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Disaster Recovery Simulation Success

Wednesday, 27 September 2006

TelstraClear Disaster Recovery Simulation Success

TelstraClear successfully tested its front-of-house applications in a self-initiated disaster recovery simulation last month.

TelstraClear’s Chief of Operations Luigi Sorbello said TelstraClear’s CLARiS suite of products - including Clarify, billing and residential order management systems - suffered a simulated technical issue and were not serviceable.

“We have installed new SUN E25K servers and Hitachi SAN storage equipment in Auckland and Wellington so it was important we tested both production environments. The simulated technical problem affected critical TelstraClear in-house systems so that our whole business was potentially at risk.

“Data was migrated from Auckland to Wellington and we worked in disaster recovery mode for two business days. On the second day we successfully completed a residential bill run, then fully restored services back to Auckland,” said Mr Sorbello.

Mr Sorbello said TelstraClear had spent six months installing new equipment and it needed to be tested.

“We didn’t want to sit back and wait for a problem, so we invented one ourselves. Cutting over data to Wellington meant a scheduled four-hour outage to our internal systems. However, when cutting back data to Auckland the outage was nearly halved.”

Mr Sorbello said the exercise was successful due to expert staff, technical design and vendor support.

“We’ve been working towards this exercise since last October. Retiring old systems and installing new ones adds complexities. There was no loss of data either way, the procedures worked and we enhanced our vendor relationship. It is a great success for our team, our company, our customers and our vendors.”

The Auckland production environment provides TelstraClear with its everyday application services and the Wellington site is set up specifically for user acceptance testing and disaster recovery.

“Should a catastrophic event occur in Auckland, we can migrate to the Wellington environment and remain there if needed.”

Mr Sorbello said the self-initiated exercise meant we now not only have certainty in our systems but we can pass that certainty on to our customers.

“We’ve proved we can stop and start applications and we’ve done it in a near-live environment, testing and leveraging the new technologies.”

The disaster recovery simulation sees the end of a multi-million dollar project that started last October. The disaster recovery exercise will be conducted annually.



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