The Advantages of AWS Backup

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has long since been at the forefront of making software development a smooth and seamless affair. Offering everything from serverless computing to application development tools, the technology service giant has also covered the backup frontier, no doubt. As an AWS Service Provider, that’s what we’re here to discuss today – and what’s in it for you as a business owner.

An introduction to Amazon S3 and Amazon Glacier

AWS has brought everything a developer requires under one roof, so there’s absolutely no need to go elsewhere for another service. Likewise, why choose any other backup platform other than AWS’s dedicated Amazon S3, or Amazon Glacier? While the former is great for immediate backup, the latter is ideal for archiving.

Be they websites, mobile apps or any other software, both S3 and Glacier accommodate EBS volumes, EFS file systems, RDS databases, DynamoDB tables, and Storage Gateway volumes. With the age of data being the key (and only difference) between the two, most properties (and benefits) largely remain the same. Here they are.

1. Backup data in a few clicks

Instead of integrating a third-party backup service to assist you in this endeavour, all you need to do is simply set some parameters, assign a resource and you’re good to go!

2. Even if you use a third-party backup service, you’re in luck if it’s a part of Amazon

Yes, the Amazon Partner Network (APN) consists of external backup platforms too. These platforms operate with resources from AWS, so you’ll still be enjoying the best of both worlds. However, AWS now offers these resources directly, so if you’re an existing AWS customer, it just makes sense to obtain them directly as well.

3. Pay-as-you-go pricing model

Just like its other cloud-based features, there’s no need to commit to a chunk of storage or sign complex agreements if you wish to come on board AWS Backup. That’s the beauty of AWS in general, as it enables you to scale your requirements depending on your usage and other habits. With prices as low as $0.0004 per GB on Amazon Glacier, it’s pretty much a no-brainer.

But shifting the amount of storage you need depending on how much data you’re backing up isn’t all – AWS Backup is also capable of assessing access patterns and delivering cost savings based on those patterns. This is because retrieving backed up/archived data less frequently shall cost you less, compared to retrieving data within a few minutes. Even if you are subscribed to the minute-based plan, features such as S3 Storage Class Analysis and S3 Intelligent-Tiering can monitor your retrieval patterns and shift you to a low cost plan should it be more viable.

4. Compliance-friendly

As a business, you know that you need to report to regulatory authorities – and as accurately as possible, that too. AWS Backup assists you with this tool, as it is compliance-compatible with PCI-DSS, HIPAA/HITECH, FedRAMP, EU Data Protection Directive and FISMA.

5. Stellar security

On Amazon S3, data is stored in buckets. These buckets can be monitored for suspicious access requests, so that you can ensure no unauthorized entry takes place. Steady data encryption and auditing capabilities further help to enhance security, among other things.

6. Query in place

Backing up and archiving data on AWS Backup doesn’t just render it as a repository; data at rest can otherwise be put to productive use through querying. Amazon S3 provides such a query feature, via a value-addition called S3 Select. There is no need for exporting the data or using an analytics platform to conduct the query – it can be done while the data is stored inside AWS Backup.

As an IT consulting firm, we know the importance of big data, and the time-sensitive need to retrieve analytics fast owing to highly competitive business landscapes. For developers and more so, business/brand owners, this advantage provided through AWS Backup is quite a boon. On top of that, queries can be performed on specific data sets within AWS Backup, instead of scouring through every bit of data, for faster turnarounds.

Queries are best carried out as standard SQL queries. AWS’s analytics products, Athena and Redshift Spectrum are also compatible with S3 and can be used for data querying. Since both analytics tools share similar data logs and formats, either of these products can be used to extract intended statistics.

By using the in-built query functionalities of AWS Backup, you will once again save the money you would’ve otherwise had to spend on purchasing, integrating and running an external big data analytics platform.

To sum it all up…

AWS has now become an indispensable requisite for many a developer, in order to deliver high-performance software for clients – and for good reason. Thanks to offering everything that’s possibly needed to build websites and applications, the technology service provider is a go-to option for more than just one-stop-shop convenience. In general, AWS has also been regarded highly for its level of scalability, and one that is intuitive enough to help businesses save costs depending on how much their resources are utilized.

AWS Backup is also no exception to this rule, as it stores data from applications for both warm and cold storage – while offering many more ways to make productive use of an otherwise static repository. Conducting queries on specific data sets for big data analytics is one such plus. Without having to export any data or use a specialised analytics platform, the in-built query system provided by Amazon S3 Select is one of the best ways for companies to take advantage of big data that already exists in their backups.

On a more fundamental level, there is simply no need to look elsewhere for backup, if you’re already using AWS for your application needs. All it takes is a few clicks to set some parameters, assign your resources and start backing up integral data.

Last but not the least, cost savings by determining how frequently you retrieve the data, being compliance-compatible and providing cyber protection are still more reasons to choose AWS Backup.

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