DRaaS Best Practices, Courtesy of Logicalis

By Doug Barney

IT shops today are confronted with an insane array of cloud storage backup, and disaster recovery services. So how do you choose the right one, and make sure whatever you acquire will work for your business?

Logicalis is in the business of selling disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) and has some new advice. This is your basic white paper stuff, taking a high level look at the issue and not doing a hard sell. But in the end of course the company wants you to think of it first.

The paper, “Advanced Technologies Make Thinking about Disaster Recovery a Lot Less Scary: Why You Should Reevaluate Your DR Strategy Today” can be downloaded here.

Image via Shutterstock

“Too many IT pros go home every night hoping that their organization won’t experience a disaster that will leave them scrambling to get their IT systems back online in a hurry. The fact is, disaster recovery and business continuity solutions require both a strategy and a financial commitment because not thinking about a disaster won’t stop it from happening,” said David Kinlaw, practice manager for protection services, Logicalis US. “Today, with the myriad of technological solutions available, there is a combination of virtualization, replication, co-location, data-center-as-a-service, DRaaS, or cloud-to-cloud technologies that will suit nearly every enterprise organization, making a data protection strategy not only prudent, but a no brainer. It’s no longer a question of whether or not to implement a DR solution, but what form that solution should take.”

One key bit of advice from Logicalis is to ditch tape backup. Of course, as a cloud provider, it is in Logicalis’ interest to say so. While three quarters of today’s shops still use tape for disaster recovery, tape itself can represent the disaster. Tape is fragile, can break be damaged or stolen, and even if things all seem perfect, restores from tape often fail.

Logicalis seems more concerned with performance. Tape is slow so your recovery time objective (RTO) is far longer than it should be. This means you are restoring old data. “By the time data is restored from tapes, that data may be hours, days or weeks old, something that is acceptable in some business scenarios, but a death sentence in others,” the company argued.

The cloud represents a new way to do disaster recovery, but there are many questions that need answers: how fast can I actually recover, is the backup redundant, and how much is all this going to cost?

Logicalis has its own set of criteria. Here are the company’s eight essential DRaaS features:

  1.  “A multi-tenancy cloud environment in a Tier 1 data center
  2. Geographic diversity and data center redundancy
  3. A security framework based on industry best practices, i.e., HIPAA, PCI DSS, FISMA, ITAR and MASS LAW compliance
  4. Service Level Agreements (SLAs) with true financial penalties
  5. Dedicated disaster recovery delivery managers
  6. Guaranteed reservations for additional capacity required in the event of a disaster
  7. Monitoring and management based on ITIL best practices
  8. Quarterly review and an annual full recovery test”

Advice for MSPs

Logicalis isn’t just giving advice to IT, it has an earful for MSPs as well The company has formalized its advice with the MSP Expert Extension Team (M.E.E.T.) program, “a service designed by Logicalis US to allow small to mid-sized MSPs access to the expertise, technology and marketing opportunities they need to expand their businesses and improve profitability and cash flow,” as the company explains.

Logicalis could have a lot to offer. The company has size, with its $1.4 billion in revenue, almost 3,500 employees, and some 6,000 customers. The company also has a major foot hold in managed services, and already has partnerships with technology vendors such as CA, Cisco, IBM, HP, NetApp and VMware.

Edited by Alisen Downey

MSPToday Editor at Large

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