Lightning takes down a data center. Are solar explosions next?

Amazon's data center in Ireland went down after a lightning strike, wreaking havoc for many of its European EC2 customers.

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The lightning strike on Amazon’s data center apparently was a triple whammy. Not only did it hit the electricity supplier, it hit primary and secondary power supplies and delayed the backup generators. It may be that there was little in the way of preventing the outage from a power perspective. The Uptime Institute does provide some advice in this article here; it’s worth a read.

There’s more to a solid disaster recovery plan than power supplies of course. For example, once the power goes down, automated fail-overs to different sites can help stem data loss. And even then, there may be a bit of data loss unless there’s real-time data replication between the various sites.

I’d love to hear from readers about their best practices for protecting data centers against lightning. And, of course, solar explosions. Got any (best practices, not explosions)?

 

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