Thursday, April 27, 2006

Exchange Disaster: Be Prepared

I get a lot of calls from people in the hurricane zone about what they can do to be prepared for the new season. Since it is only a couple of months away and forecasters are predicting another active year, DTI Data is getting in gear.

I just received the Exchange Newsletter from Windows It Pro and Paul Robichaux had some great insights I thought I would share with you on Exchange Disaster planning:

"1. Have a bug-out plan. If a disaster hit your business, how would
you get away from the area? How would you decide when it was time to
go? How would you tell your employees not to come to work? In fact, how
would you make the decision to shut down or relocate operations?
2. Keep communicating. How would management and employees
communicate until your email service could be reestablished? Who's in
charge of establishing and maintaining disaster communications?
3. Grab your gear and go. One of my customers implemented its
disaster recovery plan for Hurricane Katrina by shutting down the
Exchange server, pulling all the disks from the storage enclosure, and
taking them by car to Houston. This was an ingenious and effective
solution, given the circumstances. What would you do under similar
4. Now is always better than later. It's better to have a fair
solution now than a perfect solution later. Of course, this doesn't
mean that you should rush out and slap together a disaster-preparedness
strategy out of whatever random products and technologies you can find.
It does, however, mean that you should push disaster recovery and
preparedness planning to the forefront of your list of operational
It's not possible to anticipate every possible disaster, but you don't
have to. The responses to many disasters will be the same; you can make
plans based on the expected duration of recovery, the impact of the
disaster on your facilities and the surrounding area, and other
factors. Even if you don't live in a disaster-prone area (I don't; the
biggest threat in northwest Ohio is apparently highway construction),
you should still be prepared for things such as structure fires, major
traffic accidents (what if a gasoline tanker blew up nearby? That
happened at my wedding!), and so on.
The Boy Scouts say "Be prepared," but I like the US Coast Guard's motto
better: "Semper Paratus," which is Latin for "always ready."

For more info on Hurricane Data Recovery Services.

DTI DATA Hurricane Disaster Recovery Relief Efforts

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