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Toronto’s recent ice storm makes you think all about your disaster recovery. Many businesses were and are still with out power or Internet or both days after the blunt of the storm.

 

I like to talk about two practical options for small or medium size business. Colocation and Cloud services are a viable solution for those business running network applications that require a physical server.

Colocation is a service where by you rent space in a rack at a data centre. You then install your own server hardware and enjoy the security, Internet and power redundancy provided by the data centre. This space cost varies but it is in a couple of hundreds per month.

The next option is Cloud services. Now there are many definitions of cloud services. I am referring to a virtual server on a data centre infrastructure. You will have your own server and applications running in avirtual environment. Adding more hard disk space, ram or CPU is a simple click of a button. In a good data centre design, the centre itself is redundant therefore so is your virtual server. This option is obviously more expensive.

 

Here are the things to watch for! At the end of the day both solutions are a remote services which means that your office needs to have a fast, reliable and redundant Internet connection. Furthermore, delivery of some remote applications and data over the Internet can be painfully slow without a solution like Windows Remote Desktop Services or Citrix no matter how fast your Internet connection is. Both options have overhead and licensing cost.

Additional considerations should be given to the data centre itself. A good data centre in addition to site security has redundancy for every thing. That is the power source are redundant and coming from to separate sources, Internet connection are also redundant and connected to separate back bones, and in an ideal situation the data centre itself is redundant and reside on the opposite coast!

 

Something’s to think about over the holidays.