Sunday, January 29, 2012

Disaster Recovery Plan - DRP

By Roy CAstleman

What's Disaster recovery and should our company have a plan?

Disaster recovery forms a module of your business continuity plan and should sit inside your business plan and your IT business plan for the company paperwork.

Accident Recovery is the IT systems based recovery process for your web server/s (and some of your PC's) IT systems and applications in such a way that the business can continue working on its core functions as soon as is possible after a major disaster. The full system IT is going to be recovered as quickly as is practical taking into consideration cost and practicalities of the situation.

Before making the decision to do a disaster recovery plan it is a good idea to take a look at how much the business will lose in financial terms in the event of not having the ability to get access to your IT systems. To do this you can take the revenue for year (that's the total turnover for the year) for the business and divide this by the quantity of working hours in the year. This does not give you a total picture of the potential money loss as things like a loss of goodwill and loss of opportunity are not allowed for, however it does give you a very correct image of the on the ground costs. This mini exercise serves two purposes, first it demonstrates to the ruling body, (management, and the board) the importance and significance of a DRP, second it gives you a framework for budget. If you are able to demonstrate a serious, day-on-day, week-on -week, loss without any access to your IT your management will be rather more likely to put a correct budgeting place for the DRP.

Taking a look at the server systems and deciding on precisely what's important is your initial step. You will as an example have 7 or 8 different servers are running a profusion of different applications. In a catastrophe however you'll only be doing the work that keeps the business running and will very likely not be interested in generating new revenue.

To this end you are probably going to need to recover some application servers, you'll definitely need to get your exchange/e-mail system working, you may not need to recover the older emails however you'll need the last 3 months with if current email.

You may well need to get your account system of running however for smaller business in a short-term catastrophe this may regularly be delayed.

Once the level of server recovery is decided you will then have to plan the recovery. Each server will have a different recovery process and your plan will need to look at each one of those in turn, making certain a backup, testing the recovery from backup and then placing these in a timeline to make sure that you know how long this could take.

So the goal of a tragedy recovery plan is to have a look at the business needs and needs, to speak to the key business or unit owners and to choose what's you need to use for the short term while you are attempting to get over the catastrophe. Eventually you will need a re-integration plan for the business to be sure that the change back to your last location (post recovery) is smooth sailing.

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