Lately there seems to be more and more applications and internal IT services being migrated to the cloud. One of those cloud services that businesses are investigating is disaster recovery. It seems like a natural fit for an organization to back up its virtual environment to the cloud for quick and easy recovery should a disaster strike. It also makes sense for businesses of all sizes, which is probably why there is a growing list of providers gearing up to offer these types of recovery and business continuity services.
Businesses are increasingly becoming reliant on technology; when systems go down, people stop working. A reliable recovery solution is important to a business of any size as the cost of downtime continues to grow. Last year an Aberdeen Group report estimated that the average cost per hour of data center downtime had increased from $98,000 per hour in 2010 to $138,000 per hour in 2012.
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To respond to that challenge, VMware cloud partner Bluelock, which specializes in hosting virtual data centers based on VMware's vCloud infrastructure, launched a new recovery-as-a-service (RaaS) option for users of VMware virtualization. The technology is powered by Zerto Virtual Replication. But what's interesting here is that this disaster recovery capability was designed for not only those virtual machines already being hosted in one of Bluelock's existing public cloud environments but also those virtual machines being hosted by organizations on premises in a private VMware vSphere environment.
According to Bluelock, cloud-based recovery-as-a-service has two important subterms that you need to understand before exploring recovery options. Each is named for the location from which the workloads are being replicated.
- To-Cloud RaaS involves replicating to a cloud provider from a physical infrastructure or internal private cloud. To-Cloud, as the name suggests, involves the company replicating its applications to the cloud, from somewhere they own and/or maintain.
- In-Cloud RaaS involves replicating between two geographically diverse public cloud sites, typically hosted by the same provider. In-Cloud RaaS is typically used to protect important workloads and/or satisfy geographic diversity compliance requirements.
Bluelock calls its RaaS offering a "4-Series Virtual Datacenter," which reflects the fact that it operates Tier-4 designated facilities, meaning they meet a 99.995 percent level of reliability.
The company offers two versions of its RaaS solution so that it can meet both "in-cloud" and "to-cloud" designations:
- The VDC 4500 is the company's In-Cloud RaaS offering and was developed for Bluelock customers with critical workloads that require geographically separated recovery environments. It provides replication of production applications from one Bluelock data center facility to another.
- The VDC 4000 on the other hand is the company's To-Cloud RaaS offering which was designed for businesses operating their own VMware-virtualized data center environments that want the ability to recover production applications and data to an enterprise-grade Bluelock Virtual Datacenter in the public cloud.