Solar VPS Blog

A Crash Course in Disaster Recovery

Three black floppy disks stacked on top of one another
Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay 

Every business needs a disaster recovery plan. If it’s been several years since you’ve updated your plan, now is a great time to take a second look. If your business has any kind of online presence, then it carries some risk of data loss, no matter how small your business may be. 

Still, when it comes to data protection and backup plans, a lot of business owners find themselves at a loss. Where exactly do you start? And what makes a disaster recovery plan so important? Let’s take a closer look at some of the things you need to know. 

Why You Need a Disaster Recovery Plan 

Obviously, major corporations need disaster recovery plans. After all, they use a lot of data and have a lot of digital assets that require protection. But do SMBs really need comprehensive plans, and is the need really that urgent? The answer to both questions is yes, and here are some reasons why. 

Every Business Uses Data 

Again, if your business exists online, it generates digital data. It probably also collects data from clients. Your business has a responsibility to protect that information. If you run a small or medium-sized business, you may not use or generate as much data as a global corporation, but you still work with valuable data. 

Hackers Target Vulnerabilities 

Your SMB needs a disaster recovery plan as a protective measure against hackers. Hackers don’t always target the largest online businesses. In fact, more often than not, they’ll look for smaller options. Hackers expect large corporations to have lots of protections in place. They also know that SMBs tend to have fewer protections. SMBs, therefore, make easier targets with faster payoffs. 

Get Back to Business Fast 

Disasters come with high costs, and one of those costs comes from delayed business. If disaster strikes your company, you may have to pause your work while you address that disaster. If you have a documented recovery plan, that pause won’t last for too long because you’ll already have a step-by-step guide to getting back on track. On the other hand, if you don’t have a recovery plan, you’ll have to figure everything out as you go. The latter option takes a lot longer than the former, and it can put business on hold for longer than you can afford. Creating a recovery plan takes some work up front, but that work could save you a lot of time when it matters the most. 

How to Create a Disaster Recovery Plan 

You know that your business needs a disaster recovery plan. Next, you’ll need to know where to start. If this is your first time creating a comprehensive recovery plan, have patience with the process. Make sure that you don’t rush through any of the following steps. The more thorough your process is, the more effective your plan will be. 

Assess Your Hardware, Software, and Data 

Ready.gov, a US government organization dedicated to disaster preparedness, recommends that you start by taking inventory. Work with your IT team, and do a complete assessment of your company’s hardware, software, and data. This way, you’ll gain a complete understanding of your data assets and their potential vulnerability points. It’s important that you don’t skip this step. Forgetting a piece of hardware or software is easier than you might think, and if you forget to catalog something, you may leave that asset vulnerable. 

Create a Data Backup Plan 

Next, create a backup plan for everything in your company that stores data. Your disaster recovery plan should include a second copy of your important data so that you can retrieve that information in case of loss. Ideally, you should store the backup copies in a separate location from the original data. This way, if your data is struck by a physical disaster such as a fire or flood, your backup data will remain at a safe distance. 

Perform Regular Data Backups 

Of course, a single backup won’t create a truly effective disaster recovery plan. Your data will update, and you’ll gain additional data. That’s why it’s important to perform regular data backups. Make sure that you build these regular backups into your plan. It’s also a good idea to revisit your data plan once a year or so and go through each step one at a time. This way, you can keep protecting your data even as you gain new hardware and software. 

Document and Save Your Plan 

As you solidify your disaster recovery plan, document that plan and keep it in a safe but accessible place. Your IT team members should also know how to access the plan. 

Cloud Storage as a Data Backup Tool 

artist-rendered image of five clouds

Having backup copies of your data is perhaps the most important part of keeping a disaster recovery plan. Thankfully, you have a lot of options that you can use for those backups. Some business owners use additional hardware, for example, and keep that hardware at a separate location. 

Others use cloud backups instead. Ready.gov recognizes cloud storage as a simple and cost-effective solution. Cloud storage can also help you save time, since you can use it to implement automatic backups and updates. As a result, you can simplify your post-disaster options and recover lost data without hassle. 

Implement the First Steps 

If you choose cloud storage for disaster recovery reasons, you’ll still want to choose the right service provider. Some cloud providers are better than others. For example, the right cloud provider will have specific protocols to protect its hardware from fire, theft, and other potential disasters. 

Your cloud service provider should also give you options. For example, Solar VPS provides options for Windows Cloud, Linux Cloud, and even cloud apps that our clients can pick and choose as they need. Affordability also matters, which is why Solar VPS provides services starting at $5 per month. 

Finding the right cloud service provider and implementing a disaster recovery plan can be daunting. The important thing is getting started. Start by taking a look at your cloud options now. Once you do, backing up your data becomes simple. 

What is a Good Disaster Recovery Plan?

If you don’t have a disaster recovery plan (DRP) for your data, there is no better time than the present to create one. Many organizations choose a cloud VPS system for disaster recovery because it’s efficient.

Cloud VPS and disaster recovery sign

In addition, a cloud VPS disaster recovery plan saves time and money. Cloud VPS systems are reliable and secure solutions.

No business is too small to consider a disaster recovery plan for data. While no one wants to anticipate disasters, a DRP is a responsible business management practice. 

Why a Cloud VPS Disaster Recovery Plan is a Good Option 

A good DRP requires a risk assessment. In our current times, cyberattacks are a risk for any business. First, it’s critical to eliminate system vulnerabilities. One way to accomplish this is to store backups on a cloud VPS system. 

Also, it’s important to assess the security practices of the cloud VPS provider you select. 

However, even the best efforts don’t completely eliminate the risks associated with cyberattacks. Including a cyberattack response is part of a good disaster recovery plan. 

The next thing to consider are the geographic risks. For example, what are your weather-related disaster risks? Or, are servers located in a city with a higher level of security threats? A way to offset risks due to geography is to use a cloud VPS recovery plan.

The next risk to consider is how an electric grid failure affects your data. Backup power plans are always a good idea when it comes to data. However, backup power is only a temporary solution. A cloud VPS disaster recovery plan should take electric grid failures into account. 

Data Backups are Critical For Your Disaster Recovery Plan

Before you create a formal disaster recovery plan, review your current data backup procedures. How often is it being backed up? Also, what is being backed up?

The necessary frequency of data backups depends on the type of business you operate. However, this is not an area to cut corners, so consider it carefully. If critical data is being backed up frequently, don’t overlook the need for overall system backups. 

Some businesses, for example, operate with a high volume of internet transactions. Those businesses may figure the cost of losing data in a given time increment. When viewed from that perspective, the question of data backup frequency is easily answered. 

The next consideration is where backups are stored. The general suggestion is a secured off-site location. However, for those with a cloud VPS disaster recovery backup plan, this is a nonissue. 

Disaster Recovery Basics for Small to Medium-Sized Businesses

The first step is to create a summary of vital action steps in case of a disaster. Include a list of important contacts in the summary. Consider the summary as a quick reference for steps in an emergency. An accessible document to follow eases anxiety for those responding.  

For organizations with multiple IT staff members, assigning responsibilities for disaster recovery prevents confusion later. 

And a good DRP contains relevant authentication steps and passwords. Also, include key website addresses, such as your cloud VPS provider. 

If it’s relevant to your organization, include legal and financial contacts in your DRP. Another thing to consider including is suggestions on how to handle media inquiries. For those businesses without an established media contact, a DRP is a good place to identify that individual. 

Any business that processes financial transactions is open to media scrutiny and potential legal liability in the event of a data-compromising situation. 

A Cloud VPS Disaster Recovery Plan for Your Business

Cloud VPS disaster recovery is customizable. Options are either specific file backups or a complete system replication. The best choice is a combination of the two. 

Cloud disaster recovery offers the benefit of saving space and time. Also, it’s cost-efficient. Some organizations rely on their own cloud VPS for disaster recovery. But using a cloud hosting provider is easier and often more secure and reliable. 

First, it requires less management on your part. Selecting a cloud VPS hosting provider saves money since it requires no infrastructure investment. A good host provider is established with infrastructure and built-in redundancy. 

Finally, as a cloud VPS hosting provider, we know the importance of security. And you need to know the security offered by your provider. Without compromising security, we are transparent in how we address it. This is a quality to look for with something as important as disaster data recovery. 

Our Cloud VPS Disaster Recovery Solutions 

Solar VPS data centers are in five locations across the United States with one in Europe. Each location is equipped with a backup power supply. In addition, the data centers have state-of-the-art cooling systems. 

Our data centers are protected against fire damage. Additionally, they are protected against security risks, both with remote monitoring and onsite security personnel. 

We eliminate many of the headaches associated with disaster recovery planning. So, to take that a step further, we offer an optional disaster recovery backup plan. 

Our disaster recovery plan offers full server backups and incremental data backups. Backups are stored for three days with the newest replacing the oldest. Also, we offer multiple restoration points. 

Solar VPS customers sleep easier at night because our systems are backed up at a secure off-site data center. Visit our website for more information on our data centers and optional disaster recovery plan.

How a Good VPS Assists in Disaster Recovery

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Not all VPS hosting solutions are created equal. Some companies talk a big game to lure in trusting clients, but what happens when times get tough? Will your provider be available to assist you when the worst possible scenario happens? Let’s take a look at how a good VPS hosting company will handle the two dirtiest words in data: disaster recovery.

Why Does Disaster Recovery Matter?

In the modern age, every company deals in data. Over the last several years, data breaches have become growing problems for organizations big and small. According to Digital Guardian, data breaches cost American companies an estimated $8.19 million in 2018 alone. How you (and your host) manage data security is more important than ever. Failing to have a disaster recovery plan that works well and fast will cost you time, money, and potential clients.

Disaster Recovery Step #1: Where Data Is Kept Matters

While VPS usage is a two-way street, your company and your host have to work together towards data security. Consider where physical data is kept. If actively used data is kept on your premises, where are the backups kept? Best practices would suggest that at least two copies be held–physical and digital–but never in the same place. Before exploring a new VPS hosting agreement, determine your data storage needs with those who understand the subtleties of data hygiene. Consult members of your IT, leadership, and operations teams to ensure everyone can agree to data standards before disaster recovery is required. Once you know what you need, get your potential hosts involved.

Disaster Recovery Step #2: Developing an Ongoing Backup Process

Once you understand the importance of maintaining security, it’s important to develop a regular schedule for file backups. One of the good things about having a VPS hosting plan is that data is often regularly saved. This allows all company members to work on the same network concurrently and from anywhere! The problem with so much concurrent work: a lot of copies in a lot of places. By scheduling a regular backup of files, old copies of files can be removed and replaced with the most current versions. Many experts will recommend that backups happen on a weekly basis but it all depends on what your company does with data and how much data you have. Consider the kinds of data and the amount that need to be backed up. More data or more sensitive data will require more time and space for backups.

Photo by Christian Wiediger on Unsplash
Photo by Christian Wiediger on Unsplash

Disaster Recovery Step #3: Test Your Solution Often

Just because your team has landed on a VPS provider and a plan doesn’t mean it’s perfect. Systems get overloaded. Servers crash. Data can be lost. You can’t avoid the needs for serious disaster recovery. Consider running regular stress tests and simulations to detect possible weaknesses in your network and your host’s network. Many companies will establish a test environment while developing new processes and systems to locate bugs and possible weaknesses. Determine what works and what needs work before it’s too late. Consider involving your VPS host in the testing process. After all, they’re your partners in securing your data

Disaster Recovery Step #4: Get Your Disaster Recovery Plan in Writing

Once you’ve determined which VPS partner to go into business with, it’s important to have all terms and conditions in writing from the get-go. There’s no bigger headache than trying to figure out who is doing what in the midst of a data disaster. Key team members should partner with legal teams to draft clear terms that can be agreed upon between your organization and the host company. These are often referred to as Service Level Agreements or SLAs.

In SLAs, action plans for each part of the disaster recovery plan are spelled out for all involved. This allows the company or the host to undertake necessary processes to mitigate and address data breaches. Additionally, it will allow both parties to work together to prevent future issues. A service level agreement is legally binding and holds everyone responsible for their roles in data security and remediation.

Disaster Recovery Step #5: Review Your Disaster Recovery Plan Annually (or More Often)

While everything we’ve discussed today makes for a solid recovery plan, plans must adapt and change. They will change as your business changes in size, in direction, or in data needs. In many SLAs, clients will have the option to make adjustments to terms and services. Be mindful of the terms used in the SLA your organization signs–it might result in change fees, penalties, or other negative impacts for changes that occur outside of designated terms.

Similarly, you are a client of your VPS host. You reserve the right to sing their praises and air your grievances accordingly. A lot of hosting companies will bend over backwards to get your team to sign on the dotted line, but what happens after the ink has dried?

Disaster Recovery Step #6: Build and Rebuild Your Incident Response Team

As your company’s data needs change, consider drafting an incident response team to handle all the steps listed here. This team will be involved in the overall development, monitoring, and improvement of disaster recovery strategies as time goes on. The more time involved, the more costly the problem becomes. According to Comparitech, “An hour of downtime can cost $8000 for a small company, $74,000 for a medium company, and $700,000 for a large enterprise.” An entire day could cost a large company $42 million dollars!

Solar VPS: Building Custom VPS Solutions Since 2005

Now that you’ve seen the six most important steps to finding the right VPS host, look no further. The skilled team at Solar VPS has been building customized virtual private server plans for fifteen years. Our experts understand what it takes to maximize security while reducing the need for disaster recovery. Whether you’re using iOS, Linux, Windows, or a mixture of all three, we can find the perfect networking program for your organization. We’ll be there to support you no matter when–24/7/365. When you think about safety and security for your VPS, think Solar VPS.

Contact us today!

Why Should I Have a Disaster Recovery Plan?

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Cloud computing has revolutionized the way that businesses get work done for a variety of reasons. One of the most significant reasons that cloud-based computing is a great investment involves the ease of disaster recovery. Virtual Private Server (VPS) systems provide a wealth of services; but today, we’ll take a look at reasons to trust your digital disaster recovery to the experts at Solar VPS.

Disaster Recovery Happens Constantly

When your business starts using Solar VPS to host your data, disaster recovery is made easy. This is possible because your data is backed up on a consistent basis–daily in some cases. Once your initial hosting plan has been designed, your disaster recovery plan is also activated. Protocols are put into place to bundle together all of your files in one secure place. Secure VPS companies will have their own safeguards in place but what’s more–they’ll have your back and they’ll do the heavy lifting in case something unspeakable happens.

Preparing Ahead Saves Money

Disaster recovery is a process that goes beyond simply securing your data. Members of your leadership team should create a disaster recovery plan and review it on a regular basis. Additional changes should occur whenever a significant change happens to the structure or workflow of your business groups. For example, adding a new line of business or a new functionality will require added processes to your disaster recovery protocols. When your business has an active, accurate plan in place, the cost of additional services will be reduced. Preparing ahead of time saves money and stress for all involved!

How Solar VPS Manages Disaster Recovery

When you put your trust in Solar VPS, disaster recovery is in good hands but you’re still in control. Clients of Solar VPS have access to a dashboard called SolarSystem that allows your team to monitor the performance of your VPS solution and make changes as you see fit. Depending on your needs, your team can elect to do partial or full system backups. Each backup file is available for up to three days and old versions are replaced with current copies automatically. No need to worry about wasted space.

When you’re ready to set up your custom disaster recovery plan, contact the experts at Solar VPS. We’re ready to make the process seamless for you–before the unexpected happens.

When Is It Time to Upgrade Your Disaster Recovery Plan

It’s never easy to predict when disaster will strike. People refer to something as a disaster when it exceeds normal event expectations, such as a storm that causes more than expected damage, or an incident that inflicts more harm than anticipated. Disasters can harm physical property, but they can also cause damage to an organization’s people, assets, or reputation. Most organizations make disaster planning a key component of business continuity. Disaster recovery lets managers know how to deal with an emergency. They know what the priorities are, how to respond, what steps to take and how to keep operations as normal as possible. Disaster recovery is an important aspect of keeping an organization alive when things go wrong. Here’s a look at how often disaster plans should be upgraded.

Disaster Recovery Is an Ongoing Process

First of all, it’s worth noting that disaster recovery is not an occasional thing. With most organizations, disaster training likely happens on an annual basis. However, there should be someone on your team dedicated to keeping the disaster recovery plan updated and relevant. For instance, if a company opens up a new supply chain, it should factor into the disaster plan immediately rather than wait until the regularly scheduled training comes around. If a company that heavily relies on data loses access to information or is hacked, they need to know how to respond. That takes regular industry watching to know what threats are out there that could hamper the ability to function.

Regular Training for Leadership

Experts in disaster recovery know that it’s too much to expect an organization’s leadership to always be passionate about business continuity. They’re occupied with new product development, growing a team, sales, public relations and all the other demands on their time. They should be able to rely on experts to keep them abreast of the most vital information they need to make a decision in disaster recovery. Companies that are in the cloud, for example, need to know if there are fail-over capabilities in place if a server or data center goes offline. They need to be able to respond quickly to limit impact in the wake of a disaster SolarVPS provides cloud solutions for clients interested in business continuity. Our products give organizations the flexibility and security they need to function during and in the aftermath of a disaster. For questions on how we can help with disaster recovery, contact us today.

Disaster Recovery in a VPS Plan

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A Virtual Private Server (VPS) system is a smart choice for your enterprise hosting needs. A VPS solution is made possible due to modern virtualization techniques that enable you to make better use of hardware resources. When you opt for a VPS environment, you have full control over its operating system and other applications that you would like to install. It is also highly cost-effective for organizations as you don’t need to invest in expensive hardware.

Disaster Recovery with Cloud Solutions

While cost-effectiveness is one of the main advantages of cloud VPS solutions, disaster recovery is a substantial benefit as well. Cloud computing gives a new meaning to “disaster recovery.” Most of the reliable cloud service providers have strategies in place to tackle disasters if and when they happen. You are not relying on hope; instead, you are assured that you won’t have extended downtime if some unfortunate event does happen. Using cloud VPS solutions, you can enjoy short recovery times and a proper backup option.

How does it work?

When you sign up for a cloud VPS solution, all your files, folders, applications, and databases are bundled together. Your service providers will keep a backup copy of your entire virtual server to provide reliable disaster recovery. When a disaster occurs, recovery of all the files is made within a very short time, and you don’t face much downtime or disturbed customers.

Disaster Recovery at Solar VPS

At Solar VPS, we provide one of the best VPS solutions with a significant amount of flexibility and control. We have an excellent VPS management suite called SolarSystem that can deploy resources as and when needed. SolarSystem also provides DNS control and enables you to customize your service. You can utilize our Disaster Recovery backups and protect yourself from any catastrophe. We offer 20GB to 200GB backup capacity and Full Server Backups. Our algorithms allow for new data to be backed up incrementally and the backups are stored for three days. Latest backup always replaces the old one, and our backups are kept in a redundant offsite data center facility for maximum efficiency. If you run into any issues, the support team at Solar VPS is available for troubleshooting and will provide a comprehensive solution. Additionally, you can customize your hosting packages and increase your allotted resources at the click of a button. Similarly, all your resource allocation can be scaled down to reflect lesser resource need. When you sign up with Solar VPS, you only pay for what you need. Contact us today and set up your customized VPS plan.

Why You Need Disaster Recovery

Disaster recovery

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What would happen to your company in the case of a digital disaster? Few people enjoy thinking about the idea. Most prefer to pretend that nothing bad could happen to their businesses. That’s why too few companies have a disaster recovery plan. For those who do have one of these plans, however, the extra level of preparedness can literally save companies from destruction.

Avoid Losing Revenue

If your company experiences a data outage, that outage can become costly. In fact, downtime can cost businesses thousands of dollars per minute in lost revenue. When you have an outage on your hands, you have no way to conduct your business. Suddenly, the entire company’s focus goes toward fixing the problem instead of generating profit. As a result, you could lose revenue from every department.

Protect Your Reputation

Digital disasters could also potentially harm your clients. If you store any sort of information for your clientele, you risk compromising their digital safety if you don’t have a way to restore and protect that information. Lost trust means lost business. Suddenly, loyal customers who once recommended your business are now steering friends away. The damage to your reputation will spread quickly and completely.

Focus on Your Business

When you have a clear disaster recovery plan, you can spend less time worrying about manual protections. For those who don’t use disaster recovery, the constant worry about whether or not something bad will happen can prevent them from doing their jobs. A disaster recovery plan can remove that worry from your mind. That extra level of calm might just help you gain more clarity and efficiency at work.

Get Convenient Automation

Having a disaster recovery plan means that you get automatic backups with multiple points of restoration. How often do you perform backups on your own? If you had a disaster recovery plan, you wouldn’t have to worry about it. The disaster recovery system would provide regular updates and backups so that your data and your clients’ data will stay safe.

Solar VPS Disaster Recovery

Do you need a disaster recovery plan? Solar VPS offers the best way to protect yourself. We back up new data in increments, provide full server backups, and perform updates as often as needed. All of these measures take place in our high-quality data centers. If you’re ready for top-level system protection, contact us now to ask about the disaster recovery add-on.