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Storage Pipeline: Data-Replication Software

We reviewed the products in our New Jersey partner labs; our test network included a Gigabit Ethernet switch and six servers running Windows 2000 and 2003 Server. We looked for maximum efficiency in WAN bandwidth and CPU utilization, as well as initial replication performance. We also evaluated ease of installation and management, features, failover and price.

Replication Products

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When designing a disaster-recovery environment, pay attention to three main factors:

• RTO (recovery time objective) defines the maximum time your organization can do without a given app. Even if you have a replacement server ready, restoring a multigigabyte file store or database from tape or disk can take hours, while replicating data to a hot-spare server may let you fully recover in minutes or even seconds. Of course, keeping a hot spare costs more.

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