Tag Archives: SRM

VMware Released: VMware Site Recovery Manager 5.8 and vSphere Data Protection 5.8

srm5.8

VMware announces vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.8 and vSphere Data Protection (VDP) 5.8 at VMworld 2014 at San Francisco.

This new release of SRM aims to deliver next-generation Disaster Recovery capabilities for vSphere environments.

Here is list of new capabilities included with SRM 5.8 :-

  • 5x the scale of protection – IT organizations can set up recovery plans scalable up to 5,000 virtual machines per vCenter Server using array-based replication to enable enterprise-level protection–five times larger than with previous limits.
  • Enhanced self-service – New integrations will offer customers self-service access to provision predefined disaster recovery protection tiers to new VMs via blueprints in vCloud Automation Center when using array-based replication.

Here is updated VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager 5.8 Datasheet!

VMware also announces vSphere Data Protection Advanced 5.8. Powered by EMC Avamar technology, vSphere Data Protection Advanced offers simple, efficient, and robust backup capabilities for vSphere environments.

The new release delivers:

  • Enhanced support for business-critical apps – customers can now perform backups for Microsoft SQL Server clusters as well as Microsoft Exchange DAGs (Database Availability Groups).
  • Customizable Proxies and Backup Work Streams – customers now have the flexibility of choosing the number of parallel backup workstreams to satisfy Service Level Agreements (SLAs) helping them to increase backup scalability and performance.
  • Enhanced Replication – customers can now restore replicated backups at either primary or disaster recovery site.

To see more on vSphere Data Protection 5.8 click here

Thank You !!

Roshan Jha

vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 7

Now we are going to discuss Recovery Plan, Testing and Performing a Failover and Failback

===================================================

Recovery Plan

Recovery Plans are created at the recovery site so that they are accessible and can be run from the recovery site when there is a disaster at the protected site. A Recovery Plan is executed to Failover the virtual machine workload that was running at the protected site to the recovery site. It can also be used to perform Planned Migrations. A Recovery Plan is a series of configuration steps that has to be performed to Failover the protected virtual machines to the recovery site.

Note :- A Recovery Plan should be associated with at least one  Protection Group.

Creating a Recovery Plan

Once you have Protection Groups created, the next step would be to create a Recovery Plan for these Protection Groups. The Recovery Plan should be created at the recovery site SRM. This is because, in the event of a disaster, the protected site may become inaccessible. Hence, for very obvious reasons, a Recovery Plan is always created at the recovery site.

In other words, a recovery plan is like a runbook which is based on a protection group. The SRM recovery plan consists of the following:

  • List of protected VMs included in the protection group
  • Startup order for the VMs
  • Custom steps if applicable

The following steps show you how to create a Recovery Plan:

1. Navigate to the vCenter Server’s inventory home and click on Site Recovery.

2. Click on Recovery Plans on the left pane and Click on Create Recovery Plan to bring up the Create Recovery Plan wizard

RP13. In the Create Recovery Plan wizard, select the Recovery Site and click on Next to continue. If the Recovery Plan wizard is initiated at a site, then the wizard will select the other site in the site pair as the recovery site. For example, if you were to initiate the Recovery Plan wizard at SITE-A, then the wizard will auto select SITE-B as the recovery site and vice versa.

RP24. As shown in the following screenshot, select the Protection Group that you would like to use and click on Next to continue:

RP35. In the next wizard screen, click on Test Networks. The test networks are set to Auto by default. The Auto networks are isolated bubble networks and don’t connect to any physical network. So unless you have manually created an isolated test network port group at the recovery site, you can leave it at the Auto setting. Click on Next to continue:

RP46. In the next screen, enter a Recovery Plan Name and an optional Description and click on Next to continue. The Recovery Plan name can be any name of your choice.

RP57. In the Ready to Complete window, click on Finish to create the Recovery Plan.

RP68. You should see the Create Recovery Plan task completed successfully in the Recent Tasks pane.

===========================================================

Modify Recovery Plan

Our basic recovery plan is now created, we can now configure some advanced features and properties of the recovery plan. These steps are not mandatory but take a look and play around with the settings to get a better understanding of the product.

1. Select the recovery plan created in the previous step. Notice that the action bar above will now display some additional actions like Test, Cleanup, Recovery, Reprotect and Cancel.

RP72. Select the Virtual Machines tab. Select a random VM and click Configure Recovery.

RP83. In the properties window you can modify the settings for this particular VM like IP settings on the Protected Site and the Recovery Site, the priority group this VM belongs, dependencies of other VMs, shutdown actions, and startup actions, pre-power on steps and post-power on steps.

RP94. Take a look at the recovery steps under the Recovery Steps tab and review the recovery steps that will be executed during a recovery. You can view the Test , Cleanup, Recovery and Reprotect steps from the View drop down menu.

RP10

=================================================================

Testing and Performing a Failover and Failback

In the previous section, we learned how to create Protection Groups and Recovery Plans. Now we will learn how to test Recovery Plans that are already created, how to use them to perform a Failover, Planned migration, Reprotect, and Failback.

Testing a Recovery Plan

A Recovery Plan should be tested for its readiness to make sure that it would work as expected in the event of a real disaster. Most organizations periodically review and update their recovery runbook to make sure that they have an optimized, working plan for a recovery. With SRM, the testing of a Recovery Plan can now be automated.

1. Navigate to the vCenter Server’s inventory home page and click on Site Recovery.

2. Click on Recovery Plans on the left pane and Click on the Recovery Plan that you want to test and click on the Test toolbar item to bring up the Test wizard, as shown in the following screenshot:

TP13. As shown in the following screenshot, the first screen of the wizard will indicate which of the sites have been designated as the protected and recovery sites, the site connection status, and the number of VMs protected:

TP3By default, the storage option Replicate the recent changes to the recovery site is selected. I would recommend not deselecting this option because we replicate the recent changes during a Planned Migration. So, it is important  that the ability of the array to respond to a nonscheduled replication request is tested. However, we might not need to do this if the replication is synchronous. Click on Next to continue.

5. The next screen will summarize the selected options as shown in the following screenshot. Review them and click on Start to initiate the test:

TP26. You should now see a Test Recovery Plan task in the Recent Tasks pane. Navigate to the Recovery Steps tab to watch the progress of the test as shown in the following screenshot: TP46. Once the test completes successfully, you will see the following Test Complete banner appear in the Summary tab of the Recovery Plan:

CP1

==========================================================

Performing the Cleanup after a test

We know from the previous section that during the course of the testing of a Recovery Plan, SRM executes the creation of certain elements to enact a disaster recovery in a manner that will not affect the running environment. Hence, the changes made and the objects created are temporary and have to be cleaned up after a successful test. Fortunately, this is not a manual process either. SRM provides an automated method to perform a cleanup.

The following actions will occur during a cleanup:

• The ESXi hosts will be put back into the DPM standby mode

• The Recovery VMs will be powered off

• The Suspended noncritical VMs will be powered on

• The inventory entries of the Recovery VMs will be replaced with their corresponding Shadow VM entries

• The VMFS volume will be unmounted

• The LUN device will be detached

• The storage initiators and Refresh Storage System will be rescanned

• The writable snapshot that was created will be deleted

• The Port Group and the vSwitch that were created for the bubble network will be removed

The following procedure will guide you through the steps required for the cleanup:

1. Navigate to the vCenter Server’s inventory home page and click on  Site Recovery.

2. Click on Recovery Plans on the left pane and Select the Recovery Plan with the status Test Complete.

3. Click on the Cleanup item in the toolbar to bring up the cleanup wizard:

CP24. In the cleanup wizard, the details regarding the current protected and recovery sites, their connection status, and the number of protected VMs are displayed. Note that the Force Cleanup option is grayed out. This option will only be available if the cleanup operation attempt has failed during the previous attempt. Click on Next to continue.

5. The next screen will summarize the cleanup options selected. Click on Start to initiate the cleanup.

7. The Recent Tasks pane should show the Cleanup Test Recovery task as successfully completed.

==================================================================

Performing a Planned Migration

VMware SRM can be used to migrate your workload from one site to another. A Planned Migration is done when the protected site is available and is running the virtual machine workload.

There are many use cases, of which the following two are prominent:

• When migrating your infrastructure to a new hardware

• When migrating your virtual machine storage from one array to another

Note :- A Planned Migration will replicate the most recent changes with the help of storage replication. This is not optional.

The following procedure will guide you through the steps required to perform  a Planned Migration:

1. Navigate to the vCenter Server’s inventory home page and click on  Site Recovery.

2. Click on Recovery Plans on the left pane and Select the Recovery Plan that was created for the Planned Migration and click on the Recovery toolbar item, as shown in the following screenshot, to bring up the recovery wizard:

RP13. Read the info in the Recovery Confirmation window, check the “I understand that this process will permanently alter the virtual machine and infrastructure of both the protected and recovery datacenters.” box and make sure that Planned Migration is selected under the Recovery Type. Click Next to continue.

PM14. The next screen will summarize the wizard options that were selected.  Click on Start to initiate the migration.

5. The Recent Tasks pane should now show the Failover Recovery Plan task  as successfully completed.

PM26. When the recovery process completes, you should see a message as depicted in the screenshot below.

PM37. Notice that the VMs on the Protected Site are powered off and on the Recovery Site, powered on.

PM4The Planned Migration will not proceed further if any of the recovery steps fail. However, when you re-attempt the Planned Migration, it would resume the operation from the step at which it failed. This enables you to fix the problem  and resume from where it failed, saving a considerable amount of time.

==================================================================

Performing a disaster recovery (Failover)

A Failover is performed when the protected site becomes fully or partially unavailable. We use a Recovery Plan that is already created and tested to perform the Failover. Keep in mind that SRM does not automatically determine the occurrence of a disaster at the protected site; hence, a recovery is always to be manually initiated.

The following steps show how to perform a Failover:

1. Navigate to the vCenter Server’s inventory home page and click on Site Recovery.

2. Click on Recovery Plans on the left pane and Select the Recovery Plan that was created for the disaster recovery and click on the Recovery toolbar item to bring up the recovery wizard.

4. In the recovery wizard, as shown in the following screenshot, agree to the Recovery Confirmation, set the Recovery Type as Disaster Recovery, and click on Next to continue:

PM75. The next screen will summarize the selected wizard options. Click on Start to perform the recovery.

6. The Recovery Steps tab of the Recovery Plan will show the progress of each of the steps involved.

7. Once the Failover is complete, the status of the Recovery Plan should read Recovery Complete.

The recovery steps involved in a disaster recovery (Failover) is the same as in that of a Planned Migration, except for the fact that SRM ignores any unsuccessful attempts to pre-synchronize the storage or shut down the protected virtual machines.

============================================================

Initiate Unplanned Failover

This process is very similar to the one performed with the Planned Migration but in this case the Protection Site is not available.

1. On the Protected Site, simulate a disaster by powering off the vCenter Server and the ESXi hosts containing the protected VMs.

2. On the Recovery Site, open the Site Recovery Manager, navigate to Recovery Plans and press the red Recovery button, just like in the previous step.

3. By now you should get a warning stating that the connection to the vCenter Server at the Protected Site has been lost.

4. In the Recovery Confirmation window, notice that the Planned Migration is now grayed out. Select the “I understand that this process will permanently alter the virtual machine and infrastructure of both the protected and recovery datacenters.” option and click Next to proceed.

PM55. Review the settings and press Start to begin the recovery process.

6. Switch over to the Recovery Steps tab and monitor the progress. Notice the errors stating that the connection to the remote server is down. Despite the failure the recovery process continues. The VMs should be up and running in couple of minutes.

PM6If the failover and unplanned migration process both complete successfully, your SRM implementation is properly configured.

=============================================================

Forced Recovery

Forced Recovery is used when the protected site is no longer operational enough to allow SRM to perform its tasks at the protected site before the Failover.

For instance, there is an unexpected power outage at the protected site causing not just the ESXi hosts but also the storage array to become unavailable. In this scenario, SRM cannot perform any of its tasks, such as shutting down the protected VMs or replicating the most recent storage changes (if the replication is asynchronous), at the protected site.

Enabling Forced Recovery for a site

Forced Recovery is not enabled by default, but it can be enabled at the site’s advanced settings.

To do so, perform the following steps:

1. Navigate to the vCenter Server’s inventory home page and click on Site Recovery.

2. Click on Sites on the left pane.

3. Right-click on the site and click on Advanced Settings.

PM84. In the Advanced Settings windows, select the category recovery from the  left pane.

5. Select the checkbox against the recovery.forceRecovery setting, as shown in the following screenshot, and click on OK to enable Forced Recovery:

PM9

Running Forced Recovery

Running Forced Recovery will skip all the steps that otherwise should have been performed against the protected site. You should use Forced Recovery only during circumstances where the protected site is completely down, leaving no connectivity to either the ESXi hosts or the storage array.

The following steps show how Forced Recovery is executed:

1. Navigate to the vCenter Server’s inventory home page and click on  Site Recovery.

2. Click on Recovery Plans on the left pane and Right-click on the Recovery Plan that you want to run and click on Recovery.

3. In the recovery wizard, select the I understand that this process will permanently alter the virtual machines and infrastructure of both the protected and recovery datacenters checkbox.

4. Select the Recovery Type as Disaster Recovery, select the checkbox Forced Recovery – recovery site operations only, and click on Next:

PM105. You will be prompted to confirm the Forced Recovery. Click on Yes to confirm.

PM116. Review the operation summary and click on Start to initiate the Forced Recovery.

=======================================================

Reprotecting a site

After you Failover the workload from a protected site to the recovery site, the recovery site has no protection enabled for the new workload that it has begun hosting. SRM provides a method to enable protection of the recovery site. This method is called Reprotect.

A Reprotect operation will reverse the direction of the replication, thus designating the recovery site as the new protected site. The Reprotect operation can only be done on a Recovery Plan with the Recovery Complete status. Also, keep in mind that a Reprotect operation can only be executed when you have repaired the failed site  and made it available to become a recovery site.

For instance, let’s assume that SITE-A and SITE-B are the protected and recovery sites, respectively. If workload at SITE-A were failed over to SITE-B, then to Reprotect SITE-B, SITE-A should be made accessible. This would mean fixing  the problems that caused the failure at SITE-A.

The following steps show how to perform the Reprotect operation:

1. Navigate to the vCenter Server’s inventory home page and click on  Site Recovery.

2. Click on Recovery Plans in the left pane and Select the Recovery Plan with the Recovery Complete status, as shown  in the following screenshot, and click on the toolbar item Reprotect:

PM123. In the Reprotect wizard screen, agree to the Reprotect Confirmation and click on Next to continue:

PM134. In the next screen, click on Start to begin the Reprotect operation.

5. You should see a progressing Reprotect Recovery Plan task in the Recent Tasks pane. Also, the Recovery Steps tab will show the progress of every step involved in the Reprotect operation.

6. The status of the Recovery Plan after a successful Reprotect operation  should read Ready.

======================================================

Failback to the protected site

In a scenario where, after a Failover, the original protected site is fixed and is  made available to host the virtual machine workload, you can use SRM to  automate a Failback.

The Failback, although automated, is a two-step process, which is as follows:

1. Step 1 we need to perform a Reprotect operation.

2. Step 2 will be to perform a Failover.

============================================================

This concludes the series about implementing and configuring the VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager 5. I hope you enjoyed the series  🙂 

Cheers…..Roshan Jha!

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 1

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 2

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 3

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 4

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 5

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 6

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 7

Note :- I have used pictures in this post from SRM book written by Abhilash GB and from blog (http://defaultreasoning.com) by Marek.Z and would like to Thank both of them 🙂

vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 6

First we are going to discuss Replication With VR and then will cover Array-based Replication.

To protect a single virtual machine or a group of virtual machines, the virtual machine files need to be replicated from the Protected Site to the Recovery Site. Since we have already set up a VR infrastructure we will proceed using this mechanism. Here we will skip the replication configuration of a single VM and concentrate on configuring replication of multiple VMs since it’s the most common setup in a virtual infrastructure.

Configure Replication for multiple VMs

1). Open the vSphere Client and from the Home page go to VMs and Templates.

2). Select a folder in the left pane and select the Virtual Machines tab. Select All the VMs you want to configure Replication. Right-Click the selected VMs and choose vSphere Replication from Drop Down..

VRR13). In the Configure Replication wizard, select desired Recovery Point Objective (RPO – Minimum 15 min and Max 24 hr), and lease the “Initial copies of .vmdk files have been placed on the target datastoresun-checked since we didn’t copy the files to the Recovery Site. Click Next.

VRR24). Select the appropriate VR Server (If you have multiple VR Servers) at the Recovery Site or leave the setting to Auto-assign VR Server. Click Next to proceed.

VRR35). Review the settings and click Finish.

VRR46). Click Close when the Configuring Replication process is completed.

VRR5============================================================

Configure Datastore Mapping

Now that the replication of VMs has been set up, we need to create the datastore mapping for the replicated VMs on the Recovery Site.

1). On the Protected Site, open the Site Recovery Manager and select vSphere Replication in the left pane. Select the Protected Site  and go to the Datastore Mappings tab.

VRR62). Select datastores under the Source Datastore and map it to the appropriate datastore at the Recovery Site by clicking on the Configure Mapping button.

VRR73). In the Datastore Mapping window, select the appropriate datastore and click OK.

VRR84). Verify the mapping under the Target Datastore column on the Datastore Mappings tab.

5). To check if the replication is running, select the Recovery Site in the vSphere Replication and select the Virtual Machines tab. You should see something similar to the screenshot below.

VRR9OK, so the files of the virtual machines are now synchronized between the Protected Site and Recovery Site. Let’s proceed now with configuration of the Protection Group.

===========================================================

Now Let’s discuss and configure VMs with Array-Based Replication

Datastore Groups

A datastore group is a container that aggregates one or more replication-enabled datastores. The datastore groups are created by SRM and cannot be manually altered. A replication-enabled datastore is a datastore who’s LUN has a replication schedule enabled at the array.

DP1A datastore group will contain only a single datastore if the datastore doesn’t store files of virtual machines from other datastores. See the preceding single-datastore datastore group conceptual diagram.

A datastore group can also contain more than one datastore. SRM aggregates multiple datastores into a single group if they have virtual machines whose files are distributed onto these datastores. For example, if VM-A has two VMDKs placed on datastores Datastore-M and Datastore-N each, and then both these datastores become part of the same datastore group.

Protection Groups

“A protection group is a group of virtual machines that fail over together to the recovery site during a test or a recovery procedure.”

Unlike vSphere Replication, SRM cannot enable protection on individual virtual machines. All the virtual machines that are hosted on the datastores in a datastore group are protected. Meaning, with SRM, protection is enabled at the datastore group level. This is because, with an array-based replication, the LUNs backing the datastores are replicated. The array doesn’t know which VMs are hosted on the datastore. It just replicates the LUN, block by block. So, at the SRM layer, the protection is enabled at the datastore level. In a way, a Protection Group is nothing but a software construct to which datastore groups are added, which in turn includes all the VMs stored on them in the Protection Group.

When creating a Protection Group, you will have to choose the datastore groups that will be included. Keep in mind that you cannot individually select the datastores in a datastore group. If it were ever allowed to do so, then you will have virtual machines with not all of its files protected. Let’s assume that you have a virtual machine, VM-A, with two disks (VMDK-1 and VMDK-2) placed on two different datastores. Let’s also say VMDK-1 is on Datastore-X and VMDK-2 is on Datastore-Y. When creating a Protection Group, if you were allowed to select the individual datastores and if you choose only one of them, then you will leave the remaining disks of the VM unprotected. Hence, SRM doesn’t allow selecting individual datastores from a datastore group as a measure to prevent such a scenario. The following diagram shows the modified conceptual structure of the datastore group:

DP2Note:- That a datastore group cannot be a part of two Protection Groups at the same time.

===========================================================

Creating Protection Group Based on VR (vSphere Replication)

The protection group can be used in one or multiple recovery plans which we will create later. Protection groups can be Array-based or VR-based. In this case we will create a protection group based on vSphere Replication since it was configured in the previous part.

Create Protection Group

1). On the Protected Site, open the Site Recovery Manager and select Protection Groups in the left pane. Click on Create Protection Group to start the wizard.

CPG12). In the Create Protection Group wizard, select the Protected Site and vSphere Replication as the protection group type. Click Next.

PG23). In the Select Virtual Machines window, select the VMs you want to add to this Protection Group and click Next.

PG34). Provide a suggestive Protection Group Name and alternatively a Description for this Protection Group and click Next.

PG45). Review the settings and click on Finish when ready.

PG56). Wait until the Protection Group is configured. You can monitor the progress in the task pane.

Now that the VMs are protected we can start building a recovery plan. where we will configure a recovery plan for our VMs.

==========================================================

Creating Protection Group Based on Array-based Replication

A Protection Group is created in the SRM UI at the protected site.

The following procedure will guide you through the steps required to create a Protection Group:

1. On the Protected Site, open the Site Recovery Manager and select Protection Groups in the left pane. Click on Create Protection Group to start the wizard.

CPG12).  In the Create Protection Group wizard, select the Protected Site and Array based Replication (SAN) as the protection group type and  Correct Array pair Click Next.

CPG5

CPG63). On the next screen, choose a datastore group that you would like to protect. When you select a datastore group, the bottom pane will list all the VMs hosted on the datastores in the group. You cannot individually select the VMs though. Although I have selected only a single datastore group, we can select multiple datastore groups to become part of the Protection Group. Click on Next to continue

CPG34). In the next screen, provide the Protection Group Name and an optional description, and click on Next to continue.

The Protection Group Name can be any name that you would prefer to identify the Protection Group with. The common naming convention is to indicate the type or purpose of the VMs. For instance, if you were protecting the SQL Server VMs, then you might name the Protection Group as SQL Server Protection Group; or, if it  were to be a set of hyphenate VMs, you may name it as High Priority  VMs Protection Group. 

5). On the Ready to Complete screen, Review the wizard options selected and click on Finish to create a  Protection Group:

CPG4

=========================================================

So, what exactly happens when you create a Protection Group?

When you create a Protection Group, it enables protection on all the VMs in the chosen datastore group and creates shadow VMs at the recovery site. In detail, this means that at the protected site vCenter Server, you should see a Create Protection Group task complete; subsequently a Protect VM task completes successfully for each of the VMs in the Protection Group. See the following screenshot for reference:

CPG7At the recovery site of the vCenter Server, you should see the Create Protection Group, Protect VM (one for each VM), Create virtual machine (one for each VM), and Recompute Datastore Groups tasks completed successfully.

CPG8As shown in the following screenshot, the shadow VMs appear in the vCenter Server’s inventory at the recovery site:

CPG9As they are solely placeholders, you cannot perform any power operations on it. There are other operations that are possible but are not recommended. Hence, a warning will be displayed, requesting a confirmation, as shown in the following screenshot:

CPG10The placeholder datastores will only have the configuration file (.vmx), teaming configuration file (.vmxf), and a snapshot metadata file (.vmsd) for each VM.

CPG11These files will be automatically deleted when you delete the Protection Group.

==============================================================

In the next part we will discuss Recovery Plan, Testing and Performing a Failover and Failback. Click here to continue to part 7.

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 1

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 2

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 3

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 4

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 5

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 6

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 7

Note :- I have used pictures in this post from SRM book written by Abhilash GB and from blog (http://defaultreasoning.com) by Marek.Z and would like to Thank both of them 🙂

vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 5

Now SRA (Array Manager) or VR infrastructure is up and running we can start to configure the inventory mappings. The Inventory Mappings provide a convenient way to specify how the resources at the Protected Site are mapped to the resources at the Recovery Site. You can create a mapping of the following objects in the vCenter Server:

  • Resources
  • VM folders
  • Networks
  • Datastores

Inventory mapping are not mandatory but highly recommend. Let Start and configure the resource mapping, folder mapping, network mapping and a placeholder datastore.

Resource Mapping

We need to provide a correlation between the compute resource containers on both the sites. The compute resource containers are cluster, resource pool, and ESXi host. This is achieved with the help of resource mappings. Resource mappings respect the presence of these containers, which means that if there is a cluster or resource pool at the site, the ESXi hosts are not made available as a selectable compute container.

This is how you configure resource mappings:

1. Navigate to vCenter Server’s inventory home page and click on Site Recovery.

2. Click on Sites in the left pane, select a site, and navigate to the Resource Mappings tab. Select the resource container (a cluster, resource pool, vAPP, or host) you want to map, and click on Configure Mapping to bring up the Mapping window.

This is example of Cluster if you want Cluster as Resource Mappings

RM1

This is example of vAPP if you want vAPP as Resource Mappings

RM73). In the Mapping window, browse the resource inventory of the recovery site, select the destination resource container (a cluster, resource pool, vAPP, or host), and click on OK to confirm.

(Select vAPP as Resource) 

RM5

 

(Select Cluster as Resource)

RM34). The selected resource should now appear as mapped in the Recovery Site Resource column on the Resource Mappings tab.

RM6=======================================================

Folder mappings

Folders are inventory containers that can only be created using vCenter Server.  They are used to group inventory objects of the same type for easier management. There are different types of folders. The folder type is determined by the  inventory-hierarchy level they are created at. The folder names are as follows:

• Datacenter folder

• Hosts and clusters folder

• Virtual machine and template folder

• Network folder

• Storage folder The vSphere Web Client

This is how you configure Folder mappings: 

1). Click on Protected Sites in the left pane and navigate to the Folder Mappings tab. Select the virtual machine folder that you want to map,  and click on Configure Mapping to bring up the Mapping window:-

RM82). In the mapping window, create or select a recovery folder and click OK.

RM93). The selected folder should now appear as mapped in the Recovery Site Resource on the Folder Mapping tab.

RM10

 

========================================================

Network mappings

Network configuration at the protected and recovery sites need not be identical. Network mappings provide a method to form a correlation between the port groups (standard or distributed) of the protected and recovery steps. Let’s say we have a port group with the name VM Network at the protected site, and it is mapped to a port group with the name Recovery Network at the recovery site.  In this case, a virtual machine that is connected to VM Network will be reconfigured to use the Recovery Network when failed over.

This is how you configure network mappings: 

1). With the Protected Site still selected, go to the Network Mappings tab, Select the Network to map and click on Configure Mapping.

RM112). In the mapping window, select the appropriate network or dvSwitch port group at the Recovery Site and click OK.

RM123). The selected network should now appear as mapped in the Recovery Site Resource on the Network Mappings tab.

RM13

=================================================================

Configuring Placeholder Datastores

For every virtual machine that becomes part of a Protection Group, SRM creates a shadow virtual machine. A placeholder datastore is used to store the files for the shadow virtual machines. The datastore used for this purpose should be accessible to all the hosts in the datacenter/cluster serving the role of a recovery-host. Configuring placeholder datastores is an essential step in forming an SRM environment. Assuming that each of these paired sites is geographically separated, each site will have its own placeholder datastore. The following figure shows the site and placeholder datastore relationship:

RM14This is how you configure placeholder datastores:

1). With the Protected Site still selected, go to the Placeholder Datastores tab and click on Configure Placeholder Datastore.

RM152).In the mapping window, select the appropriate datastore and click on OK.

RM163). The selected datastore should now appear under the Datastore column in the Placeholder Datastores tab.

RM17Remember to configure the Resource mapping, folder mapping, network mapping and the placeholder mapping at the Recovery Site.

The inventory mappings are now configured and ready to use. Continue to SRM-Part 6 where we will configure vSphere Replication for our VMs.

========================================================

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 1

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 2

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 3

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 4

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 5

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 6

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 7

Note :- I have used pictures in this post from SRM book written by Abhilash GB and from blog (http://defaultreasoning.com) by Marek.Z and would like to Thank both of them 🙂

vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 2

Installation Repair

Altering authentication information to SRM database or vCenter server system will immediately prevent SRM to function correctly.

For example, you change the Administrator password for the vCenter server, SRM will no longer able to communicate with vCenter server. Whenever Authentication information changes after SRM installed, use Installation Repair wizard to update SRM with new credentials.

You can use Installation Repair Wizard to change the User and the Password for vCenter Server Administrator, the certification method for Authentication and the SRM database information.

One important thing to remember about using the Repair feature is that it over-write the existing installation of SRM. Therefore if you have applied patches to SRM and used Repair Wizard to change the User and the Password for vCenter Server Administrator, the certification method for Authentication and the SRM database information, You have to reapply all the patches.

Let’s start The Repair Process :-

1. Double click .EXE file to start Repair Wizard..

si12. Installer will detect that SRM is installed on the server so either we can Repair or Remove from this system. Choose Repair and click Next..

SRMPT2-23. If you were using Storage-Array Replication but now want to use vSphere         Replication Select Install vSphere Replication and click Next..

si84. Change the User or the Password information for vCenter Server and click Next..

SRMPT2-35. Change Certificate source if needed and click Next..

SRMPT2-46. Change Database Configuration Information if needed and Click Next..

SRMPT2-57. Follow the windows and click Finish to complete the Installation Repair.

========================================================

Site Pairing Process

Once SRM is installed on both the sites, the next step is to pair the sites together. The pairing process establishes a connection between the vCenter Servers at the protected and recovery sites, which makes the SRM instances at both the sites aware of its counterpart at the other site (protected site/recovery site). Without the sites being paired, we can’t proceed further with the configuration of the DR setup.

This is how the sites are paired:

1) Connect to either vCenter Server using vSphere Client –> Home –> Solutions and Applications –> And Click Site Recovery. (Site Pairing can be done either from Protected Site or from Recovery Site vCenter Server).

SitePair-12) Click on Sites in the left pane.

3) Right-click on the local site listed, and click on Configure Connection to bring up the configure connection wizard.

SitePair-24)  In the Configure Connection wizard, supply the FQDN of the remote vCenter Server and click Next to continue. Accept any subsequent certificate warnings.

SitePair-35) Enter administrator credentials, and click Next. Accept any subsequent certificate warnings

SitePair-46) This will begin the pairing process, which will establish a connection with the remote vCenter Server and SRM, and also establish reciprocity. Click Finish to complete and exit the wizard.

SitePair-7

7) Once you exit the wizard, you will be prompted again for the administrator credentials of the remote vCenter Server. Enter the credentials and click on OK. Ignore any subsequent certificate warnings.

SitePair-8

8) You should see both the sites listed under the Sites pane now:

SitePair-9Note:- Pairing is done only from one of the sites. This is because the pairing process establishes reciprocity by configuring the connection in the reverse direction as well. However, when you open the site recovery solution at the remote vCenter Server, you will be prompted to enter the administrator credentials of the other site.

============================================================

Installing Storage Replication Adapters (SRA) or vSphere Replication (VR) (Depends on your setup what are you going to use in your environment)

Once you have the SRM instances installed and paired, the next step is to install the Storage Replication Adapters. SRAs are coded and provided by the storage vendors. VMware certifies the SRAs and posts them as compatible with the SRM. Downloading SRA The certified versions of SRA can be downloaded directly from VMware’s website. Keep in mind that most vendors publish the updated versions of SRA at their website before it is certified by VMware. Since SRA is a vendor-supported component, you can choose to install the latest version available from the vendor.

This is how you can download an SRA:

1. Go to VMware’s website at www.vmware.com.

2.Navigate to the vCenter Site Recovery Manager option in Downloads under the Product Downloads category. (https://my.vmware.com/web/vmware/info/slug/infrastructure_operations_management/vmware_vcenter_site_recovery_manager/5_5)

3.Once you are at the download page for vCenter SRM, click on the Go to Downloads hyperlink listed against SRA.

SRA1

4. At the Download Storage Replication Adapters for VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager page, you will see a list of all the certified SRAs. Click on the Download Now button corresponding to the needed SRA.

SRA2 ==========================================================

Installing SRA

The SRA component has to be installed on both the SRM servers at both sites. In most cases, the SRA installation is pretty simple and straightforward, but this can be different from vendor to vendor. You need to refer to the vendor documentation for the installation procedure.

1) Once Download specific SRA from VMware Web site run .EXE file to start installation. (For Installation Demo – I am using Dell Compellent_StorageCenterSRA)

SRA32) Click on Next at the Welcome screen..

SRA43) Click YES to accept END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT..

SRA54) Installation Setup will start the software installation..

SRA65) Click Finish to complete installation.

SRA76) You Need to install SRA on SRM server If you are not installing on SRM server it will give configuration error after finishing the installation.

SRA8Once the installation is complete, follow this procedure to discover the installed SRA component:

1. Connect to the protected/recovery site of vCenter Server using  vSphere Client.

2. Navigate Home –> Solutions and Applications –> And Site Recovery.

3. Click on Array Managers in the left pane and navigate to the SRAs tab. click on Rescan SRAs to discover the installed SRA.

SRA94. Repeat the procedure at the recovery site as well to discover the SRA.

====================================================

Adding an Array Manager

Once SRA installed and discovered at both the sites, we need to add an array manager at both the sites. An array manager is required to discover the replicated LUNs and perform other storage operations initiated by SRM.

This is how you add an array manager:

1. Connect to the protected/recovery site of vCenter Server using  vSphere Client.

2. Navigate Home –> Solutions and Applications –> And Site Recovery.

3) Click on Array Managers in the left pane, select the site, and click on Add Array Manager to bring up the Add Array Manager wizard, as shown in the following screenshot:

SRA104) Follow the windows and supply a Display Name for the array manager and an SRA Type. The SRA type value field will be prepopulated with the SRA that is already installed. Click on Next to continue.

5) Follow the windows and provide vendor specific Storage Array details and Click Next.

6) Repeat the same procedure on the recovery site as well.

7) Once done, the Array Managers for both the sites should be listed, as shown in the below screenshot

SRA11

Enabling an Array Pair

An array pair shows the replication relationship between two arrays. Once Array Manager has been added to both Protected and Recovery Sites we need to enable an array pair. For the array manager to detect an array pair, there should be a replication schedule already created between the arrays. Refer to the vendor documentation to understand what a replication schedule means for the vendor’s array and the procedure to create it.

This is how you enable an array pair:

1. Make sure that there is a replication schedule enabled between the two arrays.

2. Navigate to the vCenter Server’s inventory home page and click on Site Recovery.

3. Click on Array Managers in the left pane.

4. Select an added Array Manager (local or remote), and click on Refresh to discover an array pair.

EAP1

5. If the Refresh action discovers an array pair, the array pair will be listed.  The Refresh action has to be done at both of the sites.

6.  Array pairs discovered are not enabled by default. To enable an array pair, select an array pair and click on Enable. This operation has to done at only one of the sites.

EAP27. When an array pair is enabled, it tries to discover the devices (LUNs) for which a replication schedule is enabled at the array. Keep in mind that not all devices with a replication schedule are displayed as a device for the array pair; only the ones that are presented to a host at the protected site are displayed. To view the detected and filtered replication-enabled devices with the array manager selected, navigate to the Devices tab and click on Refresh, as shown in the following screenshot:

EAP3

==============================================================

Continue to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 3

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 1

 Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 2

 Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 3

  Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 4

  Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 5

  Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 6

  Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 7

Note :- I have used pictures in this post from SRM book written by Abhilash GB and would like to Thank you him for this 🙂

vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 1

Introduction

With today’s IT infrastructures, be it virtual or physical, disaster recovery has importance. Any business should be able to continue operating with reduced downtime for its sustainability amongst the competition. Two of the major factors used to service are High Availability and Recoverability.

srm1
Recoverability is the guarantee that the service offered and its data are protected against failures, and High Availability is the guarantee that the service offered would remain operational and the failures are handled in a way that the user of the service would not even know that there was a failure. There are many ways in which businesses plan and implement disaster recovery.

When we talk about High Availability and Recoverability these two factors are important to discuss – Recovery Point Objective (RPO) and Recovery Time Objective (RTO).

What are RPO and RTO?

RPO defines the amount of data an organization can afford to lose when measured against time. RTO defines the amount of downtime the organization can afford for its services before it becomes operational again.

Both RPO and RTO are defined by time. For example, an organization can have an RPO set to 4 hours and RTO set to 1 hour. This means, it can afford to lose up to 4 hours of data, but it can only afford a service downtime up to 1 hour.

RTO only defines the amount of time a service can remain unavailable but doesn’t account for the data loss. But RPO defines how much data loss can be afforded.

srm2For example RPO is 4 hours, RTO is 2 hours and WRT is 30 minutes and disaster occurs at 10 am so we need to restore data by point of 6 am and recover the site by 12 pm. And then WRT starts for checking the servers integrity site must be fully functional by 12:30 pm. MTD in this case in 2:30 hours.

WRT (Work Recovery Time) – Determines the maximum tolerable amount of time that is needed to verify the system and/or data integrity. This could be, for example, checking the databases and logs, making sure applications or services are running and are available.

MTD (Maximum Tolerable Downtime) = RTO + WRT.

There are still so many companies following manual /Traditional way for BC/DR. To orchestrate this VMware has product called Site Recovery Manager.

Site Recovery Manager (SRM)

Site Recovery Manager (SRM) is an orchestration software that is used to automate disaster recovery testing and Failover. It can be configured to leverage either vSphere Replication or a supported array-based replication. SRM is a not a product that performs an automatic Failover, which means that there is no intelligence built into SRM that would detect a disaster/outage and Failover the VMs. The disaster recovery process should be manually initiated. Hence, it is not a high availability solution; it is purely a tool that orchestrates a Recovery Plan.

SRM requires both the protected and recovery sites to be managed by separate instances of the vCenter Server. It also requires an SRM instance at both the sites. SRM’s functionalities are currently only available via the vSphere Client and not the vSphere Web Client. Hence, an SRM plugin needs to be installed on the same machine where the vSphere Client is installed.

Refer to the following figure:

srm3Installing SRM on the protected and recovery sites:

vCenter SRM has to be installed at both the protected and recovery sites for the disaster recovery setup to work. The installation process is identical regardless of the site it is being installed on; the only difference is that at each site, you will be registering the SRM installation to the vCenter Server managing that site. SRM can either be installed on the same machine that has vCenter Server installed or on a different machine. The decision to choose either one of the installation models depends on how you want to size or separate the service-providing machines in your infrastructure. The most common deployment model is to have both vCenter and SRM on the same machine. The rationale behind this is that SRM will not work in a standalone mode; this means that if your vCenter Server goes down, there is no way you could access SRM. Like vCenter Server, SRM can be installed on a physical or virtual machine. Another factor that you must take into account is the installation of SRA. SRAs have to be installed on the same machine where you already have SRM installed. Some SRAs need a reboot after installation. So, it is important to read through the storage vendor’s documentation prior to proceeding to make a deployment choice for SRM. If the vCenter downtime is not feasible, then you will have to consider installing SRM on a separate machine.

Note:- SRA only required when you are using Array-based Replication to replicate from Protected Site to Recovery Site.

srm4

SRM Installation

1. Download SRM installer from VMware site and double click .EXE file to start installation process

si12. Click Run to start installation

si23. It will start SRM Installation process and Extract installation files.

si34. Click the Next button in the Welcome page.

si45. Click Next in the VMware Patents page.

si56. Select I agree in the License agreement and click Next..

si67. Change the Destination folder if required or click Next to install at default location ..

si78. If you want to use VR for VMs replication choose Install vSphere Replication, If want to use Array-based Replication choose Do Not install vSphere Replication and Click Next.

si89. Enter details of the vCenter Server to which this SRM will be registered to and Click Next.

si910. Make a selection of your choice and click on Next to continue. Here, I have chosen to let the installer generate a new certificate.  Use the second option if you already have a certificate file from your certificate authority. VMware recommends using CA-signed certificates for all its products.

si1011. Enter Organization name and Organization Unit and Click Next…

si1112. Enter Name of the Local Site and details and Click Next..

si1213. Choose Database and enter ODBC DSN details and click Next..

si1314. Click Install at Ready to install wizard to start the installation…

si1415. It will take few minutes to complete the installation

si1516. Click Finish to complete the Installation process.

si16

When all these components are put together, a  paired site protected by SRM will look as below:-

si17

Continue to Part – 2 for Installation repair , Site Pairing, and Installation of SRA.

Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 1

 Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 2

 Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 3

 Click here to go to vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.X – Part 4

Note :- I have used few pictures in this post from SRM book written by Abhilash GB and would like to Thank him for this 🙂

Installing Storage Replication Adapters (SRA)