Guest post by Kevin Gruneisen, VP of Data Center Solutions

When was the last time there was a great savior in IT?  So great that everyone wanted more definition, information and opinion?  Cloud certainly fits that description.

I spoke to several companies last week at an executive forum in Chicago and each one acknowledged there were too many definitions for what a Cloud does for IT. Not that they did not have a definition themselves; actually, many just reiterated what they have heard, not truly thinking it through.

So many definitions, so little time.

Last week’s topic at the event was disaster recovery and Cloud. The presenters made Cloud sound like either a near death experience for DR or used the going-to-Grandma’s-house-on-Sunday-for-fried-chicken-and-lemonade metaphor. You bring the lemons (data) and we will make the lemonade (disaster recovery). It sounds quick and easy – replicate something to somewhere and save money.

Disaster recovery in the Cloud is new, cool and it works. Does it save money? That depends on your next disaster. Does it save costs? That depends on how you define the costs. DR is still an insurance policy after all. But now, it is more than a check-off on the audit list. Everything is 24x7x365. What is the cost to your business to be down for one hour or one day or one week?

Ultimately, doing business in the Cloud should be the result of work to identify business problems and talk through how to solve them. Business to IT transformation is about solving business problems with technology. Cloud is simply one new, cool option. Look to the experts. Get everyone in a room and talk it through. Get everyone to Grandma’s on Sunday and bring your lemons.

So what do you think?  Is DR in the Cloud Ripe (ready to roll) or Hype (not ready for prime time yet)?  Be sure to share your thoughts below, too.

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