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Backup vs Disaster Recovery in Practice

How does Backup differ from Disaster Recovery? In our recent Chess webinar, iland Solutions Architect Nicholas King clearly demonstrates the difference. Find out what happens when a data centre is hit by a power outage, and what steps are required to restore systems.



  • Your systems are backed up every night at 7pm.
  • You also are running a DR system with continuous replication.
  • Disaster strikes-at 6am, a power outage hits the building, taking down your data centre.
  • How do you recover?



DRaaS Scenario:

6:01am: You press “Failover” on the DR solution.

6:05 am: The systems are back up in the cloud; the Recovery Time (RTO) is 4 minutes

The data replicated to the recovery site is consistent up until 5:58am – just before the power went out; your Recovery Point (RPO) is 2 minutes.


Back up Scenario:

6.01 am: You go to find your Backups

The next few hours are spent finding, fixing and restarting your infrastructure (assuming the power is back on)

5.00 pm: A few major systems are back online – RTO on those systems is 11 hours.

The systems are restored to the last backup time - 7 pm yesterday; so RPO on those few systems is 22 hours. The remaining systems take longer and so have much longer RTOs and RPOs.


The use of backup can therefore result in much higher RTOs and downtime; data loss is also far higher. Based on a daily backup schedule you could suffer up to 24 hours worth of data loss.

With a good DR solution, it should be a case of simply invoking a failover, taking minutes and resulting in little downtime. Eg, as in this example, only two minutes worth of data was actually lost because the recovery point was available two minutes before the power outage.


For more information on DR and Backup solutions from Chess, download our datasheet or contact our technology experts on 0844 770 6000.



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