In recent weeks many people have been asking themselves if their companies' networks and IT staff are prepared for disaster situations such as earthquakes, fires, power failures or line cuts. A comprehensive disaster preparedness and recovery plan has become more important than ever, since reliable networks are vital to the financial success of companies. It is necessary for the IT staff to ensure that the proper process is in place to handle and to recover from a disaster in a timely manner without impacting the production network. They need to make sure that:
The staff is familiar with the network topology and configurations;
They know all the scenarios that can occur during the disaster;
They are trained with the appropriate responses; and,
All scenarios are tested and verified repeatedly for effectiveness.
This helps to ensure that when a part of the network goes down and thousands of events show up, network engineers are not overwhelmed. They are trained and prepared for that situation.
Using the production network for this purpose clearly presents a problem, and test labs are not adequate. MIMIC's device recording and simulation capabilities help to create a "virtual lab," which is a replica of the production network. This virtual lab can then be used to practice disaster scenarios and recovery procedures without affecting the production network. With MIMIC, users can easily remove a part of the network, shutdown major routers, simulate cut cables, increase/decrease the traffic or generate trap storms. In this way, they can experience how their management applications react to such conditions and practice how to respond. The participants can gain real-world experience in disaster response.
Companies can also use MIMIC's recording of their networks to recreate their network if physical damage occurs and the network needs to be rebuilt. This will provide them with a record of all the manageable devices that were installed. The IT staff can do this by simply making scheduled recordings of the network, so that they can easily keep track of any changes. In addition, by using the Topology Wizard, users can create a topology of their network and can reproduce the network's physical connections as they existed before the disaster.
MIMIC is a powerful and effective tool when it comes to practicing disaster preparedness! We hope that no disaster ever occurs in your company, but if it does, better policies will be in place to cope with it.
If you would like to share how you are benefiting from MIMIC or if there is an aspect of MIMIC that you would like discussed, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.