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Basic factors for a DR plan

What are the basic factors that need to be considered when planning for a disaster recovery?

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Here's a summary from Chapter 1 of my book, "Unix Backup & Recovery." I hope it helps.

There are six main steps to designing any good disaster recovery plan. These steps concentrate on how the CIO or CTO can enable the IT department to properly execute each step.

1. Define (un)acceptable loss. How does the CEO/CIO decide how much to budget for a disaster recovery project? By first deciding how much it will cost if they don't have one.

2. Backup everything. Do you know how much of your data is not being backed up and why?

3. Organize everything. Your company has everything on tape. Can you find the tape you need when disaster strikes?

4. Protect against disasters. Most people only think about natural disasters when creating a disaster recovery plan. There are nine other types of disasters and you have to protect against all of them. Learn what types of disasters strike your area and how your company can protect against them.

5. Document what you have done. Learn innovative ways that your company can document its disaster recovery plan that ensures that this documentation is available after a disaster.

6. Test, test, test. Most disaster recovery plans fail because they are not tested. Learn how other companies are testing their disaster recovery plans. There are ways to do this that won't swallow the entire IT budget!

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This was first published in August 2002

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