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2 7 Reasons Why Data Center Customers Should Outsource Disaster Recovery By Global Data Vault Information Technology (IT) operations teams, whether inside the organizations they serve or working as service providers to one or multiple client organizations, face the decision to build or buy Disaster Recovery (DR) services. When IT operations are already located in a data center ( The Cloud ), a sense of security is a common feeling and a slightly different thought process is common in the make vs. buy decision. Though Global Data Vault acknowledges that we have a vested interest in the buy alternative, we believe the following are sound reasons why this route is best both in terms of utility and cost. 1. Data centers, in spite of all the redundancy, still suffer downtime. Look at the stories of data center outages related to Super Storm Sandy. In lower Manhattan, Verizon s Broad Street central office, which routes local phone, DSL, and FiOS data, suffered a catastrophic failure when major flooding filled the lower part of the building ruining a 90,000 cubic foot cable vault. See this story in the The Verge. For many other NYC data centers, the first 24 hours were OK for most of the Manhattan DCs, but after the first day they could not get diesel because the truck routes were cut off. Data centers rarely store more than 24 hours worth of diesel onsite because diesel goes bad not quite as fast as milk, but a lot faster than you d guess. So they improvised some better than others. The Derecho storm that hit Washington D. C. July 2012 took down Amazon Web Services and other data centers in the region. According to breakinggov.com, According to Amazon s blogs however, the power outage served as a reminder that organizations that rely on large scale data and cloud computing centers may face more than a

3 temporary suspension of service in the event of regional power outages. It may also mean that the data itself can come into question, as appeared to be the case when Amazon reported at 10:36 PM PDT that Elastic Block Store storage volumes may have inconsistent data and in effect be Impaired. It seems reasonable to expect that when the next major earthquake hits the U. S. West Coast, we ll see extended data center outages there. Why does this matter? Because when internal teams build DR solutions they generally rely on trusted partners the same connectivity provider, for example, or the same data center operator. This practice does not achieve the same level of diversity of risk achieved through outsourcing. 2. Your infrastructure will fail. In spite of all the redundancy, things still go wrong. Complexity is ever increasing and with that comes more challenging management. Look at the recent massive data theft at Target and Neiman Marcus. Even Google has outages. Look at recent Gmail unplanned outages. These are all functions of ever increasing complexity not simple system or hardware failures. These were all in high end enterprise class infrastructures which were designed to survive component failures or malicious attacks. But still they failed. Your infrastructure might be better than all these companies, but it s still subject to the same problem: increasing complexity creates significant technology and management challenges. If you take on the responsibilities of primary infrastructure, redundant infrastructure and the mechanisms to keep them synchronized you re taking on a lot of complexity if any two of these suffer a concurrent failure, you will face an outage. If you outsource, you are spreading risk and gaining management assistance. 3. Outsourcing DR requires much less IT management effort than an internal solution. Any good outsourcer should offer SLA based guaranteed restore times and recovery points. They should also provide SLA monitoring tools that make it easy for you to be sure you re getting the protection you are paying for. Finally, they should offer periodic DR tests performed through their efforts that demonstrate the readiness of your DR environment. To add this management and monitoring in-house is a lot of work.

4 4. Outsourcing allows you to work with highly experienced DR specialists. Consider Microsoft Exchange we have been through hundreds or thousands of Exchange recoveries. We have specialized knowledge and specialized tools that have proven to crack the tough cases. Consider Windows Activation especially for Windows OEM licenses booted on new hardware do you know what to do when Microsoft says This copy of Windows does not appear to be genuine and it won t boot? We do. We have years of experience dealing with this. We can also tell you what not to do i.e. call Microsoft unless you d like to waste half a day in the middle of a crisis. 5. It s much easier for an outsourcer to give you true geographic diversity. Any good provider should offer recovery from continent-wide storage locations thousands of miles apart. Even middle market companies struggle to manage infrastructure when it s so far flung. Remote hands are not the same as local hands, and eyes and ears. If you outsource, you gain valuable remote management assistance. 6. A major risk of an internal solution is the cost of under or over estimating scope. If you build too much DR infrastructure, you waste money. If you don t build enough capacity and have to expand you will likely not achieve the most cost effective solution because it s more cost effective to buy more capacity up front. An outsourcer absorbs this problem for you by achieving economy of scale across a large shared infrastructure serving a large customer base. 7. Outsourcing costs less than building redundant infrastructure. Up front capital costs are likely to be more than the full cost of the primary infrastructure after you consider the additional switching and replication components.

5 Ongoing operations and maintenance costs may be significant when you outsource, but you are avoiding not only a major capital outlay but a degree of ongoing costs as well. That capital outlay has, at best, a five year useful life before it must be replaced. An outsourcer can build on shared infrastructure and manage costs more effectively through the scale achieved across a large customer base. Summary It is probably not the case that all seven of these points apply to your make vs. buy decision in exactly the same way we suggest here. Nor is it essential that you agree with every point we make. But it has been our experience that these ideas are generally the key drivers cited by most of our customers when they make the decision to outsource. Request Information Global Data Vault (GDV) was founded in 2002 to provide superior technology for backup and disaster recovery services. With a worldwide customer base, GDV s fast growth is a function of high quality solutions and an exceptional value proposition. To learn more about Global Data Vault, visit us at Global Data Vault. Department Sales Support Customer Service Phone x x x 3

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