Thought Leadership

Protecting Your Data

We've got your back. In today’s business environment, your company’s success increasingly relies on technology.  Businesses are creating volumes of new business-critical data and employing new applications daily.  The drive to increase productivity by having ready access to information anytime, from anyplace on any device has created ‘technology complexity’.  This increased complexity combined with the 24×7 business cycle and the evolving demands of the business makes it essential that in the event of a business disruption your information recovery time and lost data is minimized.

Whether protecting a data center, local or remote offices or even a single device, your technology infrastructure needs a backup solution which meets the demands of the business within the constraints of limited IT budgets.  Your business deserves a backup and recovery solution which will minimize the impact of a system failure or outage that may include business continuity. 

Strict budgets are driving IT professionals to seek out alternatives such as virtualization and cloud computing to implement solutions for data backup, archiving and disaster recovery to achieve their goals.   The search is on for a single if not a simple data backup solution which is capable of handling complex and the ever-increasing volumes of data and system applications. 

INTRO FOR PLANNING:

There are three questions you must ask to get started in creating a backup or disaster recovery plan.

1) How long can I afford to be down? (Recovery Time Objective) 2) How much data can I afford to lose? (Recovery Point Objective) 3) How much can I afford to spend upfront and on an ongoing basis for a backup solution?

The answers to each of these questions not only affect each other, they provide the overall guideline for planning your approach to secure your information.

Let’s walk through the definitions of RTO and RPO.

RECOVERY TIME OBJECTIVE

According to Wikipedia, “the recovery time objective (RTO) is the duration of time and a service level within which a business process must be restored after a disaster (or disruption) in order to avoid unacceptable consequences associated with a break in business continuity. 

RTO can include the time required to assess a disruption, to determine and consider various repair options, the recovery itself if a resource is deemed to be lost or damaged beyond repair, post-recovery testing, and the restoration of service and communication to stakeholders.

The RTO attaches to the business process and not the resources required supporting the process. The RTO for each company and function is different. Some companies could have a two week RTO while others could be counted in seconds. Depending on the critical nature of your applications, you may have different levels of RTO within your data structure

The order of magnitude of the RTO (weeks vs. hours vs. seconds) will provide guidance as to candidate backup and recovery solutions, as technical limitations of certain solutions will preclude their use for tighter RTOs.  The ability to recover your IT infrastructure and business applications should be considered in addition to the data associated with these applications. You may discover that changes within your IT infrastructure and applications will be required to meet your desired RTO.

RECOVERY POINT OBJECTIVE  

Wikipedia defines RPO as “…the maximum tolerable period in which data might be lost from an IT service due to a major incident. The RPO gives disaster recovery planners another limit to work to when designing an effective backup and recovery solution. For instance, if the RPO is set to 4 hours, then in practice, offsite backups must be completed every 4 hours i.e. a daily offsite backup on tape will not suffice.

RPO is completely independent of RTO. RPO is simply, the amount of data you are willing to lose in the event of an outage or disaster, or the amount of work or processing that would need to be repeated (or lost) following a successful recovery.

DATA BACKUP – DISASTER RECOVERY  

Based on your answers to questions 1 and 2, your business may only require a daily backup.    On the other end of the spectrum, you may need a full-blown cloud system, so in the event of a service interruption, users never notice.

At a glance, the following table provides a simplistic view of the backup methods and their associated RTO and RPO levels along with what you can expect regarding their reliability.

RPO.RTO table 3.24.14

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Fig 1: click on image to expand it

HOW MAINSTREAM TECHNOLOGIES CAN HELP

Mainstream Technologies will help you ask the right questions; find the appropriate answers and help you design a disaster recovery plan which meets your expectations, government and/or industry regulations and your budget. 

Preparing for a service outage is much more than simply having a data backup.  The challenge is to determine how long it will take to fully restore service when an outage of any type is experienced.  

GetITback® is the data backup component of an overall disaster recovery solution.  GetITback® is a traditional disk backup solution which provides recovery better than a Cold Site (see Fig 1. above) but not as well as a Warm Site.  It is cost competitive with tape and eliminates the need to purchase or manage replacement hardware.

GetITback® provides:

  • ·        Full backups daily (or more often if desired)
  • ·        Custom backup plan to meet your RPO
  • ·        Fail-safe backup
  • ·        Faster recovery
  • ·        Multiple versions of your data stored
  • ·        Option to use the Mainstream’s data center as a failover in the event of a disaster
  • ·        Option to restore data to the off-site location of your choice
  • ·        Verified backup daily
  • ·        Option to test your backed up data quarterly

Now that your data is secure, the worst case scenario is losing all your computers and networks.  In this scenario, you’re effectively starting over and expediting restoration time is critical to your business’s survival.  Acquiring and installing new computers and software will be required before your data backup comes into play.  Without proper planning, it could take weeks to restore operations.

Mainstream Technologies can guide you through the contingencies and options of tried and true ways to make sure your business risk is minimized in the event of an outage.

ABOUT MAINSTREAM TECHNOLOGIES

Mainstream Technologies a Little Rock, Arkansas technology provider offers, managed technology services, technology consulting, custom software development, data center services, and cybersecurity services. Established in 1996, Mainstream has earned a reputation for delivering quality, reliable, and professional technology services for public and private-sector customers across the United States.

Jeff Pracht
IT Business Development Manager
(479) 715-8629 Office
(501) 529-0008 Mobile

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Little Rock, AR | Conway, AR | Bentonville, AR

325 West Capitol Ave., Suite 200
Little Rock, AR 72201

Central Arkansas 501.801.6700

Northwest Arkansas 479.439.5700

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