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DraaS-tic times call for DraaS-tic measures in VMware's cloud

Virtzilla debuts disaster-recovery-as-a-service on dedicated hardware

Disaster-recovery-as-a-service (DRaaS) is an obvious service to run in the cloud, as the business of operating secondary sites is costly and complex.

Which is why Microsoft's offered Azure Site Recovery, including for VMware users, and why and data protection vendors such as Zerto have happily stretched to the cloud.

And now VMware's taken its own DraaS-tic measures for these DraaS-tic times, by firing up its own “vCloud Air Dedicated Disaster Recovery.”

The “dedicated” denotes that if you choose the service you'll be renting a single-tenant, isolated set of kit for your very own bits.

As with most VMware cloud services, this is essentially existing virtzilla products that work on-premises and in the cloud, with bridges so it's hard to tell where your bit barn ends and the cloud begins.

VMware's Hybrid Cloud Manager runs the show, while NSX helps out by making it easier to replicate networks if you need to fail over into the DR rig.

Would-be users are promised the ability to set custom Recovery Point Objectives (RPO) and Recovery Time Objectives (RTO) for each workload. A menu of three operations will help to set those objectives, namely:

  • Constant replication of workloads for rapid cutovers. VMware mentions RPO of 15 minutes as eminently achievable;
  • Planned migrations, perhaps with vMotion between on-prem and vCloud Air with almost no unavailability of apps;
  • Active-active configuration between applications that permit it.

VMware's walked away from its ambition to build an elastic public cloud, choosing a two-pronged strategy of encouraging its vCloud Air Network partners to build vSPhere-powered clouds and allying itself with Amazon Web Services for efforts at grander scales. Partners of The Register's acquaintance don't mind this one bit: they tell us that Amazon gets all VMware users interested in talking cloud and as vCloud Air Network members are often users' long-term VARs it's not hard to win business operating VMware-powered clouds.

That VMware is clearly angling for the sweet plum of signing customers up for dedicated hardware buys may, however, rankle a little. But VMware's juggled this for years now without notable outbreaks of rancour, so this new service probably won't anger anyone unduly.

The new DR service will also show that VMware's own cloud ambitions, while scaled back, are far from over. Virtzilla nearly always points to steadily rising cloud revenue in its earnings announcements, so this new service may have a role helping out with that job too! That cloudy DR also showcases NSX's many useful roles won't hurt either as VMware has anointed the network virtualization product as its star growth product. ®

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