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A recent survey shows that companies are woefully unprepared when it comes to disaster recovery.
Earlier this year, the Disaster Recovery Preparedness Council released its Benchmark Survey and Annual Report on disaster recovery (DR) preparedness.
If there is a silver lining within this study, it’s the realization that most of the shortcomings and pain points of ill-prepared businesses can be remedied by DR solutions that are currently on the market--and that are within their means (especially considering that businesses allocate, on average, 2 percent to 7 percent of their budget on DR). Many businesses are simply overwhelmed by the panoply of backup and DR choices out there--sometimes to the point of purchasing paralysis. Recently, there have been several MSPmentor posts calling attention to the momentum building toward a unified, all-in-one appliance solution that is a hybrid of local backup and cloud-based recovery. Monetary losses attributed to the outages (which are likely only a fraction of the total damages) ranged from thousands of dollars to more than $5 million for some larger companies.
With a hybrid solution, businesses benefit from broad protection, being able to bounce back quickly from minor adverse events as well as from catastrophic, regional disasters.
A hybrid appliance-based solution also offers the option of recovering from the backup file or creating a bootable virtual standby machine that is continuously updated with the image snapshots, for full recovery in a matter of minutes or even seconds.
The benchmark survey reveals that 65 percent of companies need to produce DR reports for things such as compliance, while 43 percent find compliance reporting overly difficult, manual, and expensive.
There is no surprise here: Compliance and auditing have long bedeviled IT folks and business leaders alike. An all-in-one appliance solution also makes DR testing easy--and testing is a critical component in ensuring the reliability of your disaster recovery plan. Some of the better, and still very affordable, all-in-one appliance solutions on the market provide features like deduplication and compression, which help tame data sprawl and speed up replication to the cloud, while reducing backup windows. Today’s hybrid appliance solutions also often provide flexible pricing options--such as a per-gigabyte model or subscription-based pricing--that help make the solutions even more affordable and easy to justify in the purchasing process for businesses. Second, these are not in an alphabetical listing, I have put them in a “building block” sequence for faster learning so my recommendation is that you read them in the order they are in, at least the first time through. Finally, feel free to challenge me on any of these definitions via my website.  I am still learning, and hopefully always will be, and so I am more than willing to have “the errors of my ways” pointed out. The art and science of evaluating a business from end to end, top to bottom, bottom to top, to determine how best to ensure that a business’s key business units and critical processes and procedures are able to continue, successfully, in the aftermath of a disaster of any significant magnitude.   The end game of BC Planning is to, at least, maintain an operational relationship with and provide essential, mission critical, services for both existing, and new, customers. At a detail level, the BC team deals with the resourcing of pens, pencils, notebooks, copiers, printers and the like, but it also ensures business unit members have a wall with appropriate connections embedded in it to plug equipment into, and an appropriately configured laptop or desktop to plug into that wall’s connections.
To put a point on it:  BC Planning is focused on the business units, all of their critical processes and everything non-DRP related that supports those processes. Once the most critical PnP’s are addressed the BIA teams take up lower risk ones, though it is rare to address all PnP’s used by the BU (ex:  though on-boarding a new employee is important, the BCP may not need to address a formalized manual process for it).
An IT disaster may or may not directly affect a business unit’s assets, and vice versa, however, the end result is the same, an interruption of service, the disruption of the ability to deliver, for a significant period of time. Disaster Recovery Planning is the process of identifying, prioritizing, designing and implementing “fail over” services and systems that back up important to mission critical IT production services and systems (a disaster may also impact development and testing environments but that is of lesser criticality).  To be complete, DR Planning covers any and all monitoring and support activities and infrastructure necessary to keep vital IT services and systems up, or bring them back up, during and post a Disaster event.
To put an extra sharp point on it:  DR Planning focuses on monitoring, protecting and provisioning all of the IT services critical to the business units.
An alternate datacenter, or equivalent alternate facility, distinctly separate from the site physically housing the Production systems, that is capable of supporting identical IT functions and providing equivalent IT services during and after a disaster event.
Once the fundamental definitions above are “firmly under your hat” the next step is to drill down into the following to-be-applied, “rubber meets the road”, aspects of DR and BC.  Study the following two visuals carefully, come back to them often as you study the detailed definitions below them. Generally, post a disaster event a Gold DR system must be up within twenty-four hours, maximum, and data loss must typically be limited to no more than twenty-four hours worth. Looking for wristbands to tag you or others for concern or as a volunteer in a natural disaster effort? This green silicon rubber wristband says Natural Disaster Readiness - Relief - Recovery with a ribbon. This durable wristband was designed with those recovering from tornadoes, hurricanes, wild fires, floods, earthquakes and tsunamis and other acts of God in mind as well as spread awareness for disaster readiness.

Perfect for a response team working a natural disaster, to show your thanks for those that may have helped you or your family. Debossed (indented) message that gives a 3d effect and lasts for the life of the rubber wristband.
You may wear this item 24 hours a day including in the shower, at the health club, work, school or even while standing on your head.
An adult with very large wrists may find the Adult 8" is still too small, they will have to find another way to express their support of this cause - or use the wristband in a keychain or around a beverage container. Open this sizing guide PDF, print the page at 100% scale, follow the instructions and you will have a paper version you can try out in minutes. Nobody likes to think about the bad things that can happen in life, but all too often, history has shown that procrastinating on safeguards means a bigger and more expensive cleanup to follow. Caindec suggests that clients can realize clear benefits by moving their DR plan to the cloud, with cost savings of 70% up to 90% from traditional tape-based backup and restore systems.
Another major cost source comes from the depth of the recovery; in other words, how far back in time do you wish to restore from? Caindec’s statements come at a time when companies of all sizes – even those with well-established backup and DR systems in place, are migrating out of the age in which only non-critical projects are cloud-based.
He cites a Dimension Data case study, in which their client, ClearBenefits, an employee benefits and health plan administration service, was able to improve their Service Level Agreement (SLA) from 95% to 99.9%, which enabled them to better fulfil their compliance with Heath Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations through the development of a “hybrid cloud solution, using its cloud offering for the public-facing front end, and a private database back-end. When running a small workload, Dimension Data’s cloud solutions were significantly less in cost vs. This report, Caindec says, is yet another proofpoint of the economic benefits of Dimension Data’s CaaS offerings, and follows on the heels of a report by the Tolly Group, which found that between Amazon, Rackspace, IBM and Dimension Data, the network-centric approach used by Dimension Data’s enterprise-class cloud helped lower cost and risk, and accelerate migration of mission-critical apps to the cloud.
Ultimately, he says, a company has to review its Business Continuity strategy regularly, not only for audit purposes but for actual insurance against critical failure of operations. Author More ArticlesAbout Steve PrenticeSteve Prentice is a project manager, writer, speaker and expert on productivity in the workplace, specifically the juncture where people and technology intersect. What Should SMEs Do To Prevent Common Mistakes?Spending And Planning Wisely Overview – Billions of pounds from valuable IT and communication (ICT) budgets are wasted each year due to common mistakes in the market. How Your Business Can Overcome Its Fear of BYODOvercoming BYOD Fear While the popularity of the remote workforce has been on the rise, more and more people are returning to the office to work out of fear that their business data isn’t secure, according to a Neustar report.
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The survey provides many valuable insights, but, when it comes to DR readiness, the results are almost uniformly ugly.
Not only must they know their own environment and all its nuances, but they must also know how their environment might play with the different DR technologies. Stunningly, in the event of an outage, IT administrators found that 43 percent of the time, when trying to restore from backups and replicas, they were not recoverable. By leveraging cloud-based recovery as a service (RaaS) capabilities, businesses can spin up their entire environment (physical and virtual) to the cloud; that environment can then be accessed through a remote login and up and running in less than 15 minutes. A hybrid BDR appliance helps take the headache out of compliance activities, making auditing easier and more transparent.
A hybrid solution obviates the need to patch together costly, unwieldy, hard-to-test solutions, or to splurge on solutions like SAN-to-SAN and duplicated data centers that are overkill. P2V and V2P are also powerful capabilities, providing flexibility and options for backup and recovery. Front-loaded capital expenditures (CapEx) for wholesale hardware purchases that can bog down the DR purchasing process can now make way for a pay-as-you-go subscription plan that allows for a smoother operational expenditure (OpEx) procurement process.

While you’ve likely seen analyst reports highlighting the tremendous CAGR growth expected for this space, even without analyst input, the opportunity for growth based on the challenges facing businesses should be abundantly clear.
His experience and interests traverse cloud, cybersecurity, economics, privacy and risk management. The stated permissible amount of data loss as measured in time from the point of the declaration of a disaster event. Debossed letters are then filled with white permanent coloring for a message that really stands out. This is why, in business, the principles of Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity are so important; and with all things business, the cloud is turning out to be an excellent place for companies to turn to for solutions. He states these savings come from a dynamic system of load sharing that Dimension Data specializes in.
Caindec points out that most companies set both a Restore Time Objective (RTO) and a Restore Point Objective (RPO), which jointly answer the question of how far back in time and data does a client need to go to get back up to speed? The use of the dynamic characteristics of the cloud makes it easier and cheaper than ever, without compromising integrity.
Companies are running sales support software, they are file sharing, collaborating and using e-mail programs and a lot more in the cloud. However, that usage also leads to concerns about the security of those solutions. Transactional Email ServicesCloud Based Email Marketing Services Every business can benefit from successful implementation of email marketing strategies, but the variety of SaaS on the market can be a little overwhelming at times.
He suggested that I resurrect CHAOS (Controlling Havoc and Overhauling Security) Theory from a couple of years ago as the message is still holds very true.
In particular, cross-border data security regulations and legislative reform is on the rise. Our goal is to continue to build our growing information portal by providing the best in-depth articles, interviews, event listings, whitepapers, infographics and much more. In fact, a jaw-dropping 73 percent of companies were deemed as failing (receiving grades of D or F) in terms of disaster readiness.
An MSP partner can play a pivotal role in whittling down the choices for business customers.
For instance, a best-in-class BDR appliance solution lets you verify, in a few simple clicks, that your servers and data are backed up and readily recoverable from the image. Today’s cutting-edge hybrid solutions are not only considerably cheaper than legacy solutions, but they are also highly unified and automated so as to simplify DR deployment and management while shortening the learning curve. With a hybrid local and cloud-based solution, testing is made much easier--and cheaper--especially in terms of labor. And, when you unify local and cloud backup and recovery all together in one appliance, you’ve just cured a fair share of DR ills. For example, to meet the needs of a financial client, RTO can be about 4 hours, which can be expensive. Thanks to virtualization technologies, you can leverage the nifty cloud sandbox features of best-in-class RaaS platforms, allowing you to test changes before deploying into production and to play with various configurations and settings. With a cloud-based RPO it can be a fraction of the cost, since it is easier to map usage to the actual profile of a client’s business requirement. This capability helps ensure IT resiliency and quality assurance--all on the relative cheap. This is also a proactive way to ensure you are not getting IT tickets down the line for deployments that went awry. The way we do it in the cloud, you can set up the data and hold it in disk, but you do not have to have unused servers running.

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