Better SQL server backups

Idera's SQLsafe brings compression, encryption, ease, and speed to backups of Microsoft's database

Idera’s SQLsafe — a backup utility for Microsoft SQL Server — was designed to compete directly with Imceda’s LiteSpeed. Similar to LiteSpeed, SQLsafe improves on native SQL Server backups with compression, encryption, faster backups and restores, and lots of extras that make managing database backups easier.

For example, SQLsafe offers different backup compression rates so that DBAs can choose what’s more important to them, speed or size. (In my early tests, using the highest compression setting, I achieved 71 percent compression.) And SQLsafe can encrypt backups using AES, DES, Triple-DES, or RC2 algorithms, giving admins a lot of flexibility in securing off-site data.

One feature I really like is the ROI calculator, which allows you to easily estimate storage costs as your data volume grows. SQLsafe’s default cost assumption is $200 per gigabyte, but you can enter whatever amount is appropriate for your environment. Another useful feature is the compression calculator, which tells you how much storage space you’ll need for different compression rates.

SQLsafe’s GUI is very intuitive, making it easy to get status on current backups (queued, processing, error, complete, failed, cancelled) and also view statistical information such as how many backups completed and how many failed in the past week. And, using SQLsafe’s CLI, you can script entire backup scenarios that are as complicated as your scripting language allows. Using preprocess and post-process switches, I was able to define scripts that ran both before and after my backup.

SQLsafe is a promising way to manage SQL Server backups and a worthy competitor to LiteSpeed. Which to choose? Ask me after I try the new version of LiteSpeed in the coming weeks.

Idera SQLsafe 1.1

Idera

Cost: $995 per server

Available: Now

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