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// 12 Jan 2022

4 Key Capabilities for Cloud Outage Recovery

Suhas Nayak, Sr. Director, Cloud and Data Center Marketing

Many of the major consumer and enterprise services and businesses today run on the public cloud, and the smooth functioning of the cloud resources is critical for these services. However, last month many companies saw multiple cloud outages causing disruptions to their customer-facing services. These outages affected notable brands like Netflix, Disney Plus, Slack, Quora, Asana, Imgur as well as gaming platforms such as Epic Games, PUBG, and League of Legends to name a few. It took around 12 hours for the cloud infrastructures to be restored but for some customers, it took much longer than that as their compute instances and storage volumes could not be restored and had to be recovered from backup copies — which can take a long time if your data protection solution does not provide easy recovery capabilities.

An official explanation of one of the cloud outages can be found here, but what we should all learn from these incidents is that no matter how sophisticated and robust the cloud is today, we should always be ready for outages. It brings to light the importance of hardening your data protection strategy as part of a broader disaster recovery plan. To help with that strategy, here are four key capabilities every cloud team must have in place to minimize downtime in the event of an outage.

1. Backup of application data stored outside of the primary account & region

When your application is impacted by an outage, it is important that you have a secondary copy of the application’s data to fall back on. Having a cloud data protection solution that backs up all your critical applications is imperative, as you do not want to put all your eggs in the same basket. Along those lines, the best practice for enterprises today is storing critical backups outside the same user’s account and in an alternate region away from the primary application. Doing so ensures the backup copies are shielded from a potential outage or business disruption, making the data accessible to initiate the recovery process instantly. Clumio Protect by default backs up application data in Clumio’s SecureVault that is completely isolated from the user’s account with the option to store the backups outside the region.

2. Ability to quickly find the right backup copy

Having a valid and accessible backup copy during an outage is important, but it is equally important to be able to quickly find the right backups to restore the service in time. Once you have enabled backup of your applications, 100s of backup copies get created over time and it could get challenging or time-consuming to find the most relevant backup copy for the impacted application. Your cloud data protection solution should deliver a simple and intuitive user experience to quickly find the backups corresponding to the impacted applications. For example, as shown below, Clumio Protect’s calendar view makes it effortless to find the backup copies for point-in-time recovery. Simply click on the date, and run through an easy recovery workflow to get your data back.

3. Granular recovery from backups

Once you find the point in time to restore, finding the data is only as good as the granularity to restore.  Most backup solutions provide instance-level recovery, but what if you need a file or a directory or a database record only? With instance-level recovery, it typically takes much longer to restore the large amounts of data, plus a ton of trial and error to actually find the needle in a haystack. Clumio has multiple options to find the data you are looking for, well beyond instance restore.

These options include browsing the filesystem, global search and index, and direct query access to restore specific records of RDS. This results in recovering the specific data you need in an optimum manner, saving both time and cost.

4. Rapid and flexible recovery from backups

Last but not least, you must have a cloud data protection solution that is architected for cloud-scale. When large amounts of data need to be restored across multiple accounts and applications, the backup solution needs to scale instantly to meet these demanding needs and restore data rapidly to ensure business continuity. You also need the flexibility to restore the data to any account or region that is not impacted by an outage. Clumio Protect’s cloud-native architecture leverages the full extent of cloud scalability to avoid any data flow bottlenecks. This is achieved by sidestepping process tiers and transporting data directly into highly scalable and durable object storage. This enables Clumio to not just scale but do so rapidly when needed to adapt to the application requirements.

Clumio’s data processing pipeline is built to maximize the use of serverless compute Lambda functions that deliver limitless dynamic scaling at a moment’s notice to enable data recovery at a rapid pace. Clumio’s customers also have the flexibility to recover data to any of their accounts or regions paving the way for timely and flexible recovery of their cloud applications.

If your data protection solution doesn’t already provide all four of these key capabilities to get back up and running after a cloud outage, there’s an easy path forward. You can have all of these in place for your cloud assets in less than 15 minutes with Clumio. Don’t wait for the next outage to find out, test drive it for free today! Clumio is available for the protection of Amazon S3, EBS, EC2, RDS, Microsoft 365, and VMware Cloud on AWS with a 30-day free trial on AWS Marketplace.