Storage Policy-Based Protection Groups (SPPGs) are a very helpful to Site Recovery Manager and I wrote a detailed post about them here. Just as a quick reminder of what they are, SPPGs make the protection of VMs and datastores simple and dynamic. Need to protect a VM? Associate it with a storage policy and place it onto compliant storage and it’s protected. This means that administrators can spend less time managing protection and end users can get their workloads protected faster.
There are a few common questions that I’ve received about SPPGs that I wanted to answer as well as a few pieces of new material about SPPGs that I wanted to make you aware of.
First off, SPPG Q&A:
- If I want to take advantage of SRM integration with stretched storage or NSX universal logical switches, do I have to use SPPGs? – Yes, for now in order to use either of those features requires the use of SPPGs. These features complement each other very well and are therefore what we wanted to focus on first.
- Why don’t SPPGs require a placeholder datastore? – For storage policy protection, Site Recovery Manager applies inventory mappings to virtual machines when you run a recovery plan that contains a storage policy protection group. With array-based and vSphere Replication protection groups, Site Recovery Manager applies inventory mappings at the moment that you configure protection on a virtual machine. With storage policy protection groups, because storage policy protection is dynamic, Site Recovery Manager only applies the inventory mappings at the moment that you run a recovery plan. Virtual machine placement decisions are made according to the inventory mappings when a recovery plan runs, so Site Recovery Manager does not create placeholder virtual machines on the recovery site.
- Can I use SPPGs with vSphere Replication? – Currently SPPGs can only be used with array-based replication. We have heard that request and it is something that we are considering for future releases.
If you have other questions about SPPGs please post them in the comments. If you have other questions about Site Recovery Manager or vSphere Replication, make sure to check out the SRM FAQ and VR FAQ on StorageHub.
Lastly, here are some additional resources on SPPGs:
For a conceptual walkthrough on SPPGs check out this video.
To see a demo of protecting a VM using SPPGs see here. This video walks through the steps needed to protect a VM with an SPPG, though the process of protecting a newly deployed VM would be nearly identical. It shows the association of a VM with the storage policy, placement of the VM onto storage compliant with that policy and the VM now belonging to the SPPG.
To see a demo of what a planned migration looks like when using SPPGs (and stretched storage) see here. This shows a group of VMs running at the primary site, initiating a planned migration utilizing cross-vCenter vmotion, the vmotions done in the order defined by the recovery plan priority groups and dependencies and then the VMs running at the recovery site.