• 4 min read

Enterprise-Grade Array-Based Replication and Disaster Recovery with ASR and System Center – Now Generally Available!

We're excited to announce the GA of Array-Based Replication with System Center and ASR.

Today’s GA announcement delivers on a widely requested enhancement from our Enterprise customers – the ability to leverage replication capabilities of existing Storage Area Network (SAN) Arrays to enable high performance synchronous and asynchronous replication across on-premises Hyper-V Sites. With System Center Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM) and Azure Site Recovery, our customers can get seamless end-to-end storage array-based replication and disaster recovery that is optimized to deliver the following key functionality:

  • ENHANCED End-to-End Disaster Recovery and Orchestration with ASR and SCVMM automates the creation and management of all target objects – both storage and compute – to ensure that recovery is guaranteed to work. Protection and Recovery are Virtual Machine and Storage aware, cutting down on manual steps and multiple administrator roles that are traditionally needed in recovering a workload post disaster
  • ENHANCED Standards-Based (SMI-S) Storage Discovery, Provisioning, and Replication Management in SCVMM ensures complete integration and the ability to leverage replication capabilities provided by our enterprise storage partners, such as HP, NetApp, EMC, Hitachi, and others. SCVMM will provide comprehensive SAN management capabilities within console
  • ENHANCED Synchronous Replication and Workload Recovery within Minutes ensures that with ASR, our customers can achieve the lowest possible RPO and RTO. Capabilities supported by the storage hardware are automatically made available within ASR
  • ENHANCED Multi-VM Consistency and Replications Groups enable multiple Virtual Machines to be protected and replicated together, thereby expanding support for n-tier applications that require application tiers to replicate consistently and failover at the same time
  • ENHANCED Support for Guest Clusters that depend on shared storage provided by Shared VHDX or a Microsoft iSCSI Target. This important new functionality enables disaster recovery and failover of applications such as SQL Server, SharePoint, SAP etc. that rely on shared storage

These enhanced features complement our already expansive list of features such as one-click orchestrated failovers using ASR Recovery Plans, DR Testing and non-invasive Drills, At-Scale Configuration and Management, Self-Service Disaster Recovery, and support for Compliance and Audit Reporting.


Since formally announcing the Preview of the new functionality at TechEd Europe 2014, we have been working with our storage partners – NetApp, HP, EMC, Hitachi, and others – to validate our functionality and their updated SMI-S Providers in real customer environments. The standards-based integration based on the Storage Networking Industry Association’s SMI-S Specification, helps us support a vibrant ecosystem of storage devices with SCVMM and ASR.

HP 3PAR StoreServ

Using HP 3PAR StoreServ Storage in ASR deployments offloads the host from doing additional work like replication, handling failure cases due to built-in enterprise resiliency and of course, carrying out data integrity checks.

HP 3PAR Remote Copy, is the component in the 3PAR software that integrates seamlessly with ASR to create and manage protection groups for Hyper-V Virtual Machines. Through integration with SNIA SMI-S, array-based replication groups are created directly from Microsoft ASR without the need for additional storage management resources. Failover, failback and recovery of HP 3PAR Remote Copy groups is managed in the Microsoft ASR user interface. VMs can be protected with Hyper-V Replication or HP 3PAR Remote Copy array-based replication.

HP 3PAR StoreServ Storage support of ASR is available now and further details about integration with ASR can be found in HP 3PAR StoreServ Storage Replication Integration guide with Microsoft Azure Site Recovery.

NetApp FAS Storage

NetApp recently released their Data ONTAP SMI-S Agent v 5.2, which enables ASR SAN Replication with their FAS arrays and controllers.

Read more about their enablement of this capability in the first part of Chris Lionetti’s three-part blog series here: Offload Storage Mirroring Operations with Azure Site Recovery


EMC’s storage arrays such as VMAX EMC Symmetrix Remote Data Facility (SRDF) give customers the confidence that RPO and RTO goals are met while ensuring complex application environments are protected as a whole using consistency technology. The VMAX3 software architecture allows for even more effective use of CPU power taking advantage of multi-core and multi-threading technologies for parallelization or the replication workload.

The combination of Microsoft Azure Site Recovery and EMC VMAX SRDF provides a simplified and highly scalable disaster recovery solution across on-premises or hosted Microsoft-based IT infrastructures. Combining ASR and SRDF provides customers the ability to orchestrate replication, protection, and failover of virtual machines across on-premises and their DR or Service Provider data centers. Check out EMC’s Thin Blue Line Blog for more information.


With its ability to protect and coordinate the replication and recovery of any customer IT environment – Windows or Linux, physical or virtualized on Hyper-V, VMware or others – Azure Site Recovery plays an important role in the disaster recovery plans of many organizations. As the productivity and platform company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, Microsoft is committed to solving our customers’ business continuity challenges and enabling hybrid cloud solutions that work seamlessly across private, partner, and public clouds.

Visit the Azure Site Recovery forum on MSDN for additional information and to engage with other customers. You will need System Center VMM 2012 R2 Update Rollup 5.0 to enable Storage Array-Based Replication and Disaster Recovery across Hyper-V Sites. For more information, check out the Azure Site Recovery documentation. For pricing information, visit the ASR Pricing page and select ‘Azure Site Recovery to customer owned sites’ to view the price in your local currency.

Getting started with Azure Site Recovery is easy – all you need is to simply sign up for a free Microsoft Azure trial.