In this video, Sharon outlines the business continuity and disaster recovery solutions available in Azure, including the difference between Azure Backup vaults and the Recovery Service vaults, and an overview of RPO and RTO.
- [Narrator] Let's spend some time discussing Azure Business Continuity, or BC, and Azure Disaster Recovery, DR. Azure provides simple and cost-effective BC and DR strategies. The two solutions that are available are the Azure Backup service and Azure Site Recovery. The benefit of both of these services is that they are flexible to satisfy a variety of deployment options. Outside of Azure, we can leverage StorSimple which is a physical device that extends backup capability into Azure.
In all three cases, you only pay for the resources that you're consuming, not for the resources that you might consume at a later date. The Azure Backup service backs up files, folders, virtual machines, applications, and workloads to Azure. And we'll be discussing Azure Backup in detail later in this chapter. Azure Site Recovery, or ASR, provides a backup site for your servers and workloads. Think of ASR as your disaster recovery site in the cloud.
ASR can replicate not only your virtual machines but also your physical servers to Azure. And if your primary site is unavailable, you simply failover to the Azure implementation. Once the primary site is back online, you can then failback to it. And we'll be looking at ASR in more depth later in this chapter as well. According to Microsoft, 95 percent of all restores are from data that's been backed up in the last seven days. This is a niche that StorSimple fills.
It stores your most recent backups on the local StorSimple device. Using a local device for your backups results in faster backups, and even more important, faster restores. Older and archival backups that are on your StorSimple device are moved to Azure for long-term storage. There are several benefits to using the StorSimple device including using Azure for that long-term archival storage that we just mentioned, not having to physically remove backup media from a site, you can leverage the on-demand scaling that's already available to you in Azure for those long-term archival solutions, and finally, media migration is not required.
You don't have to worry about transferring backups between different media types. StorSimple supports backup applications from Veritas Backup Exec, Veritas NetBackup, and Veeam. Now, let's go ahead and take a look at a StorSimple deployment topology. As you can see, we have our typical on-premise environment as well as an Azure environment. Our on-premise environment houses our server and applications. We need to introduce into that on-premise environment one of the supported backup applications to manage the backing up of the data from the servers and applications to the StorSimple appliance.
Your recent backups will be on this appliance. But as time passes, the long-term archival backups are then transferred to Azure storage where you will pay for the storage that you consume. Now that we've discussed the methods to protect your data, let's change gears and quickly talk about the Recovery Services Vault. For those of you who have been around Azure for some time, you may be familiar with the Backup Vault. This was the original Backup Vault that we would have configured when using Azure backup via the classic portal.
The new vault is called the Recovery Services Vault, and it was introduced to support the resources when using the Azure Resource Manager or the new portal. Microsoft does recommend using the Recovery Services Vault. But if you still have deployments that are in the classic portal, you can only use the original Backup Vault. And no discussion about business continuity and disaster recovery would be complete without touching on RTO and RPO.
RTO is the Recovery Time Objective, and this is the duration or length of time that a business must be functional after a disaster has occurred. And each company will have a different requirement for this. I have consulted with companies who have had an RTO of six hours and others went, "Uh, a day or two is okay." So it really will depend. The RPO, or Recovery Point Objective, is the maximum amount of data that can be lost after a disaster.
And again, this will be very different for every company. For some companies, no data lost is acceptable. For others, a few hours or even days is okay. Let's go ahead and take a look at an example. In our example here, we can see that we have a failure. And our RPO, or how much data that you're willing to lose, goes back six hours. That was the time of the last backup. Our RTO, or how long can you be down for, in our example here is 12 hours from that failure point.
But keep in mind, to keep the RPO and the RTO to a minimum, your cost will increase. Using a combination of Azure Backup, ASR, and StorSimple, you can ensure your data is recoverable, your systems are always online and meeting the required recovery point and time objectives.
Note: As an intermediate-level course, an existing understanding of the Azure platform is required. The course can also serve to deepen the skills of IT professionals wishing to prepare for Azure certification.
- Monitoring Azure solutions
- Operations Management Suite, Azure Service Health, and Azure Application Insights
- Azure regions and domains
- Designing a recovery strategy with Azure Site Recovery and Azure Backup
- Configuring and deploying your recovery strategy
- Azure Automation use cases