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Scott Drummonds on Virtualization

SRM Survey Results

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About six weeks ago I announced a survey to measure the value of VMware’s Site Recovery Manager.  Thirty-seven respondents offered their thoughts on how SRM has changed their disaster recovery process.  The results are not surprising; I already knew customers love SRM.  But they are a stark reminder of the immeasurable value of this product.

The survey results are below with my own observations.  To the impatient I offer the following summary:

  • Only 40% of respondents ran DR tests at least once a year before SRM was installed. 95% of them run DR tests at least once a year with SRM.
  • 73% of respondents were not confident that their pre-SRM DR test would succeed. 95% are confident their DR test will succeed with SRM.
  • 54% of customers before SRM never tested their DR plan.
  • 97% of customers with SRM complete their DR tests in hours.
  • 76% of respondents claimed SRM decreased production downtime during DR tests.

Many software products provide value that is directly measured by customers. With the hypervisor, customers can compare the number of servers before and after consolidation and assign a value to the software that reduced the server count. But some softwares’s value is difficult to measure, although obvious in hindsight. SRM is one example on this.

Consider the results above. How do you quantify the value of reduced production downtime during DR tests? How do you assign currency to confidence? How do you measure the benefit to business of regular DR tests? While it is difficult to assign value to each of these, most of us have a gut feel that we are talking about very big numbers.

In short, if you are not running SRM today then you are missing an opportunity to simplify DR, reduce its cost of maintenance, and improve your confidence in your DR plan.  The value of confidence to the business is difficult to measure but impossible to deny.

How confident are you that your DR test will succeed?

The great majority of customers without SRM lack confidence in their DR plan. The great majority of those customers claim confidence after installing SRM.

How frequently do you run a DR test?

The frequency of DR tests increases dramatically with SRM.  DR test frequency is a direct predictor of customer confidence.  It is also a requirement in environments where DR tests are audited.

How long do your DR tests take?

Nearly all respondents claimed that DR tests could be completed in hours with SRM present.  For anyone that has ever had to cancel weekend plans or spend an entire night in the datacenter to run a DR plan test this is welcome news.

How has SRM changed your downtime during DR tests?

Production downtime decreases with SRM because the test recovery site is fenced off from production so business-critical applications are unaffected by the test.  Production downtime can be measured using colossal numbers.

How does SRM affect your DR plans?

Because SRM is so well liked many new applications are pulled into the DR plan, improving the resiliency of the business.

2 Responses

Very cool data Scott – well done. Mind if I show a slide or two of this at PEX next week? I have a SRM related talk on some “DR to the Cloud” work we’re doing with partners…