July 5, 2017
Disaster Types and Ways to Recover
The "Disaster" phenomenon is as ancient as the planet Earth. Disasters came into existence long before organic life originated. Tornadoes and hurricanes, earthquakes and landslides, floods and wildfires – some of them are brief, but extremely violent, some are long-lasting and span widely across geographical locations. Many of them are still completely unpredictable.
However, disasters can also be caused by humans. In the IT industry, a disaster can also be caused by a cyber-attack, power outage, burst water pipe or theft. By definition, whenever a disaster occurs, it causes significant damage to your infrastructure, which leads to downtime, disruption and, in the worst case, loss of business.
Now let’s go deeper into disaster types and think how could we handle them to save our business from downtime or collapse.
Software Related Disasters: Business Critical Application Failures, VM Failures, and Cyber-Attacks
Business-critical applications are the ones that keep your business running. Such applications can range from some special tools to Line of Business systems. For example, a CRM is one of the major tools to manage a company's interaction with current and potential customers. Now imagine that a botched update makes a business-critical application, such as the CRM, unavailable. Even though it's just one of many applications in your environment, this situation immediately becomes a disaster. Another trouble may arise when you lose a VM running the business-critical application or become a target of a cyber-attack that locks a machine.
When such a disaster strikes, it brings you a serious headache along with downtime, customer dissatisfaction, productivity, and financial losses. Now, what do we need to do to mitigate this? What are the key points of successful recovery?
First off, your VMs should be backed up as frequently as possible to achieve minimum data loss in case of a disaster. Now that you've backed up your VMs and think you can relax – it’s too early to think so. Your frequent backups do not guarantee successful recovery from backups, because backups can be accidentally corrupted. In other words, you need to know that your backups are recoverable. Therefore, it is important to verify all VM backups and replicas and get proof of recovery. And Screenshot Verification is exactly what you need. It will keep you informed about VM backup status.
And still this is only a part of success, because every hour or even every minute of downtime can be costly for your business. So, recovery speed matters, and Flash VM boot will come in handy, enabling you to recover entire VMs from their backups within seconds.
Well, we’ve just saved our business, but things can get even worse.
Natural Disasters and Hardware Failures
What to do when your premises are completely destroyed because of an earthquake, wildfire, flood or terrorist attack. How could your business survive when you completely lose your site or hardware?
Besides natural disasters, there are many other things that can damage your hardware.
Your business-critical host may fail or become network isolated. Your network equipment can be damaged as well. Your office operations may completely stop because of a power outage that may continue for hours or days, leaving no chance to even powerful UPS. Inoperative air conditioning can easily fry your servers.
Are there any preventive measures against site or hardware loss? Can you continue your business operation in such a situation? The answer is YES.
You can replicate your business critical VMs to a remote site, with subsequent Screenshot Verification. These two features will enable you to dramatically reduce data loss and downtime.
When disaster comes, you cannot afford to act randomly. You should have a plan that covers every type of disaster that may happen.