Are your servers pets or cattle? This is our small herd waiting to be milked of data before we despose of them.
In our 'Back to the Future' blog of October 2015 we hinted that "where we're going we don't need roads", that was a reference to the move to 'cloud' based services, a move away from using PCs connected to ethernet networks and accessing software or data on internal servers, to accessing remote 'cloud' based software often while mobile via Wi-Fi.
We've been making sweeping changes to the way we work in the last couple of years and recently we retired this collection (or should it be a 'herd') of servers after migrating everything they contained onto Amazon Web Services.
This move has had many benefits, we've saved not only the cost of the hardware updates (servers, external hard drives, UPS) and software updates (OS, Databases, Anti-Virus), but all the associated labour costs and power savings, not to mention the office space when these are finally wiped and sent off to grass.
For small companies, moving from a peer-to-peer network and removing data from local hard drives onto servers makes it easier to know where data is, and therefore it can be protected and backed up properly, an even more pressing need now that GDPR makes knowing where your data is and securing it absolutely essential; but maintaining server farms is expensive and it makes sense to outsource the running and securing of servers to specialists that can achieve economies of scale.
Apart from the data backups & snapshots that Amazon provide, we also have copies on Microsoft's One Drive for Business, and make use of Office 365 abilities for Data Governance; the traditional 3-2-1 backup with one off-site copy, has now morphed into keeping two copies off-site in the cloud.
We now utilize just about every service that Amazon provides, from robust S3 object storage for files, EC2 and RDS for hosting servers and databases, SNS for email and SMS services, and serverless functions using Lambda, API Gateway (HTTP proxy to Lambda) and IAM (AWS permissions & users) to automate tasks.
We have also been hosting the dtSearch Engine for not only searching our own data but also for client data. But watch this space, we'll soon be offering Search-as-a-Service and more...