Over the last several years, news of possible power outages due to increased demand for energy have become increasingly common, leaving many business owners wondering what they should do if such a scenario plays out.
In this article, we will dive deep into the primary factors your current IT provider should be implementing on your behalf to reduce the risk of a critical IT failure due to power loss.
The most significant factor that will protect you is a cloud 1st, mobile/hybrid workforce.
That means all your IT services run in the cloud, and your workforce has laptops and company-assigned mobile devices. However, many businesses have yet to adopt a 100% cloud-first approach. Even with the risk of power outages growing, small and medium sized companies still rely on physical servers to deliver critical IT functions to the workforce.
Servers which are commonly referred to as bare metal, whir in the background of many offices in a cupboard, server room or data center. Their functions tend to be critical to the smooth running of the IT systems taking care of essential tasks like directory services, file storage and application hosting.
How do you protect these servers from data corruption if the power goes out?
Not the delivery drivers, UPS also refers to an uninterruptible power supply, and these are usually installed in a server rack.
Acting as an interface between the network and servers, power supply units and the main power for the building protect against surges and power spikes and have a battery backup for when the lights go out.
Most UPSs have around 5-10 minutes of juice to power the server – not much, but it’s enough to protect your servers. In the event the UPS device is activated, it will trigger what is known as a graceful shutdown of your network and servers.
This is one of the main factors in helping protect your business data from corruption or loss. Make sure to check if you do have UPS installed and that the necessary shutdown processes are in place – ask your provider.
RAID (redundant array of independent disks) is another measure to protect your critical business data from corruption. When there are power outages or spikes in the supply, it can affect the server hardware. Continual power spikes turning servers on and off will reduce the life of components inside a server.
The most critical components are where your business data is stored – this usually tends to be on physical hard disk drives. A RAID array will mirror and “stripe” the data if one disk fails it. When the failed disk is replaced, the data can automatically be recovered from the other disks.
Third on our list is having an offsite backup. If a power outage occurs, there is no guarantee when that power will be restored.
Access to critical business data located offsite can be a lifesaver if something needs immediate attention in the business during a power outage.
Cloud backup solutions have dramatically reduced in price over the years since data storage and internet connectivity have become commodities. Your current IT provider should be providing some form of cloud backup service. Next time you speak with them, ask them when the last time a backup restoration was done to test that the backed-up data can be accessed.
If your business would like further information and help to reduce the effects of a power outage, then get in touch with us today.
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