By Jeff Whitaker, Sr. Cloud Solutions Marketing Manager, NetApp & Yaron Haimsohn, Cloud Solution Architect, NetApp
Amazon Web Services (AWS) offers customers reliable, scalable, and inexpensive cloud computing services. Thousands of businesses use AWS solutions every day because they are simple and dependable. Companies might not realize, however, that they can also host disaster recovery (DR) solutions in AWS. This blog post describes six benefits from hosting DR solutions in AWS.
The Financial Advantage
Investing in the construction, maintenance, and staffing of a data center is a large expense that not all companies can afford. Setting up the data center to support disaster recovery adds to the cost and complexity. Even leasing space in a hosted data center requires significant investments in contracting, support, and logistics. In contrast, AWS offers a cost-effective backup, storage, and DR solution that enables firms to significantly reduce their capital expenses.
AWS works on an on-demand basis: You acquire and use infrastructure as you need it and you pay only for what you consume. The DR instances can lie dormant until needed, so you don’t have to pay for computing services until that point. This approach saves businesses a great deal of money.
An IDC report shows that AWS customers experienced a 64% reduction in total cost of ownership of cloud computing resources. The report also showed that the period to pay back the cost of AWS was five and a half months.
Fast Setup Time
Another benefit of using AWS for your DR solution is that, if you select the right components, setup time is incredibly short. In fact, in some cases you can set up a DR solution within AWS in under an hour.
Using AWS automation tools and leveraging technologies that integrate well with your existing resources make DR setup as simple as creating the appropriate virtual components and starting the system replication process. The time you save setting up a DR solution within AWS translates to greater productivity gains and cost savings for your business.
Your data center can be in any given geographical location and you can choose to host your DR in another location in the United States or globally.
AWS currently has 32 availability zones in 12 geographic regions around the world. An “availability zone” refers to one or more discrete data centers, each with redundant power, networking, and connectivity. Each data center is housed in a separate facility. Availability zones are connected to one another with a private fiber optic network, so you can architect applications that automatically fail over between availability zones without interruption.
Scalability (Part I)
Some companies initially purchase more computing resources than they need for their disaster recovery solution. They think that they might need the resources later, though, in reality, they won’t always make use of those resources.
In contrast, AWS is highly scalable. When you need more computing resources for your DR solution, you purchase them. You don’t need to make a large investment upfront for resources you might never need. The bottom line is that AWS’s on-demand model for disaster recovery is far more cost effective for the enterprise than complex systems in-house.
Scalability (Part II)
AWS’s scalability provides the flexibility that firms need to thrive. Not every business has the same activity levels all year round. Companies that experience seasonal fluctuations in their activity appreciate the option to scale down with AWS as much as they appreciate the ability to scale up.
Take the example of an e-commerce website specializing in winter sports gear. The firm’s need for DR resources isn’t the same every month. Rather, it has a greater need for AWS storage and DR between November and March. When this company doesn’t need storage resources, it doesn’t use or pay for them.
Security and Bandwidth
AWS has made security a high priority for all of its customers. Many of its security features come at no extra cost, including those in the categories of infrastructure, inventory, configuration, data encryption, identity and access control, monitoring, and logging.
In addition, when you become an AWS customer, you have access to the firm’s significant and reliable bandwidth. You don’t have to worry that your DR solution won’t be accessible or that it will operate too slowly to be effective.
NetApp Cloud ONTAP for AWS
The NetApp® Cloud ONTAP® operating system for AWS is the ideal solution for users who would like to build a cost-effective virtual data center. The solution takes minutes to build a complete virtual storage environment with clustered Data ONTAP and to seamlessly replicate on-premises data to the cloud. NetApp Cloud ONTAP for AWS enables you to build a DR site so that you can focus on what you do best: Run your business.
For more information on disaster recovery, download the new paper, Budgeting for a Disaster: 7 Cost-Savings Tips for Disaster Recovery.