Informing the IBM Community

Finding the key to cost-effective, simple business continuity and disaster recovery


key to cost-effective, simple business continuity and disaster recovery

By Tom Richards, Systems and Storage Practice Lead Northdoor plc.

Preparing for the unknown

If the events of the last year have taught us anything, it’s that no one knows what’s round the next corner. The widespread disruption caused by the pandemic has put organisations’ continuity and disaster recovery plans in the spotlight. Unless companies are ready to respond to a range of scenarios, they can be caught out by the unexpected. Even a brief loss of access to essential IT systems can stop your business in its tracks. And a longer-term outage due to a disaster could cause significant financial and reputational damage.

However big the potential risk, resources for protecting against system downtime and data loss are always limited. Companies can find it challenging to find business continuity and disaster recovery measures that are within both their budgets and skill sets. If safeguarding data and systems is too arduous a process, it can impinge on everyday operations – which defeats the purpose of the measures! Can business continuity and disaster recovery be both effective and easy to manage? Northdoor thinks so!

Applying innovation

For many companies, IBM Power Systems servers running the IBM i operating system have been at the centre of business operations for many years. The technology is renowned for bringing resilience and reliability to core processes.

With help from Northdoor, you can now take advantage of the latest advances in IBM PowerHA tools for IBM i to bolster your business continuity and disaster recovery plans. Specifically, the Full System Replication feature can help automate and manage data replication and role swaps for IBM i Logical Partitions (LPARs) using IBM storage arrays.

Northdoor brings to the table thirty years of experience supporting blue-chip companies and leading public-sector organisations in the digital transformation of their operations. By applying our expertise alongside the deep knowledge of IBM technologies that comes with our IBM Platinum Business Partner accreditation, we can help you make the most of IBM innovation.

Push-button simplicity

Compared to logical replication solutions, Full System Replication allows you to maintain a complete real-time copy of your systems or partitions at another site without the hassle of managing what data is included. Additionally, unlike PowerHA SystemMirror for IBM i, there is no need to split your application into an Independent ASP.

Rather than spending days planning how and what to copy—and revising this every time something changes in your production landscape—Full System Replication enables you to replicate all volumes and logical unit numbers (LUNs) at the push of a button. In fact, the function automates the shut-down, switch, initial programme load, reconfiguration and overall management of a full system replication environment. It includes APIs that you can use to customise the start-up programme and a choice between command-line and menu-driven interfaces for ease of use.

At Northdoor, we recently helped a leading financial services company to eliminate a complicated planning process for data replication using a logical replication approach that occupied days and significant resources. Instead, the organisation now uses Full System Replication to support its business continuity and disaster recovery schemes. Our client has saved significant time, which employees can instead use to improve services, confident that the company is well-protected from disruption to its operations. The company has also reduced its risk, because it no longer has any concerns about the quality of data in its DR landscape. Finally, the new native solution from IBM replaces a more costly third-party solution, so the company also saves money and simplifies procurement.

Contact Northdoor today for a free assessment of your IBM i Disaster Recovery and replication set-up – by understanding your recovery objectives, we can help you get the right solution in place to achieve or exceed your expectations whilst minimising the overhead on your team to manage it. What could you do with more time and the peace of mind that effective business continuity and disaster recovery plans offer? Start imagining today.

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