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September 2009, Vol. 14

Using virtualization in a disaster recovery strategy

Server virtualization is rapidly becoming a key part of many organizations' disaster recovery (DR) strategy. This is for good reason, as the properties that make server virtualization so compelling in a consolidation effort also play naturally into streamlining DR as well. That said, the use of server virtualization for DR purposes is not a "slam dunk" by any means. While server virtualization can help, it also poses its own unique set of challenges. In this article, we'll examine some of the benefits as well as some of the drawbacks that come out of using server virtualization as part of a DR plan. Virtual machines (VMs) intrinsically possess two qualities that are quite beneficial to DR: Hardware independence: Virtual machines are naturally isolated from the underlying physical hardware by the very operation of the server virtualization software, granting them hardware independence. Encapsulation: Virtual machines are encapsulated into discrete storage areas. Depending upon the virtualization solution, this encapsulation may ...

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