SRM as Dr solution – Using SRDF

In my environment we are using SRM as DR solution for 3-4 clients and more clients are willing to go that path in couple of months. We have done couple of DR test and came to know some hidden facts which many ppl who manages or started managing SRM are not aware.

In my environment we have SRM used with SRDF replication. SRM has loads of benefits over manual methods we were using earlier to take care of our DR solution.

1: Easy to handle and manager with very less manual intervention.

2: Very quick compared to manual way of bring up the DR environment.

3: Very less risk involved as any kind of flaws in the config SRM will raise the red flag with error rather then doing any damage to the data. Also it have multiple steps where error can be caught so there is no chance of negative impact.

Now with all these benefits there are some small hidden facts which administrator come to only when he face it. Here are couple of them.

1: SRM is best suited to actual DR not for DR test. Performing DR test is little cumbersome.

2: If you are using R2 LUNs for for DR test it’s ok but if you are planning to use clone copy for the test you have to be very careful. SRM does not behave very happily with clone copy of the R2 devices.

3: SRDF replication have to be perfect and 100% consistent in case you have SRM in the environment. A small glitch in the replication and RDF groups are not consistent SRM will not recover the DR environment.

4: If there is any kind of requirement for the DR environment to get some data from some point-in-time. Not possible in SRM setup. SRM will always provide the very recent data when we start the recovery as SRM we do final resync between R2 and Clone device before making the device ready for recovery.

5: SRM is best suited for ESX and VM environment. If you have other physical servers then the manual work is still required to bring up DR environment.

Apart from these facts the most problematic fact about SRM is it very difficult to get Vendor support in case of issue. Neither Vmware nor EMC take responsibility of the complete troubleshooting. They just play passing the parcel game. Any issue in issue in SRM environment takes weeks even months to come to resolution due to this. (We have faced this pain).

Soon we are going to start using SRM with RecoverPoint. Once we start that I will be able to come up with facts and benefits involved there.

Please add if anyone else has some fact to share about SRM as DR solution using SRDF.

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