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Disaster recovery planning and your cloud infrastructure

Keeping services online and accessible to customers is critical in the event of an emergency. Even if your company’s primary data centre is inaccessible or damaged beyond repair, you must have a plan to keep important services online and available to customers. 

A top tier cloud-based disaster recovery service can prevent most crises without damaging your finances.

What is cloud disaster recovery?

Cloud disaster recovery (cloud DR) is a combination of strategies and services that help back up data, applications, and other resources to public cloud or dedicated service providers in the event of any type of disaster. When this occurs, data, applications, and other resources may be restored to the local data centre or a cloud provider and restarted normally. 

A disaster recovery plan (DR) ensures uptime and data availability in the event of an emergency. Before, businesses of all sizes would require offline or secondary data centres to execute a disaster recovery plan. In the past, disaster recovery has been handled predominantly offline or in a secondary data centre, but now companies can take advantage of cloud-based DR solutions to save money and protect against unexpected outages. 

The aim of cloud disaster recovery is the same as traditional on-prem disaster recovery – to ensure critical business data and resources are protected from loss. Disaster recovery is a central element of any business continuity plan. 

Why choose cloud disaster recovery?

In the past, only local disaster recovery and second-site data protection options existed. Local disaster recovery did not always protect against fires, floods, and extreme weather events, which are common disasters. A second off-site DR offered better protection against physical disasters but led to significant business costs due to the need to implement and maintain another data centre. 

Cloud DR benefits include:

  • Fast recovery time as there is no need to wait for disaster teams to go to another site to set up, install, and so on. Cloud DR solutions are easy to set up and use
  • Scalability of cloud DR solutions means they can expand to meet business demand, whereas traditional secondary data centres are unlikely to be able to keep up with your primary data centre
  • Cloud-based disaster recovery solutions are significantly cheaper than setting up and maintaining a secondary data centre. This is because you do not have to purchase any additional hardware or software. 
  • Due to the rise in security and compliance-related regulations, many companies now prioritise them. Cloud-based DR solutions can help keep sensitive data safe and compliant with regulations. 
  • Cloud DR solutions are always available, so your business can always rely on being able to host websites, applications, or databases that need to be always running.

Cloud disaster recovery 

The cloud is an integral part of many organisations’ disaster recovery strategies these days. However, integrating cloud-based resources into your disaster recovery strategy can be challenging, since there are so many approaches you can take. There are a variety of ways to utilise the cloud in a variety of ways, as well as a variety of strategies for integrating it. 

There are three main ways to use the cloud as part of disaster recovery:

Disaster recovery from the cloud

This approach utilised the cloud as being where you store backup data, so in the event of a disaster, the data can be recovered from the cloud. Using the cloud this way also allows you to save money on data storage thanks to the low-cost options available, as well as simplify the backup process. 

The disadvantage of cloud disaster recovery is that it doesn’t work well if your on-premises IT systems are offline when you need to perform it. If your local servers and storage media were badly damaged by whatever accident caused the data loss, for example, you wouldn’t have the infrastructure to which you could recover data. 

​​Disaster recovery to the cloud

You can back up data on-premises and recover it to virtual machines and databases that are running in a cloud platform using a second approach. There is no need for physical on-site infrastructure to remain available following a disaster. Instead, quickly recover data to virtual environments running in the cloud. If a disaster impacts your local environment, your backups may be destroyed if you store them on-premises. 

Cloud-to-cloud disaster recovery

You can combine the advantages of backing up to the cloud with the convenience of recovering to the cloud by storing the backup data there. In the event of a disaster that impacts on-premises resources, you would spin up virtual machines and databases in the cloud, and then populate them with data from your cloud-based backups. 

With this approach, backup data and the infrastructure for backing it up are isolated from the local data centre in two ways. First, backup data is separated from the local data centre. That is, backup data is kept separate from the local data centre’s data. In addition, this method may speed up disaster recovery since it takes less time to transfer backup data from cloud storage to cloud VMs and databases than to transfer data between the cloud and on-premises environments, or vice versa. Cloud networks are much faster than the public Internet that connects clouds to other locations.

Cloud disaster recovery planning

When creating a cloud DR plan for your business, the two primary things to keep in mind are where and how. Where is your data stored, and how will it be backed up? You’ll also have to determine which disasters to protect against. 

You can choose to keep all of your data on-premises or in the cloud, or you can mix the two. You can also choose to use a hybrid cloud solution that stores some data on the cloud and others on-premises. 

You must decide what type of backups you’ll utilise. You may choose to store your data online using Microsoft Azure, for example. In addition to storing your data online, you may also want to store it in an offsite location that is quick to access in case of an emergency. 

Cloud disaster recovery with the experts

Disaster recovery is a necessity for all businesses. If you’re not currently leveraging the cloud as part of your disaster recovery plan, now is the time to make the change. The right cloud disaster recovery solution could be the best decision your business makes. The cloud experts at Linktech Australia can ensure you migrate to the cloud and have a disaster recovery plan that is suitable for your business needs. Talk to them today and be prepared for the future.