Considerations With Third-Party Backup Tools

Gianluca Sartori gives us a laundry list of potential problems with third-party database backup solutions:

2. Potentially dangerous separation of duties
Backup tools are often run and controlled by windows admins, who may or may not be the same persons responsible for taking care of databases. Well, surprise: if you’re taking backups you’re responsible for them, and backups are the main task of the DBA, so… congrats: you’re the DBA now, like it or not.
If your windows admins are not ok with being the DBA, but at the same time are ok with taking backups, make sure that you discuss who gets accountable for data loss when thing go south. Don’t get fooled: you must not be responsible for restores (which, ultimately, is the reason why you take backups) if you don’t have control over the backup process. Period.

There is plenty of sound advice in this post.  These points also apply to roll-your-own solutions as well, but the main focus is on enterprise backup tools, which are in many cases surprisingly shoddy.

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