Disaster Recovery Is Not Business Continuity!

What’s the Difference?

Disaster Recovery is a subset, a small part of overall Business Continuity.

Disaster Recovery is the process of saving data with the sole purpose of being able to recover it in the event of a disaster. Disasters in ICT terms range from minor to major: the minor loss of an important set of data or a server to the loss of an entire infrastructure; although recovery of a database may take less effort than the reconstruction of the company’s infrastructure, from the point-of-view of panic, pain and pressure, the size of a disaster—either minor or major—could arguably be very similar, especially if a greater number of users are affected.

Business Continuity is a completely different process. First, it is not data centric; it is business centric.

The whole point of Business Continuity is to continue to do business during a disaster, whether that loss be minor or major. In basic terms, it means that when a failure or disaster occurs, that data is still accessible with little to no downtime. The terms associated to the business are RTO and RPO (recovery time objective and recovery point objective).

Typically, Business Continuity is a combination of hardware and software technologies that keep data in two different places at the same time. For example, if the production server in one location goes down, the data and the application are “failed over” to a second system that the users or application can then use. Usually, the ‘application’ only pauses and users generally would not even know there was a problem.

Normally this means is that you must have the redundant infrastructure to support it, doubling your ICT infrastructure investment costs.

Fastcom outsourced BCP services via implementation of infrastructure clustering allows the replication of data (servers) between multiple systems thus enabling you to have that data accessible from a secondary source in the event of a failure or loss. Long term retention of your critical data is also available, completely eliminating the need for local tape or disk capacity to retain this.

Active/active Clustering – an example. If your mail application goes down on the production server, the replicated copy on the secondary server takes the load and the application stays up and people still have access. Failing back to the production server is equally simple once the fault or failure has been rectified.

Evaluate your current position.

  • Do you have a Disaster Recovery or Business Continuity Plan in place?
  • Is your plan to recover from Tape Media?
  • Is your Business Continuity provider not changing with your business needs?
  • Is your Business Continuity provider just way too expensive or not providing the flexibility your individual business needs?
  • When you test and prove your current arrangement, do you have to schedule the test or can it be performed on demand?
  • Is your recovery test just a simulation versus proving real life situations?
  • Is your recovery platform less than your production environment – has the recovery platform been load tested?
  • Is your current plan a “First come first served” should multiple situations simultaneously occur?

If you said yes to any of these questions, we would love to hear from you; let Fastcom provide a bespoke, custom to your need, flexible and cost effective arrangement. We are standing by and able to meet all your Business Continuity needs.

E-Mail us at business.continuity@fastcom.co.nz or call 0800 306-318 for a specialist to come and meet with you, without obligation, and set yourself free from legacy, costly and indeterminate Disaster Recovery ideas and arrangements.