Disaster recovery orchestration for the Enterprise
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AuGL
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VAO and VMware vSAN Stretched Cluster support

Post by AuGL »

Hello,

I would like to know if VAO supports VMware vSAN in a Stretched Cluster configuration?
i.e. a single datastore that is available across the stretched cluster, with the ability for VAO to target hosts for recovery locations in either site?

Thanks

Alec King
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Re: VAO and VMware vSAN Stretched Cluster support

Post by Alec King » 1 person likes this post

Hello,
As I understand, vSphere HA will restart VMs on another site in vSAN stretched cluster configuration. Do you want to combine this with VAO functionality such as restore from Veeam backups, or recover from Veeam replicas?

AuGL
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Re: VAO and VMware vSAN Stretched Cluster support

Post by AuGL »

For now it would be to test backups. With vSAN there is only one datastore.
So I assume VAO would leverage DataLabs to do the testing in vSAN?

In terms of leveraging VAO for DR functionality, such as replicas, is that possible with VAO? If so, would that be supported in a stretched vSAN environment?

Alec King
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Re: VAO and VMware vSAN Stretched Cluster support

Post by Alec King » 1 person likes this post

VAO Restore plans should work as expected. Create 2 Recovery Locations (RLs), one for site A hosts and one for site B hosts, both RLs containing the same stretched datastore. Choose the required RL when running the plan and VMs will be restored to (or tested on) the desired site.
You are correct, Veeam DataLab would be used to create the isolated test environment - please consult the relevant documentation for SureBackup to ensure your Veeam environment is correctly configured, especially regarding network setup. Storage performance should also be considered, as during testing there will be a lot of I/O to the vSAN datastore (and Veeam NFS datastore if instant recovery is used).

VAO will also support Veeam replicas - you can replicate VMs from site A to site B, with the replica stored on the same datastore as original VM. This is not a standard configuration, but it should work.

However VAO cannot orchestrate the unregister-register operation for the HA VMs on this datastore - that switchover is handled by vCenter.

AuGL
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Re: VAO and VMware vSAN Stretched Cluster support

Post by AuGL »

Thanks for the detailed reply, much appreciated as there's nothing available on vSAN and Veeam Replication or VAO.
VAO will also support Veeam replicas - you can replicate VMs from site A to site B, with the replica stored on the same datastore as original VM. This is not a standard configuration, but it should work.
So I would configure this with the Recovery Locations (RLs) you mentioned at the beginning of your reply?
However VAO cannot orchestrate the unregister-register operation for the HA VMs on this datastore - that switchover is handled by vCenter.
So this part is a manual process or does VAO communicate with vCenter, not sure what you are saying here?

Thanks again!

Alec King
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Re: VAO and VMware vSAN Stretched Cluster support

Post by Alec King » 1 person likes this post

Hi Glenn,

Perhaps using Veeam built-in replication is not useful in this scenario, as you would be starting a replica VM rather than failing-over the existing VM, which somewhat defeats the purpose of the stretched storage... So let's disregard standard Veeam replicas for the moment.

Regarding Restore plans to recover from backups - they should work perfectly. Just create a Recovery Location for each site (contains host(s), datastore, network config). When you run your Restore plan, choose the Recovery Location you want and your VMs will be restored there.
Note you have option to 'prefer Backup Copies' in a Recovery Location, if you do use backup copy jobs across sites then this can be useful to ensure the best (closest) backup data is used for the recovery.

Regarding your vSAN stretched cluster, it would be good to have more details of the configuration. Are you using vCenter high availability (HA) to protect those VMs on the cluster? VAO cannot control vCenter HA directly.

Again, restoring VMs from backup should work perfectly - if you've any other questions around VM Groups, Recovery Locations, Instant VM Recovery etc just let us know.

Thanks!
Alec King
Vice President, Product Management
Veeam Software

AuGL
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Re: VAO and VMware vSAN Stretched Cluster support

Post by AuGL »

Hi Alec,

Not all VMs are "stretched", some are only protected within the local data center, for example Domain Controllers and Exchange, which have their own application HA/DR/Replication capabilities.
For those that don't, we need to look at using Veeam Replication, so I need to understand how this would work in a stretched vSAN environment, is it something Veeam has actually tested in development?

DRS and HA is enabled on the cluster and works as per normal vSphere cluster. As mentioned above, the vSAN Storage Policies determine the level of protection, i.e. whether a VM is "stretched" across both data centers or not. If a vSAN host fails, the VMs are HA restarted on a surviving host, in the case of a data center failure, the "stretched" VMs are HA restarted at the surviving data center.

Alec King
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Re: VAO and VMware vSAN Stretched Cluster support

Post by Alec King » 1 person likes this post

Hi Glenn,

OK, now I see the use case for Veeam regular replication for certain VMs.
Veeam B&R replication should work normally in a vSAN environment as it is storage-agnostic (you can replicate a VM to/from any vSphere datastore regardless of the hardware backing it)
And of course VAO plans can be created for Veeam regular replicas.

And Restore (from backup) Plans are also an option as confirmed above.

Thanks for the details on the DRS/HA configuration - and I can confirm VAO does not orchestrate vSphere HA/DRS, so recovery of those VMs would be performed by vCenter.

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