What is DraaS?

Taking the Pulse of the IBM i Market

January 8, 2021 Matt Paterini, Regional Director

Disaster Recovery as a Service

Every organization needs a sound disaster recovery plan to protect their business from natural disasters, weather events, cyber-attacks, and other unexpected threats. Disaster recovery strategies can take on different forms depending on the requirements of the business, specifically the defined Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and Recovery Point Objective (RPO).

Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) is the practice of providing remote data and system recovery as a managed service. Unlike manual disaster recovery (DR) approaches in which organizations simply have access to a remote system and are required to manually restore data in the event of a disaster, DRaaS contractually ensures remote recovery to defined RTO/RPO, completely managed by the MSP. This makes DRaaS more reliable than a manual DR plan, as many organizations do not have the internal resources suitable to adequately manage DR.

High availability (H/A) is also a common DR practice that often gets confused with DRaaS. For many organizations, the ability to role-swap to a second system with immediate RTO/RPO is not necessary. H/A also requires maintaining a second system and does not address archival backups for days, weeks, months and years. Unless immediate RTO/RPO is truly required, H/A is typically not a cost-effective DR option. In fact, a cloud backup and DRaaS strategy is approximately 1/2 – 1/3 the investment of H/A.

A cloud backup and DRaaS strategy is appropriate for an organization that has shorter RTO/RPO requirements than a manual approach can accommodate, but the immediate RTO/RPO provided by H/A is not required.

As it relates specifically to IBM i DRaaS, UCG Technologies and VAULT400 offer a 12-hour and a 24-hour RTO with 24-hour RPO in each case.

Both IBM i DRaaS offerings begin with VAULT400 cloud backups to two remote, regulatory compliant data centers. For the 24-hour RTO option, UCG Technologies loads the proper IBM i operating system and PTF level at the point of disaster declaration, ports data from the remote vault to a multi-platform POD of shared systems and provides remote VPN access in < 24 hours.

For the 12-hour RTO option, UCG pre-loads the operating system and PTF’s to a dedicated serial number assigned system. At the point of disaster declaration, data ports from the remote vault to the dedicated system and remote VPN access is provided in < 12 hours.

Regardless of your organization’s RTO/RPO requirements, a formal DR plan is critical to minimizing risk. For the vast majority of organizations, a cloud backup with DRaaS strategy proves to be the most reliable and cost-effective for the business.

Article published in IT Jungle, The Four Hundred
Disaster Recovery, At Your Service | November 16, 2020