The Unpleasant Trade-Offs of Enterprise Business Continuity

Anyone who is any way involved with trying to implement an enterprise business continuity solution probably knows all too well the compromises they frequently have to make. As enterprise companies try to centralize and deliver enterprise data protection and business continuity across all of their application servers, they are consistently faced with an unpleasant trade-off:

  • Spend a fortune and do your best to guarantee high availability, protection and immediate recoveries for your company’s mission critical application servers but then leave the rest of your enterprise’s applications with a mish-mash of data protection and recovery solutions that may or may not work
  • Create a standard, more affordable method way to protect all of your company’s application servers but then fail to deliver an application recovery mechanism that delivers the level of data protection or recovery that matches the varying requirements of individual applications

The outcome of trying to balance these conflicting priorities of high availability and immediate recoveries versus providing affordable data protection creates a zero-sum game for companies. No matter which application need they are trying to meet, they end up robbing from Peter to pay Paul because they can’t put their finger on an application that provides enterprise-wide business continuity.

However the way to negate these unpleasant trade-offs is not working harder, more hours or kicking your system administrator, system integrator or technology provider in the backside a couple of more times in order to make the current solution work. The solution is to identify a whole new method to enterprise business continuity.

Think about how most enterprise business continuity solutions are engineered now. Host-based solutions are based on a one-to-one mapping between the source host on which the application runs and the target system. Storage system-based solutions only work for hosts attached to that storage system while network-based solution (appliance or switch) only work for those hosts that pass data through that appliance or switch.

All of these are incomplete for the enterprise business continuity needs that companies are trying to cope with today. Each of these are built with specific paradigms in mind (host-centric; network-centric or storage system-centric). Toss in the rapid adoption of server virtualization and it becomes evident that deploying any of today’s solutions amount to nothing more than a zero-sum game.

A whole new paradigm is needed that accounts for DAS-attached servers, NAS-attached servers, SAN-attached server and the rapidly growing server virtualization space. That’s why when one looks at the enterprise business continuity capabilities of what InMage SystemsScout delivers, it can take a little while to grasp how comprehensive it is. What makes it unique is not that it protects and recovers data from all of these different types of applications attached to storage in multiple ways. Other products can do that as well. What makes it unique is that it has put a foundation down to recover application locally or remotely back to a consistent point in time regardless of how what type of storage systems these application servers are attached.

Enterprise business continuity can feel like an exercise in futility and that you always have to give up some level of recovery or data protection in order to satisfy some other application recovery requirement. InMage Systems’ Scout gives companies the opportunity to stop making compromises about their ability to recover when disasters – large or small – strike. Instead, it starts to take companies down a path of protecting and recovering their data for any application server in the infrastructure and out of the mindset of, “What trade-off do I need to make today?”

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