Natural Disaster Preparedness Tips for your IT Systems

With the 2018 hurricane season upon us it introduces a threat to your IT systems and operations. While natural disasters are unavoidable there are a few precautionary activities which you can do to reduce their impact to your Emortelle operations.

Tip #1 – Connect your Emortelle server and any other mission critical network equipment to an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS). During the hurricane season the reliability of the electricity supply from your public utility may be riddled with frequent power spike and dips. This “dirty” power can damage your network hardware especially with components like the server’s power supply and storage drive. A sudden crash of the server may also corrupt some of the Emortelle data which would attract some downtime while it is repaired. Be sure to test your UPS’ battery – it should remain on for at least 5 minutes after the main power is disconnected.

Tip #2 – Perform daily Emortelle backups and verify the backup files created. Performing daily backups is important for obvious reasons but it is equally important to verify the existence of the backup files daily if your server is configured to generate backups automatically.

Tip #3 – Store a offsite copy of your backups Continuing from the previous tip, you should definitely copy your backup to another device to be stored offsite. This precaution is necessary if your server’s hard drive is damaged. An excellent offsite backup strategy would be to acquire the Offsite Backup Service offered by MSD – This service not only automatically uploads a backup of your Emortelle data to MSD’s cloud server but it also has mechanism to verify the integrity of the source backup archive and what is delivered to us. An automatic email notification of the backup upload status also sent to the respective recipients to give an alert if the backup was not received.

Tip #4 – Disconnect equipment before storm hits. This tip is a drastic measure to protect your hardware devices during an approaching storm. Shutdown your Emortelle database, power off your server and disconnect all cables connected to the server – especially the power cable, and Ethernet connections. The same can be done for any important network devices but be careful to record what is being disconnected to that the reconnection is just as smooth.  

Tip #5 – Setup a backup server machine If your main server is damaged and inoperable it can be useful to have a backup machine on standby which can be used to quickly restore your backup to resume some limited operation. This machine can be any moderately performing pc workstation (or laptop*) which can be used to preinstall a copy of the Emortelle database. *The portability of a laptop may be useful to leave offsite as an additional precautionary practice.