ON: Fri, 17 Oct 2008 14:49:43 -0500, Matthew Perdue

> It's not just the computer you have to worry about....
> True story.. somewhere in the upper Western states of the U.S.
> Medium sized company - about 100 people working, more than 10 million
> dollars in business annually. Everything in the computer room was running
> fine, except the local water authority needed to do work on the water
> pipes in the street that feed the building. The accounts payable,
> payroll and claims payable was due to be run the next day - millions
> of dollars in receivables and payables on the line. Potential fines
> by regulatory authorities for late payment. The complexities go on
> from there.
> Everyone in the building, including several state agencies, were not
> permitted to occupy the building for three (3!) days - reason: no water
> was available due to work required on the feeder pipes to the building
> and no sanitary restroom facilities would be available for more than
> 1,000 people, and no water means no fire suppression systems for the
> building.
> The public works authorities allowed company personnel approximately two
> hours to gather any materials necessary to continue their operations
> elsewhere. No access, absolutely no access was allowed to the building
> after that initial two hour period until the work was completed.
> The computer room was fine, the computers themselves were fine, the
> network was operational, all employees would've had access to the
> various systems to perform their normal daily activities. Yet no
> one could work - no water, no restrooms, no work.
> Is your business prepared for a situation like this?


If the power and the fibre to the building has not been cut then our staff
can work from home, the library, or any Starbuck's hot-spot. Anywhere
that an Internet connection is available is a potential workspace. That
includes fax, email, access to the HP3000, etc. All over SSH/SSL/TSL.
Incoming telephone service would be routed through our 24/7 answering
service so that calls would still be answered at the usual number. The
only things not "easily" reachable are user files located on the
MS-Windows network. But even those could be had for a little effort on my

If power and connectivity to our primary site is cut off then it would
take less than four hours to completely switch over most services to the
secondary site located about 50 km away. Fax, email and HP3000 services
would be maintained although he alternate fax number would have to be
promulgated. Presently, static web services are replicated on the
secondary site every 24 hours while E-mail and fax traffic are replicated
on the secondary site every 20 minutes. Data on the secondary HP3000
would be, in the worse case, 24 hours out of date. A severe
inconvenience, but not an unmanageable one.

All done in-house via ssh, cron, rsync and (for the HP3000) ftp.


*** E-Mail is NOT a SECURE channel ***
James B. Byrne mailto:ByrneJB@Harte-Lyne.ca
Harte & Lyne Limited http://www.harte-lyne.ca
9 Brockley Drive vox: +1 905 561 1241
Hamilton, Ontario fax: +1 905 561 0757
Canada L8E 3C3

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