Minimising the costs and risks associated with downtime

IT disasters are more common than you would expect. The word disaster is very powerful and conjures images of fire, air disaster etc. However in our experience it is the small disasters that have major impact whether they are natural or human error. Organisations that are prepared for possible risks and unplanned outages are able to quickly react to fast moving events and minimise the costs and risks associated with such events.
C24 provides hosted/cloud based IT disaster recovery solutions for organisations that wish to manage the risk of these events happening. The solutions usually involve clients replicating all critical infrastructure, storage, servers, applications and real time updates to one of our two ISO 27001 accredited tier IV datacentres. In most cases this allows business as usual for companies in the event of an issue which could be as simple as the loss of Microsoft Exchange or the failure of server hardware.
The DR solutions that are offered by C24 are fully managed with constant monitoring allowing total piece of mind. Our DR solutions include the provision of virtual machine snapshots of physical or virtual hardware at our primary datacentre. You can store the snapshots, application data in a suspended state as well as if necessary replicating these to our secondary data centre. In case of a disaster, we can bring these devices online and give pre-specified personnel access to the systems to allow seamless working. The DR failover can be triggered by a simple call or alerted from C24’s monitoring solution.
The range of available solutions varies as cost is always a consideration so we work with clients to deliver the following:

  • Hot Backup Site: A hot backup site typically provides a set of mirrored stand-by servers that are always available to run the application once a disaster occurs, providing minimal RTO and RPO. Hot standbys typically use synchronous replication to prevent any data loss due to a disaster.
  • Warm Backup Site: A warm backup site may keep state up to date with either synchronous or asynchronous replication schemes depending on the necessary RPO. Standby servers to run the application after failure are available, but are only kept in a “warm” state where it may take minutes to bring them online.
  • Cold Backup Site: In a cold backup site, data is often only replicated on a periodic basis, leading to an RPO of hours or days. In addition, servers to run the application after failure are not readily available, and there may be a delay of hours or days as hardware is brought out of storage or re-purposed from test and development systems, resulting in a high RTO. It can be difficult to support business continuity with cold backup sites, but they are a very low cost option for applications that do not require strong protection or availability guarantees.