It’s no secret that system downtime is bad for business. For one thing, it’s expensive. According to a 2012 Aberdeen Group report, the average cost of an hour of downtime is now $138,888 USD — up more than 30% from 2010. Given these rising costs, it’s no wonder that ensuring high availability of business-critical applications is becoming a top priority.

When it comes to choosing the right downtime protection, there are a couple of important things to keep in mind. First, deployment of applications on hypervisor software for server virtualization is increasing at a steady pace. It is expected to continue until almost all applications are implemented on virtualized servers. As a result, you need to ensure that your downtime protection can support virtualized and non-virtualized applications. Second, with IT spending and headcount on the decline, downtime protection should be easy to install and maintain since there are fewer IT resources available to manage the assets.

Available downtime protection options range from adding no additional protection other than that offered by general-purpose servers to deploying applications on fault-tolerant hardware. Which option you choose will depend on the type of application in question. If the application is mission-critical, then you’ll need higher levels of protection. A strong segment of companies are choosing to protect each of their mission critical applications with fault-tolerant servers because they provide the highest availability, require no specialized IT skills, and are now priced within reach of even small to mid-size companies. Looking for guidance in choosing between the right downtime protection options for your “can’t fail” applications? Download the Aberdeen Group report to learn more.