This article explains how to create Windows Protection Group and protect a Windows server Automatically as well as Manually.
To protect a Windows server using SafeHaven, we need to install a Local Replication Agent (LRA) on the production server. In order to complete the LRA installation, a Reboot of the production server is required. Please schedule a downtime window for LRA installation.
This article assumes that:
- A SafeHaven cluster has been created successfully
- Both production and recovery SRNs have been registered and peered
- Proper storage has been attached and claimed on the production SRN
Create a Windows Protection Group
Right click on the Production SRN and select Create Protection Group.
NOTE: Always start the Protection Group creation from the Production SRN.
Select the Recovery SRN, and click Start Wizard.
Select the servers from the production datacenter that you want to include in the Protection Group. Remember that it is perfectly acceptable to select just one server for inclusion in the Protection Group. Click Next.
NOTE: VSS Checkpoints are not available if you select multiple Windows to create a single Protection Group.
Choose a name for the Protection Group and click Next.
Next, the SafeHaven software provides a suitable default size for the Disk Cache. You can modify this should you choose.
Select the storage pool for cache. Click Next.
NOTE: By default the Cache size is "10% of the total provisioned storage" for the Windows server(s) you are protecting.
A summary panel appears. You may navigate back and change configurations for the Protection Group if you like. Please check the acknowledgement box and click Create
NOTE: LRA stands for Local Replication Agent which is the kernel level driver that CenturyLink provides to replicate Windows Production Servers. There are two methods by which LRA can be installed and initial replication can be started. User must select one of the two methods stated below.
Method 1. Automatic/Ansible LRA installation and Automatically Start Initial Replication
Method 2. Manual LRA Installation and Manually Start Initial Replication
Automatic/Ansible LRA installation and Automatically Start Initial Replication
Once the Protection Group is created and its status is Ready on the Properties tab, right click on it and click Install Local Raplication Agent.
First select the VM you need to install LRA on, then click Next.
Next you will need to provide the credentials for each protected VM, and acknowledge that you understand that :
a. Each selected virtual server will automatically reboot during the process.
b. Powershell version 3 will be installed along with the LRA in each selected VM.
NOTE: Before clicking the Finish button , please be aware that auto installation of LRA will automatically trigger a reboot of the production server right away. This reboot cannot be scheduled if you choose to install the LRA using automation/ansible.
Once it says Completed under Install LRA, click Next. Next, click Finish to end the wizard.
The initial replication of the production windows server is started automatically as part of the installation process.
Automatic LRA Installation
NOTE: Follow the steps below incase the user prefers to install the LRA and start the replication manually.
Manual LRA installation
After the protection group is created, log into each of the Windows production server within the protection group.
Download the latest compatible SafeHaven LRA software from the Windows Downloads - Driver Installer link which can be found under the Download Links of SafeHaven 5.0.0 Release Notes.
NOTE: Please make sure the LRA agent is compatible with the SafeHaven release version you are using. For example: A SafeHaven LRA version 4.0.4 is NOT compatible with SafeHaven release version 5.
NOTE: The VM requires a reboot at the end of the LRA installlation.
Launch the LRA installer, select the default Express Installation, and click Next.
To install the LRA, you must reboot the Windows production VM. Click Restart Now.
NOTE: Reboot of the production server can be scheduled for a later time.
Manually Start Initial Replication
After reboot, click on Start, find and launch the SafeHaven Manager.exe.
Select the default options on the first screen of the wizard (all boxes checked) and click Next.
Verify the NIC type and PCI slot number. Click Next
Enter the Local iSCSI IP address of Production SRN in front of Target Portal IP Address and click Discover. Select the appropriate ISCSI target to connect from the ISCSI target list.
Click Connect, then select Next.
A new window appears which provides the mapping from source(VMDK on production server) to destination disk(ISCSI on the SRN) along with the recommended Sync Rate, accept the default option and click Next.
NOTE: Please make sure each production virtual disk you want to protect is mapped to a corresponding iSCSI target destination disk. The size of the source and destination disk must match.
Select Obtain IP via DHCP under IP Address Setting, then click Next.
Click Finish to end the wizard.
The initial replication of the production windows VM will start now. Close the command prompt window if required.
Manual LRA Installation
Once the Protection Group is created successfully, Next step is to Modify WAN Replication Rate and Check Replication Status