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Architecting the Perfect Continuous Availability and Disaster Recovery Environment

Architecting the Perfect Continuous Availability and Disaster Recovery Environment

Business dependency on IT systems has never been bigger, so when things go wrong the influence can be

catastrophic.The method of designing and architecting a dependable, comprehensive, cost effective continuous availability and disaster

recovery solution can only start by understandingyour application uptime and data recovery requirements. In other words, what is your stated service level agreement (SLA) for

application and data recovery time and recovery point objectives (RTO

and RPO)?

RTO deals with the how fast an application has to be back up and running after a failure, while RPO deals with the amount of data that can be

lost. RTO and RPO can also be defined in terms of profit. That is, how

long can you afford to be down and the amount of data can you afford to

waste. When described in monetary terms, it becomes rather clear as to

where the focus needs to be.

There are numerous solutions that offer data RPO in the seconds range.

However, by comparison, there are distinctly few solutions that can also provide the same, for application RTO. Neverfail is one of the select

few, to have developed the necessary technologies required to deliver a

solution that provides application RTO and RPO in the near zero range,

quickly eliminating application downtime.

So, how do you know which applications are the most critical?

Which require RTO/RPO in the near zero timeframe?

The solutions to such enquiries are really pretty simple. Which

applications create the most help desk calls when they are unavailable?

Which applications, when unavailable, create the organization to lose

money, or productivity, or customer confidence?

Making these choices and being alert to the affect of application

downtime will help you to ascertain which applications rely on the most

attention. Establishing which applications require the most stringent

RTO and RPO is the number one step in deciding what type of method and

architecture will work most beneficial for your business.

Over the years, a vast array of point products has been created to solve the particular availability problems of the time. Whilst there has

always been the need for a solution to bring applications back online

quickly after a failure, with as minimum loss as possible, identifying a complete solution to the issue has remained elusive. However, more

recent technology advances (in replication, clustering, e duplication

etc.) mean that is now feasible to move away from the traditional

Recovery Centric approach to clearing up the issue, towards a more

Availability Centric approach.

Even though choices have been made pertaining to the criticality of

applications in an environment, for business continuity, there is still an overriding fact that

cannot be excluded, application downtime is intolerable for many

application owners, users, customers and management. Given this, it

seems like ensuring the application is effectively protected and

monitored, so that a pre emptive action can be taken to deal with a

problem before it becomes an concern, is key.

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