Data replication is defined as when data is copied from one location to another. This can be done over a storage area network (SAN), local area network (LAN) or local wide-area network (WAN). The point of replication for disaster recovery is to have copies of your data that are up to date in the event of a disaster. There are two types of data replication products: synchronous or asynchronous. And another differentiator is where the replication takes place. It can be done in the storage array, at the host (server), or in the network.
Choosing the right data replication strategy can be tricky. We've collected our top five tips on data replication strategies to help make your job easier. Learn about synchronous vs. asynchronous replication, what to look for in a data replication tool and more in this tips collection.
Disaster recovery replication guide: A look at data replication tools
Not too long ago, tape was what all companies used for data backup and recovery. If you had a disaster and needed to make recoveries from tape, you may have had to go through hundreds of tapes. Just one corrupt or missing backup tape could end your chances of a successful recovery. While replication may never entirely eliminate tape from disaster recovery scenarios, it can provide a faster and more reliable alternative. You'll learn about the different replication alternatives, and where they can be deployed in this guide on data replication disaster recovery.
Data replication options
The most expensive type of replication is synchronous replication, but there are other options available that are less expensive and may be the right choice for your company, depending on the type of data protection required. Enterprise data storage arrays tend to offer the broadest range of options, including synchronous and asynchronous replication, as well as features like consistency groups and various types of multi-hop replication. These systems also support a growing range of disk types, from solid-state drives to Fibre Channel to Serial ATA (SATA). So, it's conceivable that a multi-tier disaster recovery solution can be configured within a single storage platform. In this tip, learn about your different replication options.
In this tutorial on data replication and disaster recovery, learn how to choose the best replication product, the differences between host-, array-, and network-based data replication, and about how new technologies like data deduplication and virtual servers are changing replication and disaster recovery. You'll also learn about the different data replication technologies in this tutorial.
For Linux/Solaris solutions, there are a variety of low-cost open-source data replication tools available, such as rsync and Distributed replicated block device (DRBD). But it's important to weigh the risks of using open-source tools with the cost savings you may achieve. Are you choosing a disaster recovery strategy with too much risk? Learn about the pros and cons of open-source replication tools in this tip from SearchDataCenter.
A few years ago, it was a lot easier to outline the downsides of array-based replication; it was a very low-level technology that replicated blocks of data without much ceremony. But data replication options have changed since then, and there are many flexible and affordable disk array-based replication solution. Array-based replication is also a popular option because it is centralized and operating system-agnostic. However, the challenge still remains interoperability between most vendor solutions. Learn about the pros and cons of disk array-based replication in this tip.
EDITOR'S TIP: For even more expert advice and news on data replication, bookmark our special section on disaster recovery storage.