Mitigating WAN Downtime

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etworks are subject to reliability issues – just like any computing resource. If they fail without any alternative resources in place work can grind to a stop resulting in significant losses. A Gartner report from several years ago attributed a 19% drop in net income for a single quarter to an outage at Hershey Foods. More options are available today for companies intent on avoiding these kinds or results.

Remote offices are a regular part of the enterprise world, and they all rely on connectivity to their corporate mother-ship in some way. Branch offices with local computing resources like application and storage servers may be protected from some outages but rely on relatively more expensive equipment and support needs. And branches that rely entirely on WAN connections to the centralized datacenter can be completely out of business when that connection fails.

Branches that rely entirely on WAN connections to the centralized datacenter can be completely out of business when that connection fails.

Hybrid systems that combine the advantages of local computing with centrally managed storage, support, and applications are an option that, while they can’t completely eliminate the threat of disconnection, are relatively immune to complete failure. This kind of deployment allows users in the branch to continue operation for most functions. Similarly, a branch that is completely destroyed by a disaster can be operated from a different location until it has been rebuilt because the branch data resides in the central datacenter.

Enterprises engaged in acquisition strategies that include onboarding branch offices are in position to leverage this hybrid approach to computing and may find it can simplify their integration efforts.

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