“How do I migrate my existing Hosting Infrastructure to a new environment?”
There are three main elements to migrate: Data, Application and DNS records.
Static data is usually the easiest data to transfer and all that is required is a portable data store of the relevant size or the required bandwidth to do it by wire.
Transferring dynamic data is a more complex arrangement. The typical scenario includes scheduling a certain amount of downtime for the live solution, a data move (in its entirety if the volume is small enough or by replication if the volume is large) to the new platform with DNS migration scheduled to take place simultaneously.
With the highly variable nature of custom built code and industry specific applications, arranging an effective application migration can be a complex process. The primary prerequisite for application migration is a fully compatible platform or successful rewrite of application code and the required pre-rollout testing. Once either of these two requirements is satisfied, the actual migration of the application is done.
DNS migration needs to be set in motion at least a week prior to the final go-live date because of the replication time that may be required. If the DNS records are owned and administered by the customer, then all that is required is the relevant changes to the TTL (Time To Live) for the relevant record, a scheduled change of IP (synchronized with the application and dynamic data move) and the required adjustment to the TTL afterwards.
If the DNS records are administered by a third party the process is slightly different. The first question to ask is: is the current administrator for the record willing to point the DNS to a new provider?
“Why do I need Managed Back up?”
There are many ways in which disaster can happen, whether man made or natural ? system failure, malicious activity, human error, theft or natural catastrophe. Being hit by any one of these can significantly and negatively affect your company’s ability to operate, both short and long term. Having a well planned backup strategy is the most effective way to protect your vital data ? you are at risk without it.
Rackspace provides managed backup solutions that can reduce your risk and restore service and data as quickly and completely as possible ? an important part in ensuring essential business continuity. Partnering with Dell and Legato Systems, Rackspace provides all the components needed to create a flexible and robust backup solution for any configuration, from a single Server to a corporate e-commerce cluster.
Rackspace manages the entire solution, including initial set up and configuration, to tracking failures and even changes to the configuration. Data backups are performed off all servers and onto tape media as opposed to a separate drive. Managed Backup technicians are available 24 by 7 to perform data restores, configuration changes and answer all your backup questions.
“How do I keep my servers safe from malicious attack (hackers)?”
An Intrusion Detection System (IDS) is the first line of defence from unauthorised malicious network activity. It inspects all inbound and outbound network activity and identifies suspicious patterns that may indicate a network or system attack from someone attempting to break in and compromise the system. An IDS is particularly important because of its ability to dynamically update the firewall rules based on events that are triggered by pre-designed filters, thereby preventing threats from harmful traffic.
Firewalls are a vital part in the protection of a system. They provide robust, enterprise class, integrated network security, creating a strong multi layered defensive service for dynamic network environments.
With Cyber Crime posing an unyielding threat to businesses today, an anti-virus solution is one of the most critical, effective and affordable ways to avoid infections from viruses, spyware, adware and potentially unwanted applications.
In addition to the lines of defence above, some companies such as Rackspace offer proprietary technology for customers who may be particularly vulnerable to DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks. Rackspace has Preventier, a unique, proactive DDoS prevention program created together with network security specialists Arbor Networks and Cisco. It has been designed to add more layers of security between a customer?s network and malicious attacks, which have the potential to paralyse systems and cause havoc to mission critical applications. Combining three disparate technologies it creates an all encompassing protection system for customer networks, through the identification and filtering of hostile traffic 24/7/365. From network-wide packet scanning through granular traffic analysis right down to server-level anomaly detection and attack mitigation, Preventier ensures unmatched network protection and performance for customers.
“What's the difference between Managed Hosting and a Dedicated Server?”
A dedicated server, is just that, a server dedicated to you and your needs, with minimal services from the hosting provider. If you have highly skilled and expert staff in house, this may be a suitable option for you.
Managed hosting, goes one step further to a dedicated server as you benefit from managed services from your hosting provider. Rackspace dedicated server hosting for instance, would provide services to help in the overall management of your hosting solution. For example: administration, monitoring, security, back up and recovery, storage and reporting as well as scaling and deployment. Some may even offer migration services.
Managed hosting provides a flexible solution ideal for companies wanting to reserve a level of control, yet still be backed up by a dedicated team committed to providing 100% infrastructure uptime and responsive support.