Site Recovery Manager can use vSphere Replication to replicate data to servers at the recovery site.

You deploy vSphere Replication as a virtual appliance. The vSphere Replication appliance contains two components.

  • A vSphere Replication management server:

    • Configures the vSphere Replication server on the recovery site.

    • Enables replication from the protected site.

    • Authenticates users and checks their permissions to perform vSphere Replication operations.

    • Manages and monitors the replication infrastructure.

  • A vSphere Replication server:

    • Listens for virtual machine updates from the vSphere Replication host agent on the protected site.

    • Applies the updates to the virtual disks on the recovery site.

If necessary, you can deploy multiple vSphere Replication servers on a site to balance the replication load across your virtual infrastructure.

For information about the loads that a vSphere Replication management server and a vSphere Replication server can support, see

vSphere Replication does not require storage arrays. The vSphere Replication storage replication source and target can be any storage device, including, but not limited to, storage arrays.

You can configure vSphere Replication to regularly create and retain snapshots of protected virtual machines on the recovery site. Taking multiple point-in-time (PIT) snapshots of virtual machines allows you to retain more than one replica of a virtual machine on the recovery site. Each snapshot reflects the state of the virtual machine at a certain point in time. You can select which snapshot to recover when you use vSphere Replication to perform a recovery.

Figure 1. Site Recovery Manager Architecture with vSphere Replication

SRM architecture with vSphere Replication

Using vSphere Replication and Site Recovery Manager with vSphere Storage vMotion and vSphere Storage DRS

vSphere Replication is compatible with vSphere Storage vMotion and vSphere Storage DRS on the protected site. You can use Storage vMotion and Storage DRS to move the disk files of a virtual machine that vSphere Replication protects, with no impact on replication.

Using vSphere Replication and VMware Virtual SAN Storage with Site Recovery Manager

You can use VMware Virtual SAN storage with vSphere Replication and Site Recovery Manager.


VMware Virtual SAN is a fully supported feature of vSphere 5.5u1.

  • You can use Virtual SAN in production environments with vSphere Replication 5.5.1 and vSphere 5.5u1.

  • Virtual SAN is an experimental feature in vSphere 5.5. You can perform testing with Virtual SAN with vSphere Replication 5.5.0 and vSphere 5.5, but it is not supported for use in production environments. See the release notes for the vSphere Replication 5.5.0 release for information about how to enable Virtual SAN in vSphere 5.5.