Q: How does virtualization affect disaster recovery?
Virtualization is playing a pretty big role in disaster recovery. What virtualization has enabled a lot of customers to do, first of all, is give tremendous benefits in the data center by saving people money on the amount of servers through consolidation. In disaster recovery, if you're going to have a secondary site to back up to, instead of matching physical server to physical server, companies are able to go to what they call a P-to-V model, or physical-to-virtual model. At a secondary site they can dramatically reduce the number of physical servers required by just having those virtual machines set up and established.
In addition to that sort of secondary-site disaster recovery, virtualization is also enabling local recovery to be that much faster. By being able to have that storage network, you can leverage some of the capabilities of virtualization for data mobility to enable you to recover an application within your data center much faster than you previously could. Instead of having to get that bare-metal restore from tape and reloading that server, you can just reload that virtual file image that's stored in your SAN environment on a separate virtual machine in your data center and recover in a matter of minutes what used to take hours or days to do.
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This was first published in May 2008