Site Recovery


An important part of your organization’s BCDR strategy is figuring out how to keep corporate workloads and apps up and running when planned and unplanned outages occur.

Site Recovery helps do this by orchestrating replication, failover, and recovery of workloads and apps so that they’ll be available from a secondary location if your primary location goes down.

Why use Site Recovery?

Here’s what Site Recovery can do for your business:

  • Simplify your BCDR strategy—Site Recovery makes it easy to handle replication, failover and recovery of multiple business workloads and apps from a single location. Site recovery orchestrates replication and failover but doesn’t intercept your application data or have any information about it.
  • Provide flexible replication—Using Site Recovery you can replicate workloads running on Hyper-V virtual machines, VMware virtual machines, and Windows/Linux physical servers.
  • Easy failover and recovery—Site Recovery provides test failovers to support disaster recovery drills without affecting production environments. You can also run planned failovers with a zero-data loss for expected outages, or unplanned failovers with minimal data loss (depending on replication frequency) for unexpected disasters. After failover you can failback to your primary sites. Site Recovery provides recovery plans that can include scripts and Azure automation workbooks so that you can customize failover and recovery of multi-tier applications.
  • Eliminate secondary datacenter—You can replicate to a secondary on-premises site, or to Azure. Using Azure as a destination for disaster recovery eliminates the cost and complexity maintaining a secondary site, and replicated data is stored in Azure Storage, with all the resilience that provides.
  • Integrate with existing BCDR technologies—Site Recovery partners with other application BCDR features. For example you can use Site Recovery to protect the SQL Server back end of corporate workloads, including native support for SQL Server AlwaysOn to manage the failover of availability groups.

How does Azure Site Recovery work?

Organizations need a business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) strategy that a determines how apps, workloads, and data remain available during planned and unplanned downtime, and recover to regular working conditions as soon as possible.

Site Recovery is an Azure service that contributes to your BCDR strategy by orchestrating replication of on-premises physical servers and virtual machines to the cloud (Azure) or to a secondary site. When outages occur in your primary location, you fail over to the secondary site to keep apps and workloads available. You fail back to your primary location when it returns to normal operations.

Site Recovery can be deployed to orchestrate replication in a number of scenarios:

  • Replicate VMware virtual machines: You can replicate on-premises VMware virtual machines to Azure or to a secondary datacenter.
  • Replicate physical machines: You can replicate physical machines running Windows or Linux to Azure or to a secondary datacenter.
  • Replicate Hyper-V VMs managed in System Center VMM clouds: You can replicate on-premises Hyper-V virtual machines in VMM clouds to Azure or to a secondary datacenter.
  • Replicate Hyper-V VMs (without VMM): You can replicate Hyper-V VMs that aren’t managed by VMM to Azure.
  • Migrate VMs: You can use Site Recovery to migrate Azure IaaS VMs between regions, or tomigrate AWS Windows instances to Azure IaaS VMs. Currently only migration is supported which means you can fail over these VMs but you can’t fail them back.