The mobility of clients and demand for instantaneous services as a result of the boom of connected resources and services has made availability a business imperative, says availability and recovery multinational Veeam Middle East and Africa regional VP Gregg Petersen.
Even historically time-consuming information technology (IT) setup processes are now automated and cloud resources increase the mobility and choices of all users, from individuals to large enterprises.
“What used to take weeks and various tender processes, can now be done within minutes on an application. Similarly, data is set to grow to 18-zettabytes (which has 21 zeroes) by 2025 and $2.1-trillion a year will be spent on IT by then. However, no one has ever been able to accurately predict data growth, making capacity-based licence models a risky proposition. I expect data to grow faster even than this estimation.”
While businesses will tend to lose clients if they cannot serve them when it best suits them and need to ensure their services are constantly available, a more fundamental need for availability is to ensure that critical services operate, he highlights.
“Self-driving cars, medical and operating room systems, emergency services and utility systems, among others, must be extremely resilient,” illustrates Petersen.
Public cloud resources can support the availability and recoverability of these critical systems in hybrid cloud models. Veeam’s software enables the protection of data in hybrid cloud environments and further enables users to simulate and test various disaster and recovery scenarios, as well as orchestrate the availability of applications and services in these hybrid cloud environments.
The move from private to hybrid and wholly public cloud systems is also accelerating, he adds. Veeam has one financial services client that uses public cloud resources exclusively, while meeting all its regulatory compliance measurements.
“This serves to highlight that even industries that traditionally use private clouds are able to use public cloud resources and all industries can anticipate some level of disruption, owing to the ease with which IT resources can be accessed and consumed.”
Southern African financial payment clearing house BankservAfrica facilitates millions of interbank payments a month. It relies on Veeam’s availability systems to ensure the integrity of its data, processes and the transactions, says BanservAfrica CTO Hamman Ferreira.
“BankservAfrica is most successful if it functions seamlessly and unnoticed, because that means the system is functioning as it should,” he quips.
Recovery and availability solutions not only facilitate seamless regional financial transactions, which directly support regional economic activity, but also help to manage the growth of data.
“Transaction data is becoming richer with more exacting industry standards and regulations, which places more demand on storage and difficulties ensuring stable, scalable platforms. Resilience and robust continuity must be built into all the layers from data centre infrastructure to network and applications layers,” says Ferreira.
BankservAfrica uses the availability solution to replicate between different sites in real time and is able to test and thereby ensure the recoverability of various technology stacks, from infrastructure to applications.