Real World Disaster Recovery Scenarios

This page is designed to give examples of recovering from disaster, based on client needs that we have responded to in the past (with some details obscured for privacy.) The causes may vary, but our goal is to get you back up and running as quickly as circumstances allow- and to plan ahead so that we can anticipate the most likely scenarios and risks that might impact your business.

In the event of disaster

The first task in recovery is to contact Daily Data. In many cases, we can provide a temporary “loaner” machine or machines set up for your needs. This will also alert us to the need to react rapidly as access to your data is needed while your machine(s) are replaced.

The time it takes to “be functional” depends on multiple factors. The scenarios presented below are based on past incidents.

Water Damage to a Server Closet

Client M’s office site sustained damage during a storm to the building roof, resulting in water pouring into a server closet for several hours late on a Sunday evening. Upon arrival on Monday, employees discovered the damage. We resolved the problem by replicating their server to a loaner server while a replacement could be ordered and configured.

Time Estimate to Operational: 1 hour of labor (configuring replica server), 30 minutes of travel time to place loaner server.

Recovery Costs: Cost of replacement server and setup. Because the original server was under a maintenance plan, we were able to do the replication onto a loaner, which was covered by their maintenance plan.
The existing server used our backup service to copy files every night to an off-site backup server. While the previous night’s backup hadn’t completed due to the time of the water incursion, the fact it had happened on a weekend meant that files from Saturday’s backup were very nearly current (The office was closed on Saturday and only a few files had been in Saturday night’s backups.)

Physical Theft of Server

Client T returned from a trip to their home, where their company server was located due to an office move to discover it missing- all cords still present, but the physical machine missing. Nothing else in the house had been touched. Police were called and began working on recovery and documenting the loss. Daily Data began creating a duplicate of their most recent backup on a loaner machine in order to get them up and running immediately.

Time Estimate to Operational: Due to the very large volume of data on the physical server, most of which was critical to operations, it took several hours to replicate the server data to the point that initial operations could be restarted. The less critical files were copied from backups remotely over successive days because a partial recovery to reduce downtime was deemed more important that complete functioning with a longer stand still.

Recovery Costs: 3-6 hours of labor plus cost of replacement machine and setup.

Security cameras in the home office and a video doorbell allowed police to track down the thief, who turned out to be an angry ex-partner. The server was recovered but damaged beyond repair and had to be replaced.

Extended Power Outage

Client B’s office lost power during severe weather. With an expected return of service in the days rather than hours, he decided to relocate his server (managed and maintained by us) from the office location to our colocation facility (which still had power) in order to allow employees to continue to work remotely.

Time Estimate to Operational: Three hours in total. Installing the server at our colocation facility only took a few minutes. However, storm damage meant road damage, detours, and closures across the metroplex, and retrieving the server took longer than usual.

While B was using our off-site backup service and most data on his server was accessible via backups, the only way to allow his employees to continue with remote work was to retrieve the existing server and return it to functional status, or to create a new terminal server which the employees could log into from their various locations. In this case, the first option was chosen.

Pandemic Shut Down

Many of Daily Data’s clients- like the rest of the world- decided to shut down for in-person work as much as possible in March 2020. Daily Data assisted in setting up remote server and terminal access for companies in a variety of industries with varying needs. This included both hardware (preparing machines to be sent home with employees working remotely), software (setting up VPN keys and access in numbers ranging from five to fifty), and training (assisting employees in learning to use VPN and troubleshooting it with a variety of home internet setups.)

Time Estimate to Functioning: Variable. Different companies had different needs, but we’re proud of the job we did getting everyone set up within the first few weeks of the shutdown.

Recovery Costs: Again, highly variable. We worked with our clients to meet their needs and their budgets, while still taking care of our own employees who worked so many extra hours during this very unusual time.

Three years on, we’re still proud of what we were able to do to keep our clients running- in the office or anywhere else.