Top 10 IT disaster recovery planning tips of 2009

Read about the top 10 disaster recovery tips from 2009. Learn about topics such as DR planning and testing, pandemic planning and outsourcing DR.

Information technology (IT) disaster recovery (DR) and business continuity (BC) plans and testing are critical aspects in storage enterprises today. Without having a DR plan to fall back on, many companies and organizations could find themselves in trouble with data loss or a security breach. To help keep organizations away from disasters, vendors continue to improve and come up with new DR technologies.

Several improvements and trends have been apparent in disaster recovery technologies in 2009. "I think the one significant trend in DR this year is better support within virtualization products, specifically VMware's SRM [Site Recovery Manager] 4," said Ray Lucchesi, president of Silverton Consulting.

"It's apparent that as server virtualization goes up the market into more and more mission-critical applications, DR becomes more important." Another trend Lucchesi noticed this year was "more sophisticated data storage replication capabilities."

But perhaps the most important pattern that surfaced from disaster recovery this year was the importance of testing DR plans. "DR plan adequacy can only be determined by testing it out," said Lucchesi. "This can be as simple as a desk check of the plan or as complex as a complete run through. But it must be done on a periodic basis to catch those changes to your data center environment that have happened since the last test."

To help you learn more about disaster recovery and business continuity, we've compiled our 10 best disaster recovery tips from 2009. Whether you want to learn about the importance of workforce continuity in DR, download a free IT DR plan template, learn about pandemic planning, discover the best DR testing strategies, or what steps to follow to outsource DR correctly, we have all the information here on SearchDisasterRecovery.com.

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Data backup and recovery tips for disaster recovery purposes
Data backup and recovery solutions are a set of technologies that support an organization's disaster recovery strategy and plan, but how can you make sure your data recovery solution is the best it can be? Is it good enough for your DR plan? In this tip, read about how to make the most successful data backup and recovery solutions for your disaster recovery purposes.

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Is your disaster recovery plan out of date?
If your disaster recovery plan is out of date, then it's also probably useless. For most companies, a DR plan that is older than two or three years will likely not reflect their current backup environment and data backup technologies, so it won't keep them safe from a disaster. In this tip, read about factors that tell you your DR plan is out of date, and what things need constant updating in a DR plan such as contact info, hardware configurations, recovery procedures and more.

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The importance of workforce continuity in a disaster recovery plan 
A company can put together the most extensive disaster recovery plan that covers all the bases and ensures that all of their tools and technologies are safe, but without people to execute that DR plan, recovery will only reach a certain point. In this tip, learn about the importance of workforce continuity in a disaster recovery plan. You will also find out what factors you need to have in place in order to have a successful and operating workforce during a disaster including remote connectivity and the possibility of hiring temporary workforce.

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IT disaster recovery plan template: A free download and sample plan 
Disaster recovery plans have the ability to keep companies safe during unplanned incidents that can threaten their IT environment. In this free downloadable IT DR plan template and sample plan, learn what a DR plan is, step-by-step IT DR plan development and read about the most important IT disaster recovery planning considerations.

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Disaster recovery strategies: Eight tips for better DR planning 
Disaster recovery has a lot of moving parts, so it can be difficult to synchronize and coordinate all of these parts so that all of the elements of DR function together. How can companies make DR coordination and planning easier? In this tip on disaster recovery strategies, read about eight tips for better DR planning, which include defining responsibilities, validating the business impact analysis (BIA) process, designing an effective DR infrastructure and more.

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Using a pandemic recovery plan template: A free download and guide 
The country was hit hard with the H1N1 flu in 2009, and the spread of this virus quickly turned into a pandemic. The threat of this pandemic hitting the workforce quickly entered the minds of IT managers, and so did the importance of having a good pandemic recovery plan in place. In this free downloadable guide and pandemic recovery plan, learn how to build a pandemic plan, find out what questions you need to ask, look at a pandemic planning checklist and look at some of the best practices on pandemic planning for your business.

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Best practices for selecting a disaster recovery facility
Outsourcing disaster recovery is a popular DR practice. Studies show that using an outsourced DR service is often more reliable than creating a DR service in-house. However, that's not true with every company. This tip explores the best practices for selecting a disaster recovery facility, explaining the criteria for choosing what type of facility is right for your company: an in-house or outsourced location, and the questions to ask your facility provider for each type.

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Disaster recovery and failback: Five tips 
Most of the information about business continuity and disaster recovery revolve around what to do before and during a disaster, but few tips and articles address what to do at the end of a disaster and how to pick up the pieces. What are the proper steps to resume operations? What should you do if you have to move to a new location? This article offers five disaster recovery and failback tips. The tips include the following: Make sure your data is available and secure, test all systems and networks before resuming production, conduct a post audit and assessment and more.

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Disaster recovery essentials: E-Guide on DR planning and testing strategies The tools available for disaster recovery continue to grow, but DR planning and testing remains a challenge due to growing data in data storage environments. What are some of the most critical decisions you need to make in DR planning? How do you know that your DR plan will work correctly? Download this E-Guide on DR planning and testing strategies to find out these DR essentials. Whether you need more information about VMware Site Recovery Manager, hot and cold disaster recovery site options, replication virtual machines or DR testing tips, we have it all here in this e-guide.

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Network disaster recovery and business continuity technology tutorial 
Most recovery options depend on a working network in order to succeed, making networking an essential component during a disaster. Whether you are getting started with server virtualization, are creating a disaster recovery network checklist or need to learn more about protecting your VoIP systems, this tutorial on network disaster recovery and business continuity technology will provide you with important information to help you understand the complexities of DR/BC planning and networking.

To help you stay up to date on disaster recovery in 2010, bookmark our page on disaster recovery for the latest news, tips and tutorials on disaster recovery and business continuity.

This was first published in December 2009

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