Some companies find their applications and data work best when failover goes to the public cloud. Other data and apps might be better off targeting a data center in a different geographic location, on infrastrastructure owned by the company. IT leaders don’t have to run five separate disaster recovery applications, Angst said, because they can run it all through software like Nutanix’s HCI platform.
Collins noted that in a multicloud world, Nutanix’s customers can choose to back up to their own secondary data center (a private cloud) or to the public cloud. Another option is disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS), where a third party oversees all aspects of a BCDR program.
“And it's offered up as a single subscription to the customer,” Collins said.
This sets the stage for drilling down into even more customizations.
Get Granular at the Policy Level
Most companies have limited budgets, so they want to devote the most data protection and disaster recovery resources to the most mission-critical applications and data.
“One of the nice things about today's technology is that you're able to use these granular-level constructs, such as protection policies, and group categories of virtual machines (VMs) together to facilitate application prioritization,” Collins said.
“In a simple way, you might think of an application that has a backend database,” he added. “Well, you want those two VMs to be ganged together in a single protection policy.” If the business depends on keeping that application running all the time, then BCDR policies can be honed to deal with that need. “And so, you have this sort of built-in prioritization in terms of protecting your applications,” Collins said.
“Because you have these tools available to you in these DR solutions, you're able to stratify applications and only spend the maximum amount of money when required to protect certain business-critical applications,” he said.
Precise specialization helps IT managers craft nuanced BCDR programs that optimize the total cost of ownership (TCO) of a solution. “I think that's a really powerful story with today's technology, compared maybe to the old days where you just failed over an entire data center, and that was it,” Collins said.
Be Ready for Anything
Collins recalled one of the most unusual reasons for system downtime he has encountered:
“Everybody thinks of DR as a natural disaster, but we actually had a customer that had a rodent chew through wires in a data center and brought the data center down.”