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VMware Site Recovery Manager : Know all about it

Last updated on 28th Jan 2023, Artciles, Blog

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Ravichandran (Data Engineer - Financial Performance and Analytics )

Ravichandran has a wealth of experience in cloud computing, BI, Perl, Salesforce, Microstrategy, and Cobit. Moreover, he has over 9 years of experience as a data engineer, financial performance, and analytics.

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    • In this article you will learn:
    • 1.Introduction.
    • 2.Features and Benefits of Site Recovery Manager.
    • 3.Terminology.
    • 4.Architectural Overview.
    • 5.Conclusion.

Introduction:

Disaster recovery site migration and non-disruptive testing capabilities are offered to VMware customers by VMware Site Recovery Manager 8.4 an addition to the VMware vCenter.VMware Site uses an HTML5-based “Clarity” UI and is fully integrated with a VMware vCenter Server.The process of migrating, recovering, testing, re-protecting and failing-back virtual machine workloads is automated with the help of Site Recovery Manager and a variety of replication solutions such as VMware vSphere Replication.The VMware vCenter Server at two sites is coordinated by servers called Site Recovery Manager. This will allow copies of the virtual machines to start up as the original virtual machines at the protected site are shut down. These virtual machines take on the duty of offering the same services by using data replicated from a secure site.

Recovery plans that outline virtual machines shutdown and restart sequences the resource pools to which they are assigned and the networks they can access control the migration of protected inventory and services between sites. With the aid of isolated networks and a temporary copy of replicated data Site Recovery Manager makes it possible to test recovery plans without interfering with ongoing business at either site. Individual applications and entire sites can be migrated using the multiple recovery plans giving you more control over which virtual machines are failed over and which are failed back. This also makes testing schedules flexible.A virtual infrastructure platform’s feature set is expanded by Site Recovery Manager to offer quick business continuity in the event of partial or total site failures.

Features and Benefits of Site Recovery Manager:

  • The requirement for app-specific point solutions is eliminated by an application-agnostic protection.
  • Recovery times are shortened by automated orchestration of site failover and failback with a single click.
  • Recovery objectives are more predictable when recovery plans are frequently tested in a non-disruptive manner.
  • Manual runbooks are replaced by centralised management of recovery plans using HTML5 UI.
  • Disaster prevention and data center mobility are both made possible by the planned migration workflow.
  • Integrating VMware vSAN with hyper-converged software-defined storage reduces the DR footprint.
  • Supports various vCenter versions allowing flexible pairing and upgrading
  • Integration of vSphere Replication provides VM-centric replication that eliminates reliance on storage.
  • Support for Virtual Volumes (vVols) an array-based replication method provides options for synchronous replication with no data loss.
  • Protection is automated by Storage Policy Based Protection Groups, VMware vRealize Orchestrator and VMware vRealize Automation through self-service policy-based provisioning.
VMware Site Recovery Manager

Terminology:

Recovery time objective (RTO): a period of time that a business process should be operational again after a disaster or other disruption in order to prevent unfavorable effects from the disruption to business continuity.

Recovery point objective (RPO): If a system goes offline due to a hardware, software or communications failure the oldest file that can be restored from backup storage before normal operations can resume is.

Consistency group: one or more concurrently replicated LUNs or volumes. All items in the consistency group are restored to the same point in time when they are recovered.

Protected site: web page with protected virtual machines.

Recovery site: In the event of a failover the site where protected virtual machines are recovered.

Note: When replication occurs in both directions and Site Recovery Manager is protecting virtual machines at both sites the same site can serve as both a protected site and a recovery site.

Datastore group: In a Site Recovery Manager one or more datastores are treated as a unit. The consistency group in an array replication solution is a common example.

Architectural Overview:

Site Recovery Manager 8.4 is installed in a paired configuration such as a protected site and a recovery site. A Site Recovery Manager 8.4 is installed in a paired configuration such as a protected site and a recovery site. Both sites have the Site Recovery Manager 8.4 software installed as an appliance. It supports multiple vCenter versions at either site. Every site must have one or more vSphere hosts running version 6.5 or higher. For more information see the Site Recovery Manager 8.4 Compatibility Matrixes.Site Recovery Manager transfers data between sites using vSphere Replication, array-based replication, Virtual Volume (vVols) replication or stretched storage. Every site must have array-based replication and stretched storage licenced and configured, as well as an appropriate storage replication adaptor installed on a Site Recovery Manager server. A Virtual Volume (vVols) replication must also be licenced and configured however the storage replication adaptor is not required when using Virtual Volumes.

Use Cases:

Though disaster recovery from one site to another is the most obvious use case for a Site Recovery Manager it can also handle a variety of other use cases.

Disaster Recovery:

Site Recovery Manager was created specifically to handle disaster recovery or unplanned failover. This is the most important but least used use case for a Site Recovery Manager. Unexpected site failures are uncommon but when they do occur a quick recovery is critical to business. A Site Recovery Manager can assist in this situation by automating and orchestrating the recovery of critical business systems for partial or total site failures ensuring the shortest RTO.

Disaster Avoidance:

Another common application for a Site Recovery Manager is preventive failover. This could be anything from an impending storm to the threat of power outages. A Site Recovery Manager when combined with a supported stretched storage solution can orchestrate a cross-vCenter vMotion of virtual machines allowing for zero-downtime disaster avoidance.Without the use of stretched storage Site Recovery Manager enables the graceful shutdown of virtual machines at a protected site, full data replication and ordered startup of virtual machines and applications at a recovery site ensuring app consistency and zero data loss.

Site Recovery Manager

Planned Migration:

The most common way Site Recovery Manager is used is to move virtual machines and applications between sites on a regular basis. This could be for datacenter relocation, global load balancing or scheduled site maintenance.Site Recovery Manager has all of the capabilities required to ensure a smooth site migration. It enables full migration testing in a completely non-disruptive manner for production systems. It also helps with zero-downtime migrations by utilising stretched storage. Furthermore in planned migration mode it will pause if any problems are discovered during migration giving you the chance to correct them.

Upgrade and Patch Testing:

The Site Recovery Manager test environment is ideal for performing operating system application upgrade and patch testing. Test environments are complete copies of production environments configured in an isolated network segment ensuring that testing is as realistic as possible while not affecting production workloads or replication.

Topologies:

A Site Recovery Manager can be used in a variety of failover scenarios depending on the needs constraints and goals of the customer.

Active-Passive:

A traditional active-passive scenario includes a production site that runs applications and services and a secondary or recovery site that is idle until a recovery is required. This topology is common and while it provides dedicated recovery resources it requires paying for unused site, servers and storage.

Deployment and Configuration:

The deployment and configuration of Site Recovery Manager is more straightforward and logical.

Conclusion:

VMware Infrastructure provides a simple architecture in a virtual environment that allows businesses to manage computing, storage and networking resources without having to worry about underlying physical hardware.

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