I have a one-site setup with vSphere 5.5, VSAN and NSX 6.1 deployed. There are two separate clusters: one for the management VM's and another for workloads. Currently I'm trying to make this infrastructure more resilient. We decided to use another site and deploy SRM 5.8 in a/p scenario. The requirement is to protect only workload VM's and not the management components. So, now I'm wondering what would be the best approach? Should I deploy a separate VCSA in the recovery site along with NSX Manager and Controllers? Or maybe we can just include only the NSX components in the recovery plan, power them on in the case of site failure, and use scripts or Orchestrator workflow to set the networking up?
BTW, I'll be using the Replication appliance with SRM.
What are your thoughts?
from my current understanding, if you are planning on using NSX, then SRM will not work in your environment. Right now its a pick one or the other, but not both. We found this out about 4 months ago, so that's what I'm basing this one, but I could be mistaken if then have made changes to NSX since then.
To use SRM will require a vCenter at your second site. See below for details about NSX config.
To answer the question about NSX and SRM compatibility:
The compatibility between NSX and SRM comes down to this: SRM is a 2 vCenter concept and NSX is a 1 vCenter/multiple site concept.
That said they work fine together, deploy NSX separately at each site and duplicate the settings & rules at each, map networks for SRM and you are all set. The challenge will be to keep the NSX settings in sync across the 2 sites, however this can be met by utilizing good change control.
Tighter integration between NSX and SRM is being worked on.
To add to what GS has mentioned I would also recommend watching the following VMworld 2014 session that discusses NSX in a multi-DC environment -> VMworld 2014 - Networking: Multi Site Data Center Solutions with VM - YouTube
There is discussion of NSX ad SRM towards the end of the session (though I would recommend watching all of the session).
Thanks guys for your thoughts. I was also able to check the slides from NET4299 - NSX Multi-site Solutions for BC/DR (PEX 2015). Seems that it won't be a problem to set up 2 vCenter servers and 2 NSX deployments. Right now the only challenge I see is keeping NSX config synchronized.
But apart from that, I wanted to ask you what's needed to enable vSphere Replication between these two sites? We're using VSAN, so our options are limited in regards of replicating storage.
The vSphere Replication documentation should cover this fairly well . You basically just deploy an appliance to both sites and make sure the appropriate ports are open .