Cyber Resilience Means More Than Just High Availability or Disaster Recovery Alone

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October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month! All month long, we’ll be exploring cybersecurity-related topics to help you (and your data) stay safe online.

Click to learn more about author Don Boxley.

What creates true cyber resilience? In database circles, the two factors that help lead to it – disaster recovery (DR) and high availability (HA) – are frequently misunderstood. While sometimes considered to be the same thing, they play different but complementary roles. DR allows an organization to recover data and regain lost services (or continue to maintain them) after an outage or disaster occurs. HA, on the other hand, is the ability of a database to operate continuously without failing.

If an enterprise ensures only one of these things, it can’t claim cyber resilience. Both DR and HA in tandem are needed – but it hasn’t traditionally been easy to achieve both. For example, even Microsoft SQL Server, while one of the most popular and most deployed relational database management systems, faces challenges when it comes to ensuring database HA and DR in security, scalability, and resilience. 

A SQL Server HA/DR challenge is that ensuring optimal remote data protection requires users of cloud-based Microsoft SQL Server to figure out how to tap into the full power of not just SQL Server’s DR capabilities, but also its HA capabilities. For enterprises wanting to leverage SQL Server on Linux for both HA and DR the challenge of trying to implement both typically resulted in something that lacks scalability, fails recovery time objective (RTO) and recovery point objective (RPO) requirements, and has insufficient data security due to reliance on virtual private network (VPN) technology. What’s more, such an effort is very expensive.

Overcoming Pain Points

Fortunately, there’s a much more effective use case that companies can now turn to: Smart Availability software. This is a solution that actually runs on top of SQL Server, which helps avoid overly complex and unreliable local HA and DR architecture, and problematic cluster management. It also saves companies from RTO challenges due to long system outages, network security problems resulting from exposure of lateral network attack surfaces from VPN, and costly infrastructure requiring ongoing maintenance.

Utilizing Smart Availability software for SQL Server can solve these pain points by boosting SQL Server AG performance and simplifying workload management for SQL Server. The software can also help companies: 

  • Respond to channel partner/end customer requirements to improve SQL Server’s database resilience 
  • Offer optimal data and database security 
  • Provide scalability across public and private clouds, and between remote and on-premise locations 
  • Potentially cut SQL Server costs in half when combining local HA with remote data protection 

The Advantages Multiply

To summarize, there are clearly many advantages for companies that opt for Smart Availability clustering software that runs on top of SQL, from ease of implementation for HA and DR, virtually no downtime, infrastructure freedom, workload portability, and certainly not least, cost savings. In short, by boosting RPO using micro-tunnels, allowing for speedy RTO, and facilitating end-to-end automatic failover management, the software creates the cyber resiliency that enterprises need. 

If you aren’t convinced yet, consider that this solution also offers significant data protection.  Some of the latest Smart Availability software offers patented SDP technology for secure multi-cloud, multi-site network communications. By eliminating the lateral network attack surface that VPN solutions make vulnerable, strong network security results. 

With cost savings and high ROI, Smart Availability software is the way to go for companies to maximize both HA and DR capabilities, solving the challenges of other solutions by banishing the need to rely on VPNs, SQL Server licenses, and multiple clustering technologies. This solution is effective with Microsoft SQL Server and excels in helping organizations run HA, distributed SQL Server clusters on Windows, as well as Linux. 

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