A new report shows that despite increasing demand for virtualization, some businesses still lag in their understanding of the technology. Case in point: most companies think their virtual machines are inherently safe from data loss, even if they don't have any sort of data backup solution in place.
Data loss is not rare
According to a recent survey from Kroll Ontrack, 40 percent of organizations experienced data loss in the past year after virtualizing their storage. However, the majority of companies (80 percent) didn't believe data kept in a virtual environment would be at risk of loss, ZDnet reported. In fact, 52 percent of respondents believed that this technology reduced the risk of data loss.
The survey, which polled 724 IT professionals from around the world, additionally noted that of the 84 respondents leveraging virtualization, approximately one-third had virtualized either 75 percent or all of their storage environments.
"It is erroneous to believe virtual environments are inherently safer or at less risk for data loss than other storage mediums," said Jeff Pederson, Kroll Ontrack's manager of data recovery operation, in the report. "Virtual data loss can result from a range of causes, including file-system corruption, deleted virtual machines, internal virtual disk corruption, RAID and other storage and server hardware failures, and deleted or corrupt files contained within virtualized storage systems."
Perhaps even more worrisome is that only 33 percent of respondents fully recovered lost data, with 67 percent just achieving partial recovery, the news source explained. As a result, 43 percent of organizations had to rebuild data. Fortunately, the number of companies reporting data loss has dropped from 65 percent in 2011 to 40 percent this year.
However, many of the incidents of data loss may actually stem from end-user issues. According to a recent article from IT Pro Portal, a number of factors created in-house are causing problems with virtual storage environments, including storage that doesn't match its purpose, misconfiguration of storage and overloading the storage system with too many devices.
The difficulties end-users continue to have with virtualization underscore the opportunity available to MSPs who offer virtualization solutions, especially VMware backup. Though many might expect the virtualization market to have matured by now, there's still clearly plenty of work to be done to help SMBs get a handle of their virtual storage environment and protect their virtual machines.