By default, Site Recovery Manager sets all virtual machines in a new recovery plan to recovery priority level 3. You can increase or decrease the recovery priority of a virtual machine. The recovery priority specifies the shutdown and power on order of virtual machines.

If you change the priority of a virtual machine, Site Recovery Manager applies the new priority to all recovery plans that contain this virtual machine.

Site Recovery Manager starts virtual machines on the recovery site according to the priority that you set. Site Recovery Manager starts priority 1 virtual machines first, then priority 2 virtual machines second, and so on. Site Recovery Manager uses VMware Tools heartbeat to discover when a virtual machine is running on the recovery site. In this way, Site Recovery Manager can ensure that all virtual machines of a given priority are running before it starts the virtual machines of the next priority. For this reason, you must install VMware Tools on protected virtual machines.


  1. In the vSphere Client, click Site Recovery > Open Site Recovery.
  2. On the Site Recovery home tab, select a site pair and click View Details.
  3. Select the Recovery Plans tab, click on a recovery plan, and select Virtual Machines.
  4. Right-click a virtual machine and select Priority Group.
  5. Select a new priority for the virtual machine.
    The highest priority is 1. The lowest priority is 5.
  6. Click Yes to confirm the change of priority.