Network Computing is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Laws of Data Recovery

An IT manager who survived his first Florida hurricane season says it took a full year to prepare his law firm for the worst.

Ben Weinberger, director of IT for Fort Lauderdale-based law firm Ruden McClosky, found out about hurricanes the hard way when he started his job during hurricane season in September 2004.

Soon after his arrival, a hurricane knocked out power at the firm's Tampa office, which had been set up along with Fort Lauderdale as one of its data centers. Half of the company's IT operations were down for two days, and the only way to restore data to Fort Lauderdale was to back up to tape over the WAN. The backup took 30 hours.

"A good lawyer can bill 30 hours in a single day, but no IT department can do a 30-hour backup in a day," Weinberger says. "That solution just sucked for lack of a better word. Attorneys scream and shout if we go offline for a minute, so you can imagine what it was like."

Weinberger knew his main task at his new job was to make the 200-attorney firm with 10 offices throughout Florida hurricane-proof. In his previous job at the City of Los Angeles Attorney's office, he dealt with a few small earthquakes but no hurricanes.

  • 1