When most people think of or discuss cloud (VoIP) phone systems, they focus on things like advanced features, total mobility, scalability, and of course: significant initial and ongoing cost savings. However, there is another piece of the cloud phone system puzzle that is just as important. In some situations, it is even more valuable and vital than those mentioned above – geo-redundancy.
Geo-redundancy is the practice of ensuring that all data associated with a cloud phone system is backed up in multiple geographic locations. This means if there was an event like an earthquake, power outage, or other natural disaster in one location, all of the data would still be safe and accessible from another location. Having redundant servers located in multiple locations and/or countries is a safety net you don’t want to skip. By doing so, organizations ensure that their cloud phone system will be available and operating, regardless of any such disasters.
Geo-redundancy is a critical feature for organizations that require very high levels of reliability. For example, in the medical field, patient safety and data integrity are paramount. A hospital or healthcare provider needs to know that its phone system is fully operational at all times. They also must ensure that all of the data associated with it is safe and secure no matter what happens.
In this article, we look at what geo-redundancy (a.k.a. geographical redundancy and geographic redundancy) is, how it works, and the key benefits for our customers.
What is Geo-Redundancy?
Simply put, geo-redundancy involves distributing mission-critical infrastructure components — such as servers — across data centers that are in different physical locations. This essentially creates a “safety net” in case the primary location fails. This also goes for power outages or disasters (natural or otherwise) that affect an entire region.
How Does Geo-Redundancy Work?
Geo-redundancy works by duplicating IT infrastructure in two or more data centers, which makes them simultaneously available. During a power outage or periods of excess demand, the workload can be shifted or shared to a secondary location. Doing so eliminates disruption. This process is called “failover,” and happens automatically.
Key Benefits of Geo-Redundancy
There are four key benefits of geo-redundancy for our customers:
High Performance and Availability
Geo-redundancy ensures that our customers consistently enjoy optimal performance. This is because traffic is shared across multiple nodes, which in turn leads to faster processing times and more effective resource utilization. Our Service Level Agreements (SLAs) pledge an uptime commitment of 99.9% or higher, ensuring that our customers can rely on consistent service availability.
Geo-redundancy ensures that our customers can access their phone system even in the event of site-level failures (e.g. catastrophic and natural disasters) because there is no single point of failure. For example, in September 2022 when Hurricane Ian hit the Southeast and North Carolina, we were ready and prepared. We currently have our Class 4/5 telephone switch in three remote locations with full, 1-second fail-over in Greensboro NC, Research Triangle Park NC, and Dallas TX.
No Interruption for Updates and Upgrades
One of the most beneficial aspects of our cloud phone system is that we are constantly updating and upgrading it. This is different than conventional landline phone system providers, which typically offer the best and newest technology to new customers — and ignore those already on the roster. At Carolina Digital Phone, ALL of our customers can be assured that they are using the latest technology and tools! Now, how does this fit into our discussion on the benefits of geo-redundancy? Here is the answer: our multi-site infrastructure allows us to perform various updates and upgrades (as well as perform routine maintenance), there is disruption to our customers, and no need to plan for downtime. Of course, with this in mind, naturally, we schedule upgrades/updates/maintenance on days and times when they would still have the least impact on our customers.
Geo-redundancy allows us to put in place highly effective, fault-tolerant protection against high-volume attacks (e.g. DDoS), which aim to bring down critical applications and resources. This is because (as mentioned earlier) our active geo-redundant architecture avoids having a single point of failure.
The Bottom Line
Our advanced geo-redundancy infrastructure — and the robust protection and peace of mind that it provides — is part of our standard service offering and does not cost our customers anything extra. It is just another of the many reasons why we are one of the longest-serving cloud phone system vendors in North Carolina and the entire country!
Learn more about our geo-redundancy infrastructure and more by scheduling your free demo. Call us at (336) 544-4000. We can connect with your team in-person at your location, or over the web.