Your fast track to continuous IT operation – Cluster in a box

August 5, 2014

In a world where everyone expects 24/7 connectivity, it is more important than ever to keep your business applications up and running. Your IT supports and drives your business. It enables you to comply with regulations, improves your business processes and allows you to respond faster to new demands. Extended downtime can cause a direct and measurable impact on your business, as well as that of your partners and suppliers. This clearly leads to the need of a highly available IT.

Also, compliance requirements for small businesses can be just as stringent as they are for large enterprises, so data must be protected from incidents too.

But the level of protection needs to be balanced against costs when developing your solution.

Implementing the right solution for your situation depends on the following key metrics:

1) Recovery Time Objective (RTO) – How quickly do you need to be back up and running after an incident or disaster disaster occurs?
2) Recovery Point Objective (RPO) – Once you recover your data, how current does that data need to be? Is data from your last backup sufficient? For example, can you roll back to last week? Last night? Or this morning?
3) Recovery Cost Objective (RCO) – How much budget do you have to meet your RTO and RPO? You don’t want to overspend on your disaster recovery to meet higher objectives than required. At the same time, you need to make sure you can meet your RTO and RPO with the budget you have to spend for DR. This metric comes down to, “How much are you willing to spend on DR?” (or “How much can you spend?”).
4) Application Recovery Objective (ARO) – Every organization has certain applications that keep the business running. What are yours? Microsoft Exchange? SQL Svr? SharePoint? Financials? Your recovery plan should ensure that these key applications can be recovered and brought back to a consistent usable state in the required timescale

You’ll want to give some thought to these objectives and what your environment requires as you select a suitable solution. But building such IT environments is still a complex task. Servers, storage, network and software have to be combined in the right configuration and installation.

One way of reducing the complexity is to benefit from the knowledge gained in many similar projects, for example, Fujitsu offer a Cluster-in-a-box offering which provides a fully pre-configured and pre-installed, high-availability, fully supported IT environment for small and medium-sized companies within one chassis. The solutions offer an excellent price/performance ratio that keeps expenditure and risk to an absolute minimum for the customer.



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