Despite a clear need for a comprehensive disaster recovery/business continuity strategy—one that guarantees quickly restored service in the face of both natural and man-made disasters—many businesses come up short. Why?
Despite the importance of efficient, effective, affordable, compliant disaster recovery tools and practices, many companies are falling short. Consider these statistics:
- 22% of organizations still use tape and offsite storage as their primary disaster recovery methods
- 3 out of 4 businesses get a failing grade for disaster recovery
- The average cost of one hour of downtime is $84,000
- The average time to recover after a disaster is 18.5 hours
Despite a clear need for a comprehensive disaster recovery/business continuity strategy—one that guarantees quickly restored service in the face of both natural and man-made disasters—many businesses come up short. Why? According to experts, the main reasons are complexity and cost.
“Traditional disaster recovery solutions typically involve buying another storage system to put at a remote site and buying replication software,” said Eric Slack, a senior analyst at Evaluator Group. “Either way, these solutions are complex and expensive.”
Instead of traditional disaster recovery strategies, which include labor-intensive offsite tape or disk storage that require complex synchronization processes with a secondary site, the converged way is simpler. For one thing, it typically includes replications and snapshots, features that enable these systems to access copies of critical virtual machines over to the remote location. It also reduces the number of separate pieces and processes involved, simplifying installation, configuration and ongoing management. In addition, hyperconverged infrastructures are modular, so companies can start out small and grow by adding additional appliances.
This model is particularly useful for organizations with multiple remote locations. With this in place, remote offices can function as the recovery site for the main location, and the main location can serve as the recovery site for all remote offices. Branch offices have traditionally been an IT headache; not only is remote office IT expensive, but they are typically run with fewer qualified IT staff and less infrastructure. By using a converged approach, companies with branch offices gain many benefits—not only simplified and more affordable infrastructure, but more robust disaster recovery capabilities.
To create a fully redundant disaster recovery solution, some companies use converged infrastructure in conjunction with the cloud, which acts as a disaster recovery location. Instead of simply being a target destination where the converged infrastructure sends data to be protected, clouds also can be used in a peer-to-peer active/active or active/passive (failover) scenario for implementing business resiliency. This provides businesses with both a master copy of the data and a converged business-resilient environment.
In addition to being less costly than traditional disaster recovery methods, the fact that it’s simpler to manage can be a big factor. “Traditional disaster recovery solutions are much more complex than setting up a small cluster at the DR site and turning on the replication feature that’s included in your [converged] architecture,” Slack says.
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