SCCM 2012 DR


  • Hi all, we are looking to do a DR test of our SCCM 2012 infrastructure soon and I'm looking at the options available.

    We have a single Primary Site with one primary site server (DP/MP/SUP/Provider etc.) and one dedicated SCCM SQL server holding the site database. Both of these machines are VMware virtual machines.

    When running in DR we will need full SCCM operations i.e. using console, OSD, deploying new applications etc so need the primary site server and site database server up and running.

    I've seen references in other threads to people using HyperV Replica for the DR of SCCM 2012. Has anyone used VMware SRM for the DR of SCCM 2012? I understand this is unsupported by Microsoft but this seems to be the simplest way to provide DR.

    SRM would bring up the replicated SQL Server VM and then the Site Server VM at the DR site and we would reconfigure the ip addresses of the two servers. Once name resolution is updated hopefully we should be back up and running.

    Does anyone see and issues with this option or had experience doing DR this way?

    The only other option I can see to perform the DR test is the following:

    1. Have a standby virtual server (a) for the primary site server and a standby virtual server (b) for the sql server in DR

    2. Restore the site database to (b) from SQL backup

    2. Rename server (a) to the same computername as the primary site server (is this required?) and then perform site server recovery from existing backup skipping database recovery

    Appreciate your thoughts.

    Friday, August 02, 2013 5:06 AM

All replies

  • It is unsupported and it will not work to rename the server. You will need to preform a clean install of CM12 and use the backup that you have.

    Friday, August 02, 2013 12:25 PM
  • Many folks do use the redundancy facilities provided by their hypervisor solution to provide DR capabilities (and to a limited extent HA). Having a separate SQL server does complicate the picture for this though because you would have to of course replicate both at the same time. (This is all technically unsupported also)

    The built in DR solution is to backup and restore the DB and initiate the site restore from the DB backup.

    Jason |

    Friday, August 02, 2013 1:32 PM
  • Hi, thanks for the replies.

    For the supported scenario i.e. backup and restore, do we need to build a virtual server in our DR site that has the same hostname as our production primary site server but without SCCM 2012 installed.

    Then restore the sccm site database to a SQL server in DR and perform a site restore from the SCCM DR server. Or do we need to perform a clean install of SCCM 2012 on the DR virtual server first of all (Same site code, new sitecode) before doing the site restore.

    Also to fail back to production after the DR test, would this just be a matter of powering off the DR server and bringing the production primary site server back online?

    Appreciate your help.

    Friday, August 02, 2013 11:53 PM
  • Your DR test should probably be in an isolated environment so as not to affect production. This would also involve restoring a DC to that isolate environment also.

    Jason |

    Saturday, August 03, 2013 6:08 PM
  • Thanks Jason. The problem is they require software deployments, OSD and other config manager functions to be tested as part of the DR test. I'm thinking SRM, although unsupported, may be the better option as we should be able to test these out and then falil sccm back to prod.
    Sunday, August 04, 2013 10:19 AM
  • Just be very careful. there is no "failing back" in CM12. You will need to restore the site, if you want to move it back.

    Honestly you should be doing this within a lab only, doing it any other way, IMO is asking for trouble.

    Monday, August 05, 2013 12:30 PM
  • Hi Garth, appreciate the comments.

    In terms of fail back this is a VMware SRM feature not SCCM.  This allows the servers to be failed back to the original protected site (production datacentre) from the recovery site (DR) after a test.

    So this should allow us to move the sccm site from Prod datacentre to DR datacentre and back again with just IP address changes. 

    I'd like to hear if anyone else has done this with VMware SRM, as it does seem like a great way of being able to test DR.

    We would perform backups of SCCM prior to undertaking this test.

    Monday, August 05, 2013 10:26 PM
  • Hi all, to update this thread.

    We have successfully used SRM to fail our SCCM primary site server and separate SQL VM across to DR, perform SCCM functions and back to production with no issues.

    While this isn't supported by Microsoft, it makes a great DR solution for SCCM and is quite effortless compared with the alternative.

    Saturday, September 14, 2013 5:33 AM