Functioning DR Scenarios: More Important Than Ever
Non-running business procedures were never desirable; that isn’t a new realization. The continuous technological development and the optimization of procedures, however, causes shrinking risk and safety buffers in gradually larger dependency and effective networks. Therefore, the failing of central systems can have devastating consequences on business operations and numbers within minutes.
Naturally, enterprises will prepare themselves for emergency cases. Virtualization, cluster, sophisticated backup and restore concepts, and all connected management activities are usually the chosen resolutions, and those are all suitable. But typically, there are circumstances which cannot be covered by those solutions, either because the handling becomes too complex, one of the dimensions of RPO, RTO or RCO isn’t covered entirely, or they’re solely founded on local scenarios.
To remove local boundaries, there’s the classic solution of working with external systems and data centers. However, many enterprises still want to avoid the connected efforts of this solution, even now.
Emergency Systems Local / On Campus? Access Becomes Limited
The general reasons for external operations of failure systems are generally known in risk management: wildfires, floods, network or electricity failures, work protests, or sabotage. All of those bring corporate managers and other responsible authorities to share the opinion that availability and disaster recovery concepts on a local or campus level are far from enough.
As soon as the campus or the entire regional IT isn’t running, the situation becomes critical. Local systems occasionally suffer from diverse challenges. Nevertheless, if business locations are forced to stop working because they don’t have access to central systems, the cause is negligence of recovery systems.
Productive Systems in the Database, Recovery Systems on Cloud
If enterprises use databases in separate locations, this doesn’t necessarily become relevant. In those cases, Libelle supports DR scenarios with Libelle BusinessShadow, which allows users to switch between databases, complex application fields, or entire data centers with the press of a button.
Not every enterprise, however, can or wants to build and maintain a second data center in an alternate location. In terms of infrastructure (including buildings, security systems, and networks) and systems engineering (server hardware, operating systems, and software), those systems must be fully supervised. This then causes internal or external costs and expenditures for a setting with no active usage for the majority of time, but one that must be active in emergency situations. Aside from that, they’re usually specified for productive operations. In other words, it is dead capital of a significant size that also causes expenditures.
In those cases, Libelle and different cloud providers offer the DRaaS – Disaster Recovery as a Service – solution, which enables enterprises to fix those situations simply and efficiently.
The Hybrid-Cloud Approach with DRaaS: Rightsizing
In this scenario, productive systems are operated in enterprise-owned data centers, as per usual. All existing availability technology and processes can still be applied, or enterprises can reevaluate the existing processes at any given time.
Additionally, DR systems will be built in cooperation with Libelle and a cloud provider, and those will be reduced to minimum expenditures during normal operations. The DR systems simply must be efficient enough to acquire the data flow from Libelle BusinessShadow. This means that in comparison, the costs for an emergency system during normal operations are very low versus a traditional standby system.
If an emergency occurs, the performance parameters will increase, including more CPU, more RAM, and more network throughput. The decision can be made individually as to what becomes relevant during an emergency. Obviously, costs will occur, but those are easily predictable in advance and, in most cases, the costs are even lower than the costs of the native operating system.
The keyword that emerges is rightsizing. For every kind of enterprise, the right system size is chosen, keeping costs only to that which is necessary.
Additional Reasons for Emergency Systems on Cloud
There is a variety of reasons to consider cloud systems, some of which are tailored to different scenarios.
Specifically for the DR concept, enterprises don’t have to invest in certain infrastructures when you consider rightsizing, but different aspects should be considered as well while making the decision:
- The reduced maintenance expenditures for the systems
- The safety mechanisms which cloud providers offer (including security)
- The flexibility with which more systems can be built
Admittedly, not every enterprise needs a DRaaS scenario. We support our users with our best practices in concrete analysis, calculations, and evaluations to discuss the execution of specific scenarios. Additionally, we cooperate with large hype scalers such as AWS and Microsoft Azure, as well as with locally-based providers. While making the decision, the main question always regards the concrete requirements, which our professional team helps you to evaluate.
DRaaS – An Entrance Scenario for Cloud Operating
We find that many of our customers use DRaaS as an entrance scenario for systematic cloud operating. The benefit, aside from the aforementioned reasons, is also the received experience, as well as triggers such as the existing DR-concepts and infrastructures (which have been “good enough” for a while) reach their requirement/performance limit, hardware expires, existing service contracts expire, the data centers should be reduced, etc.
From our perspective, if the enterprise has considered cloud transition but the transfer seems too radical, the outsourcing of DR Systems is a completely suitable first step to preserve IT security, gain personal experience, and also understand commercial effects.
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