How To

The Step-by-Step Guide to Cloud-Based Disaster Recovery

Disaster recovery (DR) is a concept that is simple in premise: When there is an outage or data breach, IT teams use backups and replication to resume operations as normal. This process becomes overwhelmingly complex, though, when organizations have multiple cloud locations to consider during a crisis.

With complicated infrastructure comes the potential to waste valuable time and money during recovery. There is a demonstrated need for cloud-based DR that is simple to use at every step.

Key Takeaways:

  • Disaster recovery (DR) is crucial both on-premises and in the cloud, and the first step toward a comprehensive recovery strategy is to extend DR seamlessly across those locations.
  • Risks change with the times and with enterprise growth, so DR must also adapt and improve to constantly ensure business continuity.
  • Adopting DRaaS is another step that businesses can take toward scaling their data protection strategy while minimizing costs and internal burdens.

What Is Cloud-Based Disaster Recovery?

While organizations will inevitably take steps to harden their infrastructure security against cyberthreats, there will likely come a time when breaches, natural disasters, or simple accidents cause a potential loss of data. When an unavoidable outage occurs, an established disaster recovery strategy plays a central role in restoring data and getting operations back up and running.

Backup and disaster recovery are both essential parts of enterprise data protection. Regularly copying data to alternate storage locations ensures that backups can go live moments after the primary hardware goes down, due largely to automated DR tools that orchestrate the resumption of service before most human users can perceive a disruption.

These processes traditionally take place in a company’s on-premises datacenters, but the cloud-native world of modern IT necessitates the adoption of cloud-based DR practices. When so much data exists in locations distributed across clouds or at the network edge, recovering from the cloud itself is the only way to restore data with minimal delay.

Disaster recovery in the cloud, while convenient and flexible, requires a few crucial steps of setup before it can safeguard your business continuity to its full potential.

Step 1: Extend Disaster Recovery Across On-Premises and Cloud Datacenters

In the modern hybrid cloud world, many organizations choose to maintain on-premises datacenters for the sake of security and control while also utilizing the public cloud for scalability and flexibility. In this type of distributed environment, the ideal DR solution extends seamlessly across on-premises and cloud locations.

Similarly, strong cloud-based DR also extends across multiple clouds in a multicloud environment, even when those clouds originate from different vendors.

Disparate clouds and datacenter locations traditionally exist as silos, making them separate entities that are difficult to target as backup or recovery locations under one singular DR methodology.

Nutanix Disaster Recovery eliminates those silos and enables a recovery plan that minimizes downtime and data loss, regardless of where the replication site is located. At the same time, this type of integrated solution makes it easier to meet service-level agreements and reduce costs.

The goal of cloud-based disaster recovery is ultimately to be available when it is needed, wherever it is needed. Adopting a DR solution with always-on availability that extends across all on-prem and cloud locations is the foundational step toward protecting mission-critical apps and data.

Step 2: Continuously Improve Business Continuity

Just like IT security, DR is a continual process that does not end simply by implementing an attractive solution. Businesses will constantly change, evolve, and scale with consumer demand, just as malicious parties will also adapt their tactics with the times. This means that an organization’s business continuity strategy must also undergo constant improvement.

It is up to IT decision-makers to implement policies for the continual improvement of cloud-based disaster recovery strategies. For example, strong data protection policies will regularly refocus priorities on the most crucial data assets, acknowledge emerging disaster risks, and spur operations toward new service level expectations.

With these types of policies in place, IT teams can observe results such as:

  • Reduced application downtime
  • Centralization of control over disaster recovery operations
  • Ongoing compliance with SLAs
  • Prioritization of business-critical applications
  • Data protection as a built-in feature

When business continuity and disaster recovery come together under a protective umbrella of scalable policies, data protection becomes an inherent part of the infrastructure and all IT processes.

Step 3: Implement Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service

When DR processes are too complex, or when there is simply a need to free teams from extra burdens or costs, turning to disaster recovery services in the cloud is the simplest solution for complementing or even replacing an existing recovery strategy.

Nutanix DRaaS exemplifies how the as-a-service model can ensure success while liberating organizations from the complexities of managing a full-scale datacenter disaster recovery process in-house. With Nutanix DRaaS, it only takes a few clicks to enable comprehensive protection of applications within minutes.

Outsourcing cloud-based disaster recovery is also a large stride toward reducing an organization’s total cost of ownership in the cloud. With the right service provider, doing so comes with no risk of failure when it comes to achieving SLAs.

Verified Market Research reports that the DRaaS market size was valued at USD $9,718.26 million in 2022 with a projected growth to $41,182.37 million by 2030. As DR in the cloud becomes increasingly necessary, the quality of service provided by third-party vendors improves to match. This leads to greater trust and reliance on these services by companies looking to save time and money without sacrificing security.

Cloud-Based Disaster Recovery Support at Every Step

When businesses implement cloud services, there is a partnership between the user and the service provider. The ideal provider is a supportive and collaborative partner at every step of the disaster recovery process, from implementation to growth and, of course, when disaster truly does strike.

Companies operating in the Nutanix ecosystem and utilizing hybrid cloud tools like Nutanix Cloud Clusters (NC2) already have complete DR solutions available in the cloud. With DR on NC2, IT leaders can deploy automated protection policies as well as thorough recovery plans that orchestrate the restoration of virtual machines  — all with simplicity at the forefront of the design philosophy.

This simplicity can make all the difference for an enterprise experiencing a data breach or outage. Complicated architecture and complex management methods lead to the loss of precious minutes or even hours during a crisis, but a simple-to-use cloud-based disaster recovery solution can restore operations in just a few clicks.

Learn more about enterprise data protection and other ways to manage risks at the datacenter level.

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