How do I establish recovery priority for my applications?

If it's at the IT level, it comes from a data perspective. When you start moving up a little bit into the business side, people start looking at the applications because they don't really know where the data is. If we talk today about virtualization, you lose where that data is, so you're looking at the application, but it's really essentially the same idea.

If it's at the IT level, it comes from a data perspective. When you start moving up a little bit into the business side, people start looking at the applications because they don't really know where the data is. If we talk today about virtualization, you lose where that data is, so you're looking at the application, but it's really essentially the same idea. The recovery priority for your applications is based on the same criteria as...

the actual value of the data they use. It's really: Which business processes make use of those applications and what is their criticality?

Recovery priority information
Restoring data: Increase your efficiency

Move your backups to a SAN

Business continuity for mission critical applications
The priority itself really goes to dependencies as well. For example, DNS (which could be considered an application or a utility depending on how you look at it) could have a higher priority than some other systems because if you don't have DNS, you don't have a response on your Internet connections or your network connections. Obviously, dependencies are also very important and it's not necessarily a dollar value at this point -- priority becomes a technical question. Active directory, authentication and security applications move up in priority and need to be restored before anything else can be restored.

Something that's very often overlooked is the backup application itself. It's probably one of the most critical applications that you have, although it doesn't show up as an application most of the time. It becomes an infrastructure component. You need to restore your backup server and your backup application before you can start restoring data.

When we look at a business, there are always core functions and support functions. Backups are definitely a support function. In the banking industry, from a data replication and criticality of the data standpoint, it's definitely the financial data that would be important and the most critical. However, when we're looking at an application priority, we need to start looking at support functions and core functions.

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This was first published in August 2006

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