Windows Azure Hyper-V Recovery Manager is now in General Availability

Posted by Marcel van den Berg   |   Friday, January 17th, 2014   |  

Microsoft announced General Availability of Hyper-V Recovery Manager. This means the service is supported by Microsoft for production and is backed with a Service Level Agreement.

Hyper-V Recovery Manager (HRM) is a cloud based service which coordinates failover and failback between two Microsoft System Center 2012 managed datacenters. The cloud based service is a control plane running on Windows Azure. It allows to create runbooks which coordinates the startup of virtual machines in a predefined order. It will also adjust IP-configuration of virtual machines if the secondary site is using a different IP-subnet than the primary site.

HRM is positioned by Microsoft as a better solution than VMware Site Recovery Manager (SRM). SRM is a DR coordination software solution as well.  SRM needs to be installed on-premise and requires unlike HRM quite some mouseclicks to get configured.

HRM allows a ‘one-button press’ disaster recovery procedure. It is able to handle planned downtime (prevent a disaster like hurricane, or planned maintenance) as well as unplanned downtime.

Customer data is not stored in Windows Azure. Replication between primary and secondary site is performed by Hyper-V Replica. Hyper-V Replica is a free feature of Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V which allows a-synchronous  replication per virtual machine. Hyper-V Replica is storage agnostic which means the storage in primary site can be different than storage used in the secondary site.

HRM only stores meta data in Windows Azure like names of virtual machine and networks. All data is sent encrypted.

Since the Preview in October of HRM some new enhancements were made:

  • Improved Failback Support: The Failback support has been improved in scenarios where the primary host cluster has been rebuilt after an outage.
  • Support for Kerberos based Authentication: Cloud configuration now allows selecting Kerberos based authentication for Hyper-V Replica. This is useful in scenarios where customers want to use 3rd party WAN optimization and compression and have AD trust available between primary and secondary sites.
  • Support for Upgrade from VMM 2012 SP1 to VMM 2012 R2: HRM service now supports upgrades from VMM 2012 SP1 to VMM 2012 R2.
  • Improved Scale: The UI and service has been enhanced for better scale support

Pricing of HRM is based per protected virtual machine and charged per month. Microsoft charges the average number of virtual machines protected by HRM per month. So when in the first half 20 virtual machines are protected and in the second half 0, you will be charged for 10 virtual machines.

Price (starting March 1): €11.92/ $ 16 month per virtual machine protected.

Preview price with 50% discount (until February 28): €5.96/ $ 8 month per virtual machine protected.

More information on the GA of Hyper-V Recovery Manager in this blogpost.

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