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Business Continuity Solutions

What is Business Continuity?

Business continuity (or business reliance or business continuance) encompasses the activities that an enterprise performs to maintain consistency and recoverability of its data, operations, and services.

Key Terms

  • Application availability depends upon the ability of IT services to survive any fault, whether it is a server failure, a network fault, or a datacenter disaster.
  • Data availability depends on the existence of up-to-date backup data copies.
  • Data replication is an enabling technology for achieving high or continuous availability for application services and the timely backup of important data.
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"...while 95 percent of organizations have a disaster recovery plan in place, 23 percent never test their plan. The findings indicate a lack of testing and coverage gaps within disaster recovery plans may be leading to service outages in many organizations."

-Spiceworks

Average Cost of Downtime per Hour by Industry (in USD)

Figure 1 — Average Cost of Downtime per Hour by Industry (in $US)

Figure 1 states the numerous costs per hour of downtime by industry: healthcare loses $636K, retail $1.1M, financial $1.5M, manufacturing $1.6M, and Communications/Media/Entertainment $2M, with the average at $1.4M. (Source: Network Computing, the Meta Group, Contingency Planning Research.)

International Data Corporation (IDC) Availability Levels

The IDC defines four Availability Levels (ALs), AL1 – AL4, for classifying downtime. Each level corresponds to the number of 9s in the average availability after the decimal point. It also calculates the average cost of downtime for each level from the “Average Cost of Downtime per Hour” in Figure 1 (note: $1.4M USD per hour equals $388.88 USD per second, on average). Note that Shadowbase business continuity architecture satisfies the most demanding ALs (AL2 – AL4).

Table 1 — IDC Availability Levels
Availability Level (AL)1 Shadowbase Architecture User Notice Ability Yearly Downtime2 Yearly Cost (USD)
AL1: 99.9% N/A All work stoppage, uncontrolled shutdown 08:45:56 $1,227,149.73 (USD)
AL2: 99.99%

Active/Passive

User interruption, performance degradation, in-flight transaction interruptions 00:52:35 $122,714.97 (USD)
AL3: 99.999%

Sizzling-Hot-Takeover

Performance degradation, automatic failover transfers 00:05:15 $12,271.50 (USD)
AL4: 99.9999%

Active/Active

None 00:00:31 $1,227.15 (USD)
1Source: IDC Publishes High Availability Survey
2Note: “Yearly Downtime” is expressed in hours (HH), minutes (MM), and seconds (SS) timestamp format: HH:MM:SS.

HPE Shadowbase Solutions Support a Range of Recovery Time Objectives (RTO) and Recovery Point Objectives (RPO)

Businesses with access to real-time online transactional data have a competitive advantage

RTOs of minutes to seconds is considered high availability, while RTOs of seconds to sub-seconds is considered continuous availability.

To gain the most potential from this data it must be current and available at any given time

The inability to access or update current data carries a significant business cost, possibly measured in many thousands of dollars per second.

Figure 2 — The HPE Shadowbase Business Continuity Continuum (BCC)

*Note: Shadowbase ZDL architectures are future synchronous technologies; specifications are subject to change without notice, and delivery dates are not guaranteed.

In Figure 2, AL and the amount of data loss in each architecture improves as you move from the lower left to the upper right: horizontally from an active/passive through sizzling-hot-takeover (SZT) to an active/active architecture, and vertically from asynchronous to synchronous data replication technology.

The Solution: HPE Shadowbase


HPE Shadowbase solutions offer a range of data replication capabilities to meet every application availability and data recoverability need

The overall return on investment in deploying a Shadowbase business continuity solution is positive, by preventing prolonged periods of downtime or data loss which can cost a business thousands or even millions of dollars.

HPE Shadowbase data replication solutions support low-latency, uni-directional, and bi-directional data replication between homogeneous and heterogeneous systems and databases with scalability, selectivity, and sophisticated data transformation and mapping facilities, therefore providing a business continuity solution to meet any business requirement.

Disaster Recovery (DR)

Active/Passive Replication Systems

Uni-directional active/passive disaster recovery for high availability.

  • Classic disaster recovery configurations
  • Applications must be started following a failure of the active node
  • The passive system is typically used for read-only query and reporting purposes
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Sizzling-Hot-Takeover (SZT)

Active/Almost-Active Replication Systems

  • Bi-directional active/almost-active for higher availability
  • Hot standby — application is up and running
  • Failover fault avoidance
  • Recover to known-working system
  • Standby availability testing while production system is active
  • Shadowbase automatic failover and recovery
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Continuous Availability (CA)

Active/Active Replication Systems

  • Bi-directional active/active (hot-hot) disaster tolerant architecture
  • Shadowbase automatic failover and recovery
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Shadowbase Zero Data Loss (ZDL)

Synchronous Replication Technology

  • Elimination of data loss in the event of an outage
  • Elimination of data collisions in active/active architectures
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HPE Shadowbase Zero Downtime Migration (ZDM)

Eliminate Planned Application Downtime

  • Migrate to new hardware (homogeneous or heterogeneous)
  • Avoid the risk of classic big-bang conversions and outage windows
  • Capacity expansion — expand with symmetric or asymmetric nodes
  • Load balancing — redistribute users and partitions across the network
  • Disaster tolerance and data locality — disperse nodes geographically
  • Migrations — in increments, or initially to an active/active environment
  • Operations — risk-free failover/recovery testing, or run and maintain unattended sites
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HPE Shadowbase Solutions and HPE Pathway Domains

HPE NonStop Pathway is an application framework that is a mainstay of mission-critical online transactional processing (OLTP) systems.

  • The Pathway Model
  • HPE Shadowbase and Pathway Domains
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