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Replication for disaster recovery

Business continuity expert Pierre Dorion discusses how replication can be used for disaster recovery.

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We are considering replication for disaster recovery (DR). We currently have DMX and CLARiiON arrays housing our production storage as designed for tiering purposes.

However, now that we are considering replication we are wondering if we have complicated things by needing to activate and manage two replication software packages (SRDF & MirrorView). Should we consider a DMX3 and tier within that array and have only one replication software, SRDF?

As any good storage architect would, we always tend to initially look at these things from a purely technical point of view. However, we also need to take into consideration the business of drivers and requirements. For example, will moving everything to a common storage platform (i.e. DMX3) actually offset the cost of activating and managing two replication tools? Acquisition cost, implementation, migration, etc. are all economical factors that must be evaluated.

The fact that your organization has already adopted a tiered storage model would imply that some level of data categorization has already taken place. The next question would then become, does everything need to be replicated on only the top tier? If only the top tier is to be replicated for DR, maybe a single replication tool (SRDF) is required. If all data must be replicated remotely to meet business recovery requirements, then maybe the different storage tiers were not required in the first place.

This was first published in February 2007

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