Backup the data in AWS Elastic Block Store

Backup the data in AWS Elastic Block Store

A recent Amazon outage resulted in a small number of customers losing production data stored in their accounts. This, of course, led to typical anti-cloud comments that follows such events. The reality is that these customers data loss had nothing to do with cloud and everything to do with them not understanding the storage they were using and backing it up.

Over Labor Day weekend there was a power outage in one of the availability zones in the AWS US-East-1 region.  Backup generators came on, but quickly failed for unknown reasons. Customers’ Elastic Block Store (EBS) data is replicated among multiple servers, but the outage affected multiple servers. While the bulk of data stored in EBS was fine or was able to be easily recovered after outage, .5 percent of the data could not be recovered. Customers among the .5 percent who did not have a backup of their EBS data actually lost data.

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