Hybrid IT offers organisations attractive benefits, including the ability to closely align technology platforms with workloads, and precisely meet the specific needs of diverse audiences. Such benefits, properly exploited, can pay huge dividends in customer satisfaction, brand equity and PR, as well as in their effect on sales and profits.
However, as organisations rely increasingly heavily on Hybrid IT, with applications handling data across a complex portfolio of systems, they must address increased IT complexity. Internal and external datacentres, multiple public, private and hybrid cloud environments, and in many cases various legacy systems, working together, present multiple points of potential failure.
Service Availability and Recovery
With such complexity across the IT estate, maintaining service availability is hard, and, in the event of a major failure, staging a swift and successful recovery is harder still. Yet both are critically important: 43% of respondents in a Disaster Recovery Institute survey stated that always staying online and competitive was their No 1 reason for recovery.
A resilient, recoverable production environment is essential for comprehensive, rapid recovery in the event of significant systems failures. Because of the complexity and diversity of technology in play in a typical Hybrid IT environment, though, there is no one technology that can cover it all.
Bringing Together the Parts
In the absence of any single technology covering recovery and availability in hybrid environments, it is key to find a solution bringing together those disparate technologies that, between them, do – a single solution covering the full range of platforms in today’s Hybrid IT environments.
While many disaster recovery providers simply spin up servers in the event of a failure, leaving recovery to those servers in the hands of the customer, such a solution would take a Hybrid IT approach, integrating hosting, cloud and recovery services to deliver a comprehensive solution providing the levels of resilience and recovery essential to today’s Hybrid IT production environments.
1. Protecting Data
Data replication, for mission-critical data, would maintain a full, working copy of the environment, ready to go live whenever necessary. Recovery times of between 4 and 12 hours would be essential to address aggressive RTOs.
Backup and vaulting would be provided for less critical data, with RTO and RPO goals ranging from 24 to 48 hours, as well as for longer-term data retention. A managed service would be available.
2. Recovering the Environment
In the event of disaster, the solution would provide cloud based and physical IT recovery to restore production environments.
Highly scalable, running on secure, enterprise-class platforms, fully managed and SLA-backed cloud based recovery would ensure that specific RPO and RTO needs could be met. A portfolio of services would be available, including server replication with near-zero RPOs and RTOs of under 4 hours, virtual servers providing 2 to 4 hour SLA-backed recovery, and agnostic storage replication.
For physical recovery, customers’ systems could be implemented in the service provider’s recovery facility.
3. Managing Recovery
Customers should be able to decide which processes to address internally, and which to have their provider handle.
A discovery and mapping service providing an accurate and auditable map of production environments and applications, and their dependencies would help inform decisions on strategic projects driving business value, such as correctly sizing recovery solutions to optimise budget, as well as helping keep production and recovery environments in sync for greater resilience and availability.
4. Recovering the Workplace
In the event of a disaster directly affecting the workplace, recovering data and the IT environment is not enough. It is also essential to have somewhere to carry on business. Tailorable dedicated, shared and mobile workplace solutions would allow customers to balance service levels, risk and costs according to their specific needs.
The good news is that such solutions, do exist – Recovery and Business Continuity Services from Sungard Availability Services is a good example.
Planning and delivering disaster recovery in Hybrid IT environments remains complex, though. Talk to MTI to discover how we can help you identify your risks and needs, and address them to ensure you stay up and running whatever challenges may arise. Visit www.mti.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01483 520 200.