Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) is a champion among disaster recovery solutions for protecting your business’s data and applications. But how exactly does this service work? With terms like RPO, hypervisor, and more, it’s easy to get lost in the technical details or even sidetracked by myths about DRaaS.
In this blog, we share what LightBound’s DRaaS is, the technology behind it, and a basic breakdown of what DRaaS looks like in action. This will help you gain a clear understanding of how this business continuity and disaster recovery (BC/DR) service keeps your data safe.
What is DRaaS?
Every second it takes for your business to recover from data loss or downtime matters to your bottom line. That’s why it’s key to be able to achieve a quick and easy recovery from a crisis, which is exactly what Disaster Recovery as a Service is designed to do.
With DRaaS, a third-party provider like LightBound hosts and continually replicates your servers. This allows your business to failover in a disaster scenario so you can continue normal business operations until your on-premises environment is restored to normal.
DRaaS protects both your data and infrastructure. Any time there are file changes, DRaaS automatically replicates those changes to a different location geographically—that of your provider.
All in all, DRaaS means that any time you experience downtime, it won’t be for long. With basic backup procedures, downtime can last hours or even days, but DRaaS reduces downtime to mere minutes:
- RTO (Recovery Time Objective) is the time in the future your business will be up again, which is measured in only minutes with DRaaS
- RPO (Recovery Point Objective) is the point in time you recover to in the past, which is measured in only seconds with DRaaS
How Does the Replication Technology Behind DRaaS Work?
From a more technical standpoint, LightBound’s Disaster Recovery as a Service is what’s known as a hypervisor-based replication solution. With hypervisor-based replication, each time a virtual machine (VM) writes to its virtual disk, the written command is automatically and continuously captured, cloned, and sent to the recovery site with no impact on application performance.
Regardless of underlying infrastructure at a virtual level for both storage and server locations, enterprise applications are recovered with consistency through hypervisor-based replication. The replication technology consists of:
- A virtual manager that manages disaster recovery, business continuity, and offsite backup functionality at the site level
- A virtual replication appliance that replicates the VMs and associated virtual disks and copies I/O (input/output) as it is created before it leaves the hypervisor
Other physically-bound disaster recovery solutions, including array-based replication and appliance-based replication, work in the virtual environment, but they aren’t optimized for it. This prevents the full benefits and capabilities of virtualization from being received.
Hypervisor-based replication bridges this gap in the data protection strategy because it is perfectly optimized for virtual environments, offering major benefits without the drawbacks of other solutions.
Benefits of hypervisor-based replication include:
- The virtual manager, installed directly inside the virtual infrastructure, is able to tap into a virtual machine’s IO stream, making it more efficient, accurate, and responsive than prior methods
- Continuous replication with zero impact on application performance
- There are no guest-host requirements or additional hardware footprint
- You can quickly move virtual machines around from one physical server or array logical unit (data store) to another
- It’s fully hardware-agnostic to storage source and destination, able to replicate to anything from anything
- Achieves RPO in seconds and RTO in minutes
How Does Disaster Recovery as a Service Work?
1. Getting started with LightBound’s DRaaS.
Choosing your provider is a crucial first step and can make or break your DRaaS experience. Once you’ve found the right provider, it’s time to get set up.
With LightBound as your provider, we will work personally with you to create a custom plan for your company. Deployment is extremely fast, only taking a fraction of the time needed for traditional disaster recovery setups. The failover is fully configured to simplify your recovery process to only a few clicks.
Once deployed, your servers will be continuously replicated over LightBound’s private fiber optics. With LightBound you can expect:
- Testing 2x annually to ensure a fast and efficient recovery
- Your data is stored in an SSAE 16 SOC 2 Certified data center
- 24/7/365 monitoring by skilled support staff
- Guaranteed resource pool reservation
2. Disaster strikes your business.
You never know when disaster will strike your business, but when it does, you’ll want to be ready. Whether an employee accidentally formats a company hard drive or a major hurricane strikes your office building, disaster can take on many forms, big and small. Thankfully, choosing DRaaS means that no matter the cause of the disaster, you are ready.
3. Automated switch to failover operations.
Even after a disaster has struck your business, your applications are still being served through the cloud with minimal or no data loss thanks to the seconds-long RPO DRaaS is able to provide.
DRaaS fails over processing to the cloud so your organization can continue to operate during a disaster. The failover notice can be automated or manual. In a high-pressure scenario, your IT can count on DRaaS to provide automated and orchestrated processes that can be executed in just a few clicks.
For manual initiation of failover, the process is simple:
- Click “failover” in your management console
- Select the applications that need recovery
- Choose the point in time to which your apps need to be restored (to the point when they were not corrupted)
- Start the failover process
4. Automated failback.
The DRaaS operation remains in effect until your IT team can repair the on-premises environment and issue a failback order. Many businesses without DRaaS avoid failover because failback can be a huge ordeal, but LightBound’s DRaaS makes failback easy. After your environment is back up and running, it is only a few clicks to failback.
Ready to Get Started with DRaaS?
DRaaS makes recovering from disaster affordable, achievable, and fast. If you’re interested in learning more about Disaster Recovery as a Service or its benefits, contact LightBound today. Our experts will help answer any questions you might have about cloud data recovery and more.