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Virtualization causing ‘major gaps in business continuity readiness’

Neverfail has published the results of a survey conducted for the company by Osterman Research that reveal the “lingering – and potentially devastating – gaps that virtualization can create in disaster recovery and business continuity planning and operations, particularly for enterprise application availability.” The findings highlight the potential risks of virtualization if not factored into a comprehensive disaster recovery and business strategy, says Neverfail.

The research, which is based on surveys of 252 IT professionals, found that while virtualization is being widely implemented, it is often being done at the expense of availability and continuity of physical servers. These results illustrate the need for businesses to ensure their entire underlying IT infrastructure – both virtual and physical – is appropriately managed and protected in order to keep their operations up and running in the case of disaster or downtime.

Martin Mackay, CEO of Neverfail explained: "Moving to a fully-virtualized environment doesn't happen overnight. As a result, many applications live in a kind of limbo, with some components on physical servers and other in the cloud during the migration. The dynamic nature of virtualization, which offers benefits such as lower costs and increased automation, also makes it harder to keep disaster recovery plans up-to-date, putting critical operations at risk. The findings demonstrate that gaps exist, and in order to maintain continuous availability, businesses must take the proper steps to close them."

Other key findings include:

  • Heterogeneous deployments dominate. 44 percent of businesses deploy their critical applications across both physical and virtual servers; while 24 percent are still housing the majority of their critical apps on physical servers alone. Only four percent of businesses house all critical applications virtually.
  • Risk does not discriminate – at least by perception. 47 percent of respondents believe virtual and physical servers carry the same level of downtime risk.
  • What you don't know can hurt you. 70 percent of businesses only update their disaster recovery plan every one to five years. What's more, one third of businesses only test their disaster recovery plan once every 12 months; and 17 percent admit they never test their plans.
  • An accident waiting to happen. 81 percent of businesses reported problems during their last disaster recovery test.

Methodology
Osterman Research conducted 252 online surveys of IT decision makers and influencers across a range of industries. Respondents were selected from both the Osterman Research survey panel as well as an external panel.

www.neverfailgroup.com

•Date: 6th June 2013 • US/World •Type: Article • Topic: ICT continuity

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