How To Guy

Disaster Recovery in VMware Environments

In the recently posted "The World Runs on VMware vSphere" infographic, shows how just in the last 10 years (2001-2011) we have gone from virtually NO server virtualization in use to more than 50 percent of the servers in the world being virtualized (and over 20 million vSphere virtual machines running every day). It is truly amazing but you also have to consider how, when it comes to it, virtualization changes everything. It changes backup, recovery, provisioning, inventory, budgeting, administration, support and, yes, disaster recovery.

It is possible to use traditional backup applications and traditional disaster recovery procedures with virtualization, BUT, it is highly inefficient. Virtualization not only provides the traditional list of benefits but it makes disaster recovery effortless compared to what it was before.

I worked at a company that, originally, didn't have a disaster recovery plan other than "somehow, someway, we'll restore those backups that we took offsite to Bob's house last week." At that time, with few resources and no planning in place, we didn't stand a chance if we ran into a real disaster. Over time, we created a redundant datacenter that sat with some servers in it that just had the OS. We developed binders of procedures on how to restore our backups onto those servers. Eventually, we tested it with real users and it worked -- but it was all a very delicate "house of cards."

Today, virtualization disaster recovery solutions can change all that. They can replicate just the virtual machines that are most critical. They can sync only the changed blocks across the WAN to the DR site. They can even automatically plan and script a disaster recovery plan so that it can all occur at the push of a button. No longer will every application replication scenario require expensive SAN at each site with replication licenses and tons of bandwidth. These new virtualization DR solutions have realistic, easy to implement, and affordable options for every company.

Tomorrow, July 20, I'll be keynoting a Disaster Recovery in VMware Environments webinar with three vendors: Virtacore/PHD Technologies, Zerto and Veeam. You'll learn my take on virtualization disaster recovery as well as understand how these companies can help to make disaster recovery of your virtual infrastructure easy. Here's all the info you need to know about the webinar (and if you can't attend it live, don't worry, it will all be recorded for later playback). I hope that you'll join me!

Disaster Recovery in VMware Environments
Date: July 20, 2011 at 9 a.m. PDT / 12 noon EDT
Keynote: David Davis; How-to Guy for Virtualization Review and vSphere Training Author at Train Signal
How can you save your VMware infrastructure from disaster? Find out in this three-hour supercast focused on how to best implement disaster recovery (DR) in your  VMware environment and virtual infrastructure.

9:00am PT: Keynote Presentation
Join David as he discusses what you need to know about implementing DR for your VMware environment. He will explore:

  • The top five DR challenges VMware oriented IT organizations face today.
  • What you can do to minimize disaster potential as information and data proliferates.
  • Typical DR scenarios faced in a virtual infrastructure.
  • DR best practices in virtualized environments.
  • Tips to simplify virtual backup and replication.

9:30 a.m. PT: "Disaster Recovery in the Cloud" by Virtacore Systems and PHD Virtual Technologies
The costs of creating and maintaining a DR plan can be significantly reduced by utilizing cloud solutions. But where to start? This session explores your options when it comes to virtualization and DR in the cloud. You will learn:

  • What questions should I ask when developing a disaster recovery plan that includes cloud resources?
  • How does RPO and RTO fit into my disaster recovery plan?
  • What is the difference between a hot, warm and cold back-up?
  • How can I optimize backup and recovery for my virtual infrastructure?

10:30 a.m. PT: "Is Your BC/DR Solution Virtual-Aware? 5 Ways to Know and an Introduction to Hypervisor-Based Replication" by Zerto
There is a critical need for BC/DR to become aligned with virtualization in the data center. This session explores common replication technologies and methods, and introduces hypervisor-based replication purpose-built for virtual environments. You will learn:

  • The challenges caused by the three most common traditional approaches to replication.
  • How hypervisor-based replication enables the many benefits of virtualization to be fully realized.
  • How hypervisor-based replication, purpose-built for the virtual environment will position you for growth and optimize your BC/DR activities.

11:30 a.m. PT:  "Five Ways to Put vPower to Work for You" by Veeam
Join Rick Vanover, VMware vExpert as he discusses the value and benefits of vPower in Veeam Backup & Replication v5, including:

  • VM Recovery: Learn how to keep your job when a critical VM goes.
  • Virtual Lab: What is it and how can you use it to make backups work for you?
  • U-AIR: Get the details about a new paradigm in object-level recovery

Register now for this information packed live event!

About the Author

David Davis is a well-known virtualization and cloud computing expert, author, speaker, and analyst. David’s library of popular video training courses can be found at To contact David about his speaking schedule and his latest project, go to


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