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This post originally appeared on HighScalability.com on January 14, 2013

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Monday, January 14, 2013 at 9:30AM

This is a guest post by Jeff Behl, VP Ops @ LogicMonitor. Jeff has been a bit herder for the last 20 years, architecting and overseeing the infrastructure for a number of SaaS based companies.  

Data Replication for Disaster Recovery

An inevitable part of disaster recovery planning is making sure customer data exists in multiple locations.  In the case of LogicMonitor, a SaaS-based monitoring solution for physical, virtual, and cloud environments, we wanted copies of customer data files both within a data center and outside of it.  The former was to protect against the loss of individual servers within a facility, and the latter for recovery in the event of the complete loss of a data center.

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Sample SAT question: xUnit is to Continuous Integration as what is to automated server deployments?

We’ve been going through lots of growth here at LogicMonitor. Part of growth means firing up new servers to deal with more customers, but we also have been adding a variety of new services: proxies that allow our customers to route around Internet issues that BGP doesn’t catch; servers that test performance and reachability of customers sites from various locations, and so on.  All of which means spinning up new servers: sometimes lots of times, in QA, staging and development environments.

As old hands in running datacenter operations, we have long adhered to the tenet of not trusting people – including ourselves. People make mistakes, and can’t remember things they did to make things work. So all our servers and applications are deployed by automated tools. We happen to use Puppet, but collectively we’ve worked with cfengine, chef, and even Rightscripts.

So, for us to bring up a new server – no problem. It’s scripted, repeatable, takes no time. But how about splitting the functions of what was one server into several? And how do we know that the servers being deployed are set up correctly, if there are changes and updates? Read more »

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