1. What's the "best" option for getting data between two data centers positioning each of them as a DR site for the other? Current data media is DASD (EMC), tape and optical. RPO values vary by application and multiple DBMS exist (e.g. Oracle, SQL) and multiple OSs MF, INTEL based and UNIX.
2. Is standardizing on DBMS capabilities for data replication (e.g. Oracle's RAC) between two sites better than a hardware solution (e.g. EMC's SRDF) for everything?
3. How do you address sync points with this amount of data transfer requirements (30TB)?
My opinion is that database-specific solutions are probably going to give you better consistency with replication than hardware-based solutions. However, there are products, such as FalconStor, that are hardware-based solutions that interface with the database level. There is no hard and fast "this is always better than that" rule.
Such a complicated question can only be answered in context -- in the light of your environment. You need to establish your requirements, then ask your vendors how they will meet them -- and what it will cost to do so.
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This was first published in December 2002