Microsoft Catapults Tweaked Azure Site Recovery Solution for VMware

By CIOReview | Thursday, January 21, 2016

FREMONT, CA: Microsoft has made it easier for their clients to back up and recover their VMware virtual servers by upgrading the Azure Site Recovery (ASR), the company's cloud-based disaster recovery product. The move to update ASR for VMware is a continuation of Microsoft’s platform-agnostic approach in-line with the ‘cloud-first’ strategy adopted by Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft.

The ASR concept grants customers to back-up virtual machines into the Azure storage, update them and run them on Azure as a disaster recovery option. The company charges 54 U.S. dollars per month for every VM item stored in Azure, but users don’t have to pay compute or storage costs until they run the VM.

“Customers can now protect and replicate their VMware virtual machines and physical servers to Azure, without the need to deploy any replication or orchestration components in Azure IaaS [Infrastructure-as-a-Service],” said Senior Program Manager of Microsoft Cloud and Enterprise, Abhishek Hemranjini.

VMware has a disaster recovery service of their own that is currently functioning in nine geographical regions as compared to eighteen regions provided by Microsoft. Microsoft’s enhanced ASR service will help users tackle some of the complexity and cost issues involved in setting up disaster recovery services of the old version. Though the old version remains available, the company recommends the users to begin using the latest, enhanced VMware when replicating VMware workloads or physical machines to Azure.

On the management front, administrators can install the on-premise components of ASR using Microsoft's Installer technology with .msi file format, which is also known as Windows Installer. This will empower them to configure replication to Azure in a few simple steps without including the expense and intricacy that custom replication arrangements involve. Another advantage is the non-disruptive recovery testing, which allows users to test and validate VMware virtual machine failover to Azure within minutes without affecting production workloads. The enhanced version allows users to access only the IT management services that they need, install them and have prompt results, paying only for the features that are being used.