Disaster Recovery - Virtual Server Agent for VMware

In the event of a disaster, recovery time can be minimized by having a stand-by site for disaster recovery. The following features support disaster recovery for virtual machines protected by the Virtual Server Agent (VSA) for VMware:

  • Full system recovery to a stand-by server
  • Live Mount for validation of virtual machine backups
  • Live Sync for automatic replication of virtual machines from backups to a disaster recovery site

Reverting to the Production Server

After failing over to a disaster recovery site, you can restore services at the original production site or identify a new production site. To fail back to the production site, reverse the failover operation by performing the following steps:

  1. Back up the virtual machines on the standby server to capture any changes that were made after the failover.
  2. Perform full VM restores to the production server. If you are restoring to the original production server, use the unconditional overwrite option for the restores.

Planning for a Disaster Recovery

While multiple virtual machines can always be restored simultaneously at any time, disaster scenarios may require them to be readily available at the moment they are needed.

To achieve this, the recommended disaster recovery plan consists of creating a Stand-by server at a disaster recovery (DR) Site to which virtual machines are restored on a routine basis. In the event of a disaster, the Stand-by server is readily available with the virtual machines. After the initial creation of virtual machines on the Stand-by server, incremental backups from the production site update only the new or changed blocks (dash copy) on the Stand-by server.

  1. Create a Stand-by Server consisting of the following:
    • The VMware application
    • Sufficient memory and disk space to hold all the virtual machines you may need to recover in a disaster scenario.
  2. From the CommCell Console, navigate to Client Computer | <VMware vCenter Client> | Virtual Server | VMware.

    Right-click the backupset that contains the data you want to restore and click Browse and Restore.

  3. Click View Content.

  4. Expand the defaultBackupSet and select the required virtual machines.

    Click Recover All Selected.

  5. Clear the Restore in place check box.

    Click in the ESX Server column and select the destination ESX Server and Datastore for each virtual machine.

    Click OK.

    Select Unconditionally overwrite VM with same name option.

    If the Unconditionally overwrite VM with the same name option is used when restoring a virtual machine that has independent disks, the independent disks and their VMDKs are removed from the datastore and are not restored.

    Click OK on the Restore Options for All Selected Items dialog box.

  6. You can monitor the progress of the restore job in the Job Controller window of the CommCell Console.

  7. Once the restore job has completed, right-click the <backupset> and click View | Restore History.

  8. Click OK.

  9. You can view the following details about the job by right-clicking the job:
    • View Restore Items

      You can view them as Successful, Failed, Skipped or All.

    • View Job Details
    • View Events of the restore job.
    • View Log files of the restore job.

  10. Once the virtual machine is restored, it is automatically mounted to the virtual center/ESX Server you selected.