Aussie data centre disaster recovery skips virtual servers

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Aussie data centre disaster recovery skips virtual servers

Almost one in three disaster recovery plans in Aussie data centres don’t cover virtual servers, according to a new Symantec report.

The State of the Data Centre report also found 30 percent of disaster recovery (DR) plans in local companies 'need work’.

Another three percent of local companies surveyed have a DR plan they describe as either ‘informal’ or ‘undocumented’, according to David Dzienciol, director of channel sales at Symantec A/NZ.

Poor execution of disaster recovery plans and the omission of virtual servers suggest the plans haven’t been updated as data centre complexity has grown, Dzienciol told iTnews.

“I’d suggest customers may have had a DR strategy and plan in place already, in some cases defined for a mainframe world, but as they migrated off mainframes and onto virtual machines they’re not necessarily able to use the same methodology from a DR perspective,” said Dzienciol.

Dzienciol said Symantec’s view was that there is ‘always room to improve’ on DR plans and strategies.

“The unfortunate thing about DR is that some organisations do take it more seriously only after the fact [a recovery incident],” he said.

“Some organisations look at their backup environment and other infrastructure as adequate, but we certainly believe there’s room for improvement.”

The survey also found software failure is the biggest cause of unplanned downtime in Aussie organisations (25 percent), followed by power outages (23 percent).

Dzienciol was unable to say for sure why power outages ranked so highly among respondents, who had to have at least 5,000 employees to participate.

He suggested that different data centre requirements may be a reason why some of the organisations surveyed don’t appear to have UPS in an N+1 or 2N configuration or a backup diesel generator in place.

“Some respondents may be looking across their entire data centre footprint,” said Dzienciol.

“Some of their data centres may be smaller and not have the same power capacity as others.

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