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DEPLOYING RECOVERPOINT FOR VIRTUAL

MACHINES VERSION 5.0 SP1 WITH VXRAIL

ABSTRACT
This white paper explains how RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines is implemented with
the VxRail Hyper-Converged Infrastructure Appliance to provide comprehensive per-VM
data protection. It provides a technical overview detailing the integration of the two
technologies.

May, 2017

WHITE PAPER
Table of Contents
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ...........................................................................................................4
Audience ........................................................................................................................................... 4

OVERVIEW ................................................................................................................................5
DEPLOYMENT ..........................................................................................................................7
Preparing the network for VxRAIL ..................................................................................................... 7
Preparing the ESXi nodes ................................................................................................................. 9
Downloading the RecoverPoint for VMs software ........................................................................... 10
Deploying the vRPAs using the OVF file ......................................................................................... 11
Installing the vRPA cluster .............................................................................................................. 23
Integrated Management and Protection with the vSphere Web Client ............................................ 35
Protection ........................................................................................................................................ 36

LICENSING ............................................................................................................................. 39
CONCLUSION ........................................................................................................................ 40
REFERENCES ........................................................................................................................ 41

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The information in this publication is provided “as is.” EMC Corporation makes no representations or warranties of any kind with respect
to the information in this publication, and specifically disclaims implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.
Use, copying, and distribution of any EMC software described in this publication requires an applicable software license.

EMC2, EMC, the EMC logo, RecoverPoint and RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines are registered trademarks or trademarks of EMC
Corporation in the United States and other countries. All other trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners. ©
Copyright 2017 EMC Corporation. All rights reserved. Published in the USA, May 2017, Part Number H16180.

EMC believes the information in this document is accurate as of its publication date. The information is subject to change without
notice.

EMC is now part of the Dell group of companies.

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The IT infrastructure market is undergoing unprecedented transformation. The most significant


transformation is reflected by two major trends: a deployment trend toward converged
infrastructure and a design trend toward software-defined data centers (SDDCs).

In conjunction with this trend customers continue to require a Business Continuity/Disaster


Recovery (BC/DR) capability that is synonymous with their converged infrastructure. RecoverPoint
for Virtual Machines for VMware (referred to RecoverPoint for VMs here on in) is synonymous with
this requirement and provides customers with this capability by enabling local AND/OR remote
replication of virtual machines (VMs) on a per-VM basis (containing VMDK and/or RDM files),
allowing recovery to any Point in Time (PiT) snapshot with orchestration features during Recover to
Production or Failover.

RecoverPoint for VMs is a software-only data protection solution for protecting VMware VMs
enabling replication from any storage type to any storage type, leveraging Virtual RecoverPoint
Appliances (vRPAs) integrated in the VMware ESXi hosts as part of a VMware High Availability
cluster. This is achieved via a RecoverPoint write-splitter embedded in the ESXi hypervisor.

RecoverPoint for VMs simplifies operational recovery and disaster recovery with built-in
orchestration and automation capabilities accessible via VMware vCenter. vAdministrators can
manage the protection lifecycle of VMs via the RecoverPoint for VMs plug-in through the VMware
vSphere Web Client.

Audience
This white paper is intended for EMC customers, partners and employees who want to
understand and evaluate VxRAIL with RecoverPoint for VMs. Familiarity with
RecoverPoint, VxRAIL and VMware is required.

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OVERVIEW

This paper will focus primarily of the deployment of a RecoverPoint for VMs within a VxRAIL
environment and will provide a typical example of how a customer may choose to deploy the
solution. Moreover, it will also highlight all the relevant components and provide some best
practice recommendations.

RecoverPoint for VMs addresses this requirement by replicating VMs (with VMDK and/or RDM
vdisks) on any type of storage supported by VMware over any distance, be it synchronous or
asynchronous. This unique approach to replication in the VMware environment is supported as per
the software versions specified in the latest RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines 5.0 Simple Support
Matrix and provides the following core capabilities:

 Fully Virtualized Solution


 Storage Agnosticism (SAN, DAS, NAS, iSCSI, FCoE, vSAN, SIO)
 vSphere Hypervisor Based ESXi Splitter (vSCSI or IOF)
 Web-based deployment
 Integrated Management within the VMware vSphere Web Client
 Recovery Operations with any PiT (failover, failback and recover to production)
 Orchestration of recovery operations (including re-iping, MAC replication, start-up
sequencing, prioritization, pre and post scripts)
 REST API
 Fault tolerance
 No Single-Point-Of-Failure
 vMotion/Storage vMotion Support
 Non-Disruptive Upgrade capability
 Efficient protection of scaled environments
 Multi-copy (one to many simultaneous replication)
 Multi-VM Consistency Groups
 Asynchronous and/or Synchronous replication
 Dynamic switching between asynchronous and synchronous replication
 Built-in WAN bandwidth reduction capabilities (compression and deduplication)
 Bandwidth throttling
 Efficient use of journaling technology – roll from the latest PiT snapshot and between
different PiT snapshots using the Test a Copy feature
 Transparent addition/removal of VMDK/VM from a Consistency Group

For more specific product and feature capability of RecoverPoint for VMs refer to the latest
documentation and/or Whitepapers from EMC Online Support->Support by Product->RecoverPoint
for Virtual Machines.

The VxRail Series delivers virtualization, compute, and storage in a scalable, easy to
manage, hyper-converged infrastructure appliance. A VxRail Appliance is built on Intel Xeon
processor-based x86 hardware with the VxRail™ Manager software bundle, and support for other
value-added software from EMC and VMware.

The VxRail Manager software bundle includes the following:

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 VxRail™ Manager for deployment, configuration, and management
 VMware vSphere®, including ESXi
 VMware vCenter Server™
 VMware vSAN™ for storage
 VMware vRealize Log Insight™

The VxRail Appliance also includes complementary applications including RecoverPoint for Virtual
Machines.

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DEPLOYMENT

The following section depicts the deployment of a single vRPA cluster consisting of two vRPAs in a
VxRAIL Appliance.

Preparing the network for VxRail

Prepare the required port groups on the VxRail Distributed Switch (VMware HCIA Distributed
Switch) in relation to the RecoverPoint for VMs network adapter topology.

The recommended network adapter topology, and the topology used as part of the vRPA cluster
deployment in this whitepaper, is to use the configuration of three port groups in VxRAIL shown in
Figure 1 to match the three network adapter topology (for LAN, WAN and Data (iSCSI) separation)
highloghted in Table 1.

Note that it is possible to use any of the other network adapter topologies. For example, if using a
single network adapter, define one port group, RP_ALL, or if using four network adapters, define
four port groups, RP_WAN, RP_LAN, RP_Data1 and RP_Data2.

The selection of the network topology also determines the IP address requirement. The
recommended three network adapter topology configuration will require three separate IP address
for each vRPA, i.e. LAN, WAN and Data (iSCSI).

Note that this does not include the IP address required for the iSCSI Software Adapter on each of
the ESXi nodes. This is a separate requirement.

Figure 1

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Table 1

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Preparing the ESXi nodes

It is recommended that RecoverPoint for VMs with VxRAIL deployments use the vSCSI splitter type
which requires a minimum of one iSCSI Software Adapters VMkernel port per ESXi node.

1. Create one VMkernel on each ESXi node by selecting the pre-existing Data (iSCSI) port group
on the distributed vSwitch “VxRail Distributed Switch”.

2. When using a single VMKernel port, assign uplink1 to the port and bind it to the software
iSCSI adapter.

When using two VMkernel ports as part of the 4 network topology adapter option:

 Assign uplink1 to one VMkernel port and uplink2 to the second VMkernel port
 For uplink2, use traffic shaping to limit bandwidth to no more than 1Gb/s:

• Locate the port group, right-click it, and select Edit Settings.
• In the Edit Settings window, change traffic shaping for the port group:

Table 2

 Bind the VMkernel ports to the software iSCSI adapter.

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Downloading the RecoverPoint for VMs software

The latest qualified RecoverPoint for VMs release is available from the VxRail Market Place. Log
onto the VxRAIL Manager and navigate to Market in order to download the RecoverPoint for VMs
OVA file.

Note that only the OVA file is required to deploy the vRPAs. Refer to the latest RecoverPoint for VMs
5.0 Release Notes and RecoverPoint for VMs 5.0 Installation and Deployment Guide prior to OVF
deployment.

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Deploying vRPAs using the OVA file

The following screenshots show the OVA deployment required for a single vRPA although two
vRPAs will be deployed as part of a single vRPA cluster deployment. A vRPA cluster can support
one to eight vRPAs.

When choosing the vRPA profile, shown in the OVF deployment screenshots, refer to the following
table.

Table 3

Note that after deploying the vRPAs the VxRAIL reservation settings may prevent the vRPA from
powering up to due to its default predefined limits.

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Installing the vRPA Cluster

Once the vRPAs have been deployed the vRPA cluster can be deployed by using the IP address of
the first vRPA. The following screenshots show the vRPA cluster OVA deployment with all of the
input parameters added.

Note that the splitter VIB is installed on each of the ESXi nodes as part of the vRPA cluster
deployment.

Refer to the latest RecoverPoint for VMs 5.0 Release Notes and RecoverPoint for VMs 5.0
Installation and Deployment Guide prior to vRPA cluster deployment.

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Integrated Management and Protection using vSphere Web Client

The RecoverPoint for VMs plugin exists within the vSphere Web Client and is installed
automatically as part of the Deployer installation process.

It enables discovery, provisioning, automation and orchestration of disaster recovery workflows


such as PiT testing, failing over, failing back, and recovering production of a single consistency
group or of a group of consistency groups.

Access to the RecoverPoint for VMs plugin is performed via the vSphere Web Client and is initiated
using the following, where <vCenter-IP-address> is the IP address of the vCenter and <port> is the
port selected in the installation of the Web Client plugin. The default port is 9443.

https://<vCenter-IP-address>:<port>/vsphere-client/

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Protection

Once the vRPA cluster has been deployed, register the ESXi cluster(s) to ensure that any VMs
residing in the cluster(s) can be protected by adding the MARVIN-Virtual-SAN-Cluster via the ESX
Clusters tab. Registration is performed via the RecoverPoint for VMs plugin.

Figure 37

The deployment of a single vRPA cluster allows Local protection of a VM. Remote protection of a VM
requires deployment of an additional vRPA cluster on another VxRAIL Appliance or external VMware
environment and the connection of two or more vRPA clusters.

Once the additional vRPA cluster is deployed the two vRPA clusters can be connected using the
Deployer Connect Cluster Wizard as shown below.

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Once successfully logged into the Web Client, the RecoverPoint for VMs plugin is visible and
accessible as a RecoverPoint for VMs option to both initiate protection of a VM and to perform
recovery and management activities.

Protection of a VM can now be initiated by clicking on the VM -> Manage -> RecoverPoint for VMs
and then selecting ‘Protect this VM’ option as shown in the figure below.

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LICENSING

Refer to the latest RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines Ordering and Licensing Guide for information
relating to licensing.

RecoverPoint for VMs licensing is per # of protected VMs with the Production VMs vCenter ID (of the
source vCenter where the VMs are being protected) needing to be licensed. Note that each VxRAIL
Appliance currently provides a free bundle RecoverPoint for VMs licensing bundle of 15 VMs.

A protected VM is associated with a “Production vCenter”. This association is created when the CG
is defined, and is maintained even when a VM has failed over. There is no need for a license on the
DR site vCenter (replica/target site ) – the license for a failed-over VM continues to count against
the pool of its Production vCenter unless it is also desired to protect VMs on this site.

The license file acts as a dynamic pool. RecoverPoint for VMs cluster obtain their license from the
vCenter Server license pool. When a CG is protected, the number of available VM licenses
decreases by then number of VMs in that CG. When protection is removed from a CG, the available
license pool increases back by the same number of VMs.

The license to protect a VM includes all of its copies. Whether a VM is protected locally, remotely,
locally and remotely or with two remote copies, all copies count against one VM license.

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CONCLUSION

This document provides a comprehensive deployment overview for RecoverPoint for Virtual
Machines deployment with a VxRAIL Appliance. Deployment of a single vRPA cluster is a quick and
easy process allowing VM protection within the same VxRAIL Appliance or to another vRPA cluster
in a secondary VxRAIL Appliance in under an hour.

Note that a successful deployment always requires efficient sizing and monitoring.

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REFERENCES

The following documents were used or referenced in conjunction with the authoring of this
document. All documents are available at EMC’s Online Support website,
https://support.emc.com:

 RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines 5.0 Release Notes


 RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines 5.0 Installation and Deployment Guide
 RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines 5.0 Administrator’s Guide
 RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines 5.0 Product Guide Release
 RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines 5.0 Scale and Performance Guide
 RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines 5.0 REST API Programming and Reference Guide
 RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines Simple Support Matrix 5.0
 RecoverPoint for Virtual Machines 5.0 Ordering and Licensing Guide Release

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