Top 3 Considerations When Building Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Service Offerings

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1 WHITE PAPER: Building Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Services Top 3 Considerations When Building Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Service Offerings Bennett Klein DATA MANAGEMENT CUSTOMER SOLUTIONS April 2012

2 Building Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery Services Table of Contents Executive Summary CONSIDERATION 1: BC/DR IS MORE THAN BACKUP 4 CONSIDERATION 2: BUILD IT OR BUY IT 5 CONSIDERATION 3: LEVERAGE A MULTI-TIER STRATEGY 5 Summary Copyright 2012 CA. All rights reserved. All other trademarks, trade names, service marks and logos referenced herein belong to their respective companies.

3 Executive summary SMBs have the same business continuity (BC) and Disaster Recovery (DR) needs as large enterprises, but the lack of IT resources, budget and experience can prove overwhelming. While most enterprises have remote facilities to leverage for BC/DR, most SMBs don t have that luxury. This offers MSPs a lucrative opportunity to offer BC/DR managed and hosted services whether they use their own facilities or leverage others such as a public cloud. A recent eweek article Companies-Gartner / stated that by 2014, 30 percent of midsize companies will have adopted recovery-in-the-cloud, also known as recovery-as-a-service (RaaS), to support IT operations recovery, up from just over 1 percent today, according to Gartner. A comprehensive Disaster Recovery plan and strategy typically provides an organization with system, application and data recovery within an accepted recovery time, which may translate into hours or even days. The goal is to achieve the best recovery time objective (RTO) and minimize data loss delivering a good recovery point objective (RPO). Business Continuity on the other hand, typically reflects an organization s ability to maintain access to IT resources after unexpected system and storage outages. A comprehensive BC plan and strategy will offer near-instantaneous failover to redundant resources hosted onsite, offsite (such as a MSP facility) and in the cloud and include continuous data protection technologies. 3

4 CONSIDERATION #1 - BC/DR IS MORE THAN BACKUP Clearly, ensuring a comprehensive backup and restore strategy is the cornerstone to any data protection service, but delivering BC and DR services demand far more. MSPs new to this market can build their first service offering as a simple managed backup and restore service for SMBs, as even this relatively simple approach can be challenging to any IT staff with minimal resources, time and knowledge. This service may involve helping select the best backup solution for the environment, deploying the solution across the enterprise, scheduling backups, monitoring and reporting, and data restoration. But to build a competitive DR solution includes integrating technologies such as bare metal recovery (BMR) for fast system recovery. BMR uses the last recovery point image from an image-based backup software solution to recover a complete physical server system and data to any other physical server or virtual machine (VM), located at the client s data center or your own data center for hosting purposes. BMR can help clients slash system recovery time over traditional methods like manually re-installing a system s operating system and applications from scratch and then restoring data from the last backup. For even faster system recovery, MSPs should consider integrating a virtual standby technology that uses the most recent image of the system, applications and data and automatically converts it into a virtual server disk format (VMDK for VMware and VHD for Hyper-V) in a virtual machine that can be quickly and easily turned on after an unplanned system outage. Virtual Standby is usually a core component of a comprehensive image-based backup software solution and can be deployed on both physical and virtual server environments and uses virtual server resources at the client s site or your own data center. For even better data protection, consider implementing a continuous replication solution that includes a data-rewind capability for continuous data protection (CDP) that helps reduce the risk of data loss and delivers better RPO. For a competitive BC solution, MSPs should consider adding a host-based high availability (HA) solution that includes redundant servers and storage. This easy to use solution monitors at both the system and application levels, and once it detects an outage automatically fails over to the redundant servers and storage and redirect end users. Host-based HA solutions can be deployed onsite (at your clients data centers), at a remote site (like your own data center), and even in a public cloud like Amazon Web Services (AWS). HA solutions can offer near-instantaneous failover to deliver the fastest system recovery of the solutions mentioned here. 4

5 CONSIDERATION #2 - BUILD IT OR BUY IT As you consider building your BC/DR services, one main consideration is whether you build your own BC/DR facility, or leverage an existing BC/DR facility or cloud. While it may appear attractive to build, manage and maintain your own data center, you must consider the time, resources, cost and experience necessary. And in addition to the core resources you will need to deliver your hosted BC/DR services, you will need to plan and deploy your own BC/DR plan and solution to protect your own data center resources. Large BC/DR hosting facilities usually deploy many of the onsite system, application and data recovery technologies discussed above, but also employ continuous or periodic replication to one or more remote sites in case of a localized man-made or natural disaster like fire, flood, hurricane, earthquake or blizzard. The better your solution, the better service level agreements (SLAs) you can offer along with premium pricing. Many MSPs today have aggressive time-to-market goals as this market space is becoming a very competitive environment and the longer it takes to bring your services to market, the longer it will take to launch your services and start your recurring revenue engine. Unless you already have a hardened data center and BC/DR solution in place, an attractive alternative would be to leverage a public or private cloud solution, or even license a complete turn-key BC/DR service offering where all you need to do is sign up clients and start billing. Depending on your costs for data center resources and staff, leveraging a public cloud or turn-key service offering may be more profitable too. Clearly Return on Investment (ROI) and payback for building your own data center may take far longer, and understanding your total cost of ownership (TCO) when pricing your services will be critical. CONSIDERATION #3 - LEVERAGE A MULTI-TIER STRATEGY The most important action to take before planning your BC/DR services is to understand your customers needs and budgets, and your competition. As we discussed in section #1, there are many technologies available to you to build your BC/DR services and you should leverage the different levels of protection, recovery and availability to build out a suite of flexible and cost-effective services to meet the varying needs of your target market. 5

6 You might start with a hybrid data protection solution that provides fast onsite data protection and recovery using local disk storage, along with BMR for system recovery. This approach helps your clients address exponentially growing data, ever-shrinking backup windows and demanding system recovery time objectives. A hybrid data protection solution provides the first step towards a DR service with automated file copy (or replication) from your clients data centers and remote offices to your own data center or public cloud. For more critical data, add continuous replication whether at your clients sites, at your own data center, or in a public cloud to help reduce risk of data loss. Byte-level replication captures every change in real time. For BC services, add a host-based replication/high availability software solution where the redundant failover systems and storage reside at your clients data centers, at your own data center, or even a public cloud. Choose a solution that includes offline synchronization for faster and easier deployment along with automated, nondisruptive recovery testing so you can test your failover environment on a client-byclient basis, without disrupting their on-premise production environment. These could be important differentiators for your services and you can charge more for these invaluable services. 6

7 Summary Now is the time for you as a MSP to develop your own BC/DR services and partner with a market-leading technology partner like CA Technologies. CA ARCserve provides core software technologies you need to build your BC/DR services. Our integrated backup, recovery, replication and high availability software can be used to build your own BC/DR data center, and includes tight integration with Amazon Web Services public cloud if you decide to leverage an existing BC/DR facility instead. And for MSPs that want faster time-to-market and less risk, CA Technologies offers 2 turn-key managed service solutions for MSPs: CA ARCserve D2D On Demand for Disaster Recovery, utilizing hybrid-cloud data protection and CA Instant Recovery On Demand for Business Continuity, providing system, application and data high availability. CA ARCserve D2D On Demand includes bundled and integrated Windows Azure cloud storage and CA Instant Recovery On Demand offers bundled and integrated CA cloud server and storage resources. These on-demand services can be deployed quickly and allow you to start building a recurring revenue stream without the hassle, time and cost of building it all on your own. For more information about these products and turn-key service offerings, visit arcserve.com. About the Author Bennett Klein is Senior Director of Product Marketing for CA Technologies where he is responsible for setting strategies for building worldwide market awareness and demand for the CA ARCserve Family of Products. Copyright 2012 CA. All rights reserved. All other trademarks, trade names, service marks and logos referenced herein belong to their respective companies. This document is for your informational purposes only. CA assumes no responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of the information. To the extent permitted by applicable law, CA provides this document as is without warranty of any kind, including, without limitation, any implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, or noninfringement. In no event will CA be liable for any loss or damage, direct or indirect, from the use of this document, including, without limitation, lost profits, business interruption, goodwill, or lost data, even if CA is expressly advised in advance of the possibility of such damages 7

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