Thursday, February 16, 2017

vSAN Availability Part 12 - Data Protection and Disaster Recovery

This is the final article in my vSAN Availability blog series. To wrap things up, I thought it made sense to briefly discuss data protection, replication, and disaster recovery. I say "briefly" because it would be nearly impossible to cover all of the various solutions and options that are available both from VMware and its massive ecosystem of data protection and disaster recovery partners. There will be mention of a few solutions and product features in this article - again, this is not a comprehensive list. We will start with data protection, i.e., backup and restore, move on to replication, and finish with disaster recovery.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

vSphere Replication Synchronization Types

vSphere Replication is VMware’s hypervisor-based virtual machine replication solution that is included with vSphere Essentials Plus Kit and higher editions. We commonly get questions around the differences between the various types and modes of synchronization — or “sync” — vSphere Replication utilizes. This article covers sync types and modes and discusses related performance improvements introduced with vSphere Replication 6.0.

Monday, January 23, 2017

vSAN Availability Part 11 - Stretched Cluster Failure Scenarios

Previous articles have covered how vSAN responds to and recovers from various environmental failures in a standard (non-stretched) cluster. This article provides concise coverage of similar environmental failures in a stretched cluster environment.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

vSAN Availability Part 10 - Stretched Cluster Preferred and Secondary Fault Domains

A vSAN stretched cluster consists of exactly three sites or, more accurately, three fault domains: The Preferred fault domain, the Secondary fault domain, and the Witness fault domain. This short article explains the difference between the Preferred and Secondary fault domains and how this difference affects recovery based on the type of failure.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

vSphere Data Protection (VDP) - SSO server could not be found

I ran into the following error while working with VDP: The SSO server could not be found. Please make sure the SSO configuration on the VDP appliance is correct. There is a KB article on this: After reading through the article and checking those items, the issue was still not resolved.

Monday, December 12, 2016

OVF Choices When Deploying vSphere Replication 6.5

VMware vSphere Replication 6.5 is the latest version of vSphere Replication (VR) released with vSphere 6.5, vCenter Server 6.5, and Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 6.5. VR is a host-based virtual machine (VM) replication solution that works with nearly any storage type supported by vSphere. VR is deployed as a virtual appliance using an Open Virtualization Format (OVF) specification found on the VR ISO that is downloaded from While more general information on VR can be found here, this article focuses on the various OVFs that are found on the VR ISO and what the use cases are for each.

Monday, December 5, 2016

vSAN Availability Part 9 - Configuring a Stretched Cluster

A vSAN stretched cluster configuration provides a simple solution for extending a vSAN cluster across geographically disbursed locations. These locations could be opposite sides of a data center with separate power feeds or two different cities. Stretched clusters enable rapid recovery from site failure with no data loss. They also provide an excellent option for migrating workloads between locations with zero downtime if maintenance at one site or the other is needed. For more of an introduction to vSAN stretched clusters, take a look at the previous article (Part 8) in this blog series.

This article covers the simplicity of configuring a vSAN stretched cluster complete with a video demo. Before we get to the video, let's take a moment to cover the main prerequisites that must be in place prior to configuring the stretched cluster. For starters, note that stretched clusters are supported with vSAN versions 6.1 and higher and vSAN Enterprise licensing is required for this feature.