SRM 5.8 Protection Groups

SRM 5.8 Protection Groups

SRM Sites and resource mappings are all done.  It’s time to create some Protection Groups for our new VMware Site Recovery Manager deployment.

A protection group is a collection of virtual machines that should be failed over together.  For instance, you may want all of your Microsoft Exchange servers to fail over together, or you may want a Web, App, Database Tier to all failover at the same time.  It is also possible that your main goal for SRM is to protect you in the event of a catastrophic loss of your datacenter and you’re concerned with every VM.  It still a good idea to create multiple protection groups so that you can fail over certain apps in the event of an unforeseen issue.  Think about it, if your mail servers crashed but the rest of your datacenter is fine, would it make sense to just fail over the mail servers, or the entire datacenter?  Just failing over the mail servers would make sense if they are in their own protection group.

If we look at the protection groups menu of Site Recovery we’ll want to click the shield icon with the “+” sign on it.SRM58-PG1

Give the new protection group a name.  Of course give it a descriptive name.  A name like “Protection Group 1” doesn’t work very well when you have lots of protection groups.  Name it something easy to identify.  Back to my examples, I’ve named my protection group, “Test-PG1”.  Yep, I’m a hypocrite.  Click Next.

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Select the Protected Site and a replication strategy.  In my lab, I’ve setup vSphere Replication so I’ve chosen that as my replication type.  Click Next.

NOTE  If you are using Array Based Replication, make sure that you don’t have multiple protection groups on the same LUN or consistency group.  The entire LUN would be taken offline during a failover of a protection group, so having some VMs that aren’t supposed to failover on the same LUN could cause you an issue.

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Select the Virtual Machines to fail over.  The populated list will only show virtual machines that are being replicated.  As you can see from the screenshot below, the VM named “FailoverVM” is available for protection even though I have many VMs in my vCenter.  “FailoverVM” is the only one that is being replicated.  Click Next.

NOTE: If you are using Array Based Replication, you will be selecting a datastore vs individual virtual machines.  The same rule about replication holds true, however.  Only replicated datastores should show up in this menu.

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Give the Protection group a good description.  Click Next.

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Review the Protection Group settings and click Finish.

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Summary

Protection groups are simple to setup in Site Recovery Manager, but could take a considerable amount of planning to make sure VMs are in the correct LUNs.  The planning of your entire disaster recovery plan should be designed with this in mind.

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