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Archive for the ‘hurricane’ tag

How Your Business Can Survive a Natural Disaster   no comments

Posted at Oct 3, 2017 @ 10:31am disaster recovery

Natural Disaster

Smart business owners know the importance of planning so that they can make projections and understand the direction that their businesses need to take. In addition to traditional business plans, it is vital for companies to plan for disasters in order to protect their businesses. Natural and other disasters can cripple businesses, making it difficult for them to recover. When a disaster happens, it is important that businesses have protected their important data so that they can get back to doing business as soon as possible. Businesses that do not have in-depth Disaster Recovery Plans in place when a major natural disaster happens may not be able to recover from them. Fortunately, the advancement of technology has brought simple-to-implement and disaster-proof data protection to businesses, provided by the Cloud.

 

Lessons From Nature

Some business owners put off disaster recovery planning, thinking that the likelihood of something happening is minimal. Recent natural events demonstrate the importance of implementing a strong recovery plan, however. Hurricane Harvey flooded Houston with enough water that FEMA has projected it will take years for the city to fully recover. Hurricane Irma carved its own path of destruction through Florida, and Hurricane Maria caused total devastation to Puerto Rico.

While Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico are all in hurricane-prone areas, disasters can strike anywhere. The middle of the country and the South are prone to monster tornados such as the mile-wide tornado that destroyed a third of Joplin, Missouri in 2011, killing 161 people and leveling or gutting thousands of buildings, including one of the city’s two major hospitals. Similarly, the Northeastern states are also not immune from disasters as demonstrated by the ravages of Hurricane Sandy. During the winters, the Northeast and upper Midwest also face risks from crippling blizzards, which can down power lines, cause roof collapses and bring businesses to a grinding halt. The earthquake-prone West faces its own dangers of natural disasters, underscoring the importance to businesses everywhere to plan for the worst that could happen.

A common lesson from all of these disasters is that it is highly important for businesses to have backups of their data and IT infrastructure in the located off-site from their office locations and in the Cloud. Having data and IT infrastructure redundancies in the Cloud can protect a business from falling victim to power outages and other storm-related problems. Cloud technology allows businesses to store their data, servers, even their entire IT infrastructure inside a datacenter, with the ability to access their data as needed or to recover it quickly if disasters strike. This type of cloud solution is known as Colocation. Another cloud solution that datacenters offer for businesses is Disaster Recovery as a Service or DRaaS.

 

DRaaS

With a DRaaS solution, businesses do not have to maintain and invest in their own remote hardware or servers. DRaaS solutions utilize Cloud Replication, in which a company’s entire IT infrastructure is replicated remotely in the cloud. This allows for a much faster recovery time because business applications can continue running over the cloud instead of waiting for data to be restored.

DRaaS offers a cloud-based solution without substantial outlays of capital. It is more service-oriented with customers paying for their consumed resources rather than paying for physical space. DRaaS is scalable, allowing businesses to expand as they need and to choose the appropriate resources for the sizes of their businesses. This means that the resources that they have available to them through DRaaS can grow with the businesses so that they remain protected at all times.

It is important for business owners to plan for everything, including the possibility that disasters may strike. When business owners have strong disaster recovery and business continuity plans in place, they may restart their businesses much faster than they might otherwise after disasters. By working in the cloud, a business’s data and applications are instantly stored so that a disaster may end up being a minor bump in the road rather than a crippling event.

Don’t gamble with your company’s data, call TurnKey Internet at 518-618-0999 and receive a free consultation of your company’s Disaster Recovery Plan. Learn more at www.TurnKeyInternet.net/myplan

 

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Disaster Recovery Remedies   1 comment

Are you ready? - Hurricane“Hindsight gives you 20/20 vision,” is a statement you should keep in mind as you read this blog article. Many businesses that were just recently affected in some way by Hurricane Sandy could have avoided the complete standstill to their services by preparing and planning out just what they would do if their facility suffered a catastrophic loss. Hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes,  snow storms, flooding, and fire are some of the most obvious causes of potentially disastrous losses that could halt the operations of a business. In fact, the property of a business does not even have to have any direct damage for a natural disaster to halt their business. For example, loss of electricity, telephone, or internet connectivity can cause problems with functionality, as those services are paramount.

The question any disaster recovery consultant will ask you is, “how would your business survive if it was affected short-term and/or long-term by some catastrophic event?” If you understand that any type of disaster could destroy your computing infrastructure – where all of your company records and data are stored, which could quite possibly destroy your business – then you should have a plan in place to alleviate that possibility.

At the very least, any business that uses computing to manage their operations should have an off-site back-up of their most important data and records. This is not a very expensive strategy, it is something that can be entirely automated, and it does not even need to be accessed until you actually need to use it. There are automated back-up systems available from most data-centers, which back-up your data as frequently as you desire. The incremental changes made in the time-frame chosen are then sent across the internet through an encrypted protocol, and stored in a managed backup system at the data center. Usually, the client is provided with a secure web interface to access those files as needed. These back-ups can also be used to restore individual data files that may have become deleted or damaged at any time, and downloaded back to the computers in your office.

The next step up from simply backing-up your data for protection from a disaster would be hosting some, to all, of your regular computing infrastructure in a data center (cloud computing). If you hosted your main office server in a data center and accessed your files over the Internet from the PCs in your office, you could survive a disaster from a computing standpoint. All of your important data could then be accessed from a temporary, remote location, or even by having your employees work from home until the office is re-established. Many companies are now hosting their entire computing infrastructure in a data center; everything from virtual PCs to their application servers. These can then be accessed through just about any device that is connected to the internet, such as a PC, Mac, tablet, and many types of smartphones.

Communicating with your customer base during and after any disaster is vital in many cases. When your email and telephone systems are cut off, and you and your customers can no longer communicate, this could be extremely damaging to your business. By hosting your email server at a data center, you have access to your email system through almost any device connected to the internet.

One of the data center services that is really gaining popularity lately is VOIP-based hosted phone systems. In a VOIP-based system, The PBX system normally nailed to the wall in an office is replaced by a PBX server in a data center. Management and administration of the system is then done though a web interface. All phone communication is channeled through voice over Internet protocol (VOIP).  The advantage of this in a disaster is that your phone system is always intact. You can access your administration portal over the Internet and change any settings that may be necessary, such as adding additional extensions for remote users. Staff members can work from remote locations or at home, by accessing the phone system with a softphone on their PC or by having their calls transferred from their extensions to their cell phones.

I have suggested that data center services, TurnKey Internet included, are great solutions to the issues surrounding disaster recovery. The key reason is that they have multiple redundancies in place to provide 100% up-time guarantees. At TurnKey Internet, we have multiple fiber providers supplying our Internet and bandwidth through diverse physical paths into our facility. We have complicated switch gear in place to maintain your connections, in case one or some of the fiber connections coming into the building are disrupted. Additionally, our power supply is backed-up with both a robust battery back-up supply to all servers and equipment, as well as an on-site diesel generator that can power our facility long-term if necessary.  For these reasons and more, anyone considering disaster recovery planning should consider the options available from reputable data centers like ours at TurnKey Internet, to insure that their business is not damaged long-term by a catastrophic event that had not been planned for.

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Hurricane Sandy Preparedness Status Update – New York Datacenter   no comments

Posted at Oct 29, 2012 @ 12:17pm New York Datacenter

generator-newyork-datacenterEDIT: View our live Hurricane Sandy camera to watch as the storm reaches New York at http://sandycam.turnkeyinternet.net/

 

Hurricane Sandy is currently hitting the Northeast U.S. with hurricane-force winds and monsoon rains. It is expected to hit New York and Upstate New York today (Monday, October 29th, 2012).  The NY Stock Exchange has shut down, as have many businesses and schools throughout the North East.  At TurnKey Internet, we have already activated our Emergency Preparedness Stage II Plan as of Sunday October 28th – and we have already completed extensive on-site generator stress tests. We topped off our diesel tanks so we can run independent of utility power for several days, and have increased staff intervals to staggered shifts to ensure that on-site engineering staff and customer service coverage remains uninterrupted both during and after the storm.  We have additional staff on hand in case you wish to call in for a status update (518-618-0999), or you can view live status updates on our Twitter feed. There will be links to photos as the hurricane passes through the region, today and tomorrow, Tuesday, October 30th.

 

TurnKey Internet’s new, multi-million dollar data-center located in the heart of New York’s Tech Valley Region already has multiple redundant systems in place to remain online in the event of power loss, fiber network outage, or natural disaster.  The facility is a former government building, built with concrete walls that are over a foot thick, on a self contained secure lot, over 2,000 feet above sea level.  There is no risk for flooding, and the facility is built to withstand hurricane-level winds, as well as tornado-level winds. Rest assured our role is to ensure uninterrupted and continuous 100% operation for all cloud services we provide to our clients, and the activation of our Preparedness Stage II Plan ensures exactly that.  For businesses and clients with data located at their offices, homes, etc. – we strongly urge you to copy and back-up your data to a secure data-center such as TurnKey’s immediately, so you will have access to your data in the event your business loses local power due to Hurricane Sandy.  TurnKey Internet’s facility and cloud services will remain at full operation status, with additional staff on standby to assist you.

 

Our best wishes go out for the safety and health of our clients, staff, friends, and family.

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Written by Adam on October 29th, 2012

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