Reliable access to is vital for companies to thrive in this digital age. But businesses struggle with various risk factors- like hardware failures, cyberattacks, and geographical distances-that could block access to or corrupt valuable assets. Left without access to , teams may struggle to carry out day-to-day tasks and deliver on important projects.
One way to safeguard your from those risks is using solutions. This technology is indispensable for teams that want to replicate and protect their and use it as a source of competitive advantage.
To help businesses explore , we’ll dive into this technology and cover its benefits, challenges, types, and methods. Lastly, we’ll explore what features you should look for in .
What is Data Replication
Types of Replication
What to Look for in Data Replication Software
What is Data Replication
cloud and storing it on another or site. The result is a multitude of exact copies residing in multiple locations. is the process of copying from an on-premise or
These replicas support teams in their and efforts. If is compromised at one site (for example by a system failure or a cyberattack), teams can pull from other servers and resume their work.
also allows users to access stored on servers close to their offices, reducing network latency. For , users in Asia may experience a delay when accessing stored in North America-based servers. But the latency will decrease if a replica of this is kept on a that’s closer to Asia.
also plays an important role in and business intelligence efforts, in which is replicated from operational databases to warehouses.
How data replication works
involves copying in many different ways, including between on-premises servers, servers in other locations, to multiple devices, or to or from cloud servers.
can also be replicated on demand or according to a schedule, in real time or in batches . can also be triggered by any changes in the master source.
Overall, the process of follows these steps:
- Specify your source and destination
- Choose tables and columns to be copied from the source
- Plan out the frequency of
- Decide on a method you’ll use
- Identify keys if you’re using key-based
- Select a tool or write a custom code
- Monitor processes for quality and consistency
Benefits of data replication
Data replication makes data available on multiple sites, and in doing so, offers various benefits:
- Better availability: If a system at one site goes down because of hardware issues or other problems, users can access stored at other s.
- Improved : is replicated to multiple sites, allowing IT teams to easily restore deleted or corrupted .
- Faster access to : As is stored in various locations, users retrieve from the closest servers and benefit from reduced latency.
- Improved operations: can be retrieved from multiple servers, reducing the chance that any could be overwhelmed with user queries.
- Improved : can be continuously replicated from a to a used by business intelligence teams.
Replicating data to the cloud has additional benefits. Data is kept safely off-site and won’t be damaged if a major disaster, such as a flood or fire, damages on-site infrastructure. Cloud replication is also cheaper than deploying on-site data centers. Users won’t have to pay for hardware or maintenance. Replicating data to the cloud is a safer option for smaller businesses that may not be able to afford full-time cybersecurity staff. Cloud providers are constantly improving their network and physical security. Furthermore, cloud sites provide users with on-demand scalability and flexibility. Data can be replicated to servers in different geographical locations, including in the nearby region.
Data replication challenges
Data replication technologies offer many benefits, but IT teams should also keep in mind several challenges:
- Increased data storage costs: Keeping replicated data at multiple locations leads to rising storage and processing costs.
- Extra work for internal teams: Setting up and maintaining a data replication system often requires assigning a dedicated internal team.
- Increased network traffic: Replicating data across multiple copies requires deploying new processes and adding more traffic to the network.
- Inconsistent data: Managing multiple updates in a distributed environment may cause data to sometimes be out of sync. Database administrators should ensure consistency in replication processes.
Types and methods of data replication
Depending on their needs, companies can choose among several types of data replication:
- Transactional replication: Users receive a full copy of their data sets, and updates are continuously replicated as data in the source changes.
- Snapshot replication: A snapshot of the database is sent to replicated sites at a specific moment.
- Merge replication: Data from multiple databases is replicated into a single database.
In tactical terms, there are several methods for replicating data, including:
- Full-table replication: Every piece of new, updated, and existing data is copied from the source to the destination site. This method copies all data every time and requires a lot of processing power, which puts networks under heavy stress.
- Key-based incremental replication: Only data changed since the previous update will be replicated. This approach uses less processing power but can’t replicate hard-deleted data.
- Log-based incremental is replicated based on information in log files. This is an efficient method but works only with sources that support log-based (such as , Oracle, and PostgreSQL).
What to look for in data replication software
Data replication software should ideally contain the following features:
- A large number of connectors: A replication tool should allow you to replicate data from various sources and SaaS tools to data warehouses and other targets.
- Log-based capture: An ideal replication software product should capture streams of data using log-based change data capture.
- Data transformation: Data replication solutions should also allow users to clean, enrich, and transform replicated data.
- Ease of use: A drag-and-drop interface is an ideal solution for users to quickly set up replication processes.
Of course, users can set up the replication process by writing code internally. But managing yet another in-house app is a major commitment of energy, staff, and money. The app also may require the team to handle error logging, refactoring code, alerting, etc. It comes as no surprise that many teams are opting for third-party data replication software.
There are also real-time database replication solutions such as Striim. This tool extracts data from databases using change data capture technology and replicates it to a variety of targets in near real time. Striim’s replication capabilities have various use cases. This platform can, for instance, enable financial organizations to near instantaneously replicate transactions and new balances data to customer accounts. Inspyrus, a San Francisco-based fintech startup, uses Striim to replicate invoicing data from its private cloud operational databases to other cloud targets such as Snowflake. Striim can also be used to replicate obfuscated sensitive data to Google Cloud while original data is safely kept in an on-premises environment.
Have more time to analyze data
Reliable access to is of vital importance for today’s companies. But that access can often be blocked or limited, which is why solutions are increasingly important. They enable teams to replicate and protect valuable assets, and support efforts. And with secured, teams can have more time and energy to analyze and find insights that will provide a competitive edge.