How do I protect my VMs?

You have bought the SecondSite product, paired your site to Zettagrid and now need to start protecting VMs.

Step 1 – New VPG

From your SecondSite console click on the VPG tab and either select the ‘New VPG’ button at the top or select the ‘Action’ button at the bottom, and then select ‘Create VPG.’

Step 2 – Name VPG

Name the VPG and choose a priority of either High, Medium or Low. This is loosely tied to the target RPO and the service profile later. Ensure you select appropriately as it will block you later if you chose a low priority and then selected platinum on the profile.


Step 3 – Select VMs

Choose all the VMs you would like to be a part of this VPG and then change the boot order for any that need to be powered up before others in the same VPG. Think of database servers needing to be up before the front end web.

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Step 4 – Recovery Site

There will only be one recovery site and one recovery org VDC available so select them and then choose the service profile. This is what is used if there is any contention on the WAN link and there is a decision about what blocks to send across the wire first.

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Step 5 – Edit Volumes

At the storage screen edit any VMs listed that you have some already arranged with Zettagrid staff to preseeded VMDKs or VHDXs for (you would have given us VMDKs or VHDXs on a drive/NAS in that instance). Select the appropriate VMDK or VHDX for each VM that you have preseeded. This is an optional step and is not required, with no preseeding of data SecondSite will simply replicate across all required data.

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Step 6 – Recovery

The ‘Recovery’ tab includes what actions you want to be taken after the VMs have been failed across.

Typically if the VMs are to remain on the same IP address and you don’t have any custom actions to perform then make sure you remove the tick from ‘VCD Guest Customisations’ as it will attempt to do a quickprep/sysprep when the VMs are powered on otherwise. Select the prod network for the VM and the test/ringfenced network for the VM.

If no networks are shown here then log onto the NSX Edge in your Zettagrid MyAccount and create any networks you need.

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Step 7 – NICs

Edit any NIC settings required for both test or real scenarios from this next NICs tab. Be careful though as making any of these changes requires VM Tools to be running in the VMs and if its not it will fail on this step if a test or real failover is initiated and it will mean manual intervention. It will also mean potentially harming the reverse protection process.

We suggest making no IP or NIC changes as it keeps everything simple and lowers the possibility of problems when failing over.

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Step 8 – Backup

The ‘Backup’ tab is not used and you can skip passed this.

Double check the ‘Summary’ tab to make sure all is correct and then select ‘Done’. This will now trigger an ‘Initial Sync’ which depending on how much data is being sent, how big the link is and whether you are pre-seeding this can take some time.

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You should do the same for all VMs that need protection and group them according to the target RPO and whether they should be grouped together or not. Typically we prefer to use more VPGs rather than less VPGs as you have more visibility and control.