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2015 April Home // 2015 April

I get this question a lot from customers when their hard drive fails, and they want to know what the clicking sound is. I made this video to explain a few years ago, and it’s up to almost 150,000 hits on youtube. So obviously people want to know.

Hopefully that explains at least a little. If you heard this noise coming from your computer, it’s time to bring it in.

For some businesses a couple hours of downtime can be a problem. It can cost hundreds in lost revenue, or makes your customers unhappy. However, those businesses don’t need to spend tens of thousands of dollars to make sure their computer systems keep working.  A client like that may need redundant internet connections, a server with redundant hard drives, and maybe an online backup solution.

But what if being down for an hour looses you tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars? Some companies pay millions for multiple data centers, each having multiple electricity connections, multiple internet connections, and multiple backups to support multiple redundant servers with redundant hard drives, cpu’s, memory, and even power supplies. All that to stretch out the number of 9’s at the end of 99.999% up time.

If your company doesn’t have millions of dollars to spend on I.T. you can still get pretty close to the up time of the big companies. A few ways to do this are:

Virtualize servers in a “public” cloud- You can harness the power of these millions of dollars that cloud computing companies are spending on their data centers, and “rent” space and processing power from them. However not all servers can be off site in the cloud, and having some servers off site means you need a faster internet connection to connect to the server.

Build your own cloud- When the data you have is too important to upload over the internet, you might want to build your own cloud. This is more expensive, and less redundant than having your servers hosted in a public cloud, but you get the peace of mind that you know exactly where your data is.

Use a hybrid backup solution- You may want to keep your current servers in place since you already payed for them, and they work. The question is for how long? Computers break. That’s why I have a job. So with a hybrid backup solution you can back your server up, and if it fails you can use the backup to run a virtual copy of your server. This solution is less expensive than building your own cloud, and can be very similar in cost to hosting your servers in a public cloud.

No matter what size your business is, or how much you need top spend to make sure things keep running, there is a solution for you.