We currently have a single site with 3 hosts. We're putting together another site as sort of a secondary datacenter / eventual DR site with 2 hosts. The plan is to run a few things out there permanently, and have replication going for critical servers so that they can come online at this location if needed. Not everything would fail over to this location.
The 2 sites will be connected by our own 10Gig fiber over a stretched layer 2 network, so no IP address changes. Latency between the sites is expected to be around 4-6ms or less.
I'm trying to figure out what the best way to go about setting up vCenter is. Should our one instance manage it all? Should there be a separate instance for this secondary site, and then link the two vCenter servers? Could we somehow use VCHA to have 1 instance but be able to have a node at each site running and survive a site failure? Maybe there's another way?
I have an almost exact same setup with a stretched L2
I have one vCenter and 2 clusters in 2 cities a few hundred KM apart from each other within vCenter. All my hosts share the same distributed switch,.
I do have a SAN at each side so I am not doing any stretched iSCSI.
It works great. You don't need to license another vCenter. The only thing is you said replication. How are you planning to do this? If you want to use VMware's SRM, you will need 2 vCenter.
You can storage vMotion machines across the WAN and maintain the same IP space on the other cluster
Sounds good, and glad to hear from someone doing something very similar - we're not too far off base! We are stretching the iSCSI VLAN as well, but there's a SAN at each site. We expect the iSCSI traffic to stay local.
So is what you are doing with vCenter specifically VCHA? I just want to make sure of that. I was just reading a little of the documentation and it states its not for DR - but I feel like in my situation with no IP address changes, and all L2, and very similar VLANS in use it would work for that. From VMware's perspective it wouldn't know its a different site many miles away.
For replication we were going to start testing vSphere Replication for some of the servers - luckily we only need to fail over a small percentage of servers. Several of our servers are redundant (an A and B server) so those "B" servers are going to just stay at the remote site. Also may look into Zerto for some critical servers.
I am not doing anything with vCenter HA. If vCenter dies I can just rebuild and restore from the backup.
For DR I use SRM. We have another site that has it's own vCenter and storage with the L2 extended there as well. We do the replications of our most critical VMs to the DR site, just in case.
I have worked with Zerto, you'll need 2 vCenter deployed for that to work. Really just boils down to if you want to manage 2 instances and if you can get the money to pay for the license.
hello, for local site and secondary site disaster recovery. You can try Vinchin Backup & Recovery. It helps not only replicate data from local site to secondary site but also backup both sites.
IN VCHA your both vCenter server will have same data base info like ( vm. cluster, host info etc) . VCHA provide HA solution not DR solution , in VCHA you required put witness node on other site, VCHA can protect your single site in the event of vcenter server failure, even though you can run 2nd VCSA on other site but information would be same,
You can use VR ( VMware replication)
Okay, thank you for that info about Zerto. I've only had a brief conversation with them and I didn't know about needing 2 vCenters for that.
I thought you said you only had 1 vCenter server managing the 2 sites. Sounds like maybe you have more than 2 sites. I'd like to hear from someone using VCHA. It seems like it should "just work" though reality may be a little different. I suppose the word "DR" could mean many different things to many people. For me its more of a secondary hot site, all on the same LAN. VCHA seems like an easy way to get more uptime with less effort. I'd rather not have to be bothered by restoring vCenter to another site if one site is down. It would be nice if something automatically takes over. Also - we don't have SRM.