You use Site Recovery Manager in conjunction with vSphere Replication and their constructs to implement cross-region disaster recovery for the workloads of the management products in the SDDC. To avoid outage reproduction in the protected region, use stretched storage clusters and implement an architecture with multiple availability zones.


Disaster recovery that is based on Site Recovery Manager has the following main elements:

Dual-region configuration

All protected virtual machines are initially located in Region A which is considered as the protected region, and are recovered in Region B which is considered as the recovery region. In a typical Site Recovery Manager installation, the protected region provides business-critical data center services. The recovery region is an alternative infrastructure to which Site Recovery Manager can relocate these services.

Replication of virtual machine data

  • Array-based replication. When you use array-based replication, one or more storage arrays at the protected region replicate data to peer arrays at the recovery region. To use array-based replication with Site Recovery Manager, you must configure replication first on the storage array and install a storage specific adapter before you can configure Site Recovery Manager to use it.

  • vSphere Replication. You configure vSphere Replication on virtual machines independently of Site Recovery Manager. Replication does not occur at the storage array level. The replication source and target storage can be any storage device. 

    You can configure vSphere Replication to use the multiple-point-in-time snapshot feature enabling more flexibility for data recovery of protected virtual machines on the recovery region. 

Protection groups

A protection group is a group of virtual machines that fail over together at the recovery region during test and recovery. Each protection group protects one datastore group, and each datastore group can contain multiple datastores. However, you cannot create protection groups that combine virtual machines protected by array-based replication and vSphere Replication. 

Recovery plans

A recovery plan specifies how Site Recovery Manager recovers the virtual machines in the protection groups. You can include a combination of array-based replication protection groups and vSphere Replication protection groups in the same recovery plan.

Figure 1. Disaster Recovery Architecture

Site Recovery Manager is configured to replicate vRealize Automation, vReaize Business, vRealize Operations Manager, and vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager. vRealize Log Insight in each region is not replicated.

Multi-Region Site Recovery Manager Deployment

The scope of the VMware Validated Design for SDDC pairs two Site Recovery Manager servers deployed on the management cluster. This design implements the following disaster recovery configuration:

  • The following management applications are a subject of disaster recovery protection:

    • vRealize Automation, vRealize Business Server, and vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager

    • Analytics cluster of vRealize Operations Manager

  • The virtual infrastructure components that are not in the scope of the disaster recovery protection, such as vRealize Log Insight, are available as separate instances in each region. 

Avoiding Disaster by using Multiple Availability Zones

To integrate stretched storage clusters for first-level disaster avoidance, use two availability zones in Region A: Availability Zone 1 and Availability Zone 2. If a disaster occurs, use the multi-region capabilities of Site Recovery Manager for orchestrated recovery.