Now that vSphere 6.5 supports array-based replication (ABR), customers are starting to configure replication in their VM Storage Policies. Before you configure your policies for replication below are a few prerequisites to check.

Note: Always check with your storage vendor for specific instructions on configuring your VASA Provider.  While very similar, each vendor I've configured is slightly different.

  1.  Does your VASA Provider support VASA API 3.0?  Always check with your storage vendor first to see if they offer support for VASA 3.0.  If you already have your VP registered in vSphere you can verify by doing the following:
    1. From your vCenter go to configure - Storage Providers
    2. Select your VASA Provider and verify the status is online and the VASA API Version is 3.0vasa-api
  2. Be sure to create a storage component for replication.
    1. Click on VM Storage Policies
    2. Click on the Storage Policy Component tab.
    3. Click Create Storage Policy Componentspc
      • Name your SPC
      • Select Replication for the category
      • Select your VASA Provider for the Provider


Configure vVols Replication

Now that you have registered VPs with VASA API version 3.0 or higher and you've successfully configured your Storage Component, all that's left to do is create a VM Storage Policy with replication.  This is a pretty straight forward task, but it's important to keep in mind that the options displayed in the configuration of the SPBM Storage Policies are determined by your storage Vendor.  In the example below I am creating a policy using Nimble Storage.

  1. Click on VM Storage Policies
  2. Click Create VM Storage Policy
  3. Add the desired capabilities to your policy to include a replication schedule.  In the example below I have an hourly replication policy.  This means any VM created using this policy will automatically be configured to replicate to my preconfigured target location (group-b).
  4. IMPORTANT: Click Add Component - Replication and then your previously created Storage Component (Nimble Replication)
  5. Click Next - Finish


Adding replication to SPBM Storage Policies has been the most popular feature request since vVols 1.0  Using vSphere 6.5 and a VASA Provider certified with VASA API 3.0 you will find setting up vVols replication to be a fairly simple task.  As always there are prerequisites to consider from both VMware and your storage vendor. So now that we have preconfigured replication, how do we actually do a failover?  In my next post I will be sharing examples of vVols Disaster Recovery using PowerCLI.  Stay tuned and until then... bye for now.