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Scalable Internet Architectures by Theo Schlossnagle

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Chapter 3. Mission-Critical Environments

Mission-critical is a commonly abused term. Some think it describes any architecture that they run; others believe it is a term for “systems that launch spacecraft.” For the purpose of further discussion, we will equate mission-critical systems with business-critical systems. Business-critical is easy to define: Each business can simply choose what it believes to be vital to its operations.

Perhaps the most important issue to address from a technical perspective is to determine what aspects of a technical infrastructure are critical to the mission. Note the word is aspects and not components. This isn’t solely about equipment and software; it is also about policies and procedures. Without going into ...

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