Blog Viewer

VMUG Bits: Advantage of Cloud-Based DR

By Lori Donaldson posted 04-09-2018 02:33 PM


I’ve listened to no less than five presentations on data management and movement in the past week. There has been a ground swell of technology companies to enter the data protection market. All of which have an option for backing data up to the cloud. What may get lost in the noise is the capability these solutions bring to disaster recovery (DR).

I spent several years running the DR operations for a global Fortune 200’s SAP infrastructure. I want to level-set. At any scale DR is hard. No matter of technology changes the fact that applications, people, and process are in constant change. It’s what makes DR hard. To this point, DR proved hard and expensive. If a company wanted aggressive recover point objectives (RPO) and recover time objectives (RTO), then cost plays a critical factor. 

RPO represents how much data loss a business operation can endure. RTO represents the amount of time a business requires to recovery from a business impacting event. Like any other technology businesses want no data loss and constant availability. From an engineering and cost perspective, the greater the capability, the higher the expense.

To this point, facility and circuit cost represented the gating cost factor in achieving the business objective. In the past, it required leasing or purchasing compute and data assets in a DR facility. Storage replication services helped keep remote copies in sync. Before public cloud solutions, spreading the cost across several customers presented poor RTO results.

Public cloud has enabled greater efficiency from a technology perspective. AWS has proven that virtualization at scale enables sharing data center resources across multi-tenants. Data protection companies have leveraged these economies of scale to offer data replication services to sync backups to relatively cheap storage using commodity internet connectivity.

Adding orchestration enables customers to convert VMDK images to AWS AMI’s. In practice, there’s a great level of complexity too much be resolved. Functionally, modern solutions bring the capability that previously only available to the largest of enterprise.

Keith Townsend
VMUG Contributor and The CTO Advisor