Microsoft Cloud Recovery Services
During the last year Microsoft’s Cloud Platform ‘Azure’ has seen considerable development. An area of focus has been BCDR (Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery) and predominately, Azure Site Recovery and Azure Backup.
Azure Backup & Azure Site Recovery (ASR) offer simple, reliable, cloud-integrated backup to replace tape, ensure compliance and save customers money. Furthermore, ASR ensures all vital applications and virtual machines are protected.
In this article, we are going to look at these services in more detail and how you can look to benefit from these and begin leveraging them for your gain.
Azure Site Recovery
What is Azure Site Recovery?
Azure Site Recovery (ASR) is a Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Service hosted by Microsoft and provides the replication and orchestration of your servers and services to another datacentre. The ‘other’ data centre can be your own datacentre, which uses ASR as a cloud witness, or it can be a Microsoft Azure Data Center for replication.
Why use Azure Site Recovery?
Azure Site Recovery coordinates and manages the ongoing replication of data by integrating with existing technologies such as Hyper-V Replica, System Center, and SQL Server AlwaysOn. Furthermore, environments can be protected by automating the replication of the virtual machines based on policies that you set and control.
Traditionally, customers would require a separate datacentre for Disaster Recovery Systems, complete with enough compute, storage and networking resource to support a Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR) solution should a disaster occur. ASR offers not only a lower cost alternative due to the ‘Pay for what you use’ Cloud storage but also offers a convenient, faster datacentre configuration and efficient way to setup, configure and utilise.
What is Azure Backup?
Azure Backup is a Microsoft Azure Service to backup and restore your data to/from Microsoft Azure and can be used to replace or run alongside your existing backup solution, dependent on the solution of course! Microsoft Azure is known for its secure and reliable services backed by excellent SLAs to ensure that your data and the service you are consuming is highly available.
Azure Backup can be used to either backup your on-premises machines or even your machines currently residing in Azure. Whist your machines in Azure are protected via replicated disks, this does not suffice as a backup solution. What if you need to roll back your servers after a disaster?
Why use Azure Backup?
One of the biggest challenges organisations face today is the cost, time and resource often required to test current on premise backup solutions. Furthermore, having numerous tape archives is often expensive and difficult to maintain. If all your data is held on off-site tapes, how long does it take you to recover your data? Hours? Days? Weeks?
With Cloud backup, organisations can save money and increase business agility, lowering the management costs of backing up remote/branch offices and reducing the dependence of offsite tape backup to accelerate a faster and more efficient recovery time. With 99 years of retention Azure also meets, or exceeds, even the most demanding regulatory and business requirements.
Azure Backup is designed to integrate with existing backup solutions such as System Center Data Protection Manager, giving you the power of a robust recovery solution and the advantage of a scalable cloud backend for your long-term storage.
With the lowest tier of Storage replicating your data 3 times throughout the Azure Datacentre to ensure availability and protection coupled with a 99.9% Service availability. Azure Backup has some compelling points as a long term, integrated and cost effective solution.
Microsoft has released a secure, simple and cost effective platform for managing and supporting your BCDR Requirements. Equipped with a wealth of features and support such as orchestration and multiplatform support, Azure Site Recovery and Azure Backup are strong candidates in any BCDR type scenario.
Azure Site Recovery and Azure Backup are part of the Operations Management Suite and part of the Standard Azure Subscription, both of which have
free trials available that will allow you to test these products out and get a feel for them.
I would recommend to anyone to get hands on with this product to get a better feel for it.
If you do have an existing Azure Subscription and are interested in using Azure Site Recovery, then it is free for the first 31 Days. This gives enough time to test and get to grips with Azure Site Recovery. Find more details on pricing.
Thanks for reading!
Gennaro Migliaccio | Cloud Management Specialist