Posted on 02 May 2011 by Lizernst@BluPointe.com
Hardly a week goes by without a news story where an outage impacts key online services. Twitter has had a series of well-documented resilience issues and more recently, errors have impacted Skype’s services too.
Typically, when a tech issue hits a large tech company, they are up and running again.pretty swiftly. However, when a small- to medium-size business has a serious IT-related .issue, it can cause much bigger problems, over a far longer period of time.
Below are some examples of the kind .of impact that failing to implement a disaster recovery plan, can have on a small business.
Disaster Recovery Planning
Consider the following scenario: You manage a successful small business with 100 employees, 20 of whom use a computer on a daily basis. You have an in-house server running some form of office productivity software, plus Line of Business applications like accounting, CRM and possibly production control. Your computer users (probably) have Windows computers; though the following still applies if you use Macs. The desktop computers are configured to store all data on the server and the server has one of the commonly used backup software suites running on it.
What would you need to do if the server failed?
- Possibly, source and replace the failed hardware.
- Boot the server from the Recovery CD if there is one, or from the original installation CD if there isn’t, assuming you have it!
- If there is a recovery CD, it should be a pretty easy process of following instructions to restore the server to the state of the last backup.
If there isn’t, you will probably need to:
- Re-install and configure the Operating System from the Installation CD (2-3 hours)
- Update the operating system to the patch state required by the Backup Software (this could take a day at least: depending on your network bandwidth.)
- Re-install and configure the Backup software (maybe half a day.)
- Run the Backup software and restore the server as before.
- The additional costs of not having bare metal recovery.
Looking at the above, you can see that you could have added between 24 and 36 hours to your downtime, if you didn’t have the recovery CD. During that period you have no email, no LoB applications, and no files or documents. Disaster-related harm is far from over.
How much productivity will you lose?
Let’s say that 10 of those 20 computer users can still be 50 percent more productive than the others; you’re still looking at a 37.5 percent total reduction in productivity for your office staff.
Only you can calculate the actual loss in productivity expressed as loss in revenue, but it doesn’t take much for this to be higher than the cost of implementing a proper bare metal backup environment.