5 Backup Considerations in Virtual Environment

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According to Computer Weekly, virtual machines have been adopted by 80 percent of modern organizations. What’s more, many organizations have taken the big step to have their processes run completely through virtual environments.

Virtualization has become essential to smooth operation of current information systems. However, virtualized servers carrying out major functions, such as handling the flow of traffic, storage tasks and application serving, can pose a few challenges to business owners.

When it comes to backup, migrating from physical servers to virtualized machines can be quite challenging. It might need a change of tactics and approach.

This is where the role of MSPs (Managed Service Providers) becomes so important. They need to enhance their services and offer safer virtual environments to their clients. Continue reading

How Data Backup Has Evolved Over the Years

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If there is one constant in the tech world, it would be ‘change’ itself. As far as data backup is concerned, we have come a long way.

With the advent of data backup on the cloud, it is hard to imagine that not very long ago, we used to store information on punch cards and magnetic tapes.

What’s more, we won’t stop here. New technological advances will be made and data backup will keep getting better and safer.

Let’s take you back in time and elaborate on how the data backup mechanisms have evolved over the years: Continue reading

5 Latest Backup and Recovery Trends

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The IT landscape is growing faster than ever. The tech revolution has made data security all the more important.

From cloud adoption to expansion of various data repositories, Managed Service Providers (MSPs) are employing latest procedures for backup and recovery.

As an MSP, you should be aware of the latest happenings in the technology landscape. Any form of data loss can prove to be quite detrimental for you and your client. We, at Ahsay, have outlined some latest data security and backup trends. Read on:

1. The Transition toward the Cloud Is Happening and It’s Real

As the world’s data is increasing at rapid rates, more and more cloud technology seems to be implemented.

The amazing advantage of the cloud technology is that it keeps data safe without companies having to buy extra space for large machines. What’s more, cloud technology has made data safety more affordable and scalable for companies.

2. Cyber Threats Are Continuously on a Rise

We live in a digital era. Like many things, technology has also changed the way crimes were carried out in the past.

Today, companies are more vulnerable to cyber criminals. This is the reason frequent, automatic data backup by a reliable source has become so important.

3. The Internet of Things (IoT) Technology will prove to be a Game Changer

The Internet of Things (IoT) technology, previously considered a topic of science fiction, is now becoming a reality.

The technology will be generating immense amounts of data. This will mean that MSPs will need to adapt and enhance their mechanisms.

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4. As-A-Service Models Will Continue to Evolve

This one is related to cloud computing. The advent of cloud has converted IT services from something a company managed to something it consumes.

The latest DRaaS (Disaster Recovery as a Service) applies to data backup landscape. This model allows MSPs to manage company’s data remotely and provide efficient recovery in case of any data loss.

5. Machine Learning will be implemented for Big Data

Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology is not new. However, its application to data management and backup is quite recent.

Intelligent systems are being designed to make data storage more efficient. By imitating functions of the human brain, the backup systems of future will be safer than ever. What’s more, these solutions will prove to be quite cost-effective for MSPs.

If you are looking for a whitelabel backup solution for managed backup services for your clients, Ahsay can be the solution. From server-side replication to live monitoring, our solution provides a secure managed data backup service.

Back up Your Customer’s WordPress Site in 2 Steps

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Having a current backup of your customer’s WordPress website hosted by you is critical for protecting their websites against disastrous data loss or corruption initiated by the top 5 security issues in WordPress. There are two parts to back up an entire WordPress Site: Database (MySQL database) and Files. With Ahsay backup solution, you are just 2 simple steps away from completely safeguarding your customers’ WordPress sites.

WordPress MySQL database backup

On AhsayOBM client backup application, create a MySQL database backup set (free add-on module) to back up your customer’s WordPress database. After proper configuration, the database will be backed up to your selected destinations, such as your AhsayCBS backup server, local storage or public cloud storage, according to the defined backup schedule.

WordPress site files backup

On AhsayOBM client backup application, create a file backup set (free add-on module) to back up WordPress site files, such as WordPress core installation, plugins, themes, images, JavaScript and PHP scripts, and other code files that is under the folder you installed WordPress. After proper configuration, the WordPress site files will be backed up to your selected destinations, such as your AhsayCBS backup server, local storage or public cloud storage, according to the defined backup schedule.

Even if hackers, server crash or user errors completely wiped out your customer’s WordPress sites, you can still quickly restore their most recent WordPress database and files from the secure backup destination with ease.

How it works

Suppose you have your own AhsayCBS backup server up and running, and AhsayOBM client backup software installed on your web server that has WordPress and MySQL database running on it. All you need to do is to create 2 backup sets mentioned previously.

For example, I have a WordPress site, My Ahsay Blog, with site files installed on  D:\wordpress. I have create a database called “blog” in MySQL for storing WordPress data.wp-01 wp-02 wp-03

Let’s see how to back up this site.

Create a backup set for backing up WordPress MySQL database

Login to your AhsayOBM client software, click on the Backup Sets button.
Create MySQL backup set in AhsayOBM client backup software

Create a MySQL Backup Set. Enter the MySQL login info and the path to your mysqldump. wp-05

Select the WordPress database node.wp-06

Setup the backup schedule for automated backup. Here, I  created 2 daily backups. If the site has content updates frequently everyday, then you can create more frequent scheduled backups.wp-07

Setup the backup destination. For demo purpose, I just set AhsayCBS backup server as the only destination.wp-08

Keep the default encryption settings.wp-23

Copy the encryption key and save it securely so that when you need to restore the backed up data on another machine, you will need to enter the encryption key then.wp-24

That’s it. The backup set for backing up WordPress MySQL database is created. Click on the “Backup Now” button to fire a backup to AhsayCBS manually.wp-11

Done. The selected MySQL database is backed up to AhsayCBS successful.wp-12

Next, we need to create a File backup set for backing up WordPress site files that are stored in D:\wordpress.Create MySQL backup set in AhsayOBM client backup softwarewp-15 wp-16

Also, I will back up my PHP (php.ini) and Apache configuration files so that in case my PHP or Apache has problem, I can restore those configurations after re-installation. wp-18 wp-19

As these files update frequency is lower, once per day backup is good enough. Don’t worry that it will backup all the files everyday. After the initial full backup, AhsayOBM won’t backup those files which have not been modified.wp-20

Set AhsayCBS as the backup destination for this backup set.wp-22

Keep the default encryption settings.wp-23 wp-24

Done. Backup set created. Fire a backup manually by clicking the “Backup Now” button.wp-25

All site files, PHP and Apache configurations have been backed up to AhsayCBS backup server.wp-26

Restore WordPress MySQL database if user accidentally deleted contents

Let’s see how the restore works. Assume the WordPress editor has accidentally deleted all the site posts, we can easily restore them back to the WordPress site by restoring the backed up MySQL database with just a few click.

Let’s delete all the posts permanently first to simulate the data loss scenario. Just go to WordPress admin section > Posts, and trash all the contents permanently.wp-restore-02 wp-restore-04 wp-restore-05 wp-restore-07 wp-restore-08

Load the WordPress site and all the contents should be gone.wp-restore-09

Now, open AhsayOBM and click the “Restore” button.wp-restore-10

Select the WordPress MySQL database backup set to restore.wp-restore-11

Select the backup destination from which to restore. Since we have just one destination, just click on that.wp-restore-12

Select the database node, i.e. blog, to restore.wp-restore-14

Since we want to restore all the backed up contents back to the site, we can simply choose to restore to “Original location”.wp-restore-15

Choose a temporary directory for AhsayOBM to store temporary files during the restore process. Then, click the “Restore” button to start the restoration.wp-restore-16wp-restore-18

After successful restoration, go back to the WordPress admin page > Posts. All the contents should be reappeared.wp-restore-20

Reload the site and all the contents should be restored successfully.wp-01

Sounds good? Just drop us a message if you want to offer WordPress backup solution to your customers.

Top 5 Reasons to Back Up Your Customer’s WordPress Site

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Imagine this situation. As a web hosting service provider, one day one of your web servers is hacked, causing hundreds or even thousands of your customers’ WordPress sites to be inaccessible and show error screens. Angry phone calls and emails follow soon. Can you afford to tell your customers their sites have no backups (or only long-outdated backups), all the lost posts, images and comments are gone for good, and the only resolution is to rebuild the sites? A business isn’t a business without a website these days. Once your customers’ years of hard work, blood, sweat and tears turn to dust, you can count yourself lucky if any of them still stay with you.

Even if it’s not about hacking, many different things can cause a site to crash or become vulnerable. That’s why a web hosting service provider should always back up customers’ WordPress sites. If you’re not convinced yet, here are the top 5 reasons that get you to act.

1. Brute Force Login Attempts

A brute force attack on WordPress is when someone attempts to gain access to your customer’s site by trying an enormous number of different username and password combinations. As WordPress has unlimited login attempts by default, hackers can exploit the WordPress login page and use this trial and error method over and over until a successful username and password combination is discovered. Even if it is unsuccessful, brute force attacks can still wreak havoc on the web hosting server because enormous login attempts may overload the system.

2. Using Outdated WordPress or Plugins and Themes from Suspect Sources

Your customers may expose their sites to risks and attacks unwittingly. By default anyone can find out what version of WordPress your customer’s site is running. Some themes may even show the version number on every page of the site. The reason this could be a security risk is that, if your customer is running an older version of WordPress, hackers will be able to target specific security vulnerabilities that have since been patched by more recent updates.

Another common way attackers can exploit is poorly-written and insecure plugins and themes from untrustworthy sources. According to a report by wpscan.org, of the 4,000 known WordPress security vulnerabilities more than half are from WordPress plugins. Files of torrented “free” versions of premium plugins and themes may have been modified to contain malware.

3. File Inclusion Exploits

PHP, the code that runs a WordPress website along with plugins and themes, is another security issue that can be exploited by attackers. File inclusion exploits usually happen when vulnerable code is used to load remote files that allow attackers to gain access to your customer’s website. There could be serious consequence once an unscrupulous attacker has access to the “wp-config.php” file, one of the most important files in your customer’s WordPress installation.

4. SQL Injections

Your customer’s WordPress website uses a MySQL database to operate. The database contains all the posts, comments, and links on the website. Attackers can gain access to the WordPress database and to all of your customer’s website data using SQL injections. According to Wordfense, SQL injections are the second most common vulnerabilities found in WordPress in 2016. With the injection, the attacker may be able to create a new admin-level user account, which can then be used to login and get full access to your customer’s WordPress website. SQL injections can also be used to insert new data into the database, including links to malicious or spam websites

5. Malware

Malware (i.e. malicious software) is commonly utilized by cybercriminals to gain unauthorized access to a website to gather sensitive data. The popularity of WordPress as a blogging platform and CMS makes WordPress a target for malware. A hacked WordPress site usually means malware has been injected into the website’s files. Take a look at the website’s recently changed files and one may be able to detect if any malware exists on the website. There are thousands of malware types on the web, but WordPress is not vulnerable to all of them. Some of the most common WordPress malware infections are Backdoors, Drive-by downloads, Pharma hacks, and Malicious redirects.

 

Without a backup, your customers’ WordPress websites could be lost forever because of the above security issues. You need a reliable backup solution in place to protect their WordPress websites from unexpected disasters. Click here to find out how Ahsay can help.

 

AhsayOBM for Installing on Synology NAS Devices

We have released a new edition of AhsayOBM client backup application for Synology NAS in the latest Ahsay Backup Software version 7.5. Do you know where to get it? If not, please refer to this simple instruction. Have a good day!

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Ahsay Mobile Backup App for iPhone and Android

After the release of our v7, many partners asked if we have any plan on releasing a mobile backup app. To be frank, it is in our plan and we are working hard to put out a beta version in a couple of months. Since you asked, let me show you a mock-up of it:

Ahsay Mobile Backup App for iPhone and Android

This app will be available for both iOS and Android. It allows users to backup data to cloud storage and AhsayOBS. Same as AhsayOBM and AhsayACB, the available backup destinations can be controlled through Group Policy Management in the new AhsayCBS. Because of the iOS limitations, not all features you see above are available for iOS version.

So, give us some time and we’ll put out a beta for you very soon. In the meantime, follow at least one of our social channels so that you won’t miss our progress.