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Category Archives: Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery

How to Build Better Protection for Your Applications and Data

When it comes to business continuity and disaster recovery, the stakes are higher than ever for IT. Your company depends on you to protect their most important data and apps against downtime. But you may not have adequate solutions in place to safeguard your business.

VMware virtualization can help. Based on the core vSphere platform, organizations can implement disaster recovery, data protection and business continuity solutions. And now putting them into production is easier, with our Tech Tips for Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery (BC/DR). Whether you’re just getting started with expanding virtualization for added BC/DR capabilities, or are looking for ways to improve your level of protection, these Tech Tips will help you:

  • Simplify management and set up dependable, space-efficient backup and recovery with vSphere Data Protection. You’ll get tips on how to:
    • Determine how much backup data capacity is right for your organization.
    • Set up effective retention policies to optimize bandwidth consumption and storage efficiency.

  • Lower your cost of disaster recovery by up to 50 percent with vCenter Site Recovery Manager. Get recommendations on ways to:
    • Start small with just one application or service, then build out your disaster recovery plan.
    • Use priority groups and dependencies to prioritize which VMs start at a recovery site.
    • Build multiple recovery plans to define sets of VM machines that fail over together.
  • Apply native cloud-based disaster recovery with vCloud Air Disaster Recovery. We’ll share advice on how to:
    • Choose the service subscription plan that’s right for your specific needs.
    • Define your disaster recovery policy settings based on the priority of your applications.
    • Run a test recovery operation to verify that everything is properly configured and working as planned.

You’ll find these and many more suggestions in the VMware Tech Tips for Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery

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What’s New with vSphere Data Protection 5.8 and vSphere Replication 5.8

This post originally appeared on the vSphere Blog

Along with all of the announcements at VMworld 2014, I am happy to report on the latest versions of vSphere Data Protection (VDP) and vSphere Replication. As most of you may already know, there are two editions of VDP: VDP, which is included with vSphere Essentials Plus Kit and higher editions, and VDP Advanced, which is purchased separately. vSphere Replication is included with vSphere Essentials Plus Kit and higher editions. This article highlights the most prominent new features and updates in VDP Advanced and vSphere Replication.

VDP Advanced

Perhaps the number one feature request we heard was supporting the backup and recovery of databases on SQL Server AlwaysOn and Failover Clusters. The other was Exchange DAG support. With vSphere Data Protection Advanced 5.8, you get both! The VDP Advanced agents for SQL Server and Exchange have been updated to support these high availability solutions including the ability to select a replica backup policy such as “prefer secondary” for SQL Server AlwaysOn or “prefer passive” for Exchange DAG.

sqlserver alwayson backup

VDP Advanced has further enhanced its replication capabilities to enable “Replicate and Restore Anywhere”. Replicated backup data can be re-replicated – either back to the source location or another location. Examples – Scenario 1: I back up data at Site A with VDP Advanced and replicate the backup data to VDP Advanced at Site B. If needed, I could replicate that backup data (again) from Site B to Site C. Scenario 2: If Site A were to sustain a disaster and the original VDP Advanced appliance is lost, I could deploy a new VDP Advanced appliance, “Recover replicated backups” from Site B, and restore data in Site A.

recover replicated backups

It is now possible to deploy external proxies with VDP Advanced enabling more efficient backups in remote locations where the VDP Advanced appliance does not have direct access to the storage on which protected VMs are running, e.g., a separate cluster or remote site. An external proxy also supports VMs with Linux Logical Volume Manager (LVM) and EXT4 file systems.

Reporting has improved in VDP Advanced 5.8. If there is a task failure, detailed client log information can be viewed in the VDP Advanced UI and saved to a text file. In addition to information on backup jobs, replication jobs, and automated backup verification jobs, a list of unprotected clients, i.e., VMs not currently included in a backup job, is available. These reports can be exported to CSV files.

vdp unprotected clients

vSphere Replication

The primary new feature of vSphere Replication 5.8 is the integration of replication to a cloud provider such as VMware vCloud Air. When configuring vSphere Replication for a VM, the first step is selecting replication to a vCenter Server environment (on premise) or a cloud provider.

vr config vcloud

This makes it easy to configure, manage, and monitor vSphere Replication both on premise and to the cloud using the vSphere Web Client.

vr monitoring

vSphere Replication reporting has also improved. Various graphs and charts are available including Replicated VMs (by VC), Replicated VMs (by Host), RPO Violations, and Transferred Bytes.

vr reports

The items above are in addition to numerous bug fixes. Those details will be available in the release notes for each product.

Follow me on Twitter: @jhuntervmware

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How To Seed a vCloud Air Disaster Recovery Replication Without Downtime

This post originally appeared on the vCloud Blog

In a recent blog post, VMware’s Chris Colotti shows step-by-step how to replicate a virtual machine in vCloud Air Disaster Recovery at a faster speed through data seeding.

With data seeding, you run the risk of a huge data transfer reduction. But there is a silver lining – you trade off the loss of data for a faster replication. To validate the process, Chris compared the results of three different methods:

1. Full ground up replication to establish an initial sync time


2. Traditional vCloud Connector data seeding


3. Live vSphere clone with vCloud Connector data seeding


Visit Chris Colotti’s blog for results and complete instructions on how to seed the replication using Offline Data Transfer without the need to power off the source machine!

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IT is the Cornerstone of Your Business. Shouldn’t You Protect It?

We’ve all heard about the cost savings you can get from virtualizing your infrastructure. But did you know that virtualization can also dramatically improve disaster recovery and business continuity (BCDR)?

In today’s competitive environment, your business can’t afford a minute of downtime. Even a short outage can impact your revenue, productivity, and your company’s reputation.

VMware can help your business up & running. Learn how in our paper, “5 Ways Virtualization Can Protect Your Business Now.” We’ll discuss how virtualizing with VMware can help you improve your BCDR strategy, including:

  • Simplified backup and recovery—Learn how vSphere Data Protection gives you total protection for your virtual infrastructure and your most important applications so you can minimize downtime and avoid lost data. With VMware tools you already know, deployment and management are fast, simple, and intuitive.
  • Protection against hardware and software failures—The quicker your team can spot a failure and respond to it, the better you can safeguard your business. VMware solutions protect your entire virtualized environment from failures at the physical server or OS level, and help ensure nonstop application availability.
  • Get protection from site-level failures—Virtualization lets you easily recover from site-level failures that can cost weeks of productivity. Discover how vSphere Replication makes it easy for you to easily replicate virtual machines to a recovery site.
  • Handle maintenance with zero downtime—Upgrading and patching hardware and software is important, but it’s time consuming for your team and might involve taking your applications offline. VMware solutions enable live migration of running virtual machines and virtual machine disk files, giving your IT teams the agility and flexibility they need to support other areas of the business.
  • Improve visibility across your virtualized environment—Without a single view of your IT environment, you’ll need to spend time and money managing and monitoring different administrative tools. vSphere with Operations Management delivers insight into the health, resource utilization, and capacity consumption of your entire virtualized environment.



No business should go without always-on protection for your IT environment. Learn more about how VMware can help you tap the potential of virtualization to improve your BCDR strategy today.






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Is Your Business Safe from Downtime and Disasters? Get Peace of Mind with Virtualization

When your company depends on nonstop access to your network, it’s more important than ever to have a complete business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) strategy in place. Even a few minutes of downtime can bring your business operations to a grinding halt. And studies show that this unplanned data center downtime can cost up to $7,900 a minute (Emerson Network Power and Ponemon Institute).

When a disaster happens, your BCDR solution can make the difference between survival and bankruptcy. But traditional solutions typically depend on complicated processes and architectures, including duplicate data centers and server infrastructure, multiple processes for getting data to a recovery site, restarting servers, reinstalling operating systems, and more.

Because disaster recovery can be so complex and costly, many small and midsized businesses are unable to provide good protection to more than a privileged few of their production workloads. That leaves many workloads—from file/print servers to internal Web servers and departmental applications—either unprotected or poorly protected.

Fortunately, today’s virtualization of IT resources and new cloud-based solutions give you more choices for protecting your applications and data. We’ll show you how to choose and deploy these options in the new VMware white paper, “Unlock the Power of Virtualization: BCDR Made Easy.”

This in-depth paper explores:

  • How virtualization makes BCDR easy, through encapsulation of operating systems, applications, and data into virtual containers; consolidation of multiple servers; and hardware independence that makes it easy to perform maintenance, balance workloads, and optimize IT efficiency
  • The business benefits of employing virtualization to safeguard your business, including plan testing and automated deployment of recovery plans; simpler management of BCDR through a single user interface; and the ability to expand your disaster recovery coverage to more applications without additional costs
  • Key components of a complete BCDR solution, featuring an overview of VMware’s product portfolio, including tools for high availability and fault tolerance; data protection solutions for backing up entire virtual machines; and more
  • A discussion of disaster recovery models, including private cloud, cloud-based services, and hybrid approaches with on-premises and hosted-cloud service solutions