If the cloud didn’t exist, disaster recovery experts would want to invent it. The two fit together that well.
One of the key elements of a disaster recovery/business continuity (DR/BC) plan is geographical diversity. Simply, if the equipment in one location goes down – and carries the data with it – it is a reasonable idea to have a duplicate of both elsewhere. That idea predates the cloud (or, at least, the latest version of it). But it is exactly what the cloud provides.
At Datamation, Christine Taylor offers insight into the use of the cloud for DR. It is important to remember that though the cloud is a tremendous tool for DR, it must be proactively managed to realize the full benefits. A very important point is that there are limitations to the cloud’s DR capabilities – unless the enterprise takes the appropriate steps.
Taylor writes that “DR in the cloud is not backup and restore.” In other words, real DR involves systems and applications as well as data. Unless the organization takes necessary steps, it could end up only being able to restore the data. In many cases, that would only be half the job and wouldn’t fully bring back the organization’s services. Thus a cloud product specially geared to DR is important to fully realize the benefits.
Reseller News posted a piece that looked at what Lincoln Goldsmith, Acronis’ General Manager for Australia and New Zealand, said are the three ways in which the cloud is changing BC/DR. It adds, he said, flexibility, reliability and speed.
ERS Solutions, an Irish company, produced an informative infographic on the issue of cloud-based DR. Among the findings is that the reasons for using cloud-based DR are fairly evenly distributed: 52 percent want ease of use, 48 percent look for compatibility, and 59 percent see cost as the main factor.
The infographic doesn’t say why the total is 159 percent. It isn’t too important, though. The bottom line is that there are three strong rationales for cloud-based DR. Cloud-based approaches enable companies to enfranchise remote locations, avoid the expensive and time-consuming task of building their own systems, and enhance or replace an existing platform.
The infographic also provides three tips on what to ask potential providers. Shoppers should make sure data can be transferred securely, that enough bandwidth and network capacity is guaranteed, and that a plan is in place to restore data.
The money seems to be there. For instance, cloud-based DR company CloudEndure got a $7 million investment from Infosys and Magma Venture Partners. This brings the total investment in the company, according to TechCrunch, to more than $12 million. Magma was a previous investor.
Carl Weinschenk covers telecom for IT Business Edge. He writes about wireless technology, disaster recovery/business continuity, cellular services, the Internet of Things, machine-to-machine communications and other emerging technologies and platforms. He also covers net neutrality and related regulatory issues. Weinschenk has written about the phone companies, cable operators and related companies for decades and is senior editor of Broadband Technology Report. He can be reached at [email protected] and via twitter at @DailyMusicBrk.