Disaster Recovery

Disaster recovery as a concept developed in the mid to late 1970s as computer center managers began to recognize the dependence of their organizations on their computer systems. At that time most systems were batch-oriented mainframes which in many cases could be down for a number of days before significant damage would be done to the organization.[1]

As awareness of Disaster Recovery grew an industry developed to provide backup computer centers, with Sun Information Systems (which later became Sungard Availability Systems) becoming the first major US commercial hot site vendor, established in 1978 in Philadelphia.[2]

During the 1980s and 1990s, IT disaster recovery awareness and the disaster recovery industry grew rapidly, driven by the advent of open systems and real-time processing (which increased the dependence of organizations on their IT systems). Another driving force in the growth of the industry was increasing government regulations mandating business continuity and disaster recovery plans for organizations in various sectors of the economy.

With the rapid growth of the Internet through the late 1990s and into the 2000s, organizations of all sizes became further dependent on the continuous availability of their IT systems, with many organizations setting an objective of 99.999% availability of critical systems.[citation needed] This increasing dependence on IT systems, as well as increased awareness from large-scale disasters such as 9/11, contributed to the further growth of various disaster recovery related industries, from high-availability solutions to hot-site facilities.