In this part of our Azure Site Recovery (on-premises to Azure) series, I’ll cover configuring the Hyper-V and Virtual Machine Manager Servers as well as configuring the cloud protection.

Kyle Beckman

Kyle Beckman works as a systems administrator in Atlanta, GA supporting Office 365 in higher education. He has 17+ years of systems administration experience.

Now that we’ve satisfied our prerequisites, set up our Azure storage account, and created a certificate, we can move on to creating and configuring our site recovery vault.

Configure the site recovery vault ^

In the Azure Management Portal, click New in the bottom left corner. Next, click Data Services, Recovery Services, Site Recovery Vault, and Quick Create. Pick a name and set the region of the storage account we created in Part 1. (Note: The site recovery vault must be in the same region as the storage account.)

Creating a site recovery vault in Azure for Site Recovery Manager

Creating a site recovery vault in Azure for Site Recovery Manager

The Azure Site Recovery vault we’ve just created can now be accessed by going to Recovery Services and clicking the vault name.

Azure Site Recovery vault in the Azure Management Portal

Azure Site Recovery vault in the Azure Management Portal

After clicking the vault name, you’ll go to the Quick Start. In Setup Recovery, choose Between an on-premises Hyper-V site and Microsoft Azure. Click Manage certificate and browse to the .cer file that we created in Part 1. After you’ve imported the cert, click Get the vault key and note the key that is shown.

Configuring the Azure Site Recovery vault

Configuring the Azure Site Recovery vault

Generating the vault key

Generating the vault key

Configure the Virtual Machine Manager server ^

Back in the Quick Start, we need to download and install the Microsoft Azure Site Recovery Provider and install it on the VMM server.

Download and install the Microsoft Azure Site Recovery provider for Virtual Machine Manager

Downloading and installing the Microsoft Azure Site Recovery Provider for Virtual Machine Manager

Note: When running the install, you must stop the System Center Virtual Machine Manager service on the VMM server. If you have services that are dependent on VMM, you’ll have to perform this step during a maintenance window.

Azure Site Recovery Provider Setup error indicating to stop the Virtual Machine Manager service

Specify the certificate, vault, and vault key (that we retrieved in the last step). For data encryption, you’re welcome to determine your needs here. If you do choose encryption, keep the created DataEncryptionCertificate.pfx file in a safe place since we’ll need that later in the process.

Specifying certificate vault and vault key

Specifying certificate vault and vault key

Select a name for your VMM server in Azure Site Recovery, select Synchronize cloud metadata with the vault, and then click Register. Click Close when the registration completes.

Azure Site Recovery Provider server name and initial sync

Configure Hyper-V servers ^

Back in the Quick Start, we’ll need to download another component: the Microsoft Azure Recovery Services agent. This agent will need to be installed on our Hyper-V servers.

Azure Site Recovery Services Agent for Hyper-V Server

Azure Site Recovery Services Agent for Hyper-V server

The Microsoft Azure Recovery Services agent, or MARS, is a bit simpler to install than the previous VMM component. The only thing you really need to know is that there are prerequisites for Windows Identity Foundation, .NET 4.0, and Windows PowerShell. However, the installer will download any missing components and install them for you.

Microsoft Azure Recovery Services Agent prerequisites check

Microsoft Azure Recovery Services Agent prerequisites check

Set up protection ^

Now that our servers are prepped, we’re ready to start replicating VMs to Azure. Back in the Quick Start again, click Set up protection for VMM clouds.

Setting up protection for VMM clouds

Setting up protection for VMM clouds

Go to Protected Items and click the storage account.

Selecting storage account for Azure Site Recovery protected items

Selecting storage account for Azure Site Recovery protected items

Since this is the first time we’ve configured this, you should see a link for Configure Protection Settings that you can click to advance to the configuration. Select Microsoft Azure as the target, and select your storage account where the VMs should be stored. Next, configure the other settings:

  • Encrypt Stored Data (On/Off): Specifies if VM data should be encrypted when replicated between your on-premises data center and Microsoft Azure.
  • Copy Frequency (30 seconds/5 minutes/15 minutes): Specifies how often data will be replicated between your on-premises data center and Microsoft Azure.
  • Retain Recovery Points for (Hours): Specifies how many recovery points should be kept on the Hyper-V server.
  • Frequency of Application-Consistent Snapshots: Specifies how often to create snapshots with Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS). (Ensure this number is less than the number of recovery points.)
  • Replication Start Time (Immediately/Selectable Time): Specifies the time when the initial replication starts. (Note: This time is based on the local time of your Hyper-V server.)

Configuring replication location and frequency

Configuring replication location and frequency

In our next and final installment of Azure Site Recovery (on-premises to Azure) series, I’ll cover configuring virtual machine protection and network mapping.

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