Disaster Recovery Vs. Data Recovery
Disaster recovery and data recovery, yes, you might have heard about them, but you can’t differentiate them. This is the challenge many people have been going through. Both of them are very critical to organizations and should be taken very seriously.
However, disaster recovery plays a very important role in organization as it helps them to remain stable in case of an IT disaster. Data recovery, on the other hand, assists these organizations to recover their critical lost data.
Data recovery is the process of restoring data which have been lost, corrupted, accidentally deleted or made inaccessible. In IT world, data recovery is the process used to restore data to a server, desktop, laptop or external storage system from a backup.
Causes of data loss
According to U.K. statistics released in 2016, more often than not, data loss occurs as a result of human error, not malicious attacks. The research revealed that two-thirds of data loss incidents reported were as a result of human error.
Other common causes of data loss included software crashes, natural disasters, accidental deletion of data, power outages, logical errors and damaged hard drive read/write heads amongst others.
How data recovery works
Data recovery processes usually vary. The recovery processes usually depend on the causes of the data loss, the data recovery software used to create the backup and the targeted backup media. It is possible to recover data because many files and information concerning the files are usually stored in different places.
A malfunctioning file allocation table is the one which necessitates data recovery. Actually, the file which requires recovery can be on the hard drive in perfect condition. The file can be easily recovered if it exists or damaged. However, there are other ways of recovering the file if it has been damaged, missing or encrypted. These methods are however complicated.
Physically damaged files can still be reconstructed. Some applications usually place uniform headers at the beginning of their file to indicate that the files belong to a particular application. There are tools which can be used to manually reconstruct the file headers so that some of the lost files can be recovered.
Disaster recovery (DR)
Disaster recovery is part of security planning put in place to secure an organization from the impacts of major negative events. Disaster recovery allows organizations to maintain and quickly restore mission-critical functions in case of a disaster. IT disasters are situations that put organization’s operations at risk.
Common IT disasters are caused by cyber-attacks, equipment breakdown or natural disasters. DR assists businesses to continue functioning close to normal as possible in case of a disaster. Disaster recovery processes include planning and testing. A separate physical site might be required in this situation to restore operations.
Importance of disaster recovery: RTO and RPO
Nowadays, many businesses have started to rely on high availability, thus reducing the tolerance for downtime. IT disasters are known to bring devastating effects in affected organizations. Research has revealed that many organizations fail after major disasters, but disaster recovery assists them to recover.
The two important measurements in disaster recovery downtime are Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and Recovery Point Objective (RPO).
RTO is the maximum amount of time for an organization to recover files from a backup storage and resume normal operations after a disaster. In other words, RTO is the maximum amount of downtime an organization can handle. For example, an organization with an RTO of five hours cannot handle downtime for a longer period than that.
RPO, on the other hand, is the maximum age of files an organization is required to recover from a backup storage to assist in the restoration of normal operations after a disaster. The recovery point objective is responsible for determining the least backup frequencies. For instance, if an organization has an RPO of two hours, the system must backup after every two hours.
The RTO and RPO assist IT, administrators, to select the best disaster recovery strategies, procedures, and technologies.