Whether directly in harm’s way, or affected by peripheral affects like flooding, power outages, or supply line disruptions, data centers are especially susceptible to the effects of disasters. As someone who maintains a data center and considers uptime paramount, you need to be aware of the risks and plan accordingly.
Regardless of its volatility, the tectonic plate upon which your primary data center sits is subject to geological threats such as earthquakes. Your backup site should sit on a different, stable plate. This consideration becomes more important if your primary data center resides in a volatile region, such as the San Fransisco Bay area.
While all regions are susceptible to extreme weather, you should seek a region whose climate is consistent and predictable if at all possible.
Geo-diversity doesn’t have to be inconvenient. Look for a site that is easily accessible by car or plane, and one that still offers low latency to your primary data center and your customers.
Everyone needs a secondary data center with full capabilities, but that doesn’t have to mean doubling your costs. Look for a data center provider who offers a combination of low power costs and a dedication to ultra-high efficiency. This will result in your lowest possible total cost of ownership (TCO) for your secondary data center.
If your disaster recovery data center will be a largely lights-out facility, look for a provider with good remote hands service and top-notch security. If you require an on-site workforce, you’ll need to select a location that has access to a nearby source of skilled workers and a provider that offers on-site office space.
Your secondary data center will require—and you should expect—the same connectivity options and cloud on-ramps as your primary data center.