backing up databases on web servers

  ajn 16:03 16 Feb 2003

This refers, not to an organisation that maintains its own web servers, but to the use of a commercial web hosting service that has to be accessed via a normal telephone line. (There's no chance of broadband in my area for the foreseeable future.)

What is a good backup/fallback system for databases used to feed web sites?
If a web form is used to update a database on the web server how do you (simultaneously) update a master database kept elsewhere? I assume the master copies should not be on the web server to cover for hacking or web host failure.
If the master database, not on the web server, is updated how do you update the database on the web server without using a web form?

The obvious answer of simply copying the database files between my own PC and the web server will not be practicable using an ordinary telephone line as the database files, based on current experience with Access and dBase, are likely to be between a couple of megabytes and 100MB with most probably in the 10-50MB range.

  Forum Editor 17:17 16 Feb 2003

presumably runs on a dedicated server? With a database that size it should, and you should ideally be running SQL server. The problem of mirroring a server-side database to a remote location is difficult without a high-speed connection, and the solution depends on the frequency with which you need to do the updates.

Once a week wouldn't be too bad - snailmail could handle that, but if you want a more or less real-time mirror you'll have to think about a daily courier service. A decent web host may undertake to make back-ups and courier them to you, but there's an obvious data-security problem there.

I can sympathise - those file sizes are the problem, but short of ISDN or a leased line...........

  ajn 18:34 17 Feb 2003

You have clarified and confirmed my fears!


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