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Scheduling Considerations for Multiple PCs
Ideally, each PC should have its own backup unit, media sets and schedule. However, this isn't always practical. If you have a lot of PCs that are on a network, you can certainly consider the use of network backup to make the backup of the various machines much easier. Some companies have many machines, however, that aren't on a network, and they need to be backed up periodically, but not very often.
One way to approach this system is to use a portable tape backup unit. If you have 40 PCs, you can use a portable unit that attaches to the parallel port and simply rotate through them, backing them up one PC a night. This isn't nearly as good as having a separate unit on each PC, because a long time will pass between backups. But it is much better than nothing and it saves thousands of dollars.
Another problem is the media. Many QIC/Travan drives use tapes that cost about $30 each. Since it is unsafe to use the same backup tape all the time on a machine, in case the system fails during the backup or a virus gets onto the backup, you really need 2 tapes per machine as a minimum. This means about $2,400 in media for 40 PCs. However, there are two ways to cut this cost substantially:
Next: What To Back Up