Building and managing a second disaster recovery site can be costly, time-consuming and complicated. It requires IT staff, facilities and infrastructure, software and hardware maintenance, upgrades and power. It also requires a large upfront capital investment in data centres, networks and equipment. And because a DR solution is not used all the time, it can be hard to justify to the board or CFO.
DRaas solutions reduce these costs by shifting responsibilities for infrastructure and application backup, management and failover to the service provider. By leveraging the cloud, DRaaS can be deployed in hours or days compared to weeks or months needed for onsite implementation.
It also enables business continuity and a faster return to productivity following a data centre outage by delivering applications in virtual machines and by providing an automated, non-disruptive failback process. The ability to restore a system quickly to a pre-failover state eliminates a significant source of downtime and rework, and the single management interface simplifies operations tasks.
A good DRaaS platform offers multi-site, geo-distanced replication to ensure consistent availability and data loss prevention. It should also have support for multiple hypervisors and backup platforms to protect a wide range of workloads. And it should include features for preserving network configurations during failover, reducing the need for IP readdressing and simplifying operations.
In a typical model, the IT team uses a vendor-supplied cloud management interface to select VMs or physical servers within their infrastructure that they want to back up. The provider regularly takes snapshots of those servers and stores them in the cloud, ensuring that an up-to-date production environment can be restored at the push of a button. Usage fees typically apply for storing snapshots and synchronizing data between the primary and the cloud DR sites.
Another benefit of a DRaaS solution is its ability to scale up and down on demand based on workload needs. This flexibility can help to minimize IT staffing requirements, which can be difficult to maintain in-house, especially during peak periods.
When it comes to evaluating DRaaS providers, it’s important to look for a vendor with a strong track record in the market. Look for vendors that are backed by reputable data centers and meet high security standards. You should also check to see whether they comply with the major U.S. and global data privacy programs.
A great example of a DRaaS solution that offers these benefits is Carbonite Recover. Powered by Carbonite DoubleTake, it provides push-button failover of critical applications and data by replicating primary servers in real-time at the individual byte level to the cloud. In addition to offering cost efficiency by eliminating upfront capital expenses for infrastructure and applications, Recover enables organizations to streamline processes with automated failover procedures, self-service testing, reporting and analytics.
To help IT teams save time and money on implementing, managing and supporting a DRaaS solution, they should consider using a managed service from a reputable provider. By moving the burden of hardware, facilities, IT personnel and upgrades to the service provider, businesses can focus their resources on other revenue-generating projects. backup and disaster recovery solutions