DRaaS (disaster recovery as a service) provides failover for enterprise applications to a third-party vendor’s cloud computing environment. It may be delivered on a managed, assisted or self-service basis, depending on the organization’s requirements and its willingness to invest in disaster recovery infrastructure. The underlying technology for a draas solution varies but typically includes replication software, compute and networking infrastructure that is hosted by the third-party vendor on a per-usage basis.
To reduce the risk of unplanned downtime and business continuity interruption, a DRaaS solution replicates the primary production environment to the third-party provider’s facility, which is located outside of the disaster-prone area. This eliminates the need for a secondary site, reduces costs and improves RPOs and RTOs.
Ideally, the DRaaS solution should be able to deliver near real-time failover by leveraging virtualization and elastic computing power. This allows a DRaaS solution to utilize dormant servers that are not being utilized by customers and quickly activate them as needed when the customer’s disaster-prone site goes down.
In addition to enabling near real-time failover, a DRaaS solution should offer a low price point. The DRaaS solution should be offered on a monthly subscription basis to reduce the upfront investment and preserve valuable cash flow. The price for a DRaaS solution will vary, but vendors offer options to fit any budget.
The DRaaS market has expanded in recent years, and organizations can now choose from many different solutions. Most providers are capable of delivering the required level of performance to meet a customer’s disaster recovery objectives, from basic backup and restore functionality to high-availability and near-zero RTOs. Some DRaaS solutions also support VM migration and non-disruptive testing for quick recovery after a disaster.
As businesses become increasingly reliant on technology, it is important for them to protect their data and systems from disasters. Fortunately, today’s disaster recovery-as-a-service solutions can offer enterprises instant failover and a predictable monthly fee to cover the cost of keeping data and systems protected.
Once an organization has determined its RTO and RPO and discussed them with its business partners, it is time to start looking for a DRaaS solution that will provide the protection and resiliency they need to ensure their business can continue operating after a disaster.
The cost of disaster recovery-as-a-service is now comparable to the cost of a single server, making it affordable for almost any organization. The pay-as-you-go, subscription pricing structure democratizes DR by making it accessible to companies of all sizes and eliminating the tradeoffs in which they previously had to decide what business-critical applications and data would receive priority and be protected first versus best effort and less critical information, which might not be recovered as quickly or at all. While investing in a DRaaS solution requires an initial upfront investment, the return on that investment is enormous and will outweigh any initial capital expenditures. In fact, for most organizations, the cost of a single hour of downtime is estimated at more than $300,000 for an enterprise and much higher for SMBs.