No, it’s not a gold plated notebook with diamonds. This is how the editor of Infoworld magazine tried to emphasize the business value of data residing on her notebook. Can You estimate the true value of data residing in Your information system, taking in account the dependability of every business operation on seamless functioning of Your information-communication system? Imagine that at some point in time Your ICT infrastructure is rendered inoperable. For how long can your business sustain this kind of break down? What is the damage you will suffer if part or all of your data is inaccessible? Could you work “the old way” at all? How long does it take for you to restore the full functionality of your information system? What is the damage your business will have to put up with during the downtime? Is that period measured in days, hours or just seconds?
Let us presume that you do regular backups (do You really?). Let us presume that you keep the backup media on a separate location (do You really?). If you keep the backup media on the same location in case of some calamity (fire, flood) you will loose both the live data and backup copy.
Even if You do regular backups and keep the backup media on the separate location how long will it take to restore the full functionality of Your information system – acquire the new equipment, install system and application software, restore Your data and continue with regular business activities ……
Will Your clients patiently wait for You to restore YOUR functionality, while THEIR requests are not serviced?
A data center is a facility used to house mission critical computer systems and associated components. It generally includes environmental controls (air conditioning, fire suppression, etc.), redundant/backup power supplies, redundant data communications connections, and high security, highlighted by biometric access controls to compartmentalized security zones within the facility.
Most mid-size or major companies have their own data centers, but that is not sufficient, because in order to maintain business continuity a backup of core Information system (not just raw data) is necessary. That does not mean that one has to invest in building a replica of existing ICT core site from the scratch. Equipment may be collocated in data center built for this purpose only, so the only expense is the fee for occupied space and communication cost. Some users have even opted for the collocation data center to be the only site for their core ICT infrastructure, and all the data is accessed via Internet links.
All companies who have the need to maintain the business continuity place their equipment in dedicated data centers. For some of them (like financial institutions) this will soon be the legal obligation, monitored by government agencies.However, even if you are an SME company (Small and Medium Business), and your programs and data are critical for your business continuity, you should place your core equipment (or replica, which could be just one server) in a modern data center. Taking in account the accelerating climate changes (with all the accompanying problems – like power/communication blackouts) it is hard to guarantee optimum conditions in average office environment. Placing your equipment in data center guarantees uninterrupted business operation and continuing customer satisfaction and loyalty.