SQL Backup saves a day and a half a week that I can use for other vital database activities
I'm a database administrator for MRM London, a top-five interactive and direct communications agency based in the UK. We're noted for our outstanding digital marketing, creative communications, technology innovation, data management and analytics.
MRM London's reputation is built and maintained in the digital world, so we can't afford technology failures. Secure and reliable backups are especially important, since data is at the core of our direct marketing business. We use Red Gate's SQL Backup Pro.
Faster backups, less storage space
SQL Backup Pro is simple to use, has enabled us to speed up the backup process, and saves us huge amounts of storage space because of its impressive compression rates.
We have approximately 100 servers hosting SQL Server 2000, 2005 and 2008 in two domains. These servers house production and test environments for several clients, including a leading global computer manufacturer, one of the world's largest automotive manfacturers and a national not-for-profit company. Data comprises names and addresses, contact preferences, marketing history, analytical information, and various websites. Our databases range in size from about 1 GB to 1.6 TB.
The scripting ability in SQL Backup has allowed us to completely change our backup strategy from a largely ad-hoc manual process to a completely automated system. With compression in SQL Backup Pro, our biggest backups take up one-fifth of the space of native SQL backups.
Freeing-up time for vital activities
The combination of scripting automation and faster backups has freed up a day and a half each week. I've used that time on other vital activities to ensure the health of our databases, including:
- Creating a table-archiving process to avoid databases growing unnecessarily.
- Automating a schema snapshot process to monitor database schema changes.
- Developing a detailed code-deployment strategy.
- Monitoring index fragmentation.
- Creating reporting around the backup history and server disk space.
Red Gate's SQL Toolbelt has been a key tool in accomplishing these tasks. We use SQL Response to monitor our SQL Server health and activity and SQL Compare for auditing database schema changes and to ensure successful code deployments. I've also used SQL Data Compare and I'm looking into SQL Multi Script. All of these tools are simple to use, reasonably priced and effective.
Red Gate tools save me quite a bit of time over the course of a working week, and that pleases me.
Lee Mellor manages backups, SQL Server performance, user permissions, installations, database change management, code deployment and some development for MRM London. Away from work, he keeps a busy schedule with photography, music, cinema, sports, travelling, and eating and drinking out.
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