How critical is your data? How much can you afford to lose? Phrased that way, the answer is always “none.” But if you talk to your CFO you may discover that the question is, how much data can you afford to protect?


In any discussion of technology reliability, you’re going to hear a lot about 9s – as in, how many 9s’ worth of protection or uptime will the technology in question deliver. In SaaS software, the SLA vendors usually reach with customers stipulates five 9s, or 99.999% availability. That computes to the software being unavailable for 5 minutes and 26 seconds per year.

That works fine for software (and is a realistic number for the software vendors, since there are aspects of delivering SaaS software that the vendor can’t control). But when it comes to data protection, you’re tempting fate if five 9s is all you can deliver as an IT department. Data is too valuable to risk – and today, options exist that make it easy and inexpensive to further safeguard your data.


If your data is secured at a five 9s level, it means you are likely to lose one object out of every 100,000 every year. Amazon Web Services’ S3 storage durability is set at eleven 9s (99.999999999%), so for 100,000 objects, a single object may be lost once in 1 million years. That’s a pretty good level of protection; the odds are good that your business data won’t still be mission-critical in a million years, anyhow.


But those long odds may not be long enough for your business. If you’re in a highly-regulated industry, or if you’re doing high-volume research, greater rates of data protection may be desired (or dictated). Typically, the more 9s you add, the more you pay for your storage infrastructure.


This is one area where Cloudian differs from competitors. If you need more 9s, you can change your settings and get as many 9s as you want – as many as 23 9s, if need be. Most storage systems then require that standard to be extended across all storage – if you’re paying extra for 23 9s, that expense is the same for everything you store. Cloudian allows you to apply setting at a bucket level – critical data may have more 9s’ protection than daily operational data in the same system. If you decide that you don’t need so many 9s, the levels can be adjusted at will. Cloudian gives users flexibility to manage protection levels instead of simply setting them once and hoping their decision was the right one.


Want to learn more about how Cloudian puts the storage manager back in charge? Read our new paper on data protection. It examines the question of how many 9s you need – and gives you a context so you can better understand that decision. You’ll also learn how Cloudian enables you to manage and implement that decision. Check out the white paper here.

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