Azure Site Recovery: Assessment and Discovery Tools

Azure Site Recovery for BCDR and Migration

This is the first blog in the Azure Site Recovery for BCDR and Migration series. If you are planning an On-Premises (VMware) to Azure migration, or are planning to leverage Azure Site Recovery (ASR) in your business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) strategy, and want to assess your readiness for Azure, read on.

Using Azure-provided Assessment and Discovery tools will give you a deep insight into capacity planning, plan your DR strategy, help you to develop a  phased approach to your Azure migration strategy and guide you through initial replication (IR) batching and bandwidth analysis, to help meet your desired Recovery Point Objective (RPO).

In this post we take a detailed look at two powerful tools the Azure Cloud offers:

  • Azure Deployment Planner
  • Azure Migrate

Azure Deployment Planner

Site Recovery Deployment Planner is a command-line tool for both Hyper-V to Azure and VMware to Azure disaster recovery scenarios and can be run without installing any ASR components on the on-prem Virtual Machines and hence no production impact. Deployment planner only talks to the vcenter to collect the data.

Deployment Planner provides the following details:

  1. Compatibility assessment based on VM Eligibility IOPS, Churn
  2. Network bandwidth need versus RPO assessment
  3. Azure infrastructure requirements
  4. On-premises infrastructure requirements
  5. Estimated disaster recovery cost to Azure

Microsoft Documentation

Microsoft has done a phenomenal job with their Azure documentation. This blog is intended to complement the documentation and run through an end-to-end proof of concept with sample outputs and reports.

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/site-recovery-deployment-planner

Prerequisites:

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/site-recovery-deployment-planner
Image Source: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/site-recovery-deployment-planner

 

Note: vCenter Statistics Level:

Steps to Take

  1. Download Deployment Planner Tool

Download the latest version of Site Recovery Deployment Planner. The tool is packaged in a .zip folder.  Be sure to install this tool on a system which meets the above prerequisites with access to the vCenter on tcp/443

2. Get the List of VMs to be Profiled

3. Profile VMs for 2 Hours for a Proof of Concept

Azure Deployment Planner Proof of Concept

4. Generate the Report

Copy the Profiled data directory on the system with excel 2013 installed and Generate the report.

5. Get Throughput

Get Throughput

6. Analyze the Generated Report

Review the report generated in Step#5 C:\vCenter1_ProfiledData\DeploymentPlannerReport_636636385538630000.xlsm


Sample Full Report:   DeploymentPlannerReport_636636385538630000

7. Analyze the Cost Estimation Report

Azure Migrate

The Azure Migrate service assesses on-premises workloads for migration to Azure. The service evaluates the migration suitability of on-premises machines, performance-based sizing, and provides cost estimations for running your on-premises machines in Azure. If you’re contemplating Lift-and-Shift migrations, or are in the early assessment stages of migration, this service is for you. After the assessment, you can use services such as Azure Site Recovery and Azure Database Migration Service, to migrate the machines to Azure.

Azure Migrate helps you to:

  • Assess Azure readiness: Assess whether your on-premises machines are suitable for running in Azure.
  • Get size recommendations: Get size recommendations for Azure VMs based on the performance history of on-premises VMs.
  • Estimate monthly costs: Get estimated costs for running on-premises machines in Azure.
  • Migrate with high confidence: Visualize dependencies of on-premises machines to create groups of machines that you will assess and migrate together.

Prerequisites: 

Documentation Links:

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/migrate/

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/migrate/migrate-scenarios-lift-and-shift#architecture
Image Source: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/migrate/migrate-scenarios-lift-and-shift#architecture

Steps to Take

  1. Create an Azure Migrate Project  (In the Azure Portal)

Create the Azure Migrate Project
Azure Migrate Project

 

Download the Azure Migrate Appliance

2. Deploy and Configure Azure Migrate Collector  (On the On-Prem vCenter)

If you want to assess large numbers of on-premises virtual machines (VMs), Azure Migrate is very useful to check whether they’re suitable for migration to Azure. The service provides sizing and cost estimations for running the machines in Azure.  Install the OVA firewall directly from the ESXi host Web Interface and make sure the certificate is install on the local PC.

Azure Migrate Collector

3. Run Azure Collector to Start VM Disovery  (On the Azure Migrate Appliance)

Power on the new Azure Migrate collecter VM and launch the console. Click on “Run Collector” from the desktop and configure the four steps as show below and start the collection. Notice the scope of VM discovery can be set to a vSphere Cluster, or an individual ESXi host.


4. Group Machines for Assessment

5. Create an Assessment

6. Review Azure Readiness

7. Prepare machines for depedency mapping (Optional)

Conclusion

Azure Deployment Planner and Azure Migrate help assess your readiness to move to Azure, increase the success rate, while lowering the production impact during the migration and accelerate your journey to cloud.  Consider engaging Professional Services from a cloud service provider like Navisite to bring subject matter expertise to your Azure migration or disaster recovery planning.

Note: I’d like to thank my manager John Rudenauer and leaders from our Navisite Product Management – William Toll and Umang Chhibber, Marketing team – Chris Pierdominici and Carole Bailey, and Professional Services team – Mike Gallo for their continued support and direction.

Coming soon to this series…

  1. ASR: VMware to Azure Migration using Azure Configuration Server
  2. ASR: Azure Region-to-Region DR
  3. ASR: Best Practices for Special Workload migration (SQL and Active Directory Servers)
  4. Complete BCDR Solution Using Azure Traffic Manager
Nehali Neogi

Nehali Neogi

Principal Cloud Architect at Navisite
Nehali Neogi is a Principal Cloud Architect at Navisite, leading many of their global initiatives on building the next generation of hybrid cloud services. She enjoys designing and architecting reliable and highly available solutions for Navisite’s clients. She is a Cisco, VMware NSX and Azure certified Cloud Architect leading Hybrid Cloud offerings. Her interests are cloud technologies, Software Defined Networking, full stack engineering, and realizing the transition to DevOps and system Automation.Nehali holds an Expert Level Certification in VMware NSX(VCIX-NV) and Microsoft Certified Azure Cloud Architect.She holds Masters in Computer Engineering from UMass, Lowell.
Nehali Neogi