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Data is the most important asset any business or organization can possess. Loss of data can have a significant impact on the business that can be almost irreversible and can hamper the productivity, and reputation of the company and also lose customers. Predicting when a disaster occurs is impossible. However, disasters can be classified into human errors or natural causes. What we can control is our reaction and response to recover from the disaster as quickly as possible and have a backup and restoring processes in place.
How often have you heard that the systems have crashed and that the data is at the risk of being lost? Several times perhaps while the company incurred significant loss of business. Similarly, this holds for disasters in Cloud Computing. When there is any issue or disruption of the services/apps or software, it could eventually lead to a disaster. However, recovering from that disaster is where the real expertise lies. If the team is good, you would anticipate such disasters and prepare contingencies for the same, setting the disaster recovery process in motion.
Why is Cloud Disaster Recovery required?
The need for Cloud Disaster Recovery is quite similar to the recovery we require in physical systems – to ensure valuable data and processes are up and running at all times, and to maintain business continuity. Understanding the importance of a Cloud Disaster Recovery plan is vital for businesses to run smoothly. For any organization, business continuity is the main objective. You want all infrastructure to remain intact even if any disaster strikes (natural calamities or manual interference). Therefore, it is imperative to ensure that you have recovery plans in place, which would help you and the business be back on track within minutes.
Be it a natural disaster or a cyberattack, businesses start losing billions of dollars when their servers get hit, infrastructure suffers, and services are stopped. Imagine seeing Google and Microsoft going down even for a few minutes, frantically trying to save the servers and trying to uphold services all over the world – not a pretty sight, right? This is the reason why most businesses are now investing and putting disaster recovery plans in place – to ensure that even when there is an unforeseen disaster or event, they are able to protect the majority of their functions and data, to be up and running within minutes.
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Choosing the right Cloud Data Recovery provider and strategist
As easy as it may sound, Cloud Data Recovery is no cakewalk. Yes, the processes are far more advanced, more efficient, and cost-effective as compared to the traditional data recovery processes, but even then, you must consider the following five factors before going ahead with the plan –
Location plays quite the critical factor when it comes to planning Cloud Disaster Recovery. Choosing a cloud provider with nearby infrastructure increases the risk of sharing the same disaster. In contrast, if the provider is too far, you might face network congestion and latency issues. Not just location, your cloud provider should be exceptionally reliable – where you would not have to think twice about their downtime and service issues. Apart from that, data security is of paramount importance – even if the service-based apps or data is stored in the cloud, you should always be sure of the data’s integrity and security. Not only security but even scalability and compliance also need to be taken care of – after all, your operations might require additional resources and should be protected by ISO and other compliances.
Understanding the approaches to Disaster Recovery
There are three primary approaches to cloud disaster recovery – Hot, Warm and Cold.
1. Cold DR:
The Cold DR happens to be one of the easiest, quickest to execute, and cost-effective disaster recovery methods, where the data or the resources are stored in the cloud but cannot be used without downloading all of them. However, as download and setups are required again, this is also the slowest to implement disaster recovery—one of the most significant disadvantages – an extended downtime for the business and disrupted continuity.
2. Warm DR:
The Warm DR happens to be much more efficient than the Cold DR. Here, you store not just simple data, but also your regularly backed up apps and services that can go live if you have a disaster at hand. Thus, it reduces your downtime and ensures that the business operations are not hampered. The downtime occurs because the data backup is not live, and the payloads are always required to be recovered.
3. Hot DR:
On the other hand, the Hot DR happens to be a parallel live deployment of the resources. Here, the cloud infrastructure and the central infrastructure share the live load and the traffic, which means if either of the two goes down, the other scales up and takes care of the operations and resource requirements. Topside of this approach? ZERO downtime. Yes, it is expensive, but it ensures that you do not collapse the business operations to deal with.
But irrespective of the provider you choose, we recommend you do a thorough disaster risk assessment to go forward with the most suitable strategy.
Disaster Recovery is the key to a business’s survival in the face of a disaster – whether physical or digital. It maintains the continuation of business and its operations and helps you save countless man-hours and money in the long run. As many businesses are moving towards Cloud Disaster Recovery, it is time for you to transition too and leverage the cloud to its maximum potential.
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To get started, go through our Expert Advisory page and Managed Services Package that is CloudThat’s offerings. Then, you can quickly get in touch with our highly accomplished team of experts to carry out your migration needs. Feel free to drop a comment or any queries that you have about Disaster Recovery, DR strategies, or AWS services for Disaster Recovery we will get back to you quickly.
WRITTEN BY Prarthit Mehta
Prarthit Mehta is the Business Unit Head-Cloud Consulting at CloudThat. He is an AWS ambassador and has experience delivering solutions for customers from various industry domains. He also holds working experience in AWS and Big data platforms. He is an AWS Certified Architect - Professional and a certified Microsoft Azure Solutions Architect.