How Virtualization & the Cloud Help Disaster Recovery
Most modern data centers that are dealing with an ever-increasing number of business-critical applications and information must face the possibility that digital and physical events may lead to the destruction of important data and the loss of productivity. This threat could come from natural disasters, malicious software, or even complications that arise from the sheer amount of data and trying to keep up with the shift between the devices that are used to access the servers.
Many companies have become dependent on constant and consistent uptime as well as easy access to data center information. When a disaster occurs, any interruption in the status quo can lead to major problems for everyone involved. This is why a strong disaster recovery plan is so important, and why many companies and data centers are turning to virtualization and the cloud to build a solid DR platform.
Cloud computing has gained significant traction over the past few years, and major players in the industry are all offering solutions and applications that are hosted in the cloud. In effect, the cloud could simply be defined as a service that allows everything from a single piece of software to an entire virtual server to operate at a location outside a company’s normal infrastructure. In other words, the storage and processing of critical data is all handled off site.
This has a number of immediate benefits for a disaster recovery plan. Since all the data is kept off-site, any problems that occurred to the physical location will not impact the digital archives. Cloud security has been a concern in the past, but most providers are developing more ways to keep information safe and easily accessible in case of a disaster.
This ties directly into virtualization, because it is possible to replicate an entire virtual machine in the cloud – the settings, docs, applications all at once.
The nature of virtual machines means that they are inherently easier to back up and recover than a physical machine. If, for example, the disruption in business continuity comes because of damage to or loss of data from a physical source, there isn’t much that can be done to speed the recovery process. However, since entire disc images of individual computers or entire servers can be backed up to the cloud, recovery can be done much faster.
Server virtualization is becoming an extremely important part of enterprises businesses. As the convenience and security of the cloud continues to grow and improve, these companies can take advantage of an agile environment where disaster recovery is much faster and far more reliable. If a disaster happens, the company simply has to access the information housed in the cloud, replicate the disk images, and install the former information and data to the newly created server or computer.
Concerns and Developments
For many years, companies were hesitant to start moving toward virtualization and cloud computing in an effort to maintain a perceived “total control” over the data and information. Security is always a major concern when changing technologies, but these technologies have become more pervasive in enterprise and small businesses and companies are more willing to make the change in order to ensure a more reliable and faster recovery.
Does your organization have a disaster recovery plan? Let us know in the comments.
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