What is needed for a Disaster Recovery Site?

We are looking to create a Disaster Recovery Site for some of our client's Servers.  We are installing a VMWare vSphere ESXi high availability cluster in a Datacenter for this purpose.

We would like to be able to backup our client's Servers every day, and be able to run them as a Virtual Machine at our DR Site so the clients can use them if their own Servers fail.

1.  What are the different ways to accomplish this?
2.  Do our clients have to be running their Servers virtual, or can they be physical?
3.  What backup software can do this?  Backup Exec?  Veeam? Others?
4.  Would we need some kind of BDR Appliance at each client's site?
5.  What else is needed for this scenario?

Thanks for your help!
CTS-TechAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
You need an VMware vSphere ESXi Server with local storage and Veeam Backup and Replication v5/v6 at the minimum.

If there servers are already virtual, its much easier, or otherwise you will need to Restore to Bare metal using Backup Exec or Acronis Products, Platespin Migrate
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Storagecraft have a suite of products that can backup physical servers, and restore as virtual servers.

Again, all this is much easier if your clients servers are already virtual, DR is then 90% complete, all you have todo is Replicate Changes via WAN to DR ESX servers
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Wasim Akram ShaikCommented:
1.  What are the different ways to accomplish this?
There are various ways to acheive this, even some third party tools to replicate the SAN of the Production data center to the DR data center

2.  Do our clients have to be running their Servers virtual, or can they be physical?

they can be physical also, in your case you are using virtual servers.

3.  What backup software can do this?  Backup Exec?  Veeam? Others?

We have a third party software called perpetuitti which will do this task

4.  Would we need some kind of BDR Appliance at each client's site?

I am not sure about this...
5.  What else is needed for this scenario?

You needed a WAN to have a connectivity between Production site and DR site so that the storage gets replicated on the scheduled basis.
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Gerald ConnollyCommented:
Make sure the links between the two sites have enough capacity to handle whatever load is going to be required.

Just work out how long it takes to pump 1TB down a 1Gb link (probably around 4 hours). Think about the sync in the first place and the resync back after the disaster is fixed.
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madunix (Fadi SODAH)Commented:
Data mirroring/Replication is used to provide near-immediate recoverability for time-sensitive systems and transaction processing. Replication ensures quick access to your data in case the primary site
systems should fail due to technical failures. I have done IBM SAN hardware replication,  basically replication (LUN entire copying) has two different varieties  [Metro Mirror and Global Mirror] synchronous MM short distance and asynchronous GM for long distance.  

"Metro Mirror is generally considered a campus-level solution, where the systems are located in fairly close proximity, such as within the same city. However, the distance supported will vary based on the write intensity of the application and the network being used. In general, with adequate resources, most customers find up to a 50-kilometer distance acceptable with some customers implementing up to a 300-kilometer distance."

"With Global Mirror, the target site may trail the production site by a few seconds. The frequency of creating a consistency group is a tunable parameter, and you?ll need to balance your recovery point objective with the performance impact of creating a consistency group. Many customers find a three- to five-second consistency group achievable (i.e., in a disaster, you?d lose the last three to five seconds of data)."


As said above the main challenge in SAN replication is to have enough bandwidth such as dark fiber for replication between the Data Centers. In order to get the correct bandwidth, it is important that during the period of data collection a realistic write load profile is captured, read more
http://www.ibmsystemsmag.com/aix/februarymarch08/focusonstorage/19296p1.aspx?ht=
http://www.redbooks.ibm.com/redbooks/pdfs/sg246786.pdf

Please not that incorrect entries, faults, virus in the system also will be replicated, I would recommend backup tapes on certain frequencies for the Data, so you can move back to the last known good
data.
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CTS-TechAuthor Commented:
Thanks!
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