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Salesforce Essentials: Backup and Restore

Your Salesforce data is important. The functionality and usefulness of your platform depends on access to particular lines of code and a history of information. This data can be used to inform future decisions, automate processes, and contribute to the efficiency of your business.

What happens when you lose access to this data?

Accidental deletions by users, theft of data by outside entities, and logical damage to your data through software crashes or hardware failure can leave you in the dark.

Losing your Salesforce data will create redundant work for your team, resulting in lost money due to labor hours. It can also affect the functionality of your live systems and negatively impact your end users.

Lost data results in lost money.

So what security measures do you have in place to mitigate the negative results of data loss or corruption?

Backing up your Salesforce data ensures that you have access to the uncompromised data sets you need. Restore gives you the ability to get back to business even in worst-case scenarios.

We’ll explain what goes into a comprehensive system for backing up your data as well as how to restore it.

Backup

Your Salesforce platform has a lot of data stored on it. This data can be used for many things:

  • To automate processes
  • To create new applications
  • To gain insights into consumer habits
  • To inform future decisions

It can also be used to back itself up. A backup of your Salesforce data involves creating a copy of the data present on your system. This is kept around in case of data loss or corruption of your original data, at which point it can be used for recovery.

The amount of data kept on hand will be dictated by your preferences on two factors: Recovery Point Objective (RPO) and Recovery Time Objective (RTO).

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Customize your backup solution

RPO

This refers to amount of time covered by your backup systems. In other words, it’s the maximum period relating to data that your company is willing to lose in the event of a disaster.

A shorter RPO means that your system is frequently creating backups of your information. This will require more storage capacity, but it diminishes the potential loss should something happen.

Longer RPOs are more affordable because they don’t require as much storage and the backups aren’t performed as regularly. However, this also means that your company will lose more data if there is a need to return to the backup data.

RTO

This refers to the amount of time it takes for your systems to return to normal. In other words, it’s how fast you can recover from the initial moment of data corruption, loss, or deletion to the moment you are able to resume regular operations.

A shorter RTO will save you money on the backend by reducing downtime. This downtime results in lost functionality for both your employees and your customers. However, because it requires frequent attention, a shorter RTO will have higher upkeep costs.

A few hours is a normal RTO, but this can be adjusted to be either longer or shorter.

Types of Backups

Full Backup: Create a continuously-updated copy of all of your Salesforce data and metadata.

Incremental Backup: Allows you to select incremental changes since the previous backup.

Normal Backup: A backup configuration can be set to define specific data objects to copy and store.

Hierarchical Backup: Picks up all the relationships corresponding to the selected data objects and associated relationships.

Backup vs Archiving

You might have some data that you don’t want to delete, but don’t necessarily need on hand at all times. Storing this extra data can slow down your system and make it more difficult to backup the data and information that is more urgently needed.

Data archiving is the process of identifying data that is no longer used, moving it out of the production system, and putting it in long-term storage.

This can sometimes get confused with backing up your data. While backups are a copy of essential data without affecting the original files, archives serve as data repositories for non-critical information that must be retained.

The absence of this non-critical information doesn’t affect normal operations. In fact, it improves normal operations.

Benefits of data archiving:

  • Faster backup and recovery from increased capacity
  • Makes it easier to back up systems by eliminating inactive data
  • Ability to meet new compliance regulations
  • Reduced efforts in maintaining and managing software and infrastructure for on-site backup storage
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Implementing stored data is essential

Restore

As we said earlier, backups don’t serve much of a purpose if you don’t have a way of restoring data when a disaster strikes.

A quality restore system allows you to securely return the state of the data to your desired level.

There are two types of restore capabilities for your Salesforce data:

Full Restore: This option restores all the data contained within a backup.

Selective Restore: This option allows you to select specific components of data and metadata from the existing backup to restore.

These options exist because it’s not always essential to restore your entire system. This option can save you time and money by quickly getting you back to operations.

But how would you know what information to restore? The ability to compare current orgs with past versions is incredibly useful.

Comparing backup snapshots makes it possible to identify changes in data and recover old values wherever needed.

Triggering a Restore

Beginning the recovery process can be very simple with the right tools. AutoRABIT’s Vault has streamlined this process—simply log in to your account, click the Restore section, select your preferred options and restore criteria, and click Restore Now.

That’s it. The restore process doesn’t need to be overly complicated, but it does need to be adequate. There’s no point in compiling backup data if you can’t get it back into your system when you need it.

Backup and restore capabilities are essential to a secure Salesforce account. Redundant work and lost data can have severe negative consequences on a business. Give yourself a safety net by instituting backup and restore capabilities today.

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