After meals on wheels, how about mobile disaster recovery? That’s what US distributor Avnet Technology Solutions is offering customers in a scenario that sounds rather like it came out of Star Wars. The company has put together a technology package of products from EMC, Brocade, Cisco, Metalogix and Microsoft, all installed on a chassis from Elliptical Mobile Solutions. The chassis can move under its own power at 3 miles per hour (that’s three times as fast as Cape Canaveral rocket transporters!), and also has its own cooling equipment. So has anybody already used this solution, and if so, in what circumstances?
Avnet says that its disaster recovery on wheels solution has already served in two cases: one in Afghanistan, and the other in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Beyond this, other possibilities include not only military environments, but also sporting events, where conditions are often harsh for computer systems. Mining and similar remote site industries could be additional candidates, as might telecoms operators if part of their network breaks down. The packaged, mobile solution is also designed to be a more practical solution than the supply of computing equipment in a container, another option for making computing resources available in large-scale emergency situations.
Timing is a potential issue: although Avnet is prepared to build such mobile disaster recovery solutions to customer order, it needs a few days for configuration and delivery. The time required is a function of the customer’s needs for processing power, storage, networking capability and hypervisor functionality. However, the distributor has also planned ahead with standard product configurations equivalent to 50, 100 or 250 virtual machines. Meanwhile, Elliptical Mobile Solutions continues to develop its activities in the modular data centre market, including the impending market for space tourism.