittent Internet at times but basically he has good service. I'd like to see him keep things onsite.

My idea is to either setup a NAS or external USB2/3 or eSata drive and securely mount it to the wall, in a closet or somewhere well out of sight where it can't be damaged. Maybe even encase the drive somehow with a door for access. Ideally this external would be a RAID drive with 3 drives where he could keep one off-site at a safe location. My only question is how do these external RAID enclosures update when the drive is swapped out?

Also, should the drive which is swapped be rotated so all drives leave the office at one point or keep one drive as the constant and have the other bay as the swap bay.

Now, should I incorporate optical storage on a quarterly basis? It seems pretty easy to do and fairly inexpensive if DVD's are used.

If a customer has heard all this advertising about "cloud" security etc, how do you talk them out of it? I had a customer that lost all but 3% of his data using Carbonite and they over billed and provided no support or help with recovery. It was a nightmare that I was hired to help clean up and received the angry end of the deal. These are not things which I want to repeat.

Im sorry, but especially for people like him, cloud based technology and storage is the way to go. Just find a better provider.
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Old 03-12-2012, 09:51 PM
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Im sorry, but especially for people like him, cloud based technology and storage is the way to go. Just find a better provider.
+1, sounds like just the guys for online backup.

Lot O' choices, we use Mozy here. Have had to use it in anger both for our business and for customers with failed systems. Has worked every time and my personal experience with customer and technical support is good.
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Old 03-12-2012, 09:57 PM
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Thanks for the reviews guys! I'll have to look into them a little more. Which ones offer the best resellers programs?
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Old 03-13-2012, 10:09 AM
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Agreed....sounds more than ever like someone that needs offsite backup with nothing local to break and as automated as possible.

As for recommendations for which ones to resell...we use several from simple to medium to high end, but for a landscaper, I'd just go with a simple product and that would be Jungledisk.
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Old 03-13-2012, 11:16 PM
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I have several of my clients on Crashplan because it is dead simple, and can do hybrid onsite AND cloud backup if you want (or just cloud). But there's no reseller program as far as I know. Sucks but I'd rather my customers have the right thing for their needs...less grief later on.

Edit: I guess there is a reseller program of sorts for the Pro plan? I wasn't able to find much useful information on it. But it's for businesses and would be overkill for my residential clients.
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Last edited by TechLady; 03-13-2012 at 11:35 PM.
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Old 03-14-2012, 01:22 AM
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I was thinking about maybe setting him up with a really simple host machine that he can remote into from his laptop. All his data can be stored there on a RAID config with an external backup as well in addition to maybe online backup as well.

I somehow just don't think laptop + Online Backup is going to be enough for this client because he might go lengths without connecting online to backup.

It really is almost impossible to give some of these clients a 100% bulletproof solution if they aren't willing to do what is needed.
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Old 03-14-2012, 01:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tankman1989 View Post
I was thinking about maybe setting him up with a really simple host machine that he can remote into from his laptop. All his data can be stored there on a RAID config with an external backup as well in addition to maybe online backup as well.

I somehow just don't think laptop + Online Backup is going to be enough for this client because he might go lengths without connecting online to backup.

It really is almost impossible to give some of these clients a 100% bulletproof solution if they aren't willing to do what is needed.
I am not sure how crashplan is, but I do know that many online backup systems autosynce with your designated folder and if there are any updated files or added files, it will automatically back them up. But yeah, your right, there is no 100% full proof way of keeping your customers data backed up. As long as it is connected online regularly, then cloud based backup is the best way to go.
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tankman1989 View Post
If a customer has heard all this advertising about "cloud" security etc, how do you talk them out of it?
I'm reading this post and I think there two different topics. Correct me if I'm wrong but the first topic is replacing onsite server with Cloud Technology
Second topic is backing up the data to the cloud.

Regarding the first topic. the cloud based technology is normally (not all the time) the best way and most economical. This eliminates the server, UPS, Server room, data backup, server anti-virus, server maintenance, issue with data space for growth, data redundancy (clustering 99.999 uptime / raid) and remote access it automatically build in. All you need to do is find a good cloud provider.

Regarding cloud backup, A good backup plan includes onsite and offsite backup. I normally recommend to my clients that cloud backup (eg: Mozy, CrashPlan) is only a backup to Onsite backup. Depending on the amount of data, it would take days or even weeks to do full recovery.

Last edited by rsarceno; 03-14-2012 at 09:11 AM.
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rsarceno View Post
I'm reading this post and I think there two different topics. Correct me if I'm wrong but the first topic is replacing onsite server with Cloud Technology
Second topic is backing up the data to the cloud.

Regarding the first topic. the cloud based technology is normally (not all the time) the best way and most economical. This eliminates the server, UPS, Server room, data backup, server anti-virus, server maintenance, issue with data space for growth, data redundancy (clustering 99.999 uptime / raid) and remote access it automatically build in. All you need to do is find a good cloud provider.

Regarding cloud backup, A good backup plan includes onsite and offsite backup. I normally recommend to my clients that cloud backup (eg: Mozy, CrashPlan) is only a backup to Onsite backup. Depending on the amount of data, it would take days or even weeks to do full recovery.
I agree with you but we are only talking about 1 laptop and 1 desktop if the laptop can't be found. I really need to find out more about the info before I offer an solution.

I am for remote desktop PC with RAID drive mapped to the Laptop. All files are saved on the mapped drive. There is an external backup on the desktop which may or may not have a removeable caddy for weekly off-site rotations. Then they could throw in the online that backs up the data files and whatnow. This would handle most everythig.

He could even just remote into the desktop and use the laptop as the client machine if he wanted.
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