Think that little config change is minor? Think again.

Think that little config change is minor? Think again.

by jmmerk on February 12, 2009

by Doron Pinhas,
VP, Field Operations

I recently wrote about the limitations of DR testing, but IT organizations also need to pay careful attention to the impact constant configuration change can have on DR readiness. Datacenters today  often include many applications running on thousands of servers with multiple operating systems and databases. Clusters like HP ServiceGuard, Veritas Cluster and Microsoft Cluster Server require complex resource configuration.

Of course, configuration changes are a fact of life. But any small change, like the addition of a new volume/database file or reconfiguration of a replication process – can create a gap between the  production and DR environment. Even the smallest gap can cause a recovery operation to fail.

Even when a DR test is conducted according to standard best practices, the number of gaps and errors it can miss is significant enough to pose a serious risk to the business. These risks fall into two categories:

1. Data protection risks – Application data, metadata, and data links can be jeopardized by gaps in replication setup, sequence of procedures, accessibility, mapping, zoning, etc. Maintaining completeness of the data and its internal structure consistency is a critical but difficult task.

So what’s the impact? Data loss and potential RPO violation if the data is irrecoverable OR recoverable but to a point in time that violates a required RPO.

2. Availability risk – Standby hosts, DR servers and cluster members may be unable to fulfill their role because of erroneous configuration, incorrect mapping of replicated storage to standby hosts, standby host configuration errors, etc.

So what’s the impact? Extended recover time and potential RTO violations.

Something to think about…..

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