What It Means to Lead in IT: Moving to the Forefront of Application Availability


Four things you need to do to achieve a data-driven business.

Earlier this month, Independence Day got me thinking about leadership. Certainly, we all want our country to lead on the world stage in our dynamic and sometimes chaotic times. Whatever your political stars and stripes, you can’t deny that leaders are necessary to see ahead, to anticipate and solve the problems that keep a nation — or a business — from advancing.

Management consultant Peter Drucker famously noted that “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” With data driving the success of organizations today, a major one of those right things is modernizing data protection. Where focus used to be on backups, it’s now on recovery and recoverability. What are the right things to do to make sure your backed-up data can be recovered quickly in the event of an outage so that it can continue to drive your business?

The analyst group DCIG has some ideas about this in its newly released special report. It notes that our Rapid Recovery software takes a recover-first approach to data protection, putting organizations on the forefront of achieving always-on application availability. Rapid Recovery enables organizations to do several right things exceptionally well:

  • Right thing #1: Make certain that backups are recoverable. Rapid Recovery includes Verified Recovery technology that automatically verifies that backups are recoverable through a number of checks fine-tuned for business applications.
  • Right thing #2: Enable recovery so quick, application users won’t even be aware of an outage.

Rapid Recovery has two capabilities that provide near-zero recovery-time objectives (RTOs): Live Recovery and Virtual Standby. Verified Recovery, along with these two capabilities, lets forward-thinking IT professionals lead their organizations to a happier future in which users’ application experience is optimized. In most cases for users, the restore of whole applications and their data — even terabytes of data — can be transparent, as if the outage never even happened. But leading a data-driven organization also must include a workable, flexible disaster recovery (DR) plan. And that leads to:

  • Right thing #3: Include cloud in your data protection strategy.

The idea of off-site DR isn’t new. But the DR site needs to be safe, and not all organizations have an environmentally secure location they can use. Just today, I heard about an engineering firm that had planned to move their backups off site to two of their branch offices. One was in a sketchy neighborhood in which various businesses had experienced break-ins, and the other turned out to be in a floodplain. You definitely don’t want to store your DR copies at a disaster-prone site! Reliable cloud services provide a solution: secure, pay-as-you-grow storage for replication and archiving.

Rapid Recovery makes it easy for organizations to do the right thing and integrate cloud services into their backup and recovery plans. It offers a cloud connector for point-and-click connection to leading providers and both archiving and replication capabilities, including a preconfigured Rapid Recovery Replication Target in Azure. You can read this tech brief for more about replicating to Azure with Rapid Recovery.

And with cloud in the mix, there’s one more important point to cover:

  • Right thing #4: Centralize data protection and recovery management across your environment.

The ideal data protection solution can back up and recover physical and virtual machines, across platforms, wherever they’re located — including in the cloud. Rapid Recovery protects P2P, P2V, V2V and V2P, even across hypervisors. Combined with its ability to let you set aggressive RTOs, it offers what we call ZeroIMPACT recovery — anything to anywhere.

Rapid Recovery also offers both agent-based and agentless protection, enabling admins to use one interface to do it all from one management console.

“Do the right things” is really another way of saying “follow best practices.” The DCIG Special Report I’ve cited investigates a fuller range of best practices for modernized data protection. It’s one of my favorites because it has some technical “meat” but presents the information accessibly.

Read the Report »