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The key to business continuity-server virtualisation

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Peter Thompson
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Things are as simple as this – the more expensive running your job is, the more important it becomes to ensure business continuity. Business continuity is essentially the ability of an organisation to recover and continue with regular operations in case of a disaster and data loss due to equipment failure or user error. Any downtime, which in the case of major organisations could be just minutes, is a potential financial and logistic disaster for the company. Needless to say, a seamless workflow is what every company should strive to achieve.

How to ensure business continuity?

One of the key aspects of business continuity is server virtualisation. It is, in essence, the ability provided by virtualisation software to install and operate multiple operating systems on a single physical server. Virtualisation is beneficial to businesses in a number of ways, as it centralises administrative tasks while improving scalability and overall hardware-resource utilisation; of course, there is also significant cost-reduction, which cannot be neglected when calculating long-term expenditures.

Business continuity is but one of the advantages of using server virtualisation. Another is the ability of businesses to install multiple operating systems on a single server, saving power, space and server management effort, all while saving money (not having to purchase numerous physical servers).

Virtualisation software such as vmware sits directly on the server hardware beneath the operating system. The software serves multiple purposes; it enables one or more virtual servers to be installed on the same piece of hardware; it’s not limited to a single server, but can actually be spread across one or more servers in geographically separate locations.

With vmware, you can replicate your data and operating systems to different locations and servers, ensuring your company is up and running quickly in case of a single server failure. Business continuity is about having contingency plans and being able to recover from disasters quickly; server virtualisation greatly helps this.

Furthermore, server virtualisation provides great flexibility, as it enables you to effectively “drag-and-drop” operating systems and their contents from one physical machine to another. This is yet another aspect of server virtualisation that greatly reduces the chances of IT failure or significant downtime, since replication ensures your business has another “copy” of the OS ready in case something goes wrong.

Developing a proper business continuity plan

A business continuity plan is a pillar of any serious organisation’s strategy and functioning. High-quality documentation, testing and a regular examination of the business continuity, on the other hand, are the pillars of a solid business continuity plan; all of this combined means good business as a result. Server virtualisation, in addition, is an element of business continuity not to be overlooked, as it can help save your company in case of an accident.

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About Peter Thompson

Peter Thompson
Peter Thompson founded GCOMM in 1996. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Software Engineering/Information Systems from Griffith University and his MBA from Nyenrode Business Universiteit in Holland. He believes in building great teams of people, both in business and socially.
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