Mitigating Unplanned Downtime with IBM PowerHA

Whether it’s caused by nature, a technical glitch, or human error, downtime can be a financial disaster. A recent IDC report published in a variety of articles and blogs equated 10 hours of unplanned downtime per year to a $125,000 loss for a small or medium business. For organizations with more than 1000 employees, that figure could get as high as $17 million.

According to Gartner, 80% of outages impacting mission-critical services will be caused by people and process issues, and more than 50% of those outages will be caused by change/configuration/release integration and hand-off issues through 2015,.

One way to combat downtime is to ensure that you have high availability (HA) systems in the data center. One possible solutions for SMBs is IBM PowerHA on IBM System i. PowerHA technology uses shared storage clustering with the PowerHA SystemMirror, a volume group of disks connected to multiple systems known as an independent auxiliary storage pool (IASP).

According to Steven Finnes, IBM Power Systems Product Management Executive, PowerHA, “In its most basic form, shared storage clustering is about switching access to the shared disk pool between systems, so if system A goes away, system B takes over the data and production.” That means production work can be switched between nodes with a single command.

The PowerHA solution relieves IT of having to perform a logical replication by facilitating hardware-based replication, which saves up to 32 hours a week in replication management. With the IASP, the data is replicated in real time with as little as 10 minutes a week required to monitor the system. PowerHA technology makes data synching simple as well, by keeping the primary and secondary systems in sync at the storage level.

What could be simpler than a system that is largely self-managing? By building storage and/or replicated storage cluster topology, failover and on-demand role swap operations to another node are completely automated. Outages are quickly turned around, whether planned or unplanned. PowerHA systems feature the legendary resiliency and reliability of IBM System i, reducing the need for human intervention and the probability for error and freeing up IT staff to work on more productive projects.

If achieving high availability in your organization requires logical replication, it’s time to take a closer look at PowerHA for IBM i. Educational Management Associates, an IBM Business Partner, can help determine which PowerHA solution is right for your business and manage the implementation as well. For more information about turning downtime into uptime, contact an IBM System i specialist at Educational Management Associates.