What are recovery point objective and recovery time objective?

Two of the most important terms in data protection and disaster recovery (DR) are “recovery time objective” (RTO) and “recovery point objective” (RPO). These terms are the guides that organizations use in order to choose a backup plan that is optimized for their data. Recovery point objective and recovery time objective are two critical terms that lay the foundation to identify and analyze potential strategies in your disaster recovery and business continuity plan. These strategy options include those solutions that enabled resuming of business processes in a time period near or at the RTO/RPO.

  • Recovery time objective is the targeted amount of time and a service level within which a business process must be restored after a disruption or disaster in order to avoid consequences associated with a loss of business continuity.
  • Recovery point objective is the age of files that must be recovered from backup storage for normal operations to resume if a computer, system, or network goes down as a result of a hardware, program, or communications failure.


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