Offsite Disaster Recovery Solution

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Hello Folks
We are an healthcare organisation with multiple branches geographically located. hence we are looking forward to a offsite DR.

What is the best offsite disaster recovery solution ?
- Colocation
- Private Cloud.

In both above cases, what connectivity is best ?
- IPSec VPN
- MPLS
- SD-WAN
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Hani M .S. Al-habshiContributor as IT Expert

Commented:
There are many factories :

1-How about your internet speed ? (stable or not - limited or not ) ?
2-How about your annually budget ?
3-How about your IT Team that they will manage the DR & The Data Center environment  ?
Pete LongTechnical Consultant

Commented:
Indeed, I provide this service to customers for a living!

Colo/Private Cloud-  With your own hardware? Expensive up front, and will need support on, usually from the company providing CoLo
Colo - On providers hardware? most decent DC vendors will offer virtualised environments for you to fail over into (usually based on VMware vCloud Director, or Open stack). Cheaper ongoing costs than Azure/AWS but different CoLo vendors prices differ wildly so get a good quote.

Connectivity: For failover/DR we usually provide a circuit into the client location for this task, replication traffic over public internet/VPN is fine if you don't have much data to replicate, and you change rate is slow. Yes you can seed a replication, and this sounds like a good idea but it needs to be redone every time theres a replication problem so I usually don't bother doing that.

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Author

Commented:
Hi Pete,
I’d prefer to go with CoLo solution and hardware from by providers
Basically we are looking for failover and offsite DR
In terms of connectivity what is the best and cost effective option to choose.
MPLS would be expensive
IPSec VPN would be slow
Any suggestions from your side?
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Hani M .S. Al-habshiContributor as IT Expert

Commented:
SD WAN

Author

Commented:
Can you please provide details on architecture, how SD-WAN can help us in this case ?

and which SD-WAN vendor is good ?
Meraki, Viptela, VeloCloud, etc
Philip ElderTechnical Architect - HA/Compute/Storage

Commented:
What is being done to back up the current infrastructure?

Author

Commented:
We have Dell Vx rail HCI with inbuilt backup at main DC
Hani M .S. Al-habshiContributor as IT Expert

Commented:
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SD-WAN Can Make Disaster Recovery Planning Easier

Disaster recovery is certainly an interesting topic. Prior to my analyst days, I was in corporate IT and was part of a number of disaster recovery (DR) teams. It’s my sense that most organizations are very effective on the planning side but not very effective with executing on those plans. I say this tongue-in-cheek but there is some truth to it. One of the reasons why disaster recovery is so hard to execute is because keeping the backup environment in lock step with the production environment is very difficult to do in any cost-effective way. SD-WAN can make that easier.

SD-WAN: Making Unpredictable Environments More Reliable
The dynamic nature of an SD-WAN makes it ideal for an unpredictable environment such as running in disaster recovery mode. The goal for a disaster recovery plan isn’t to identically replicate the production environment but ensure that all critical services are available to the users that need it, ideally without a degraded experience. The network plays a key role in DR as it enables remote sites to connect, data to be backed up and workers to access critical applications. An SD-WAN addresses all of these issues much better than legacy WANs.

With many of the DR plans I’ve seen, application performance is often sacrificed, as the same level of network resources are not available. The thought being that if the company is in DR mode, then any level of application performance should be sufficient. This may have been ok in the past but in today’s highly competitive digital world, customer experience means everything. Any kind of degraded experience means lost productivity and possibly lost customers.

Cost Savings & Performance Agility
The most obvious and basic benefit of SD-WANs is that they are much lower cost than traditional network services like MPLS so creating comparable network connections for the backup environment is no longer cost prohibitive.

Cost is only one factor and, while important, isn’t the most critical one. SD-WANs are dynamic and adaptable to the different applications that flow over them. Businesses can set policies on an SD-WAN to ensure the mission critical and real time applications, like VoIP are performing well. Organizations can dedicate bandwidth to the applications that matter most and then go best effort on the others. If things in the environment change, an SD-WAN can adapt quickly, sometimes without any human intervention. The same can’t be said for legacy telecom connections that often require long lead times to make changes.

Working Hand-in-Hand with WAN Acceleration

Also, the WAN optimization capabilities built into many SD-WAN solutions enable organizations to place DR facilities in areas of lower costs with cheaper power and not have to worry about the distance between data centers. For example, many New York City based firms use New Jersey as a backup location so they can use high-speed metro connections. One of the reasons why WAN optimization grew as fast as it did was because it gave businesses LAN like performance over the wide area network. Customers would often tell me that the long distance sites that have WAN optimization deployed at them offered better performance than closer branch sites that were not optimized. So why not use this benefit to strategically locate backup data centers?

Meet Your Recovery Point Objectives
Another consideration point is storage replication. Some SD-WAN providers have strong data center-to-data center replication capabilities. Data continues to grow at an unprecedented rate and while many businesses are pushing this content to the public cloud, there is an equal amount of growth in private clouds. Given the projected growth in data over the next few years, businesses cannot use traditional backup techniques to copy data between locations. Solutions like Silver Peak’s Replication Acceleration can replicate faster over long distances and shrink recovery point objects down to times that can meet the demands of digital organizations.

As businesses become more reliant on their technology infrastructure, disaster recovery planning will increase in importance. IT leaders should look to SD-WAN to increase the level of network agility, enable applications to perform better and enable faster replication all at a lower cost.
Hani M .S. Al-habshiContributor as IT Expert

Commented:
I prefer this fortinet

fortinet.com/products/sd-wan.html.

Author

Commented:
Thanks Hani for the detailed information
We can also build a DR at another location owned by us instead of CoLocation or Private Cloud that would save some money for us
Any suggestions?
Julian ParkerSenior Systems Administrator

Commented:
It may depend on the locations and what is available, there are a lot of providers out there (I work for one of them).

You must get a tender out and get quotes, cheapest isnt always best, nor is the most expensive. If they are a decent company they will help you find a solution that suits your whole business needs.

You are after a business you can work with, check out their infrastructure they have, get an idea for each location. Dont get bogged down in the specifics of the comms but make sure the complete solution fits your needs.
Philip ElderTechnical Architect - HA/Compute/Storage

Commented:
Veeam with Cloud Connect Disaster Recovery (DR).

It's a full DR solution allowing for the spooling up of VMs for spot patch testing and the like or full-on failover if the primary site goes down.

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