Does Keeping Your Resume Up to Date Count as a Valid HA and DR Strategy?

August 25, 2010

By Gil Hecht, Founder and CEO, Continuity Software

Again and again, we are reminded of just how business critical high availability (HA) and disaster recovery (DR) capabilities are in today’s highly-competitive, ultra-demanding economy. Yet, an unreasonably high percentage of today’s most well-known and respected business organizations are leaving themselves vulnerable to both natural and manmade IT disasters.

One needs only to review recent headlines to see what I mean. For instance, the 7-hour outage at Singapore’s largest banking network (“Global CIO: IBM’s Bank Outage: Anatomy of a Disaster”) and the American Eagle Outfitters 8-day-long disaster (“Oracle Backup Failure Major Factor in American Eagle 8-Day Crash”).

Clearly, HA and DR is a persistent challenge for many data centers, regardless of industry or size. And, while most data centers have implemented an HA and/or DR strategy, most understand there is no guarantee it will actually deliver. Due to the time and expense involved, it usually gets tested once or twice a year. Then, over the following days, weeks and months, changes are made to the production environment that are not replicated appropriately, and the HA/DR strategy is rendered virtually useless.

On a daily basis, I meet with many extremely experienced and talented data center managers to talk about how to ensure their organization’s HA and DR. Many do privately admit that while HA and DR is a high business priority – from both an internal governance and/or external legal regulations standpoint – they recognize that if they were to experience a true disaster, data and application availability would probably be lost for an amount of time that far exceeds SLA guidelines (if not permanently). In fact, one IT executive joked that his DR strategy was to, “Keep my resume up to date.”

OK, just for the sake of argument… How about an affordable and easy to manage solution that mitigates data protection and high availability risks by detecting gaps and vulnerabilities between your primary production, HA cluster and/or remote DR sites?


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