12 Replies Latest reply on May 29, 2007 4:51 PM by davidbarclay

    Vizioncore esXreplicator

    conradsia Hot Shot

      Is anyone actually using esXreplicator 2.0 for VI3? We have not been able to get it work consistently, and according to support we can only replicate 4  - 6 vm's at one time per server.

       

      Anyone having a better experience than I am? maybe I am doing something wrong but so far support hasn't said that the config is wrong.

       

      Is anyone running esXreplicator in production?

       

      Thanks,

        • 1. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
          jamieorth Expert

          We have been testing it significantly.  We have had good success but still feel there are some things to work out prior to putting it into production.  We were replicating 4 VM's across a 10mb link so the initial pass took a very long time.  We also adjusted from which hosts the vm's were being replicated from and to, as well as the VMFS partition (LUN's) they resided on to try to fine tune the performance.  We did have one VM that didn't replicated the 2nd VMDK file associated with the VM upon subsequent passes.  We are looking into that.  Overall its a good product if it fits your environment and serves the purpose you are looking for.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
            conradsia Hot Shot

            After tearing the environment to the ground and starting over things started to work better the second time around.

             

            But the one thing I don't like is the amount of console resources it uses. We were told to increase memory to 768 and to increase the console cpu reservation to 1200 mhz. During replication the cpu consistenly runs at >90%.

             

            I really want to use this product and I'm hoping this works out.

            • 3. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
              davidbarclay Master

              >consistenly runs at >90%.

               

              How have you configured the jobs? How many?

               

              We haven't deployed yet, but are positioning/designing it into many solutions. Talking to Kix offline he gave some pointers;

               

              \- keeping it to one replication job per core on the server

              \- staggering replication passes

              \- not replicating more than you NEED

              \- using DRS anti-affinity rules to keep apart similar jobs (i.e. servers doing 15 min jobs)

               

              I am really interested in your feedback. Some of the current designs have 30+ replicaitons jobs (mixture of 15 mins, 4 hourly and daily) so I need to sanity check! unfortunately a new product means no track record....yet.

               

              Dave

              • 4. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
                kimono Master

                yes and I get the impression from talking to others that the success of any replication type arrangment is dependant upon the overall health of your ESX hosts beforehand. if the hosts are choking then things like snapshot take and delete may fail due to console strain etc ...

                • 5. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
                  conradsia Hot Shot

                  At this point we are trying to replicate 6 vm's every 15 minutes. After letting them run over the weekend 4 are still running, one has completely stopped replicating, one needed to have the job re-created. The replicator processes esxreplicator.client.exe esxreplicator.service.exe were also hung and consuming 800MB of memory. The vm's are not production vm's either, just stand alone test vm's with pretty much no activity or change in them.

                   

                  We have less than one replication per core since the box is dual quad core and we are only attempting the recommended 4 - 6 vm's. In reality we are looking at replicating close to 30 across several hosts for production but for now we are only testing with 4 -6 on one host.

                   

                  That is the first I have heard of the anti-affinity rules, could you elaborate a little more please?

                   

                  We are very interested in feedback as well, we are beginning to feel more comfortable with the product but not close to as comfortable as we want to be before going into production or giving to a client.

                  • 6. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
                    sia-joe Novice

                    - staggering replication passes

                     

                    The problem with staggering is that there is no option for absolute scheduling.  You can only schedule passes relative to the time the job completed last.  So the schedules for all the jobs will eventually converge.

                     

                    I was told that we should only schedule as many jobs as the host can handle at one time.

                    1 person found this helpful
                    • 7. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
                      SFlaherty Novice

                      We are evaluating towards a purchase of replicator and have had mixed results. One big item we learned from tech support today is that when the replication job kicks off it has to scan for block changes since the last replication. The scan speed is 1.5gb per minute, so if you have a 15gb vmdk it takes 10 minutes before it sends data. We have also had issues with VM's crashing during the replication process (infrequently) Our impression is that this product is a work in progress and still needs some coding changes before it is ready for prime time. If someone comes up with a simple backup solution to a DR site that works consistently with ESX 3.01 they will make a fortune.

                      • 8. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
                        kix1979 Champion

                        We have also had issues

                        with VM's crashing during the replication process

                        (infrequently)

                        That must have nothing to do with esxReplicator.  Perhaps it has to due with the snapshots and IO redirection?  We don't touch the Guest OS.

                        • 9. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
                          conradsia Hot Shot

                          SFlaherty,

                           

                          esXpress is an awesome backup product which will backup your vm's to a DR site but they need to be restored once sent. It does changes only as well. Once the mass restore option is implemented in esXpress for VI3, then you wont need to manually restore them any more.

                          • 10. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
                            davidbarclay Master

                            esXpress is not a competitive product to esxReplicator. esxRanger is.

                             

                            The market is small for VMDK replication products. There DoubleTake (which just launched a v2), but it has major design flaws (requires snapshot in place permanently - scary!). Also Symantec's Volume/Cluster Thingy.

                             

                            esxReplicator is the closest we have so far...and if Vizioncore's past devleopment lifecycle is anything to go by, features and improvements will come quickly.

                             

                            Dave

                            • 11. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
                              conradsia Hot Shot

                              well, he said backup solution to a DR site not replication and I much much prefer express to ranger for backups. It's just a more intelligent piece of software in my eyes. But thats an intel vs amd type discussion that I feel people just have their own opinion on and should use whatever best suits their environment.

                               

                              But I totally agree that replicator is the closest thing to complete replication and I hope it does work out so we can push it out.

                               

                              I think platespin is claiming to have something as well ... but I havent trialed it or anything.

                              • 12. Re: Vizioncore esXreplicator
                                davidbarclay Master

                                I think platespin is claiming to have something as well

                                 

                                Repurposing an existing product to provide completely new functionality comes at a price. I'll leave it there.

                                 

                                Dave