Introduction to VMware Site Recovery Add-On VMonAWS

    No Comments

    I have been using Veeam Availability Suite for many years and it is a very good product but now VMware has a new solution called VMware Site Recovery. In my opinion cannot supersede Veeam but has some good points.

    VMware Site Recovery brings VMware enterprise-class Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC) Disaster Recovery as a Service to the AWS Cloud. It enables customers to protect and recover applications without the requirement for a dedicated secondary site. It is delivered, sold, supported, maintained and managed by VMware as an on-demand service. IT teams manage their cloud-based resources with familiar VMware tools without the difficulties of learning new skills or utilizing new tools.

    Follow the steps I took testing this service on VMware HOL


    VMware Site Recovery is an add-on feature to VMware Cloud on AWS, powered by VMware Cloud Foundation.

    It optimizes them to run on elastic, bare-metal AWS infrastructure. With the same architecture and operational experience on-premises and in the cloud, IT teams can now get instant business value via the AWS and VMware hybrid cloud experience.

    Users can leverage the global AWS footprint while getting the benefits of elastically scalable SDDC clusters, a single bill from VMware for its tightly integrated software plus AWS infrastructure, and on-demand or subscription services like VMware Site Recovery Service.

    VMware Site Recovery extends VMware Cloud on AWS to provide a managed disaster recovery, disaster avoidance and non-disruptive testing capabilities to VMware customers without the need for a secondary site, or complex configuration.

    VMware Site Recovery works in conjunction with VMware Site Recovery Manager 8.x and VMware vSphere Replication 8.x to automate the process of recovering, testing, re-protecting, and failing-back virtual machine workloads.

    VMware Site Recovery utilizes VMware Site Recovery Manager servers to coordinate the operations of the VMware SDDC. This is so that as virtual machines at the protected site are shut down, copies of these virtual machines at the recovery site startup. By using the data replicated from the protected site these virtual machines assume responsibility for providing the same services.

    VMware Site Recovery can be used between a customers datacenter and an SDDC deployed on VMware Cloud on AWS or it can be used between two SDDCs deployed to different AWS availability zones or regions. The second option allows VMware Site Recovery to provide a fully VMware managed and maintained Disaster Recovery solution.

    Migration of protected inventory and services from one site to the other is controlled by a recovery plan that specifies the order in which virtual machines are shut down and started up, the resource pools to which they are allocated, and the networks they can access. VMware Site Recovery enables the testing of recovery plans, using a temporary copy of the replicated data, and isolated networks in a way that does not disrupt ongoing operations at either site. Multiple recovery plans can be configured to migrate individual applications or entire sites providing finer control over what virtual machines are failed over and failed back. This also enables flexible testing schedules.

    VMware Site Recovery extends the feature set of the virtual infrastructure platform to provide for rapid business continuity through partial or complete site failures.

    In this simulation you will be guided through the steps needed to activate DRaaS capability with “VMware Site Recovery” Add-on, enabling firewall rules needed and mapping resources between the protected and recovery site. You will also been able to configure a recovery plan and run a test and reports.

    Activating Site Recovery

    Before you can use VMware Site Recovery, you must connect the Site Recovery Manager Server and vSphere Replication instances on the protected and the recovery sites. This procedure is known as site pairing.

    In this example we are configuring a second VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC as a pair. Protections schemes can be:

    • On premises -> Cloud
    • Cloud -> On premises
    • Cloud -> Cloud
    1. Click on View Details
    2. Click on the Add Ons tab
    3. Click ACTIVATE button under Site Recovery

    VMware Site Recovery is an add-on service in VMware Cloud on AWS and is not enabled by default. Customers wishing to utlize the service need to go through the activation process of the service which takes a few minutes to complete.

    1. Click ACTIVATE






    Click on Add-On and on OPEN SITE RECOVERY


    Network mappings indicate the network(s) in the protection or recovery site that map to those network(s) in the protected site

    Replicate a VM

    1. Click Replications
    2. Click +NEW
    3. Click #2 to move over to the following page of Virtual Machines
    4. Click to select VM9 virtual machine
    5. Click NEXT
    6. Click NEXT
    7. Click to select WorkloadDatastore for the target Datastore
    8. Click NEXT
    9. Click to adjust RPO (Recovery Point Objective) to 1 hour
      • RPO can be as low as 5 minutes as high as 24 hours.
    10. Click the checkbox to Enable point in time instances
      • Point in time instances is a feature of vSphere Replication. It is the ability to retain historical  replications as point-in-time snapshots on the recovered virtual  machines. Using this feature is quite handy in order to recover from systems that have corrupted data or viruses or even to do auditing of system changes.
    11. Click the Scroll Bar on the right hand side
    12. Click NEXT
    13. Click the Radio Button to select Add to new protection group
    14. Click the area next to Protection group name and type “PG9”
    15. Click NEXT
    16. Click the Radio Button to select Add to new recovery plan
    17. Click the area next to Recovery plan name and type “RP9”
    18. Click NEXT
    19. Click FINISH
    20. Click VM9 to expand the progress of the initial replication of this virtual machine

    Recovery Plans

    1. Click Recovery Plans
      • A recovery plan runs a series of steps that must be performed in a  specific order. You cannot change the order or purpose of the steps, but  you can insert your own steps that display messages and run commands.
    2. Click Recovery Plan RP9
    3. Click Recovery Steps
    4. Click the Virtual Machines tab
    5. Click to select VM9
    6. Click Priority Group to change priority start for a VM
      • In a recovery plan, the virtual machines being recovered can be assigned to five different priority groups.
    7. Click 1(Highest)
    8. Click YES
    9. Click to select VM9
    11. Click IP Customization 
      • You can customize IP settings for virtual machines for the protected site and the recovery site. Customizing the IP properties of a virtual machine overrides the default IP settings when the recovered virtual machine starts at the destination site.
      • If you do not customize the IP properties of a virtual machine, Site Recovery Manager uses the IP settings for the recovery site during a recovery or a test from the protection site to the recovery site. Site Recovery Manager uses the IP settings for the protection site after reprotect during the recovery or a test from the original recovery site to the original protection site.
    12. Click the drop down box
    13. Click Auto
    14. Click OK

    Testing a Recovery Plan

    Running a test recovery is an important step to take before having an actual disaster. One of the most valuable pieces of VMware Site Recovery Manager is that you can non-disruptively test the configurations.


    1. Click Recovery Steps
    2. Click the TEST button to test the recovery plan
    3. Click Next
    4. Click Finish
    5. Click History to test report exports
      • Recovery plan histories provide information about each run, test, or  cleanup of a recovery plan. The history contains information about the  result and the start and end times for the whole plan and for each step  in the plan. You can export history at any time, but history always  contains entries only for completed operations. If an operation is in  progress, the history appears after the operation completes.
    6. Click to select Test
    7. Click EXPORT REPORT
    8. Click Open in New Tab
    9. Click to close the tab
    10. Click Close
    11. Click CleanUp
    12. Click Next
    13. Click Finish

    We covered how to utilize the “VMware Site Recovery” Add-on to enable the Disaster recovery as a service capability available in VMware Cloud on AWS.

    Credits @ Lab Captains:

    • Andrea Siviero, Principal Architect, Global
    • Jennifer Schmidt, Consulting Architect, USA


    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.