×

Welcome to Knowledge Base!

KB at your finger tips

This is one stop global knowledge base where you can learn about all the products, solutions and support features.

Categories
All
Storage and Backups-Nutanix
Collector 4.2 Open Source Software

Collector 4.2

Product Release Date: 2022-09-14

Last updated: 2022-09-14

Open Source Software In This Release

For more information about Collector open source licensing details, see Open Source Licenses for Collector.

Collector 4.2 Release Notes

Collector 4.2

Product Release Date: 2022-09-14

Last updated: 2022-09-14

Updated Features

Following are the feature updates made in this release:

Performance Improvements
  • The data collection and output generation for Prism, vCenter, Hyper-V clusters, hosts, and VMs, and ONTAP CIFS shares is improved by 2x to 3x.
  • The progress bar of the data collection for Prism, vCenter, and Hyper-V VMs provides more granular and better information on the progress being made.
  • Rerunning data collection from different datacenters or clusters registered with the same vCenter, Prism, and ONTAP CIFS shares instances are faster due to caching.
Prism, Hyper-V, and v-Center - New column added in vPartition tab

A new column Collector vPartition UUID is added in the vPartition tab to account only unique entry for calculating the storage capacity and consumed storage.

Improved Logs Collection for Troubleshooting
  • For the Nutanix Collector desktop application, you can configure the log levels such as info, debug, error, critical, and warning based on the logs you want to collect for troubleshooting.
  • A new file collector-client.log has been added in the Nutanix Collector bundle to collect the logs for troubleshooting.
Configure Port Number
If the listener port's default port number is in use, you can configure the port that is unused to establish a connection.

Resolved Issues

The following issues are resolved in this release:

  • Fixed the instances for which the VM Summary value appeared as NaN in the output collection file.
  • For Prism, the storage capacity is now captured for the volume groups that are associated with File Server VMs.
  • For vHosts, fixed the 95th percentile value of the IOPS, number of read, and number of write operations that appeared empty in the output collection file.
  • The VM level provisioned and consumed storage now accounts only unique partitions.
  • Nutanix Collector supports data collection from the servers that has more number of VMs due to performance enhancements.
  • Data collection failure due to the unsupported delimiter formats is resolved.

Known Issues

This section describes the issues found in this or recent releases that you might encounter:

  • In case of vPartition entries, the datastores are not considered.
  • Collector fails to gather the information when there is only one Prism Element cluster under the Prism Central.

    For the workaround, see the section Troubleshooting of the Collector User Guide .

Open Source Software In This Release

For more information about Collector open source licensing details, see Open Source Licenses for Collector.

Read article
Data Lens User Guide

Data Lens Hosted

Last updated: 2022-12-14

Nutanix Data Lens

Important: Data created with an early access (EA) version of Data Lens will be removed with the completion of the EA program. The data will not be available in the general availability (GA) versions.

Nutanix Data Lens™ (Data Lens) provides a cloud-hosted analytics and monitoring service for all of your file servers hosted on Nutanix Files. Data Lens centralizes data from all of your clusters connected to Pulse, across various data center locations. Cloud resources reduce scaling constraints, as the Cloud is not dependent on the file server resources, letting you have near-real-time analytics and alerts even for load-heavy file servers of more than 250 million files and over 500 TB of storage. Hosting File Analytics on premises limits the service to local file servers only. In contrast, Data Lens functions on a global level, in a cluster-neutral environment, without being tied to a single Nutanix cluster.

Requirements

Meet the requirements for running Data Lens.

  • Configure a MyNutanix account to access the Data Lens console.
  • In Prism, enable Pulse health monitoring. See "Pulse Health Monitoring" in the Prism Central Guide .

Getting Started With Data Lens

Perform the tasks described in this chapter to get started with Data Lens .

Do the following:

  • Ensure that you have registered for Data Lens from the My Nutanix portal, see, Creating a My Nutanix Account.
  • Launch Data Lens , see Onboarding into Data Lens. The first admin to launch Data Lens becomes the account admin and can invite other users that are associated with the account ID.
  • Enable Data Lens for Nutanix Files file servers, see Data Lens Global Dashboard. You can monitor the enablement in the Tasks view.

Creating a My Nutanix Account

You must have a My Nutanix Account to access the Data Lens console.

About this task

Perform the following procedure to create a My Nutanix account.

Procedure

  1. In the address bar of a web browser, type https://my.nutanix.com and click Enter .
  2. Click Sign up now .
  3. Enter the details such as First Name, Last Name, Company name, Job title, Phone number, Country, Email, and Password .

    Follow the specified password complexity requirements when you are creating the password.

  4. Click Submit .

    A confirmation page is displayed and you receive an email from mynutanix@nutanix.com after you successfully complete the sign-up process.

    Following is an example of the email.

    Hi First Name,
    
    Welcome to the My Nutanix portal!
    
    To get started, confirm your email by clicking on the link below. If clicking the link does not work, you can copy and paste the link into your browser's address window.
        	https://my.nutanix.com/#/verify?username=your_email_address_ &confirmation=
    If you run into any issues, please email portal-accounts@nutanix.com to speak with a Nutanix Portal representative. Please do not reply to this email directly.
    
    
    Best Regards,
    Nutanix Team
  5. Click the link in the email to verify your email address.

    A confirmation message briefly appears and you are directed to the Nutanix Support portal.

  6. Log on to the portal by using the credentials you specified during the sign-up process.

    The Welcome Back page appears.

  7. Click My Nutanix to go to the My Nutanix dashboard.

Onboarding into Data Lens

Before you sign up for a paid plan to use Data Lens , you can start a 60-day free trial. To continue to use Data Lens after the trial period ends, you must upgrade your plan to one of the paid plans.

About this task

Perform the following procedure to subscribe to a free trial of Data Lens .

Procedure

  1. Log on to https://my.nutanix.com by using your My Nutanix credentials.
  2. On the My Nutanix dashboard, scroll down to Cloud Services, and under Data Lens , click Get Started . Subsequent users click Launch .
    The Global Dashboard appears displaying the file servers and object stores associated with your account.
    Tip: If you do not see the Global Dashboard , enable Pulse Health Monitoring. See "Pulse Health Monitoring" in the Prism Central Guide

Port Requirements

The Port Reference provides detailed port information for Data Lens and other Nutanix products and services, including port sources and destinations, service descriptions, directionality, and protocol requirements.

Unsupported Features

Lists the unsupported features for Data Lens.

  • Data Lens does not support cloned file server.

Data Lens Global Dashboard

The Global Dashboard details all registered file servers.

Global Dashboard View

The Data Lens Global Dashboard is the landing page after launching Data Lens. The Global Dashboard includes a table that lists all file servers across all of your registered clusters.

Figure. Data Lens Global Dashboard Click to enlarge The Global Dashboard includes three summary panes, displays a map with file server locations, and has a table listing file server details.

The Global Dashboard consists of the following elements.

  • An Anomaly Status pane summarizes the number of file servers with anomaly alerts, no anomaly alerts, and no rules configured.
  • A Capacity and Shares pane summarizes the total number of shares and total capacity analyzed on all file servers with Data Lens enabled (excluding snapshots). You can view the details of the shares of a particular file server by clicking the link on the total number of shares. (See "Share Details View" below). Total capacity analyzed is calculated and updated every hour.
  • A Data Summary pane summarizes the number of users, directories, and files across all file servers with Data Lens enabled.
  • A File Server pane displays region-wise file servers. Clicking the table icon in the top right corner switches to a List of File Servers , see the "List of File Servers Table" for details.
    Note: File servers do not appear for clusters with Pulse Health Monitoring disabled.
Table 1. List of File Servers
Column Description
Status Indicates if Data Lens is enabled or disabled.
Vendor Indicates the file server vendor.
File Server Name Indicates the name of the file server.
Number of Shares Indicates the number of shares and exports on the file server.
File Server Version Indicates the Files version of the file server.
Data Retention Indicates the data retention period of Data Lens data.
Three-Dot Menu Provides options to enable or disable Data Lens on the file server.

Share Details View

In the Data Summary pane, clicking the number of Shares displays Share Details view.

Figure. Share Details Click to enlarge Displays the share details of a file server

The Share Details view consists of the following elements.

  • A File Server drop-down lets you select a file server of the logged in account. Based on the selected file server, the total capacity, current usage, and the share details appear in the table.
  • Total Capacity indicates the total capacity for the file server.
  • Current Usage on Primary (includes system files) indicates the current usage of the file server.
    Note: Tiered data is excluded for calculating the current usage.
  • The List of Shares lists all of the shares on the selected file server, including all active shares and deleted shares for which Data Lens retains audit data. The list is ordered by the highest percentage of used and max capacity of the share. See the "Shares Table" for details.
    Note:
    • Data Lens updates used capacity for shares on an hourly basis, not in real-time.
    • The list does not include nested shares (active or deleted).
    • The list does not include deleted shares for which Data Lens does not retain audit data.
Table 2. Shares Table
Column Description
Share Name Indicates the name of the share.
File Server Displays the name of the file server of that share.
Used Capacity Indicates the capacity used by the share.
Max Size Indicates the quota assigned to a share, and it is the max capacity a share can use.

If value of max size is not defined, Undefined value is displayed in the table.

Dashboard

The Dashboard tab displays data on the operational trends of an entity (file server, object, or share).

Dashboard View

The Dashboard tab is the opening screen that appears after launching Data Lens for a specific entity. The scope selector indicates the entity for which the dashboard displays data using various widgets. By default the scope selector displays data for the file server (all shares). To have the widgets display data for a specific, select a single share from the scope selector . See the "Dashboard Widgets" table for a description of each widget.

Note: Widgets refresh hourly.
Figure. Data Lens Dashboard Click to enlarge Widgets in the dashboard view.

Table 1. Dashboard Widgets
Tile Name Description Values and Intervals
Data Growth Trend Displays data growth trends for the entity including the data added, data removed, and net changes.

Clicking an event period widget displays the Data Growth Trend Details view.

Clicking the View Forecast displays the data growth forecast for a time period.

7 days, the last 30 days, or the last 1 year
Data summary by age and storage tier Displays the percentage of data by age. Data age determines the data heat, including: hot, warm, and cold.

Includes an option to open the Smart Tiering Dashboard to configure tiering and to configure cost savings, see Configuring Cost Savings.

To edit the heat levels, see Configuring Data Heat Levels.
Default intervals are as follows:
  • Hot data – accessed within the last week.
  • Warm data – accessed within 2 to 4 weeks.
  • Cold data – accessed 4 weeks ago or later.
Permission denials Displays users who have had excessive permission denials and the number of denials. Clicking a user displays audit details, see Audit Trails - Users View for more. [user id], [number of permission denials]
File distribution by size Displays the number of files by file size. Provides trend details for top 5 files. Less than 1 MB, 1–10 MB, 10–100 MB, 100 MB to 1 GB, greater than 1 GB)
File distribution by type Displays the space taken up by various applications and file types. The file extension determines the file type. See the File types table for more details. MB or GB
File distribution by type details view Displays a trend graph of the top 5 file types. File distribution details include file type, current space used, current number of files, and change in space for the last 7 or 30 days.

Clicking View Details displays the File Distribution by Type view.
Daily size trend for top 5 files (GB), file type (see the "File Type" table), current space used (GB), current number of files (numeric), change in last 7 or 30 days (GB)
Potential duplicate files Displays a summary of potential duplicate files based on their name, size, and extension for files larger than 1MB. Integers for total files with duplicates and total count of duplicates. MB, GB, or TB for total size of duplicates
Top 5 active users Lists the users who have accessed the most files and number of operations the user performed for the specified period. When there are more than 5 active users, the more link provides details on the top 50 users. Clicking the user name displays the audit view for the user, see Audit Trails - Users View for more. 24 hours, 7 days, 1 month, or 1 year
Top 5 accessed files Lists the 5 most frequently accessed files. Clicking more provides details on the top 50 files.

Clicking the file name displays the audit view details for the file, see Audit Trails - Files View for more.

24 hours, 7 days, 1 month, or 1 year
Files operations Displays the distribution of operation types for the specified period, including a count for each operation type and the total sum of all operations.

Operations include: create, delete, read, write, rename, permission changed, set attribute, symlink, permission denied, permission denied (file blocking).

Clicking an operation displays the File Operation Trend view.
24 hours, 7 days, 1 month, or 1 year

Data Growth Trend Details View

Clicking an event period in the Data Growth Trend widget displays the Data growth trend details view for that period. The view includes the Share/Export and Category tabs (only the Category tab appears when viewing the details for a share). Each tab includes columns detailing entity details such as, Name, Net Capacity Change, Data Added, and Data Removed.

Figure. Data Growth Trend Details View Click to enlarge Clicking on the Data Growth widget in the Dashboard tab displays the Data Growth Trend Details view.

Table 2. Data Growth Trend Details
Column Description
Name Name of share/export or category
Net capacity change The total difference between capacity at the beginning and the end of the specified period
Data added Total data added for the specified period
Data removed Total data removed for the specified period

Data Growth Forecast View

Clicking the View Forecast for the Data Growth Trend widget displays the data forecast for an entity over a time period.

The data forecast is based on the historical data of the last 90 days. From the drop-down option, select a forecast period of 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, or 1 year.

Figure. Data Growth Forecast Details Click to enlarge Clicking View Forecast on the Data Growth Trend widget displays the data growth forecast details.

Table 3. Capacity Runway Details
Usage Description
Low Usage The number of days in which the entity reaches the maximum capacity as per the low usage.
Medium Usage The number of days in which the entity reaches the maximum capacity as per medium usage.
High Usage The number of days in which the entity reaches the maximum capacity as per high usage.

File Distribution by Type Details View

Clicking View Details for the File Distribution by Type widget displays granular details of file distribution, see the File Types table for details.

Figure. File Distribution by Type Click to enlarge Clicking View Details on the File Distribution by Type widget displays the File Distribution by Type dashboard.

Table 4. Details of File Distribution Parameters
Column Description
File type Name of file type
Current space used Space capacity occupied by the file type
Current number of files Number of files for the file type
Change (in last 30 days) The increase in capacity over a 30-day period for the specified file type
Table 5. File Types
Category Supported File Type
Archives .cab, .gz, .rar, .tar, .z, .zip
Audio .aiff, .au, .mp3, .mp4, .wav, .wma
Backups .bak, .bkf, .bkp
CD/DVD images .img, .iso, .nrg
Desktop publishing .qxd
Email archives .pst
Hard drive images .tib, .gho, .ghs
Images .bmp, .gif, .jpg, .jpeg, .pdf .png, .psd, .tif, .tiff,
Installers .msi, .rpm
Log Files .log
Lotus notes .box, .ncf, .nsf, .ns2, .ns3, .ns4, .ntf
MS Office documents .accdb, .accde, .accdt, .accdr, .doc, .docx, .docm, .dot, .dotx, .dotm, .xls, .xlsx, .xlsm, .xlt, .xltx, .xltm, .xlsb, .xlam, .ppt, .pptx, .pptm, .potx, .potm, .ppam, .ppsx, .ppsm, .mdb
System files .bin, .dll, .exe
Text files .csv, .pdf, .txt
Video .avi, mpg, .mpeg, .mov, .m4v
Disk image .hlog, .nvram, .vmdk, .vmx, .vmxf, .vmtm, .vmem, .vmsn, .vmsd

Potential Duplicate Files View

Clicking View Duplicates displays the Potential Duplicate Files view. The following table describes the information found on each pane in the view.

Figure. Potential Duplicates View Click to enlarge Clicking View Duplicates in the entities dashboard displays the Potential Duplicates view.

Table 6. Potential Duplicate Files
Pane Summary
Overall Summary Provides three high level metrics: Total Files with Duplicates , Total Count of Duplicates , and Total Size of Duplicates .
Files With Duplicates Includes an option to search by file name and a table that lists potential duplicate files. The table is organized with the file names, a link to View All Instances , and the following columns: original creation date , duplicate count , size of duplicates , and number of duplicate file owners .
Clicking View All Instances displays a table with information about the file organized by the following columns: Path , Owner , Share , Date Created , and Date Modified .
Filters Lets you filter by original creation date , duplicate count , size of duplicates , number of duplicate file owners , data type , owners and shares .

File Operation Trend View

Clicking an operation type in the File Operations widget displays the File Operation Trend view. The File Operation Trend view breaks down the specified period into smaller intervals, and displays the number of occurrences of the operation during each interval.

Figure. Operation Trend Click to enlarge A graph displays the number of times the specified operation took place over time.

Table 7. File Operation Trend View Parameters
Element Description
Operation type A drop-down option to specify the operation type. See Files Operations in the Dashboard Widgets table for a list of operation types.
Last (time period) A drop-down option to specify the period for the file operation trend.
File operation trend graph The x-axis displays shorter intervals for the specified period. The y-axis displays the number of operations trend over the extent of the intervals.

Anomalies

Data panes in the Anomalies view display data and trends for configured anomalies.

The Anomalies view provides options for creating anomaly policies and displays dashboards for viewing anomaly trends.

You can configure anomalies for the following operations:

  • Creating files and directories
  • Deleting files and directories
  • Permission changes
  • Permission denials
  • Renaming files and directories
  • Reading files and directories

Define anomaly rules by the specifying the following conditions:

  • Users exceed an operation count threshold
  • Users exceed an operation percentage threshold

Meeting the lower operation threshold triggers an anomaly.

Consider a scenario where you have 1 thousand files, the operation count threshold defined as 10, and the operation percentage threshold defined as 10%. The count threshold takes precedence, as 10% of 1 thousand is 100, which is greater than the count threshold of 10.

Figure. Anomalies Dashboard Click to enlarge The Anomalies dashboard displays anomaly trends.

Table 1. Anomalies Data Pane Descriptions
Pane Name Description Values
Anomaly Trend Displays the number of anomalies per day or per month. Last 7 days, Last 30 days, Last 1 year
Top Users Displays the users with the most anomalies and the number of anomalies per user. Last 7 days, Last 30 days, Last 1 year
Top Folders Displays the folders with the most anomalies and the number of anomalies per folder. Last 7 days, Last 30 days, Last 1 year
Operation Anomaly Types Displays the percentage of occurrences per anomaly type. Last 7 days, Last 30 days, Last 1 year

Anomaly Details

Clicking an anomaly bar in the Anomaly Trend graph displays the Anomaly Details view.

Figure. Anomaly Details View Click to enlarge

Table 2. Anomalies Details View Total Results Table
Column Description
Anomaly Type The configured anomaly type. Anomaly types not configured do not show up in the table.
Total User Count The number of users that have performed the operation causing the specified anomaly during the specified time range.
Total Folder Count The numbers of folders in which the anomaly occurred during the specified time range.
Total Operation Count Total number of anomalies for the specified anomaly type that occurred during the specified time range.
Time Range The time range for which the total user count, total folder count, and total operation count are specified.
Table 3. Anomalies Details View Users/Folders Table
Column Description
Username or Folders Indicates the entity for the operation count. Selecting the Users tab indicates operation count for specific users, and selecting the Folders tab indicates the operation count for specific folders.
Operation count The total number of operations causing anomalies for the selected user or folder during the time period for the bar in the Anomaly Trend graph.

Configuring Anomaly Detection

Steps for configuring anomaly rules.

About this task

To create an anomaly rule, do the following.

Procedure

  1. In the Data Lens web console, click the gear icon > Define Anomaly Rules .
  2. In the Anomaly Email Recipients field, enter a comma-separated list of email recipients for all anomaly alerts and data.
    Note: Data Lens sends anomaly alerts and data to recipients whenever Data Lens detects an anomaly.
  3. To configure a new anomaly, do the following in the indicated fields:
    1. Events : Select a rule for the anomaly from one of the following:
      • Permission changed
      • Permission denied
      • Delete
      • Create
      • Rename
      • Read
      The event defines the scenario type for the anomaly.
    2. Minimum Operations % : Enter a percentage value for the minimum threshold.
      Data Lens calculates the minimum operations percentage based on the number of files. For example, if there are 100 files, and you set the minimum operations percentage to 5, five operations within the scan interval would trigger an anomaly alert.
    3. Minimum Operation Count : Enter a value for a minimum operation threshold.
      Data Lens triggers an anomaly alert after meeting the threshold.
    4. User : Choose if the anomaly rule is applicable for All Users or an Individual user.
    5. Type: the type determines the interval.
      The interval determines how far back Data Lens monitors the anomaly.
    6. Interval : Enter a value for the detection interval.
    7. (optional) Actions : Click the pencil icon to update an anomaly rule. Click the x icon to delete an existing rule.
    Figure. Anomaly Configuration Fields Click to enlarge Fill out these fields to configure a new anomaly rule.

  4. Click Save .

Audit Trails

Use audit trails to look up operation data for a specific user, file, folder, or client.

The Audit Trails view includes Files , Folders , Users , and Client IP options for specifying the audit type. Use the search bar for specifying the entity for the audit (user, folder, file, or client IP).

The results table presents details for entities that match the search criteria. Clicking the entity name (or client IP number) takes you to the details for the target entity.

Performing Audits

Audit a user, file, client, or folder.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated.

Procedure

  1. Go to collapse menu > Audit Trails .
  2. Select the Files , Folders , Users , or Client IP option.
  3. (optional) In the shares field, check or un-check target shares.
  4. Enter the audit trails target into the search bar.
  5. Click Search .
  6. To display audit results in the Audit Trails window, click the entity name (or client IP number).

Audit Trails - Users View

Details for the user audit trails view.

Audit Trails Search - Users

When you search by user in Audit Trails , search results display the following information in a table:

  • User Name
  • Domain
  • Last Operation
  • Last Operation On
  • Share Name
  • Operation Date
  • Action
Figure. Users Search Results Click to enlarge A table displays user search results for the query.

Audit Details Page - Users

Clicking View Audit displays the Audit Details page, which shows the following audit information for the selected user.

  • A User Events graph displays various operations the user performed during the selected period and the percentage of time each operation has occurred per total operations during the specified period.
    • The Filter by operations dropdown contains operation filters, which you can use to filter the audit by operation type. Operations include:
      • Create File
      • Delete
      • Make Directory
      • Permission Changed
      • Permission Denied
      • Read
      • Remove Directory
      • Rename
      • Set Attribute
      • Write
      • Symlink
    • The filter bar , above the User Events graph, displays the filters in use.
    • Use the From and To fields to filter by date.
  • The Results table displays operation-specific information. See more details below.
  • The Reset Filters button removes all filters.
Figure. User Audit Details - Events Click to enlarge User Events table displays event rates for various operations performed by the user.

The Results table provides granular details of the audit results. The following data is displayed for every event.

  • User Name
  • User IP Address
  • Operation
  • Operation Date
  • Target File

Click the gear icon for options to download the data as an xls, csv, or JSON file.

Figure. Results Table Click to enlarge The results table displays a detailed view of the audit data.

Audit Trails - Folders View

Details for the folder audit trails view.

When you search by folder name in Audit Trails , search results display the following information in a table:

  • Folder Name
  • Folder Owner Name
  • Share Name
  • Parent Folder
  • Last Operation
  • Last Operation By
  • Last Operation Date
  • Action
Figure. Folders Search Results Click to enlarge

The Audit Details page shows the following audit information for the selected folder.

  • A Folder Events graph displays various operations performed on the file during the selected period, and the percentage of time each operation has occurred per total operations during that period.
    • The Filter by operations dropdown contains operation filters, which you can use to filter the audit by operation type. Operations include:
      • Select All
      • Make Directory
      • Permission Changed
      • Permission Denied
      • Remove Directory
      • Rename
      • Set Attribute
    • A filter bar , above the File Events graph displays the filters in use.
    • Use the From and to fields to filter by date.
  • The Results table displays operation-specific details.
  • The Reset Filters button removes all filters.

The Results table provides granular details of the audit results. Data Lens displays the following data for every event.

  • User Name
  • Client IP
  • Operation
  • Operation Date

Click the gear icon for options to download the data as a CSV file.

Audit Trails - Files View

Dashboards details for the files audit trails view.

Audit Trails for Files

When you search by file name in Audit Trails , search results display the following information in a table:

  • File Name
  • File Owner Name
  • Share Name
  • Parent Folder
  • Last Operation
  • Last Operation By
  • Last Operation Date
  • Action
Figure. Files Search Results Click to enlarge A table displays file search results for the query.

Note: Data Lens does not support regular expression (RegEx) based search.

The Audit Details page shows the following audit information for the selected file

  • A File Events graph displays various operations performed on the file during the selected period, and the percentage of time each operation has occurred per total operations during that period.
    • The Filter by operations dropdown contains operation filters, which you can use to filter the audit by operation type. Operation types include:
      • Close File
      • Create File
      • Delete
      • Make Directory
      • Open
      • Read
      • Rename
      • Set Attribute
      • Write
      • Symlink
    • A filter bar , above the File Events graph displays the filters in use.
    • Use the From and to fields to filter by date.
  • The Results table displays operation-specific details.
    • The Reset Filters button removes all filters.
Figure. Files Audit Details - Events Click to enlarge File Events table displays event rates for various operations for the file.

The Results table provides granular details of the audit results. Data Lens displays the following data for every event.

  • Username
  • Client IP
  • Operation
  • Operation Date

Click the gear icon for options to download the data as a CSV file.

Figure. Results Table Click to enlarge The results table displays a detailed view of the audit data.

Audit Trails - Client IP View

Details for the client IP audit trails view.

Audit Trails Search - Client IP

When you search by client IP in Audit Trails , search results display the following information in a table:

  • Client IP
  • User Name
  • Domain
  • Last Operation
  • Last Operation On
  • Share Name
  • Operation Date
  • Action
Figure. IP Search Results Click to enlarge A table displays IP search results for the query

The Audit Details page shows the following audit information for the selected client.

  • A User Events graph displays various operations performed on the client during the selected period, and the percentage of time each operation has occurred per total operations during that period.
    • The Filter by operations dropdown contains operation filters, which you can use to filter the audit by operation type. Operation types include:
      • Create File
      • Delete
      • Make Directory
      • Permission Changed
      • Permission Denied
      • Read
      • Removed Directory
      • Rename
      • Set Attribute
      • Write
      • Symlink
      • Permission Denied (File Blocking)
    • A filter bar , above the File Events graph displays the filters in use.
    • Use the From and to fields to filter by date.
  • The Results table displays operation-specific details.
    • The Reset Filters button removes all filters.
Figure. Files Audit Details - Events Click to enlarge File Events table displays event rates for various operations for the file.

The Results table provides granular details of the audit results. Data Lens displays the following data for every event.

  • User Name
  • Operation
  • Target File
  • Operation Date

Click the gear icon for an option to download the data as a CSV file.

Ransomware Protection

Protecting your file server against 0-day ransomware detection and protection.

Caution: Ransomware protection helps detect potential ransomware. Nutanix does not recommend using the Data Lens ransomware feature as an all-encompassing ransomware solution.

Data Lens scans file audit events for ransomware in near real time and notifies you in the event of a ransomware attack once you configure email notifications. Ransomware protection includes signature-based and event-pattern-based ransomware detection.

Signature Detection

Signature-based detection uses the Nutanix Files ransomware file blocking mechanism to identify and block file renames whose extension and file names match ransomware signatures carrying out The blocking of file renames helps to identify file malicious activity by containing the ransomware attack from further infecting
 the files . The ransomware file blocking mechanism uses a dynamically curated list of signatures that frequently appear in ransomware files. The curated list is dynamically updated as new ransomware signatures are available. You can also modify the list by manually adding or removing signatures.

Event Pattern Detection

Event-pattern-based ransomware protection looks for audit events in near real time to identify potential ransomware attacks. Configuring auto-remediation allows you to block malicious clients from accessing all shares. In addition to that customers will also have the option to put the files in Read-Only mode where no clients will be able to do any write operations to the shares . Customers are recommended to upgrade to Files 4.2 to use advanced auto-remediation features as described above containing the ransomware attack from further infecting the files.

Note: Customers are recommended to upgrade to Files 4.2 to use advanced auto-remediation features.

Data Lens also monitors shares for self-service restore (SSR) policies and identifies shares that do not have SSR enabled in the ransomware dashboard. You can enable SSR through the ransomware dashboard.

Ransomware Protection Dashboard

The Ransomware dashboard includes panes for viewing threats summary and its details, managing and configuring ransomware protection, managing recovery settings, viewing blocked clients (users or client IP addresses), and viewing and updating blocked file signatures.

The Ransomware dashboard includes the following sections:

  • The Threats Summary pane displays the highlighted threats and its details (impacted shares, users, client IP address, and impacted files). You can view the threat summary for last 24 hours, last 7 days, last 30 days, and last one year. By default, last 24 hours summary is selected. Click the View Details link to see the threat details and impacted files.
  • The Recovery (SSR) Enablement by Shares pane for viewing and enabling Self Service Restore (SSR). SSR snapshots are used for data recovery. To protect the shares with configured SSR policy, enable SSR for the shares, see Enabling SSR.
  • The Blocked Entities pane for viewing the blocked IP addresses and users suspected to be the source of ransomware attack.
  • The Blocked Files Signatures pane for viewing the number of blocked ransomware signatures configured on the subscribed file server. Click Download List (.csv) to download a list of blocked ransomware signatures. To update blocked signature list, click Update Blocked Signature List or click Settings > Update Signature List . See Updating Signature List
    Note: If a File Server fails to update the signatures, then the number of blocked file signatures is not updated. The previous count is displayed in the Blocked Files Signatures .
  • Click Unblock to revert access of File Server from Read Only mode to Read Write mode.
  • To enable or disable, and configure ransomware protection, click Settings . See Enabling Ransomware Protection and Configuring Ransomware Protection Policy.
Figure. Ransomware Dashboard Click to enlarge Ransomware Dashboard

Viewing Threat Details and Impacted Files

The Threats Summary pane of the ransomware dashboard displays the highlighted threats and its details (impacted shares, users, client IP address, impacted files, and Recover).

About this task

To view the threat details and the impacted files, do the following:

Procedure

  1. Click All Threats .
    A list of all threats appears.
  2. Click View Files in the Details column or click Impacted Files tab on the top.
    Figure. All Threats Tab View Click to enlarge List of threats and its details

    The impacted files are listed.
  3. In the impacted files tab view, you can do the following:
    • Select the scope and apply the filter to view the filtered list of impacted files. You can filter based on the Share Name . Client IPs , and Client Username .
    • Enter the file name, and then click Search to search for a file name from the list.
    • Click the file name to view the audit details of the file. A graph displaying the operations performed on the file, and the audit details of the operations of the file (user name, client IP address, operation, operation date) are listed in a table.
      Note: You can filter audit details based on date of audit and operations.
    • Click Recover to view the recommended snapshot to recover from the selected share. You must see a pop-up window with the snapshot details, steps for recovery, and a download link to get a script which helps automate the recovery of the selected share .
    Figure. Impacted Files Tab View Click to enlarge List of impacted files and its details

    Figure. Steps to Recover Impacted files Click to enlarge List of steps to recover back the infected files from the recommended snapshot.

Enabling Ransomware Protection

Enable ransomware protection on your file server.

About this task

Procedure

  1. Go to collapse menu > Ransomware Protection .
  2. Click Enable Ransomware Protection . See Configuring Ransomware Protection Policy for configuration steps.
  3. Click Enable .
    The ransomware dashboard is now displayed.
  4. (optional) To disable the ransomware protection, on the ransomware dashboard, click Settings > Disable Ransomware Protection .
    The ransomware protection is now disabled.

Configuring Ransomware Protection Policy

Configure ransomware protection policies on file servers.

About this task

Do the following to configure a ransomware protection policy on a file server.

Procedure

  1. In the Global Dashboard, go to collapse menu > Data Source > File Servers and select the file server.
    The file server dashboard appears.
  2. Go to collapse menu > Ransomware Protection .
  3. (optional) Click Settings > Edit Policy Configuration , to set policy to prevent ransomware attacks.
    The Ransomware Protection Policy Configuration appears.
  4. In the Ransomware Protection Policy Configuration page, do the following:
    1. (optional) Click Download List (.csv) , to download a list of blocked ransomware signatures.
    2. From Files 4.2, in Remediation of Malicious clients
      • select the Block clients on all shares to block specific clients from accessing all the share in the event of a ransomware attack.
      • select the Make files Server Read -only to make file servers read only for all the clients.
      • select No Action send a notification email but take no action on the entity.
      Note:
      • Clients can be unblocked after you analyze the threat.
      • The default remediation action will be to Block clients on all shares .
    Figure. Ransomware Protection Policy Configuration Click to enlarge Configure a policy for ransomware protection for Files 4.2

  5. Under Email Recipients , add email addresses separated by comma.
    Note: Data Lens sends a notification to the specified email addresses when a ransomware attack happens.
  6. Click Save .
    The ransomware protection policy is configured.
  7. (Optional) To disable the ransomware protection policy, click Settings > Disable Ransomware Protection .

Updating Signature List

Searches, adds or removes a signature from the ransomware protection list.

About this task

Note: Nutanix does not recommend manipulating the blocked signatures through Nutanix Files.

Do the following to add or remove a signature from the protection list.

Procedure

  1. Go to collapse menu > Ransomware Protection .
  2. Click Settings > Update Signature List .
    You can also click Update Blocked Signature List in the Blocked Files Signatures pane of the ransomware dashboard.
    The Update Blocked Signature List window appears.
  3. In the Update Blocked Signature List window, do the following:
    1. (optional) Click Download List (.csv) , to download a list of blocked ransomware signatures.
    2. Enter the file signature in the Search for signatures field, and then click the search icon to search for a signature.
      Note: Add one or more comma separated signatures which may have wildcard characters (* or ?) if required. For example, *file_name.doc*, *file_name?.doc*, filename.docx, *.docx.
    3. (Optional) Click Add to add a new signature to the list.
    4. (Optional) Click Remove to delete an existing signature from the list.
    Figure. Update Blocked Signature List Click to enlarge

  4. Click Close .

Enabling SSR

Enable self-service restore (SSR) on shares identified by Data Lens.

About this task

Data Lens scans shares for SSR policies. Do the following to protect the shares with the configured SSR policy.

Procedure

  1. Click collapse menu > Ransomware Protection .
  2. Click Settings > Manage Recovery Settings .
    The Enable SSR for Shares window appears.
  3. Click the Enable button next to the share for which you need to enable SSR.
    Figure. Manage Recovery Settings Click to enlarge

  4. Click the close icon to close the window.

Unblocking Client IP Addresses

Unblocks the client IP addresses.

About this task

Do the following to unblock the blocked entities, such as client users and client IP addresses, on a file server.

Procedure

  1. From the Global Dashboard , click collapse menu > Ransomware Protection .
    The Ransomware Protection page appears.
  2. From the Blocked Entities widget, click View Details .
    The Blocked Entities page appears with the following tabs:
    • Client IP Addresses —Lists the blocked client IP addresses.
    • Share with Restricted Access —Lists the names of blocked shares .
    • Blocked Time -lists the time at which the client was blocked on the share.
    A list of blocked entities appears.
    Figure. Blocked Entities in 4.2 server Click to enlarge List of blocked entities in 4.2 server

    Figure. Blocked Entities in 4.1 server Click to enlarge List of blocked entities in 4.1 server

    Check Shares with Restricted access to see the name of blocked shares .
  3. From the Blocked Entities widget, click View Details and select the Client IP Addresses and Client users to Unblock .
  4. Select an entity from the list and click Unblock .
    The Unblock Client IP Addresses and Client User window appears.
    Figure. Unblock Entities Click to enlarge Unblock Client IP Addresses and Client users

    Note:
    • When the unblock task is in progress, you cannot unblock another entity from the same share.
    • You can select multiple entities from the same share and unblock them.
    • You can also click Filters , enter the share name, and then click Search to search filter the blocked entities from the share.
  5. Click the Unblock button to unblock the entity.
    Note: After you unblock an entity, the entity gets access to the file system and can resume operations. Make sure that you have cleared the entity from all malicious software before you unblock an entity.
  6. (Optional) Click the gear icon, and select Export CSV or Export JSON to download a list of blocked entities to a file in CSV or JSON format.

Smart Tiering

Manage hot, warm, and cold file server data.

Use Smart Tiering to maximize the available file server space by moving cold data from the file server to an object store. Nutanix supports using Nutanix Objects, AWS Standard, AWS IA, or Wasabi (S3 compatible storage) as the object storage, which you must configure before setting up a tiering profile, for details on setting up Nutanix Objects, see the Objects User Guide .

Tiered storage does not contain the full data set. The full metadata and pointers to tiered data remain on the primary storage. However, tiering cold data to an object store does provide storage cost benefits, which you can calculate using the cost savings widget in the Data Tiering tab. You can recall tiered data from the object store by configuring an auto-recall policy during tiering policy creation, or by recalling data manually. You can also specify retention policies that indicate how long deleted data remains in secondary storage prior to permanent deletion.

Note: If you have Files version 4.2.0 and above you will be able to create a tiering profile with AWS Glacier storage class in addition to Object Store, AWS, and S3 compliant storage classes.

Do the following to enable tiering on the file server:

  • Ensure that you have enabled the file server in Data Lens, see Data Age Dashboard.
  • Review the "Limitations" section.
  • Review the Smart Tiering Requirements and Recommendations section.
  • Configure the tiering location and profile, see Configuring a Tiering Location.
  • Configure the tiering capacity threshold, see Setting a Capacity Threshold.
  • Configure a tiering criteria policy, see Creating a Tiering Policy.

Limitations

  • You can only have one tiering profile and tiering location per file server.
  • You can initiate only one tier and one recall job at a time.
  • You cannot evict tiered file data from the primary storage until all snapshots containing the file expire.
  • You cannot tier files that are smaller than 64 KiB or larger than 5 TiB.
  • You cannot write to tiered (offline) files.
  • You can only configure tiering at the file-server level.
  • You can only manually recall a maximum of 100 files at a time.
  • After re-enabling versioning, tiering operations need a minimum of 10 minutes to resume.
  • Files cannot compress data while tiering data to the object store.
  • Files does not tier sparse files.
  • The manual tier and recall operations have a timeout of 10 days, after which Data Lens terminates the operation. To continue the tier or recall operation for the remaining files, restart the operations.

Terminology

  • Capacity threshold – The percentage of file server capacity you must reach to trigger tiering operations.
  • Object store – Secondary storage service.
  • Recall – Migrating data from secondary to primary storage manually or through an auto-recall policy.
  • Tiering – Migrating cold data from primary to secondary storage.
  • Tiering profile – The secondary storage location configuration, which includes the object store, security keys, the storage bucket, and other details.

Smart Tiering Requirements and Recommendations

Meet the indicated requirements to configure and administer tiering.

General Requirements

  • Enable versioning on the object store bucket.
  • Meet the compatibility requirements as described in the Data Lens Release Notes .

Network Requirements

  • All file server VMs (FSVMs) need to access insights.nutanix.com through Pulse.
  • All FSVMs need to use DNS to resolve the name insights.nutanix.com .

AWS Simple Storage Service (S3) Requirements

Have the following AWS IAM user permissions.

  • s3:GetBucketObjectLockConfiguration
  • s3:PutObject
  • s3:GetObject
  • s3:GetLifecycleConfiguration
  • s3:AbortMultipartUpload
  • s3:PutLifecycleConfiguration
  • s3:CreateBucket
  • s3:GetObjectTagging
  • s3:ListBucket
  • s3:PutObjectTagging
  • s3:GetBucketVersioning
  • s3:GetObjectVersion
  • s3:DeleteObject

Ensure that the security keys have the following permissions on the S3 bucket:

  • Set LifeCycle policy
  • Read and write
  • Set tags on object
  • List and write on object

Nutanix Objects Object Store Requirements

  • Use the bucket owner secret and access for tiering.
  • Ensure the owner has read and write permissions.

Security Recommendations

Nutanix recommends using the following security best practices:

  • Implement security best practices for AWS S3 as described on the AWS documentation portal.
  • Do not use the same bucket for storing non-Nutanix Files data.
  • Do not manually delete or overwrite any object in the bucket, as this results in data loss.
  • Disable the object lock.
  • Enable encryption on the bucket.
  • Have the permissions to query the bucket location.
  • Do the following when changing security keys:
    • Ensure that both keys are valid when changing from key1 to key2.
    • Retire key1 from s3 only after updating key2 on the file server.
  • On AWS, Files sets the life-cycle rule on the bucket to garbage collect deleted objects. Do not overwrite or remove the rule from S3. Do not apply another life-cycle rule to the bucket.
  • For Nutanix Objects, provide security keys of the owner of the bucket.

Data Age Dashboard

The Data Age dashboard consists of the Smart Tiering and Explore tabs.

Smart Tiering Tab

The Smart Tiering dashboard includes tools for managing the tiering configuration of a file server and consists of the following primary elements:

  • The Tiering Configuration pane includes options to configure the tiering location, configure the capacity threshold, and configure tiering policies.
  • The Capacity Summary pane provides an overview of data distribution on the file server.
  • Tiering Summary pane provides an activity monitor of tiering operations.
  • Recall Summary pane provides an activity monitor of recall operations.
Figure. Smart Tiering Tab Click to enlarge The Smart Tiering dashboard displays various panes that include options for managing tiering and for viewing tiering analytics data.

The following table provides a detailed description of the features of each pane in the dashboard.

Table 1. Smart Tiering Tab
Pane Feature Description
Tiering configuration Tiering location Indicates the name of the tiering profile and the object store type. Provides an option to configure or edit the tiering location.
Capacity threshold Indicates the configured capacity threshold and whether tiering is manual or scheduled. Provides option to configure the capacity threshold, edit the capacity threshold, and to set up a tiering schedule.
Tiering policy Indicates the configured tiering policy. Provides option to define files for tiering.
Capacity summary File server and capacity Indicates the name of the file server, the capacity used, and the total capacity configured for the file server.
Data distribution on primary storage Indicates the distribution of data on the file server by the space used, the space planned for tiering, and the free space.
Note: The widget refreshes hourly.
Total tiered data The amount of data that has been moved to tiered storage.
Current cost savings The approximate amount of money saved from tiering data.
Configure cost model option See Configuring Cost Savings.
Manual recall option See Manually Recalling Tiered Data.
Tier data option See Tiering Data Manually.
Tiering summary Number of files tiered Indicates the total number of files recalled for the specified interval.
Data tiered Indicates the total amount of data tiered for the specified interval.
Data tiered graph Displays the number of files tiered over time. Hovering over the data displays the value for the time specified on the horizontal axis.
Recall summary Number of files recalled Indicates the total number of files recalled for the specified interval.
Data recalled Indicates the total amount of data recalled for the specified interval.
Data recalled graph Displays the number of files recalled over time. Hovering over the data displays the value for the time specified on the horizontal axis.

Explore Tab

The explore tab consists of the following elements:

  • A Filters pane lets you filter entities by data age (heat).
  • A Summary tab displays a breakdown of data by heat for the selected scope.
  • A Trend tab displays heat trends for a specified period (7 days, 1 month, or 1 year).
  • An Edit Data Age Configuration link lets you edit heat level settings.
  • A Data Distribution By Shares table provides share-level details for the selected entity or entities.

Configuring a Tiering Location

To tier data, configure a secondary storage object store.

About this task

A tiering profile includes the tiering location and defines the secondary storage target, which is the object store.

Follow the steps as indicated to configure a tiering profile:

Procedure

  1. In the Dashboard for the file server, click Smart Tiering Dashboard in the Data Summary by Age and Storage Tier pane.
    Figure. Set Up Tiering Click to enlarge The Smart Tiering Dashboard link in the Data Summary by Age and Storage widget.

  2. In the Tiering Configuration pane, under Tiering Location , click Add Tiering Location .
  3. Update the fields in the tab with the indicated information.
    Note: Some fields may be unavailable for updates.
    • Name : Enter a name of the tiering profile.
    • Store type : Select a store type.
    • Service host : Enter a URL of the tiering service host.
    • Access key : Enter the S3 access key ID for the object store.
    • Secret key : Enter the secret access key for accessing the object store.
    • Bucket configuration
      • Bucket name : Enter a name of the bucket in the object store (you cannot change the name).
      • Retention period : Enter a period for data retention after deletion from the file server. (The default retention period is 5 years and the minimum is 6 months).
    • Certificate
      • Certificate : Upload a secure sockets layer (SSL) certificate file.
      • Validate certificate : Check this box to enforce SSL certificate verification during tiering operations after profile creation.

Setting a Capacity Threshold

Specify when to tier data.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated.

Procedure

  1. In the Dashboard for the file server, click Smart Tiering Dashboard in the Data Summary by Age and Storage Tier pane.
  2. In the Tiering Configuration pane, click Set a Capacity Threshold .
  3. To tier data based on a threshold of occupied capacity, check the Set a Capacity Threshold box.
    1. In the % of Primary Storage field, enter an integer that indicates the capacity percentage to trigger tiering (minimum 1%).
  4. Under When to tier , choose an option.
    • To trigger tiering manually after crossing the capacity threshold, select the Manual option.
    • To configure a schedule for tiering data, choose On a Schedule option.
    Note: If you choose the Manual option, follow the steps in Tiering Data Manually to initiate tiering after you observe that the file server reaches the configured capacity threshold.
  5. If you chose the On a Schedule option, do the following in the indicated fields (otherwise, continue to the next step).
    Note: Data Lens sends tier requests to the file server until the scheduled time. However, due to bandwidth, the actual tiering operation on the file server can begin and end shortly after the scheduled time.
    • Frequency : Use the every day option and do the following (or click set a custom window for each day ).
      • Start time : Specify when to start tiering operations.
      • End time : Specify when to end tiering operations.
    • (Optional) to customize the tiering schedule, click set a custom window for each day , and do the following:
      • Select the desired tiering days.
      • For each day, specify the schedule for tiering operations in the start time and end time fields.
  6. Click Save .

Creating a Tiering Policy

Add a policy that defines when to tier cold data to object storage.

About this task

To create a tiering policy, do the following:

Procedure

  1. In the Dashboard for the file server, click Smart Tiering Dashboard in the Data Summary by Age and Storage Tier pane.
  2. In the Tiering Configuration pane, under Tiering Policy , click Define a Tiering Policy .
  3. Under Filters for Data to be Tiered , do the following:
    • Data Access Age (older than) :
      • Enter an integer to specify the data age.
      • In the dropdown, select the unit of measurement (days, weeks, months, years).
    • File Size (greater than) :
      • Enter an integer for the minimum tiering file size (minimum 64 KB).
      • In the dropdown, select the unit of measurement (KB, MB, GB).
    • File Type :
      • In the dropdown, choose either the is not (exclude) or the is (include) option.
      • Enter a file extension and click the space bar (do not include a period or forward slash). For example jpg , png , or mpeg .
    • File Owner :
      • In the dropdown, choose either the is not (exclude) or the is (include) option.
      • Enter a user name and click the space bar. For example UID:13199 or nutanix\user .
  4. (Optional) under Shares , do the following:
    1. To specify shares excluded from tiering, check the Exclude Shares box.
      Check the box next to shares to exclude.
    2. To specify an auto recall policy, check the Enable Auto-Recall box, and do the following in the indicated fields.
      • In the Times field, specify the number of times Files can retrieve a file from the object store, based on inline reads, before triggering recall.
        Note: With inline read events, a file server retrieves content from the object store, rather than the read cache. You might read a file multiple times from the read cache before retrieving it as an inline read from the object store.
      • In the period field, specify an integer and unit of measurement (days, weeks, months, years).
  5. Click Save .
    If you set a schedule for the capacity threshold, Data Lens automatically triggers the tiering operation in Nutanix Files according to the policy and threshold configuration. If you chose to manually trigger tiering, you must trigger the operation after the file server meets the criteria in the threshold and policy configuration.

Manually Recalling Tiered Data

Manually recall data from secondary to primary storage.

About this task

You can configure auto recall of data during tiering policy setup, see Creating a Tiering Policy. Otherwise, follow the steps as indicated to manually recall data.

Procedure

  1. In the Dashboard for the file server, click Smart Tiering Dashboard in the Data Summary by Age and Storage Tier pane.
  2. In the Capacity Summary pane, click Manual Recall .
  3. Select one of the following search options:
    • Files
    • Folder Path
    • Shares
  4. Enter the name of the search target into the search bar.
  5. Click Search .
  6. In the action column, click Recall .
    You can monitor the operation in the Tasks tab.
  7. (Optional) Click Cancel Recall to cancel the recall task.
    Note: You can also cancel the recall task from the Tasks tab. For more information see, Tasks Dashboard.

Tiering Data Manually

Manually initiate tiering.

About this task

If you did not choose to tier data on a schedule in the capacity threshold configuration, tier data manually.

Procedure

  1. In the Dashboard for the file server, click Smart Tiering Dashboard in the Data Summary by Age and Storage Tier pane.
  2. In the Capacity Summary pane, click Tier Data .
    An unavailable Tier Data button indicates that Data Lens has not found enough tiering candidates on the file server and that the file server has not reached the capacity threshold.
    A dialogue window asks you to confirm the action.
  3. Click Confirm .
    Data Lens triggers the tiering operation in Nutanix Files. You can monitor the operation in the Tasks tab.
  4. (Optional) Click Cancel Tiering to cancel the tiering task.
    Note: You can also cancel the tiering task from the Tasks dashboard. For more information see, Tasks Dashboard.

Updating a Tiering Configuration

Edit an existing tiering configuration.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated.

Procedure

  1. To update a tiering configuration, go to Data Summary by Age and Storage Tier > Smart Tiering Dashboard .
  2. In the Tiering Configuration section, do one or more of the following.
    • To update the tiering profile configuration, click Edit under Tiering Location . Update one or more fields as described in Configuring a Tiering Location. You can only update the access key, secret key, profile name, or the certificate.
    • To update the capacity threshold, click Edit under Capacity Threshold . Update one or more fields as described in Setting a Capacity Threshold.
    • To update the tiering policy, click Edit under Tiering Policies . Update one or more fields as described in Creating a Tiering Policy

Configuring Data Heat Levels

Update the values that constitute different data heat levels.

Procedure

  1. In the Data Age widget, click Explore .
  2. Click Edit Data Age Configuration .
  3. Do the following in the Hot Data section:
    1. In the entry field next to Older Than , enter an integer.
    2. In the dropdown, choose a value for Week(s) , Month(s) , or Year(s) .
  4. Do the following in the Warm Data section to configure two ranges :
    1. In the first entry field, enter an integer to configure the first range.
    2. In the dropdown, choose a value for Week(s) , Month(s) , or Year(s) .
    3. In the second entry field, enter an integer to configure the second range.
    4. In the dropdown, choose a value for Week(s) , Month(s) , or Year(s) .
  5. Do the following in the Cold Data section to configure four ranges :
    1. In the first entry field, enter an integer to configure the first range.
    2. In the dropdown, choose a value for Week(s) , Month(s) , or Year(s) .
    3. In the second entry field, enter an integer to configure the second range.
    4. In the dropdown, choose a value for Week(s) , Month(s) , or Year(s) .
    5. In the 3rd entry field, enter an integer to configure the 3rd range.
    6. In the dropdown, choose a value for Week(s) , Month(s) , or Year(s) .
    7. (optional) In the 4th entry field, enter an integer to configure the 4th range.
    8. In the dropdown, choose a value for Week(s) , Month(s) , or Year(s) .
  6. Click Apply .
    Note: The new values do not affect the already calculated heat statistics. Data Lens uses the updated values for future heat calculations.

Configuring Cost Savings

Configure the cost savings widget.

About this task

Configuring cost savings helps you estimate the amount of money saved by tiering data.

Procedure

  1. In the Dashboard for the file server, click Smart Tiering Dashboard in the Data Summary by Age and Storage Tier pane.
  2. In the Capacity Summary pane, click Configure Cost Model .
    Figure. Configure Cost Savings Click to enlarge The Configure Cost Model link appears in the top right pane.

  3. Do the following in the Cost Model window.
    1. Under On Premises File Storage , enter a number that indicates the on premises storage cost per year.
    2. Under Tiered Storage , enter a number that indicates the object storage cost per year.
    3. Click Save .
    The Cost Savings widget periodically updates and displays the approximate cost savings from tiering.

Reports

Generate a report for entities on the file server.

Create a report with custom attribute values or use one of the Data Lens pre-canned report templates. To create a custom report, specify the entity, attributes (and operators for some attributes), attribute values, column headings, and the number of columns, see Creating a Custom Report. Pre-canned reports define most of the attributes and headings based on the entity and template that you choose, see Creating a Pre-Canned Report. To schedule a report, see Scheduling a Report.

You can also rerun existing reports rather than creating new ones. After running a report, you can download it as a JSON or CSV file.

Reports Page

The reports page provides options to create, schedule, and download reports.

The Reports page consists of the following elements:

  • Instant Reports and Scheduled Reports tabs display reports in a tabular view.
  • Each report tab includes the following columns:
    • Report name
    • Status
    • Last run
    • Actions
  • In the Actions column, you can do the following:
    • Download reports as a JSON or as a CSV
    • Rerun reports
    • Delete reports.
  • The Create a new report button takes you to the New Report view where you can create a custom report, create a report from a template, and schedule reports.
Figure. Reports Page Click to enlarge

Clicking Create a new report takes you to the New Report view, which includes Report builder and Pre-canned Reports Templates tabs.

The Report builder and Pre-canned Reports Templates tabs include the following elements:

  • The Define Report Type section includes an Entity drop-down menu to select an entity.
  • The Define Filters section includes an Attribute drop-down menu and an option to add more attributes by clicking + Add filter .
  • The Add/remove columns in this report section displays the default columns. Clicking the columns field lets you add additional columns. Clicking the x next to the column name removes it from the report.
  • The Define number of maximum rows in this report section includes a Count field to specify the number of rows in the report.
  • A Schedule Report option lets you schedule future reports.
Table 1. Report Builder – Filter Options
Entity Attributes (filters) Operator Value Column
Events event_date
  • equal_to
  • greater_than
  • greater_than_equal_to
  • less_than
  • less_than_equal_to
(date)
  • audit_path (object path)
  • audit_objectname (object name)
  • audit_operation (operation)
  • audit_machine_name (source of operation)
  • audit_event_date (event date in UTC)
  • audit_username (user name)
Event_operation N/A
  • file_write
  • file_read
  • file_create
  • file_delete
  • rename
  • directory_create
  • directory_delete
  • SecurityChange (permission change)
  • set_attr
  • sym_link
Files Category
  • equal_to
  • greater_than
  • greater_than_equal_to
  • less_than
  • less_than_equal_to
(date)
  • object_name (file name)
  • share_UUID (share name)
  • object_owner_name (owner name)
  • object_size_logical (size)
  • file_type (extension)
  • object_creation_date (creation date in UTC)
  • last_event_date (access date in UTC)
  • share_UUID (share name)
  • fileserver_protocol
  • object_ID (file id)
  • object_last_operation_name (last operation)
  • audit_username (last operation user
  • object_last_operation_name (last operation)
  • file_path (file path)
Extensions N/A (type in value)
Deleted N/A Last (number of days from 1 to 30) days
creation_date
  • equal_to
  • greater_than
  • greater_than_equal_to
  • less_than
  • less_than_equal_to
(date)
access_date
  • equal_to
  • greater_than
  • greater_than_equal_to
  • less_than
  • less_than_equal_to
(date)
Size
  • equal_to
  • greater_than
  • greater_than_equal_to
  • less_than
  • less_than_equal_to
(number) (file size)

File size options:

  • B
  • KB
  • MB
  • GB
  • TB
Folders Deleted N/A Last (number of days from 1 to 30) days
  • object_name (Dir name)
  • object_owner_name (owner name)
  • object_creation_date (creation date in UTC)
  • last_event_date (access date in UTC)
  • share_UUID (share name)
  • object_last_operation_name (last operation)
  • audit_username (last operation user)
  • File server protocol
  • object_ID (file id)
  • file_path (Dir path)
creation_date
  • equal_to
  • greater_than
  • greater_than_equal_to
  • less_than
  • less_than_equal_to
(date)
Users last_event_date
  • equal_to
  • greater_than
  • greater_than_equal_to
  • less_than
  • less_than_equal_to
(date)
  • user_login_name (user name)
  • Last operation
  • last_event_date (access date in UTC)
  • last_operation_audit_path
Table 2. Pre-Canned Reports – Filters
Entity Pre-canned report template Columns
Events
  • Permission denied events
  • Permission denied (file blocking) events
  • audit_path (object path)
  • audit_objectname (object name)
  • audit_operation (operation)
  • audit_machine_name (source of operation)
  • audit_event_date (event date in UTC)
  • audit_username (user name)
Files
  • Largest files
  • Oldest files
  • Files not accessed for last 1 year
  • Files accessed in last 30 days
  • object_name (file name)
  • share_UUID (share name)
  • object_owner_name (owner name)
  • object_size_logical (size)
  • file_type (extension)
  • object_creation_date (creation date in UTC)
  • last_event_date (access date in UTC)
  • share_UUID (share name)
  • fileserver_protocol
  • object_ID (file id)
  • object_last_operation_name (last operation)
  • audit_username (last operation user
  • object_last_operation_name (last operation)
  • file_path (file path)
Users
  • Top owners with space consumed
  • Top active users
  • All users
  • user_login_name (user name)
  • Last operation
  • last_event_date (access date in UTC)
  • last_operation_audit_path

Creating a Custom Report

Create a custom report by defining the entity, attribute, filters, and columns.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated.

Procedure

  1. Go to collapse menu > Reports .
  2. Click Create a new report .
  3. In the Report Builder tab, do the following:
    1. In the Define Report Type section, select an entity from the drop-down menu.
    2. In the Define Filters section, select an attribute from the attributes drop-down menu.
    3. Under Value , specify the values for the attribute (some attributes also require to specify an operator in the Operator field).
    4. (optional) click + Add filter to add more attributes.
    5. In the Add/Remove column in this report section, click the field to display column options and select desired columns for the report. You can also click x for the columns you want to remove.
    6. In the Define maximum number of rows in this report section, specify the number of rows in your report. This value indicates the number of records in the report.
  4. Click Run Preview .
    The Report Preview section populates.
  5. Click Generate report . (Or schedule a report, see Scheduling a Report.)
    1. Select either the CSV or JSON option.

Creating a Pre-Canned Report

Use one of the pre-canned Data Lens templates for your report.

Procedure

  1. Go to collapse menu > Reports .
  2. Click Create a new report .
  3. In the Pre-Canned Reports Templates tab, do the following:
    1. In the Define Report Type section, select an entity from the drop-down menu.
    2. In the Define Filters section, select an attribute from the attributes drop-down menu.
    3. In the Add/Remove column in this report section, click the field to display column options and select desired columns for the report. You can also click x for the columns you want to remove.
    4. In the Define maximum number of rows in this report section, specify the number of rows in your report. This value indicates the number of records in the report.
  4. Click Run Preview .
    The Report Preview section populates.
  5. Click Generate report . (Or schedule a report, see Scheduling a Report.)
    1. Select either the CSV or JSON option.

Scheduling a Report

Schedule a custom or pre-canned report.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated to schedule a report.

Procedure

  1. Follow the procedure for creating a report and Run Preview , but do not generate the report. See Creating a Custom Report or Creating a Pre-Canned Report.
  2. Click Schedule Report .
  3. In the Schedule Report dialog box, do the following in the indicated fields:
    1. Time Zone : Select a time zone in which to schedule the report.
    2. Report Frequency : Select the report frequency from Daily , Weekly , or Monthly . This also defines the interval for which Data Lens collects data.
    3. Choose Recipients : In the Email Recipients field, enter a comma-separated list of report recipients.
  4. Click Next .
  5. Under Define the report format , select either JSON or CSV .
  6. Under Define the title for your report , enter a report title.
  7. Click Schedule Report .
    The scheduled report appears in the Scheduled Reports tab on the Reports page.

Tasks

View the tasks on the file server.

The Tasks dashboard displays a table with the status and other details of the tasks.

Tasks Dashboard

The Tasks dashboard displays the tasks that are in queue, in-progress, canceled, or in failed status.

The Task dashboard lists the following options. You can filter the tasks based on these options.

  • Queued—The tasks in the queue.
  • Running—The tasks currently in progress. Hover over this status to view the total number of files tiered or recalled so far until the task is complete.
  • Successful—The tiering or recall request task to Files is complete.
  • Failed—The tasks that did not complete successfully.
  • Canceled—The tasks that are cancelled.
  • Cancel Requested—The tasks that are requested for cancellation.
  • Canceling—The tasks that are currently being cancelled.
Figure. Tasks Dashboard Click to enlarge This table displays the tasks on a file server.

The tasks table lists the following details:

  • Operation—The type of operation the task performs. For example, tier request, recall request, create tiering location, enable ransomware, and so on.
  • Status—Task status such as, successful, canceled, and canceling. Hover over the status to view the details.
  • Creation Time—The time when the task was created.
  • Last Updated Time—The time when the task was last updated.
  • Submitted By—The name of the task submitter.
  • Action—A Cancel button appears for user recall tasks and tiering operations (operation type is tier request or recall request). You can click the Cancel button to cancel these tasks before it completes. After the cancel request is complete, the task status changes to canceled. You can cancel tasks with queued or running status.
    Note:
    • Account administrators can cancel tasks submitted by any user. Data Lens administrators can cancel the tasks they submitted. However, Data Lens Users (if the user is a viewer), cannot cancel any tasks.
    • Hover over the Cancel button to view the total number of tiered or recalled files and the name of the user who canceled the task.

Data Lens Options

You can get more insight into the usage and contents of files on your system by configuring and updating Data Lens features and settings. Some options include scanning the files on your file server on demand, updating data retention, and configuring data protection.

Updating Data Retention

The data retention period determines how long Data Lens retains event data.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated to configure data retention.

Procedure

  1. In Data Lens, click gear icon > Update Data Retention .
  2. In the Data Retention Period drop-down, select the period for data retention.
  3. Click Update .

Scanning the File System

Once enabled, Data Lens scans the metadata of all files and shares on the system. You can perform an on-demand scan of shares in your file system when new shares are created after the initial scan.

About this task

Note: Enabling Data Lens for a file server triggers scan for all shares as part of the enablement process and triggers the metadata collection. Triggering subsequent scans interferes with and overwrites the collected metadata and is not recommended unless initial scan has some issue or if any new shares are created.
To scan shares, perform the following task.

Procedure

  1. In Data Lens, click the gear icon .
  2. In the drop-down list, click Scan File System .
  3. In the list of shares, select the target shares for the scan.
    Figure. Select Scan Targets Click to enlarge

  4. Click Scan .
    The status of the share is In Progress . Once the scan is complete, the status changes to Completed . You can view the number of files scanned with the scan date and time.

Managing File Categories

Data Lens uses the file category configuration to classify file extensions.

About this task

The capacity widget in the dashboard uses the category configuration to calculate capacity details.

Procedure

  1. Click gear icon > Manage File Category .
  2. To create a category, click + New Category . (Otherwise, move on to step 3).
    1. In the Category column, name the category.
    2. In the Extensions column, specify file extensions for the category.
  3. To delete an existing category, click the x icon next to the category. (Otherwise, move on to step 4)
  4. To modify an existing category, click the pencil icon next to the category and modify the specified file extensions.
  5. Click Save .

Deleting Audit Data

Delete file server audit data or clean up the analyzed data of already deleted files and folders.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated.

Procedure

  1. Click gear icon > Manage Data .
  2. Caution: The deleted File Server data cannot be retrieved.
    (optional) To delete audit data for the entire file server, go to the File Server tab, and then click the delete the audit data > Delete .
    The deletion of File Server data can be used to reduce the usage from the allocated license capacity.
    Note: Delete option is only available for disabled File Server.
  3. (optional) To delete data for one or more shares, go to the Manage Share/Export Audit Data tab.
    Caution: The deleted audit data cannot be retrieved.
    1. Select one or more share or exports.
      • To delete a single share or export, click Delete in the row for that share.
      • To delete multiple shares or exports, select the shares to be deleted, and then click Delete above the table.
  4. Caution: The deleted data cannot be retrieved.
    (optional) To clean up the analyzed data of already deleted files and folders, go to the Manage Files/Folders Deleted Data tab, and then click the delete the files/folders data > Delete .
    The clean up of the analyzed data of already deleted files and folders can be done to reduce the usage from the allocated license capacity.
    Note: The Manage Files/Folders Deleted Data tab will only be enabled if any deleted files or folders are available for that particular File Server.
    Once you have triggered for data deletion, you will be redirected to the dashboard page.

Isilon Integration

Use Data Lens as a lightweight analytics solution for file servers on Dell EMC Isilon, a third-party file server software.

Note: The Dell EMC Isilon integration is a technical preview feature and should not be used in a production environment. You might not be able to retain audit data or upgrade file servers from technical preview to general availability (GA) versions.

The Data Lens integration with Isilon deploys an agent VM in the third-party environment of the Isilon file server. The agent VM combines the capabilities of a syslog server and Isilon's incremental scan to receive audit events, scan data, and send the heartbeat of the container for health monitoring. Nutanix also collects insights data from your Isilon file server using Pulse. Before enabling the Isilon file server on Data Lens, you must consent to insights data collection, refer to "Nutanix Insights" in Support Portal Help.

As a lightweight analytics and monitoring solution, Data Lens for Isilon currently does not include a full feature set, see Isilon Technical Preview for a list of unsupported features. As a result, the Data Lens UI for Isilon includes fewer widgets. Some of the supported features include audit trails, capacity trends, and heat monitoring. UI updates include a column listing the vendor in the file server table on the Global Dashboard and a new Registered Agents view for monitoring all registered agents. If the agent VM is down for 24 hours, an automated alert goes out to Nutanix Support.

Deploying and managing Data Lens for Isilon requires the following:

  • Installing an agent VM, see Installing an Agent VM.
  • Enabling the Isilon server and accepting the license agreement, see Enabling a File Server.
  • Monitoring the registered agent VM in the Registered Agents view, see Isilon Technical Preview.
  • Configuring a syslog server in the Isilon environment. See the EMC Isilon Auditing Guide for steps to configure a syslog server.

Isilon Technical Preview

Technical preview of the Data Lens integration with Dell EMC Isilon.

This document describes the user experience for Data Lens with Isilon.

Lightweight Feature Set

Data Lens for Isilon provides general storage capacity reporting and audit visibility.

The Isilon integration does not include the following elements and features:

  • Share-level details in the main dashboard
  • Smart Tiering
  • Anomaly detection
  • Ransomware protection

The agent VM has the following limitations and restrictions:

  • You cannot change the name of the agent VM.
  • You cannot clone the agent VM.
  • If you delete the agent VM, any files or directories on the VM are also deleted.
  • The Data Lens UI does not register changes to the agent VM IP address. Re-run the registration command to display the updated IP address.
  • A backward slash in a file name causes the name and parent directory of a file to display incorrectly in audit trails.

Registered Agents View

Clicking the gear icon > Registered Agents displays a tabular view of all the agents in Registered Agents view. The following describes the columns in the table of the Registered Agents view:

Table 1. Registered Agents View
Column Description
Name Agent VM name
IP address IP address of the host where the agent VM is registered.
ID Unique identifier for the agent VM.
No. of file servers served Number file servers on the host that the agent VM supports.
Active and offline agents Red and green icons indicate if the agent VM is on line (green) or off line (red).

Installing an Agent VM

Install a Data Lens agent VM in your third-party environment.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated:

Procedure

  1. In the File Server section of the Global Dashboard, click +Add a File Server .
  2. In the drop-down menu following Isilon , select Install a new agent .
  3. Download and configure the agent VM:
    1. To download the agent VM image, click the link in the Download an agent VM image from here line.
    2. Create an agent VM with the following minimum requirements.
      Note: The newly created VM has default Nutanix credentials. Make sure to update the credentials.
      (See "Creating a VM" in the Prism Self Service Administration Guide .)
      • 1 vCPU
      • 4 cores
      • 12 GB RAM
      • Minimum 120 GiB storage
    3. Allow HTTPS traffic from the agent VM to insights.nutanix.com .
    4. Register the VM with Data Lens using the provided token in the Add File Server view of the Global Dashboard .
      nutanix@agentVM dl_agent_cli --register --token=token
    5. Add the third-party file server to Data Lens.
      nutanix@agentVM dl_agent_cli --add_server --type=isilon --host=IP/Host-name \
      --port=REST-api-port --user=Isilon-server-user [--password_file=password-file-name]
      Replace add_server with the name of the file server. Replace IP/Host-name with the IP address of the host. Replace REST-api-port with the port number for REST API communication. Replace Isilon-server-user with your user name. Replace password-file-name with the name and path to your password file.
      Once the task completes, the server displays in the Data Lens File Server view.

What to do next

Configure a syslog server in the EMC Isilon environment to communicate with the agent VM. For steps to configure a syslog server, see the EMC Isilon Auditing Guide .

Next, enable the Isilon file server, see Enabling a File Server.

Enabling a File Server

Enable Data Lens for a file server.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated.

Note: If you disable a file server, you must delete all audit data before re-enabling it.

Procedure

  1. In the Global Dashboard , to display the file server table, go to the file server pane, and click the collapse menu icon.
  2. In the Actions column for the target file server, click Enable .
    If you are enabling a Nutanix Files file server, stop here.
    For third-party file servers (non-Nutanix), a License Agreement dialog box appears.
  3. In the License Agreement dialog box, click the links to review the following documents:
    The Nutanix Privacy Statement , the Nutanix License and Service Agreement , and information about Pulse data collection.
  4. After reviewing the documents, click Accept and Proceed to agree.

Re-deploying an Agent VM

Re-deploying an agent VM on a previously configured third-party server.

About this task

Follow the steps as indicated:

Procedure

  1. Register the agent VM using the token provided in the Add File Server view of the Global Dashboard .
    $ dl_agent_cli --register --token=token
  2. Add the third-party file server to Data Lens.
    nutanix@agentVM dl_agent_cli --add_server --type=isilon --host=IP/Host-name \
    --port=REST-api-port --user=Isilon-server-user [--password_file=password-file-name]
    Replace add_server with the name of the file server. Replace IP/Host-name with the IP address of the Isilon management host. Replace REST-api-port with the port number for REST API communication. Replace Isilon-server-user with your user name. Replace password-file-name with the name and path to your password file.

    After adding the file servers, run a full scan on all of the added file servers.

    Once the task completes, the server displays in the Data Lens File Server view.

What to do next

Perform a full scan, see Scanning the File System.
Read article
Nutanix Disaster Recovery Guide

Disaster Recovery (Formerly Leap) pc.2022.6

Product Release Date: 2022-07-25

Last updated: 2022-11-22

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Overview

Legacy disaster recovery (DR) configurations use protection domains (PDs) and third-party integrations to protect your applications. These DR configurations replicate data between on-prem Nutanix clusters. Protection domains provide limited flexibility in terms of supporting complex operations (for example, VM boot order, network mapping). With protection domains, you have to perform manual tasks to protect new guest VMs as and when your application scales up.

Nutanix Disaster Recovery offers an entity-centric automated approach to protect and recover applications. It uses categories to group the guest VMs and automate the protection of the guest VMs as the application scales. Application recovery is more flexible with network mappings, an enforceable VM start sequence, and inter-stage delays. Application recovery can also be validated and tested without affecting your production workloads. Asynchronous, NearSync, and Synchronous replication schedules ensure that an application and its configuration details synchronize to one or more recovery locations for a smoother recovery.

Note: You can protect a guest VM either with legacy DR solution (protection domain-based) or with new Nutanix Disaster Recovery . To see various Nutanix DR solutions, refer Nutanix Disaster Recovery Solutions.

Nutanix Disaster Recovery works with sets of physically isolated locations called availability zones. An instance of Prism Central represents an availability zone. One availability zone serves as the primary AZ for an application while one or more paired availability zones serve as the recovery AZs.

Note: Nutanix Disaster Recovery supports the use of Flow Virtual Networking enabled Virtual Private Clouds.
Figure. A primary on-prem AZ and one recovery on-prem AZ
Click to enlarge A primary on-prem AZ and one recovery on-prem AZ

Figure. A primary on-prem AZ and two recovery on-prem AZs
Click to enlarge A primary on-prem AZ and two recovery on-prem AZs

Figure. A primary on-prem AZ and two recovery AZs: one on-prem recovery AZ and one recovery AZ in Cloud (Xi Cloud Services)
Click to enlarge Disaster recovery to an on-prem AZ and Xi Cloud

Figure. A primary on-prem AZ and one recovery AZ at Xi Cloud Services
Click to enlarge Disaster recovery to an on-prem AZ and Xi Cloud

Figure. A primary Nutanix cluster and at most two recovery Nutanix clusters at the same on-prem AZ
Click to enlarge Disaster recovery to clusters at the same on-prem AZ

Figure. A primary AZ at Xi Cloud Services and recovery on-prem AZ
Click to enlarge Disaster recovery to an on-prem AZ

When paired, the primary AZ replicates the entities (protection policies, recovery plans, and recovery points) to the recovery AZs in the specified time intervals (RPO). The approach helps application recovery at any of the recovery AZs when there is a service disruption at the primary AZ (For example, natural disasters or scheduled maintenance). The entities start replicating back to the primary AZ when the primary AZ is up and running to ensure High Availability of applications. The entities you create or update synchronize continuously between the primary and recovery AZs. The reverse synchronization enables you to create or update entities (protection policies, recovery plans, or guest VMs) at either the primary or the recovery AZs.

This guide is primarily divided into the following two parts.

  • Protection and DR between On-Prem AZs (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

    The section walks you through the procedure of application protection and DR to other Nutanix clusters at the same or different on-prem AZs. The procedure also applies to protection and DR to other Nutanix clusters in supported public cloud.

  • Protection and DR between On-Prem AZ and Xi Cloud Service (Xi Leap)

    Xi Leap is essentially an extension of Leap to Xi Cloud Services. You can protect applications and perform DR to Xi Cloud Services or from Xi Cloud Services to an on-prem availability zone. The section describes application protection and DR from Xi Cloud Services to an on-prem Nutanix cluster. For application protection and DR to Xi Cloud Services, refer the supported capabilities in Protection and DR between On-Prem AZs (Nutanix Disaster Recovery) because the protection procedure remains the same when the primary AZ is an on-prem availability zone.

Configuration tasks and DR workflows are largely the same regardless of the type of recovery AZ. For more information about the protection and DR workflow, see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Deployment Workflow.

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Terminology

The following section describes the terms and concepts used throughout the guide. Nutanix recommends gaining familiarity with these terms before you begin configuring protection with Nutanix Disaster Recovery or Xi Leap disaster recovery.

Availability Zone (AZ)

A zone that can have one or more independent datacenters inter-connected by low latency links. An AZ can either be in your office premises (on-prem) or in Xi Cloud Services. AZs are physically isolated from each other to ensure that a disaster at one AZ does not affect another AZ. An instance of Prism Central represents an on-prem AZ.

On-Prem Availability Zone

An AZ in your premises.

Xi Cloud Services

An AZ in the Nutanix Enterprise Cloud Platform (Xi Cloud Services).

Primary Availability Zone

An AZ that initially hosts guest VMs you want to protect.

Recovery Availability Zone

An AZ where you can recover the protected guest VMs when a planned or an unplanned event occurs at the primary AZ causing its downtime. You can configure at most two recovery AZs for a guest VM.

Nutanix Cluster

A cluster running AHV or ESXi nodes on an on-prem AZ, Xi Cloud Services, or any supported public cloud. Leap does not support guest VMs from Hyper-V clusters.

Prism Element

The GUI that provides you the ability to configure, manage, and monitor a single Nutanix cluster. It is a service built into the platform for every Nutanix cluster deployed.

Prism Central

The GUI that allows you to monitor and manage many Nutanix clusters (Prism Element running on those clusters). Prism Starter, Prism Pro, and Prism Ultimate are the three flavors of Prism Central. For more information about the features available with these licenses, see Software Options.

Prism Central essentially is a VM that you deploy (host) in a Nutanix cluster (Prism Element). For more information about Prism Central, see Prism Central Guide. You can set up the following configurations of Prism Central VM.

Small Prism Central
A Prism Central VM with configuration equal to or less than 8 vCPU and 32 GB memory. The VM hot adds extra 4 GB and 1 GB memory when you enable Leap and Flow respectively in small Prism Central.
Small Prism Central (Single node)
A small Prism Central deployed in a single VM.
Small Prism Central (Scaleout)
Three small Prism Centrals deployed in three VMs in the same availability zone (AZ).
Large Prism Central
A Prism Central VM with configuration more than 8 vCPU and 32 GB memory. The VM hot adds extra 8 GB and 1 GB memory when you enable Leap and Flow respectively in large Prism Central.
Large Prism Central (Single node)
A large Prism Central deployed in a single VM.
Large Prism Central (Scaleout)
Three large Prism Centrals deployed in three VMs in the same availability zone (AZ).
Note: A scaleout Prism Central works like a single node Prism Central in the availability zone (AZ). You can upgrade a single node Prism Central to scaleout Prism Central to increase the capacity, resiliency, and redundancy of Prism Central VM. For detailed information about the available configurations of Prism Central, see Prism Central Scalability in Prism Central Release Notes.

Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)

A logically isolated network service in Xi Cloud Services. A VPC provides the complete IP address space for hosting user-configured VPNs. A VPC allows creating workloads manually or by failover from a paired primary AZ.

The following VPCs are available in each Xi Cloud Services account. You cannot create more VPCs in Xi Cloud Services.

Production VPC
Used to host production workloads.
Test VPC
Used to test failover from a paired AZ.

Source Virtual Network

The virtual network from which guest VMs migrate during a failover or failback.

Recovery Virtual Network

The virtual network to which guest VMs migrate during a failover or failback operation.

Network Mapping

A mapping between two virtual networks in paired AZs. A network mapping specifies a recovery network for all guest VMs of the source network. When you perform a failover or failback, the guest VMs in the source network recover in the corresponding (mapped) recovery network.

Category

A VM category is a key-value pair that groups similar guest VMs. Associating a protection policy with a VM category ensures that the protection policy applies to all the guest VMs in the group regardless of how the group scales with time. For example, you can associate a group of guest VMs with the Department: Marketing category, where Department is a category that includes a value Marketing along with other values such as Engineering and Sales .

VM categories remain the same way on on-prem AZs and Xi Cloud Services. For more information about VM categories, see Category Management in Prism Central Guide .

Recovery Point

A copy of the state of a system at a particular point in time.

Crash-consistent Snapshots
A snapshot is crash-consistent if it captures all of the data components (write order consistent) at the instant of the crash. VM snapshots are crash-consistent (by default), which means that the vDisks that the snapshot captures are consistent with a single point in time. Crash-consistent snapshots are more suited for non-database operating systems and applications which may not support quiescence (freezing) and un-quiescence (thawing) and such as file servers, DHCP servers, print servers.
Application-consistent Snapshots
A snapshot is application-consistent if, in addition to capturing all of the data components (write order consistent) at the instant of the crash, the running applications have completed all their operations and flushed their buffers to disk (in other words, the application is quiesced). Application-consistent snapshots capture the same data as crash-consistent snapshots, with the addition of all data in memory and all transactions in process. Therefore, application-consistent snapshots may take longer to complete.

Application-consistent snapshots are more suited for systems and applications that can be quiesced and un-quiesced or thawed, such as database operating systems and applications such as SQL, Oracle, and Exchange.

Recoverable Entity

A guest VM that you can recover from a recovery point.

Protection Policy

A configurable policy that takes recovery points of the protected guest VMs in equal time intervals, and replicates those recovery points to the recovery AZs.

Recovery Plan

A configurable policy that orchestrates the recovery of protected guest VMs at the recovery AZ.

Recovery Point Objective (RPO)

The time interval that refers to the acceptable data loss if there is a failure. For example, if the RPO is 1 hour, the system creates a recovery point every 1 hour. On recovery, you can recover the guest VMs with data as of up to 1 hour ago. Take Snapshot Every in the Create Protection Policy GUI represents RPO.

Recovery Time Objective (RTO)

The time period from failure event to the restored service. For example, an RTO of 30 minutes enables you to back up and run the protected guest VMs in 30 minutes after the failure event.

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Solutions

The following flowchart provides you with the detailed representation of the disaster recovery (DR) solutions of Nutanix. This decision tree covers both the DR solutions—protection domain-based DR and Nutanix Disaster Recovery helping you to make quick decisions on which DR strategy will best suit your environment.

Figure. Decision Tree for Nutanix DR Solutions Click to enlarge Nutanix DR Solution Decision Tree

For information about protection domain-based (legacy) DR, see Data Protection and Recovery with Prism Element guide. With Leap, you can protect your guest VMs and perform DR to on-prem availability zones (AZs) or to Xi Cloud Services. A Leap deployment for DR from Xi Cloud Services to an on-prem Nutanix cluster is Xi Leap. The detailed information about Leap and Xi Leap DR configuration is available in the following sections of this guide.

Protection and DR between On-Prem AZs (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

  • For information about protection with Asynchronous replication schedule and DR, see Protection with Asynchronous Replication Schedule and DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • For information about protection with NearSync replication schedule and DR, see Protection with NearSync Replication Schedule and DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • For information about protection with Synchronous replication schedule and DR, see Protection with Synchronous Replication Schedule (0 RPO) and DR.

Protection and DR between On-Prem AZ and Xi Cloud Service (Xi Leap)

  • For information about protection with Asynchronous replication schedule and DR, see Protection with Asynchronous Replication and DR (Xi Leap).
  • For information about protection with NearSync replication schedule and DR, see Protection with NearSync Replication and DR (Xi Leap).

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Deployment Workflow

The workflow for entity-centric protection and disaster recovery (DR) configuration is as follows. The workflow is largely the same for both Nutanix Disaster Recovery and Xi Leap configurations except a few extra steps you must perform while configuring Xi Leap.

Procedure

  1. Enable Leap at the primary and recovery on-prem AZs (Prism Central).
    Enable Leap at the on-prem AZ only. For more information about enabling Leap, see Enabling Nutanix Disaster Recovery for On-Prem AZ.
  2. Pair the primary and recovery AZs with each other.
    Only when you pair an AZ, the AZ lists while configuring recovery AZ in protection policies and recovery plans (see step 6 and step 7). For more information about pairing the AZs, see Pairing AZs (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  3. (only for Xi Leap configuration) Set up your environment to proceed with replicating to Xi Cloud Services.
    For more information about environment setup, see Xi Leap Environment Setup.
  4. (only for Xi Leap configuration) Reserve floating IP addresses.
    For more information about floating IP addresses, see Floating IP Address Management in Xi Infrastructure Service Management Guide .
  5. Create production and test virtual networks at the primary and recovery AZs.
    Create production and test virtual networks only at the on-prem AZs. Xi Cloud Services create production and test virtual networks dynamically for you. However, Xi Cloud Services provides floating IP addresses (step 4), a feature that is not available for on-prem AZs. For more information about production and test virtual networks, see Nutanix Virtual Networks.
  6. Create a protection policy with replication schedules at the primary AZ.
    A protection policy can replicate recovery points to at most two other Nutanix clusters at the same or different AZs. To replicate the recovery points, add a replication schedule between the primary AZ and each recovery AZ.
    • To create a protection policy with an Asynchronous replication schedule, see:
      • Creating a Protection Policy with an Asynchronous Replication Schedule (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)
      • Creating a Protection Policy with Asynchronous Replication Schedule (Xi Leap)
    • To create a protection policy with a NearSync replication schedule, see:
      • Creating a Protection Policy with a NearSync Replication Schedule (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)
      • Creating a Protection Policy with NearSync Replication Schedule (Xi Leap)
      Note: To maintain the efficiency of minutely replication, protection policies allow you to add NearSync replication schedule between the primary AZ and only one recovery AZ.
    • To create a protection policy with the Synchronous replication schedule, see Creating a Protection Policy with the Synchronous Replication Schedule.
      Note: To maintain the efficiency of synchronous replication, protection policies allow you to add only one recovery AZ when you add Synchronous replication schedule. If you already have an Asynchronous or a NearSync replication schedule in the protection policy, you cannot add another recovery AZ to protect the guest VMs with Synchronous replication schedule.
    You can also create a protection policy at a recovery AZ. Protection policies you create or update at a recovery AZ synchronize back to the primary AZ. The reverse synchronization helps when you protect more guest VMs in the same protection policy at the recovery AZ.
  7. Create a recovery plan at the primary AZ.
    A recovery plan orchestrates the failover of the protected guest VMs (step 6) to a recovery AZ. For two recovery AZs, create two discrete recovery plans at the primary AZ—one for DR to each recovery AZ.
    • To create a recovery plan for DR to another Nutanix cluster at the same or different on-prem AZs, see Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
    • To create a recovery plan for DR to Xi Cloud Services, see Creating a Recovery Plan (Xi Leap).
    You can also create a recovery plan at a recovery AZ. The recovery plan you create or update at a recovery AZ synchronizes back to the primary AZ. The reverse synchronization helps in scenarios where you add more guest VMs to the same recovery plan at the recovery AZ.
  8. Validate or test the recovery plan you create in step 7.
    To test a recovery plan, perform a test failover to a recovery AZ.
    • To perform test failover to another Nutanix cluster at the same or different on-prem AZs, see Performing a Test Failover (Leap).
    • To perform test failover to Xi Cloud Services, see Failover and Failback Operations (Xi Leap).
  9. (only for Xi Leap configuration) After the failover to recovery AZ, enable external connectivity. To enable external connectivity, perform the following.
      1. After a planned failover, shut down the VLAN interface on the on-prem Top-of-Rack (TOR) switch.
      2. To access the Internet from Xi Cloud Services, create both inbound and outbound policy-based routing (PBR) policies on the virtual private cloud (VPC). For more information, see Policy Configuration in Xi Infrastructure Service Administration Guide .
  10. (only for Xi Leap configuration) Perform the following procedure to access the recovered guest VMs through the Internet.
      1. Assign a floating IP address to the guest VMs failed over to Xi Cloud Services. For more information, see Floating IP Address Management in Xi Infrastructure Service Administration Guide
      2. Create PBR policies and specify the internal or private IP address of the guest VMs. For more information, see Policy Configuration in Xi Infrastructure Service Administration Guide .
    Note: If a guest VM (that hosts a publicly accessible webAZ) fails over, update the authoritative DNS server (for example, Amazon Route 53, GoDaddy, DNSmadeEasy) with the primary failover record (on-prem public IP address) and the secondary failover record (Xi floating IP address). For example, if your authoritative DNS server is Amazon Route53, configure the primary and the secondary failover records. Amazon Route53 performs the health checks on the primary failover record and returns the secondary failover record when the primary is down.

On-Prem Hardware Resource Requirements

For DR solutions with Asynchronous, NearSync, and Synchronous replication schedules to succeed, the nodes in the on-prem AZs (AZs or AZs) must have certain resources. This section provides information about the node, disk and Foundation configurations necessary to support the RPO-based recovery point frequencies.

  • The conditions and configurations provided in this section apply to Local and Remote recovery points.

  • Any node configuration with two or more SSDs, each SSD being 1.2 TB or greater capacity, supports recovery point frequency for NearSync.

  • Any node configuration that supports recovery point frequency of six (6) hours also supports AHV-based Synchronous replication schedules because a protection policy with Synchronous replication schedule takes recovery points of the protected VMs every 6 hours. See Protection with Synchronous Replication Schedule (0 RPO) and DR for more details about Synchronous replication.

  • Both the primary cluster and replication target cluster must fulfill the same minimum resource requirements.

  • Ensure that any new node or disk additions made to the on-prem AZs (Availability Zones) meet the minimum requirements.

  • Features such as Deduplication and RF3 may require additional memory depending on the DR schedules and other workloads run on the cluster.

Note: In case of on-prem deployments, the default minimum recovery point frequency using the default Foundation configuration is 6 hours. To increase the recovery point frequency, you must also modify the Foundation configuration (SSD and CVM) accordingly. For example, an all-flash setup with a capacity between 48 TB to 92 TB has the default recovery point frequency is 6 hours. If you want to decrease the recovery point interval to one (1) hour, you must modify the default Foundation configuration to:
  • 14 vCPUs for CVM
  • 40 GB for CVM

The table lists the supported frequency for the recovery points across various hardware configurations.

Table 1. Recovery Point Frequency
Type of disk Capacity per node Minimum recovery point frequency Foundation Configuration - SSD and CVM requirements
Hybrid Total HDD tier capacity of 32 TB or lower. Total capacity (HDD + SSD) of 40 TB or lower.
  • NearSync
  • Async (Hourly)
No change required—Default Foundation configuration.
  • 2 x SSDs

  • Each SSD must be minimum 1.2 TB or more for NearSync.

Total HDD tier capacity between 32-64 TB. Total capacity (HDD + SSD) of 92 TB or lower.

Up to 64 TB HDD

Up to 32 TB SSD (4 x 7.68 TB SSDs)

  • NearSync
  • Async (Hourly)
Modify Foundation configurations to minimum:
  • 4 x SSDs
  • Each SSD must be minimum 1.2 TB or more for NearSync.
  • 14 vCPU for CVM
  • 40 GB for CVM

Total HDD tier capacity between 32-64 TB. Total capacity (HDD + SSD) of 92 TB or lower.

Up to 64 TB HDD

Up to 32 TB SSD

Async (Every 6 hours) No change required—Default Foundation configuration.

Total HDD tier capacity between 64-80 TB. Total capacity (HDD + SSD) of 96 TB or lower.

Async (Every 6 hours) No change required—Default Foundation configuration.

Total HDD tier capacity greater than 80 TB. Total capacity (HDD + SSD) of 136 TB or lower.

Async (Every 6 hours) Modify Foundation configurations to minimum:
  • 12 vCPU for CVM
  • 36 GB for CVM
All Flash Total capacity of 48 TB or lower
  • NearSync
  • Async (Hourly)
No change required—Default Foundation configuration.
Total capacity between 48-92 TB
  • NearSync
  • Async (Hourly)
Modify Foundation configurations to minimum:
  • 14 vCPU for CVM
  • 40 GB for CVM
Total capacity between 48-92 TB Async (Every 6 hours) No change required—Default Foundation configuration.
Total capacity greater than 92 TB Async (Every 6 hours) Modify Foundation configurations to minimum:
  • 12 vCPU for CVM
  • 36 GB for CVM

Native Encryption of Replication Traffic

You can enable or disable encryption of the replication traffic that is generated between the primary cluster and the replication (remote) cluster or AZ by replication schedules. This encryption feature does not include or consider encryption of the traffic flowing between Prism Element and Prism Central.
Note: This feature only supports the use of native keys and certificates and does not support custom, user-provided keys and certificates to encrypt the replication traffic.

For details about the ports and protocols used by encrypted replication traffic, see Ports and Protocols.

Enabling Encryption of Replication Traffic

Before you begin

For encryption of Leap-based DR replication traffic, ensure that Leap-based DR is set up and the two AZs (AZs) are paired. This requirement is not applicable to protection domain based DR.

About this task

For details about the ports and protocols used by encrypted replication traffic, see Ports and Protocols.

To enable encryption of replication traffic, perform the following steps on the primary and replication (remote) clusters.
Important: For encryption of Leap based DR replication traffic also, you must perform these steps of the clusters in primary and replication AZs. Also, ensure that the Prism Centrals of the two AZs are paired.

Procedure

  1. SSH to the cluster Controller VM.
  2. Change the folder to bin .
    nutanix@CVM:$ cd bin
    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ 
  3. Run the script with enable option.
    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ python onwire_encryption_tool.py --leap --enable <remote_cluster_vip>

    For example: If the IP address of the replication (remote) cluster is 10.xxx.xxx.xxx.

    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ python onwire_encryption_tool.py --leap --enable 10.xxx.xxx.xxx
    Important: Enter the password for the nutanix access for the remote cluster CVM when prompted.
    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ python onwire_encryption_tool.py --leap --enable 10.xxx.xxx.xxx
    Checking Source Cluster Compatibility
    Check Complete. Source is compatible
    Checking Remote cluster Compatibility
    nutanix@10.xxx.xxx.xxx's password:
    Check Complete. Remote cluster is compatible
    Importing root.crt from Remote Cluster: 10.xxx.xxx.xxx
    
    nutanix@10.xxx.xxx.xxx's password:
    Checking if Remote Cluster's root.crt file already exists
    nutanix@10.xxx.xxx.xxx's password:
    Encryption enabled Successfully. Please perform rolling restart of Cerebro and Stargate services for changes to take effect

What to do next

Ensure that the changes take effect by performing a rolling restart of Cerebro and Stargate services on the primary and replication clusters using the following command.
nutanix@CVM:$ allssh "source /etc/profile; genesis stop cerebro stargate && cluster start; sleep 180"

Verifying the Status of Encryption of Replication Traffic

You can check the enabled or disabled status of the encryption of replication traffic.

About this task

For details about the ports and protocols used by encrypted replication traffic, see Ports and Protocols.

To verify the status of encryption of replication traffic, perform the following step on the cluster.

Procedure

  1. Run the following command to identify the CVM that contains trusted_certs.crt certificate:
    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ allssh "ls -la /home/nutanix/tmp/ | grep -i trusted"
    A sample output is as follows:
    nutanix@CVM:~/$ allssh "ls -la /home/nutanix/tmp/ | grep -i trusted"
    ================== xx:xx:xx:2 =================
    ================== xx:xx:xx:3 =================
    ================== xx:xx:xx:4 =================
    -rw-------.  1 nutanix nutanix  1790 Dec xx 06:27 trusted_certs.crt.xx:xx:xx:xx
  2. SSH to the CVM identified (for exmple, xx.xx.xx.2) in the previous step.
  3. Run the script with verify option.
    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ python onwire_encryption_tool.py --leap --verify <remote_cluster_vip>

    For example: If the IP address of the replication (remote) cluster is 10.xxx.xxx.xxx.

    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ python onwire_encryption_tool.py --leap --verify 10.xxx.xxx.xxx
    Important: Enter the password for the nutanix access for the remote cluster CVM when prompted.
    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ python onwire_encryption_tool.py --leap --verify 10.xxx.xxx.xxx
    Checking Source Cluster Compatibility
    Check Complete. Source is compatible
    Checking Remote cluster Compatibility
    nutanix@10.xxx.xxx.xxx's password:
    Check Complete. Remote cluster is compatible
    Verifying Encryption: Checking if Remote Cluster's root.crt file already exists
    nutanix@10.xxx.xxx.xxx's password:
    Encryption Verification Successful. Encryption is already enabled for this remote

Disabling Encryption of Replication Traffic

You can disable encryption of replication traffic

About this task

To disable encryption of replication traffic, perform the following step on the cluster.

Procedure

  1. SSH to the cluster Controller VM.
  2. Change the folder to bin .
    nutanix@CVM:$ cd bin
    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ 
  3. Run the script with disable option.
    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ python onwire_encryption_tool.py --leap --disable <remote_cluster_vip>

    For example: If the IP address of the replication (remote) cluster is 10.xxx.xxx.xxx.

    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ python onwire_encryption_tool.py --leap --disable 10.xxx.xxx.xxx
    Important: Enter the password for the nutanix access for the remote cluster CVM when prompted.
    nutanix@CVM:~/bin$ python onwire_encryption_tool.py --leap --disable 10.xxx.xxx.xxx
    Checking Source Cluster Compatibility
    Stopping Cerebro on all nodes of the cluster
    
    Encryption disabled Successfully. Please perform rolling restart of Cerebro and Stargate services for changes to take effect.

What to do next

Ensure that the changes take effect by performing a rolling restart of Cerebro and Stargate services on the primary and replication clusters using the following command.
nutanix@CVM:$ allssh "source /etc/profile; genesis stop cerebro stargate && cluster start; sleep 180"

Protection and DR between On-Prem AZs (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

Leap protects your guest VMs and orchestrates their disaster recovery (DR) to other Nutanix clusters when events causing service disruption occur at the primary AZ. For protection of your guest VMs, protection policies with Asynchronous, NearSync, or Synchronous replication schedules generate and replicate recovery points to other on-prem AZs (AZs). Recovery plans orchestrate DR from the replicated recovery points to other Nutanix clusters at the same or different on-prem AZs.

Protection policies create a recovery point—and set its expiry time—in every iteration of the specified time period (RPO). For example, the policy creates a recovery point every 1 hour for an RPO schedule of 1 hour. The recovery point expires at its designated expiry time based on the retention policy—see step 3 in Creating a Protection Policy with an Asynchronous Replication Schedule (Nutanix Disaster Recovery). If there is a prolonged outage at an AZ, the Nutanix cluster retains the last recovery point to ensure you do not lose all the recovery points. For NearSync replication (lightweight snapshot), the Nutanix cluster retains the last full hourly snapshot. During the outage, the Nutanix cluster does not clean up the recovery points due to expiry. When the Nutanix cluster comes online, it cleans up the recovery points that are past expiry immediately.

For High Availability of a guest VM, Nutanix Disaster Recovery enables replication of its recovery points to one or more on-prem AZs. A protection policy can replicate recovery points to maximum two on-prem AZs. For replication, you must add a replication schedule between AZs. You can set up the on-prem AZs for protection and DR in the following arrangements.

Figure. The Primary and recovery Nutanix clusters at the different on-prem AZs
Click to enlarge The Primary and recovery Nutanix clusters at the different AZs

Figure. The Primary and recovery Nutanix clusters at the same on-prem AZ
Click to enlarge The Primary and recovery Nutanix clusters at the same on-prem AZ

The replication to multiple AZs enables DR to Nutanix clusters at all the AZs where the recovery points replicate or exist. To enable performing DR to a Nutanix cluster at the same or different AZ (recovery AZ), you must create a recovery plan. To enable performing DR to two different Nutanix clusters at the same or different recovery AZs, you must create two discrete recovery plans—one for each recovery AZ. In addition to performing DR to Nutanix clusters running the same hypervisor type, you can also perform cross-hypervisor disaster recovery (CHDR)—DR from AHV clusters to ESXi clusters, or from ESXi clusters to AHV clusters.

The protection policies and recovery plans you create or update synchronize continuously between the primary and recovery on-prem AZs. The reverse synchronization enables you to create or update entities (protection policies, recovery plans, and guest VMs) at either the primary or the recovery AZs.

The following section describes protection of your guest VMs and DR to a Nutanix cluster at the same or different on-prem AZs. The workflow is the same for protection and DR to a Nutanix cluster in supported public cloud platforms. For information about protection of your guest VMs and DR from Xi Cloud Services to an on-prem Nutanix cluster (Xi Leap), see Protection and DR between On-Prem AZ and Xi Cloud Service (Xi Leap).

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Requirements

The following are the general requirements of Nutanix Disaster Recovery . Along with the general requirements, there are specific requirements for protection with the following supported replication schedules.

  • For information about the on-prem node, disk and Foundation configurations required to support Asynchronous, NearSync, and Synchronous replication schedules, see On-Prem Hardware Resource Requirements.
  • For specific requirements of protection with Asynchronous replication schedule (1 hour or greater RPO), see Asynchronous Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • For specific requirements of protection with NearSync replication schedule (1–15 minutes RPO), see NearSync Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • For specific requirements of protection with Synchronous replication schedule (0 RPO), see Synchronous Replication Requirements.

License Requirements

The AOS license required depends on the features that you want to use. For information about the features that are available with an AOS license, see Software Options.

Hypervisor Requirements

The underlying hypervisors required differ in all the supported replication schedules. For more information about underlying hypervisor requirements for the supported replication schedules, see:

  • Asynchronous Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)
  • NearSync Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)
  • Synchronous Replication Requirements

Nutanix Software Requirements

  • Each on-prem AZ (AZ) must have a Leap enabled Prism Central instance. To enable Leap in Prism Central, see Enabling Nutanix Disaster Recovery for On-Prem AZ.
    Note: If you are using ESXi, register at least one vCenter Server to Prism Central. You can also register two vCenter Servers, each to a Prism Central at different AZs. If you register both the Prism Central to the single vCenter Server, ensure that each ESXi cluster is part of different datacenter object in vCenter.

  • The primary and recovery Prism Central and Prism Element on the Nutanix clusters must be running on the supported AOS versions. For more information about the required versions for the supported replication schedules, see:
    • Asynchronous Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)
    • NearSync Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)
    • Synchronous Replication Requirements
    Tip:

    Nutanix supports replications between the all the latest supported LTS and STS released AOS versions. To check the list of the latest supported AOS versions, see KB-5505. To determine if the AOS versions currently running on your clusters are EOL, see the EOL document .

    Upgrade the AOS version to the next available supported LTS/STS release. To determine if an upgrade path is supported, check the Upgrade Paths page before you upgrade the AOS.

    Note: If both clusters have different AOS versions that are EOL, upgrade the cluster with lower AOS version to match the cluster with higher AOS version and then perform the upgrade to the next supported LTS version.

    For example, the clusters are running AOS versions 5.5.x and 5.10.x respectively. Upgrade the cluster on 5.5.x to 5.10.x. After both the clusters are on 5.10.x, proceed to upgrade each cluster to 5.15.x (supported LTS). Once both clusters are on 5.15.x you can upgrade the clusters to 5.20.x or newer.

    Nutanix recommends that both the primary and the replication clusters or AZs run the same AOS version.

User Requirements

You must have one of the following roles in Prism Central.

  • User admin
  • Prism Central admin
  • Prism Self Service admin
  • Xi admin

To view the available roles or create a role, click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window and go to Administration > Roles in the left pane.

Firewall Port Requirements

To allow two-way replication between Nutanix clusters at the same or different AZs, you must enable certain ports in your external firewall. To know about the required ports, see Disaster Recovery - Leap in Port Reference.

Networking Requirements

Requirements for static IP address preservation after failover
You can preserve one IP address of a guest VM (with static IP address) for its failover (DR) to an IPAM network. After the failover, the other IP addresses of the guest VM have to be reconfigured manually. To preserve an IP address of a guest VM (with static IP address), ensure that:
Caution: By default, you cannot preserve statically assigned DNS IP addresses after failover (DR) of guest VMs. However, you can create custom in-guest scripts to preserve the statically assigned DNS IP addresses. For more information, see Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • Both the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters run AOS 5.11 or newer.
  • The protected guest VMs have Nutanix Guest Tools (NGT) version 1.5 or newer installed.

    For information about installing NGT, see Nutanix Guest Tools in Prism Web Console Guide .

  • The protected guest VMs have at least one empty CD-ROM slot.

    The empty CD-ROM is required for mounting NGT at the recovery AZ.

  • The protected guest VMs can reach the Controller VM from both the AZs.
  • The protected guest VMs have NetworkManager command-line tool (nmcli) version 0.9.10.0 or newer installed.
    Also, the NetworkManager must manage the networks on Linux VMs. To enable NetworkManager on a Linux VM, in the interface configuration file, set the value of the NM_CONTROLLED field to yes . After setting the field, restart the network service on the VM.
    Tip: In CentOS, the interface configuration file is /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth0 .
Requirements for static IP address mapping of guest VMs between source and target virtual networks
You can explicitly define IP addresses for guest VMs that have static IP addresses on the primary AZ. On recovery, such guest VMs retain the explicitly defined IP address. To map static IP addresses of guest VMs between source and target virtual networks, ensure that:
  • Both the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters run AOS 5.17 or newer.
  • The protected guest VMs have static IP addresses at the primary AZ.
  • The protected guest VMs have Nutanix Guest Tools (NGT) version 1.5 or newer installed.

    For information about installing NGT, see Nutanix Guest Tools in Prism Web Console Guide .

  • The protected guest VMs have at least one empty CD-ROM slot.

    The empty CD-ROM is required for mounting NGT at the recovery AZ.

  • The protected guest VMs can reach the Controller VM from both the AZs.
  • The recovery plan selected for failover has VM-level IP address mapping configured.
Virtual network design requirements
You can design the virtual subnets that you plan to use for DR to the recovery AZ so that they can accommodate the guest VMs running in the source virtual network.
  • Maintain a uniform network configuration for all the virtual LANs (VLANs) with the same VLAN ID and network range in all the Nutanix clusters at a AZ. All such VLANs must have the same subnet name, IP address range, and IP address prefix length ( (Gateway IP/Prefix Length) ).

    For example, if you have VLAN with id 0 and network 10.45.128.0/17, and three clusters PE1, PE2, and PE3 at the AZ AZ1, all the clusters must maintain the same name, IP address range, and IP address prefix length ( (Gateway IP/Prefix Length) ), for VLAN with id 0.

  • To use a virtual network as a recovery virtual network, ensure that the virtual network meets the following requirements.
    • The network prefix is the same as the network prefix of the source virtual network. For example, if the source network address is 192.0.2.0/24, the network prefix of the recovery virtual network must also be 24.
    • The gateway IP address is the same as the gateway IP address in the source network. For example, if the gateway IP address in the source virtual network 192.0.2.0/24 is 192.0.2.10, the last octet of the gateway IP address in the recovery virtual network must also be 10.
  • To use a single Nutanix cluster as a target for DR from multiple primary Nutanix clusters, ensure that the number of virtual networks on the recovery cluster is equal to the sum of the number of virtual networks on the individual primary Nutanix clusters. For example, if there are two primary Nutanix clusters, with one cluster having m networks and the other cluster having n networks, ensure that the recovery cluster has m + n networks. Such a design ensures that all recovered VMs attach to a network.

Additional Requirements

  • Both the primary and recovery Nutanix clusters must have an external IP address.
  • Both the primary and recovery Prism Centrals and Nutanix clusters must have a data services IP address.
  • The Nutanix cluster that hosts the Prism Central must meet the following requirements.
    • The Nutanix cluster must be registered to the Prism Central instance.
    • The Nutanix cluster must have an iSCSI data services IP address configured on it.
    • The Nutanix cluster must also have sufficient memory to support a hot add of memory to all Prism Central nodes when you enable Leap. A small Prism Central instance (4 vCPUs, 16 GB memory) requires a hot add of 4 GB, and a large Prism Central instance (8 vCPUs, 32 GB memory) requires a hot add of 8 GB. If you enable Nutanix Flow, each Prism Central instance requires an extra hot-add of 1 GB.
  • Each node in a scaled-out Prism Central instance must have a minimum of 4 vCPUs and 16 GB memory.

    For more information about the scaled-out deployments of a Prism Central, see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Terminology.

  • The protected guest VMs must have Nutanix VM mobility drivers installed.

    Nutanix VM mobility drivers are required for accessing the guest VMs after failover. Without Nutanix VM mobility drivers, the guest VMs become inaccessible after a failover.

  • Maintain a uniform network configuration for all the virtual LANs (VLANs) with the same VLAN ID and network range in all the clusters at an AZ (AZ). All such VLANs must have the same subnet name, IP address range, and IP address prefix length ( (Gateway IP/Prefix Length) ).

    For example, if you have VLAN with id 0 and network 10.45.128.0/17, and three clusters PE1, PE2, and PE3 at the AZ AZ1, all the clusters must maintain the same name, IP address range, and IP address prefix length ( (Gateway IP/Prefix Length) ), for VLAN with id 0.

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Limitations

Consider the following general limitations before configuring Nutanix Disaster Recovery . Along with the general limitations, there are specific protection limitations with the following supported replication schedules.

  • For specific limitations of protection with Asynchronous replication schedule (1 hour or greater RPO), see Asynchronous Replication Limitations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • For specific limitations of protection with NearSync replication schedule (1–15 minutes RPO), see NearSync Replication Limitations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • For specific limitations of protection with Synchronous replication schedule (0 RPO), see Synchronous Replication Limitations.

Virtual Machine Limitations

You cannot do or implement the following.

  • Deploy witness VMs.
  • Protect multiple guest VMs that use disk sharing (for example, multi-writer sharing, Microsoft Failover Clusters, Oracle RAC).

  • Protect VMware fault tolerance enabled guest VMs.

  • Recover vGPU console enabled guest VMs efficiently.

    When you perform DR of vGPU console-enabled guest VMs, the VMs recover with the default VGA console (without any alert) instead of vGPU console. The guest VMs fail to recover when you perform cross-hypervisor disaster recovery (CHDR). For more information about DR and backup behavior of guest VMs with vGPU, see vGPU Enabled Guest VMs.

  • Configure NICs for a guest VM across both the virtual private clouds (VPC).

    You can configure NICs for a guest VM associated with either production or test VPC.

Volume Groups Limitation

You cannot protect volume groups.

Network Segmentation Limitation

You cannot apply network segmentation for management traffic (any traffic not on the backplane network) in Leap.

You get an error when you try to enable network segmentation for management traffic on a Leap enabled Nutanix Cluster or enable Leap in a network segmentation enabled Nutanix cluster. For more information about network segmentation, see Securing Traffic Through Network Segmentation in the Security Guide .
Note: However, you can apply network segmentation for backplane traffic at the primary and recovery clusters. Nutanix does not recommend this because when you perform a planned failover of guest VMs having network segmentation for backplane enabled, the guest VMs fail to recover and the guest VMs at the primary AZ are removed.

Virtual Network Limitation

Although there is no limit to the number of VLANs that you can create, only the first 500 VLANs list in the drop-down of Network Settings while creating a recovery plan. For more information about VLANs in the recovery plan, see Nutanix Virtual Networks.

Nutanix to vSphere Cluster Mapping Limitation

Due to the way the Nutanix architecture distributes data, there is limited support for mapping a Nutanix cluster to multiple vSphere clusters. If a Nutanix cluster is split into multiple vSphere clusters, migrate and recovery operations fail.

Failover Limitation

After the failover, the recovered guest VMs do not retain their associated labels.
Tip: Assign categories to the guest VMs instead of labels because VM categories are retained after the failover.

vGPU Enabled Guest VMs

The following table list the behavior of guest VMs with vGPU to disaster recovery (DR) and backup deployments.

Table 1.
Primary cluster Recovery cluster DR or Backup Identical vGPU models Unidentical vGPU models or no vGPU
AHV AHV Nutanix Disaster Recovery Supported:
  • Recovery point creation
  • Replication
  • Restore
  • Migrate
  • VM start
  • Failover and Failback
Supported:
  • Recovery point creation
  • Replication
  • Restore
  • Migrate
Unsupported:
  • VM start
  • Failover and Failback
    Note: Only for Synchronous replication, protection of guest VMs fail.
Backup: HYCU Guest VMs with vGPU fail to recover. Guest VMs with vGPU fail to recover.
Backup: Veeam Guest VMs with vGPU fail to recover.
  • Guest VMs with vGPU recover but with older vGPU.
  • Guest VMs with vGPU recover but do not start.
Tip: The VMs start when you disable vGPU on the guest VM
ESXi ESXi Nutanix Disaster Recovery Guest VMs with vGPU cannot be protected. Guest VMs with vGPU cannot be protected.
Backup Guest VMs with vGPU cannot be protected. Guest VMs with vGPU cannot be protected.
AHV ESXi Nutanix Disaster Recovery vGPU is disabled after failover of Guest VMs with vGPU. vGPU is disabled after failover of Guest VMs with vGPU.
ESXi AHV Nutanix Disaster Recovery Guest VMs with vGPU cannot be protected. Guest VMs with vGPU cannot be protected.

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Configuration Maximums

For the maximum number of entities you can configure with different replication schedules and perform failover (disaster recovery), see Nutanix Configuration Maximums. The limits have been tested for Leap production deployments. Nutanix does not guarantee the system to be able to operate beyond these limits.

Tip: Upgrade your NCC version to 3.10.1 to get configuration alerts.

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Recommendations

Nutanix recommends the following best practices for configuring Nutanix Disaster Recovery .

General Recommendations

  • Create all entities (protection policies, recovery plans, and VM categories) at the primary AZ (AZ).
  • Upgrade Prism Central before upgrading Prism Element on the Nutanix clusters registered to it. For more information about upgrading Prism Central, see Upgrading Prism Central in the Acropolis Upgrade Guide .
  • Do not include the guest VMs protected with Asynchronous, NearSync, and Synchronous replication schedules in the same recovery plan. You can include guest VMs protected with Asynchronous or NearSync replication schedules in the same recovery plan. However, if you combine these guest VMs with the guest VMs protected by Synchronous replication schedules in a recovery plan, the recovery fails.
  • Disable Synchronous replication before unpairing the AZs.

    If you unpair the AZs while the guest VMs in the Nutanix clusters are still in synchronization, the Nutanix cluster becomes unstable. For more information about disabling Synchronous replication, see Synchronous Replication Management.

Recommendation for Migrating Protection Domains to Protection Policies

You can protect a guest VM either with the legacy DR solution (protection domain-based) or with Leap. To protect a legacy DR-protected guest VM with Leap, you must migrate the guest VM from the protection domain to a protection policy. During the migration, do not delete the guest VM snapshots in the protection domain. Nutanix recommends keeping the guest VM snapshots in the protection domain until the first recovery point for the guest VM is available on Prism Central. For more information, see Migrating Guest VMs from a Protection Domain to a Protection Policy.

Recommendation for DR to Nutanix Clusters at the Same On-Prem AZ

If the single Prism Central that you use for protection and DR to Nutanix clusters at the same AZ (AZ) becomes inactive, you cannot perform a failover when required. To avoid the single point of failure in such deployments, Nutanix recommends installing the single Prism Central at a different AZ (different fault domain).

Recommendation for Virtual Networks

  • Map the networks while creating a recovery plan in Prism Central.
  • Recovery plans do not support overlapping subnets in a network-mapping configuration. Do not create virtual networks that have the same name or overlapping IP address ranges.

Recommendation for Container Mapping

Create storage containers with the same name on both the primary and recovery Nutanix clusters.

Leap automatically maps the storage containers during the first replication (seeding) of a guest VM. If a storage container with the same name exists on both the primary and recovery Nutanix clusters, the recovery points replicate to the storage container with the same name only. For example, if your protected guest VMs are in the SelfServiceContainer on the primary Nutanix cluster, and the recovery Nutanix cluster also has SelfServiceContainer , the recovery points replicate to SelfServiceContainer only. If a storage container with the same name does not exist at the recovery AZ, the recovery points replicate to a random storage container at the recovery AZ. For more information about creating storage containers on the Nutanix clusters, see Creating a Storage Container in Prism Web Console Guide .

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Service-Level Agreements (SLAs)

Nutanix Disaster Recovery enables protection of your guest VMs and disaster recovery (DR) to one or more Nutanix clusters at the same or different on-prem AZs. A Nutanix cluster is essentially an AHV or an ESXi cluster running AOS. In addition to performing DR to Nutanix clusters running the same hypervisor type, you can also perform cross-hypervisor disaster recovery (CHDR)—DR from AHV clusters to ESXi clusters, or from ESXi clusters to AHV clusters.

Leap supports DR (and CHDR) to maximum two different Nutanix clusters at the same or different AZs (AZs). You can protect your guest VMs with the following replication schedules.

  • Asynchronous replication schedule (1 hour or greater RPO). For information about protection with Asynchronous replication schedule, see Protection with Asynchronous Replication Schedule and DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • NearSync replication schedule (1–15 minute RPO). For information about protection with NearSync replication schedule, see Protection with NearSync Replication Schedule and DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • Synchronous replication schedule (0 RPO). For information about protection with Synchronous replication schedule, see Protection with Synchronous Replication Schedule (0 RPO) and DR.

    To maintain the efficiency in protection and DR, Leap allows to protect a guest VM with Synchronous replication schedule to only one AHV cluster and at the different on-prem availability zone.

Nutanix Disaster Recovery Views

The disaster recovery (DR) views enable you to perform CRUD operations on the following types of Leap entities.

  • Configured entities (for example, AZs, protection policies, and recovery plans)
  • Created entities (for example, guest VMs, and recovery points)

This chapter describes the views of Prism Central (on-prem AZ).

AZs View

The AZs view under the hamburger icon > Administration lists all of your paired AZs.

The following figure is a sample view, and the tables describe the fields and the actions that you can perform in this view.

Figure. AZs View Click to enlarge AZs View

Table 1. AZs View Fields
Field Description
Name Name of the AZ.
Region Region to which the AZ belongs.
Type Type of AZ. AZs that are backed by on-prem Prism Central instances are shown to be of type physical. The AZ that you are logged in to is shown as a local AZ.
Connectivity Status Status of connectivity between the local AZ and the paired AZ.
Table 2. Workflows Available in the AZs View
Workflow Description
Connect to AZ (on-prem Prism Central only) Connect to an on-prem Prism Central or to a Xi Cloud Services for data replication.
Table 3. Actions Available in the Actions Menu
Action Description
Disconnect Disconnect the remote AZ. When you disconnect an availability zone, the pairing is removed.

Protection Summary View

The Protection Summary view under the hamburger icon > Data Protection shows detailed information about the Leap entities in an AZ (AZ) and helps you generate DR reports for the specified time. The information in the Protection Summary view enables you to monitor the health of your DR deployments (Leap) and the activities performed on Leap entities. Select a topology in the left-hand side pane and protection and recovery information of the selected topology shows up in DR widgets on the right-hand side pane. The following figures are a sample view, and the tables describe the fields and the actions that you can perform in the DR widgets.

Figure. Protection Summary: Protected Entities, Replication Tasks, and Recovery Readiness Click to enlarge Protection Summary View: Protected Entities, Replication Tasks, and Recovery Readiness

Figure. Protection Summary: Configuration Alerts Click to enlarge Protection Summary View: Configuration Alerts

Figure. Protection Summary: Reports and Recovery Events Click to enlarge Protection Summary View: Reports and Recovery Events

Table 1. Protected Entities
Field Description
Total Number of guest VMs protected. Clicking the number shows the guest VMs protected in protection policies.
RPO Not Met Number of guest VMs that are protected but do not meet the specified RPO. Clicking the number shows the guest VMs that do not meet the specified RPO.
Table 2. Replication Tasks
Field Description
Ongoing Number of ongoing replication tasks.
Stuck Number of replication tasks that are stuck. Clicking the number shows the stuck alerts generated in Alerts .
Failed Number of replication tasks that failed. Clicking the number shows the alerts generated in Alerts .
Table 3. Recovery Readiness
Field Description
Measured by Failover operations to check the readiness of the recovery plans. You can use Validate , Test Failover , or Planned Failover from the drop-down list to check recovery readiness.
Succeeded Number of recovery plans on which the selected failover operation ran successfully. Clicking the number shows the recovery plans on which the selected failover operation ran successfully.
Succeeded With Warnings Number of recovery plans on which the selected failover operation ran successfully but with warnings. Clicking the number shows the recovery plans on which the selected failover operation ran successfully with warnings.
Failed Number of recovery plans on which the selected failover operation failed to run successfully. Clicking the number shows the recovery plans on which the selected failover operation failed to run successfully.
Not Executed Number of recovery plans on which no failover operation ran. Clicking the number shows the recovery plans on which no failover operation ran.
Table 4. Entities with RPO Not Met
Field Description
Name Names of guest VMs that do not meet the specified RPO. You can use the filters on the guest VMs to investigate the reason for RPO not meeting.
Table 5. Configuration Alerts
Field Description
Alert Description Description of configuration alerts raised on protection policies and recovery plans.
Impacted Entity The entities impacted by the configuration alerts.
Table 6. Reports
Field Description
Report Name Name of the report.
Generated at Date and time when the report was generated.
Download Option to download the report as a PDF or a CSV document.

Recovery Events

This widget shows you a detailed view of the Recovery Readiness . You can view information about all the recovery plans that ran on the selected AZs in the last 3 months.

Protection Policies View

The Protection Policies view under the hamburger icon > Data Protection lists all of configured protection policies from all the paired availability zones.

The following figure is a sample view, and the tables describe the fields and the actions that you can perform in this view.

Figure. Protection Policies View Click to enlarge Protection Policies View

Table 1. Protection Policies View Fields
Field Description
Policy Name Name of the protection policy.
Schedules Number of schedules configured in the protection policy. If the protection policy has multiple schedules, a drop-down icon is displayed. Click the drop-down icon to see the primary location:primary Nutanix cluster , recovery location:recovery Nutanix cluster , and RPO of the schedules in the protection policy.
Alerts Number of alerts issued for the protection policy.
Table 2. Workflows Available in the Protection Policies View
Workflow Description
Create protection policy Create a protection policy.
Table 3. Actions Available in the Actions Menu
Action Description
Update Update the protection policy.
Clone Clone the protection policy.
Delete Delete the protection policy.

Recovery Plans View

The Recovery Plans view under the hamburger icon > Data Protection lists all of configured recovery plans from all the paired availability zones.

The following figure is a sample view, and the tables describe the fields and the actions that you can perform in this view.

Figure. Recovery Plans View Click to enlarge Recovery Plans View

Table 1. Recovery Plans View Fields
Field Description
Name Name of the recovery plan.
Primary Location Replication source AZ for the recovery plan.
Recovery Location Replication target AZ for the recovery plan.
Entities Sum of the following VMs:
  • Number of local, live VMs that are specified in the recovery plan.
  • Number of remote VMs that the recovery plan can recover at this AZ.
Last Validation Status Status of the most recent validation of the recovery plan.
Last Test Status Status of the most recent test performed on the recovery plan.
Last Failover Status Status of the most recent failover performed on the recovery plan.
Table 2. Workflows Available in the Recovery Plans View
Workflow Description
Create Recovery Plan Create a recovery plan.
Table 3. Actions Available in the Actions Menu
Action Description
Validate Validates the recovery plan to ensure that the VMs in the recovery plan have a valid configuration and can be recovered.
Test Tests the recovery plan.
Clean-up test VMs Cleans up the VMs failed over as a result of testing recovery plan.
Update Updates the recovery plan.
Failover Performs a failover.
Delete Deletes the recovery plan.

VM Recovery Points

The VM Recovery Points view under the hamburger icon > Data Protection lists all the recovery points of all the protected guest VMs (generated over time).

The following figure is a sample view, and the tables describe the fields and the actions that you can perform in this view.

Figure. VM Recovery Points Click to enlarge VM Recovery Points View

Table 1. VM Recovery Points View Fields
Field Description
Name Name of the recovery point.
Latest Recovery Point on Local AZ Replication source AZ for the recovery plan.
Oldest Recovery Point on Local AZ Replication target AZ for the recovery plan.
Total Recovery Points Number of recovery points generated for the guest VM.
Owner Owner account of the recovery point.
Table 2. Actions Available in the Actions Menu
Action Description
Clone (Previously Restore) Clones the guest VM from the selected recovery points. The operation creates a copy of guest VM in the same Nutanix cluster without overwriting the original guest VM (out-of-place restore). For more information, see Manual Recovery of Guest VMs.
Revert Reverts the guest VMs to the selected recovery points. The operation recreates the guest VM in the same Nutanix cluster by overwriting the original guest VM (in-place restore). For more information, see Manual Recovery of Guest VMs.
Replicate Manually replicates the selected recovery points to a different Nutanix cluster in the same or different AZs. For more information, see Replicating Recovery Points Manually.

Dashboard Widgets

The dashboard includes widgets that display the statuses of configured protection policies and recovery plans. If you have not configured these VMs, the widgets display a summary of the steps required to get started with Leap.

To view these widgets, click the Dashboard tab.

The following figure is a sample view of the dashboard widgets.

Figure. Dashboard Widgets for Leap Click to enlarge Dashboard Widgets

Enabling Nutanix Disaster Recovery for On-Prem AZ

To perform disaster recovery (DR) to Nutanix clusters at different on-prem available zones (AZs), enable Leap at both the primary and recovery AZs (Prism Central). Without enabling Leap, you can configure protection policies and recovery plans that synchronize to the paired AZs but you cannot perform failover and failback operations. To perform DR to different Nutanix clusters at the same AZ, enable Leap in the single Prism Central.

About this task

To enable Nutanix Disaster Recovery , perform the following procedure.

Note: You cannot disable Nutanix Disaster Recovery once you have enabled it.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the settings button (gear icon) at the top-right corner of the window.
  3. Click Enable Leap in the Setup section on the left pane.
    Figure. Enabling Leap
    Click to enlarge Enabling Leap

    The Leap dialog box run prechecks. If any precheck fails, resolve the issue that is causing the failure and click check again .
  4. Click Enable after all the prechecks pass.
    Leap is enabled after at least 10 seconds.

Pairing AZs (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

To replicate entities (protection policies, recovery plans, and recovery points) to different on-prem AZs (AZs) bidirectionally, pair the AZs with each other. To replicate entities to different Nutanix clusters at the same AZ bidirectionally, you need not pair the AZs because the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters are registered to the same AZ (Prism Central). Without pairing the AZs, you cannot perform DR to a different AZ.

About this task

To pair an on-prem AZ with another on-prem AZ, perform the following procedure at either of the on-prem AZs.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Administration > AZs in the left pane.
    Figure. Pairing AZ
    Click to enlarge Pairing AZ

  3. Click Connect to AZ .
    Specify the following information in the Connect to Availability Zone window.
    Figure. Connect to AZ
    Click to enlarge Connect to AZ

    1. AZ Type : Select Physical Location from the drop-down list.
      A physical location is an on-prem AZ (AZ). To pair the on-prem AZ with Xi Cloud Services, select XI from the drop-down list, and enter the credentials of your Xi Cloud Services account in step c and set d.
    2. IP Address for Remote PC : Enter the IP address of the recovery AZ Prism Central.
    3. Username : Enter the username of your recovery AZ Prism Central.
    4. Password : Enter the password of your recovery AZ Prism Central.
  4. Click Connect .
    Both the on-prem AZs are paired to each other.

Protection and Automated DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

Automated disaster recovery (DR) configurations use protection policies to protect your guest VMs, and recovery plans to orchestrate the recovery of those guest VMs to different Nutanix clusters at the same or different AZs (AZs). You can automate protection of your guest VMs with the following supported replication schedules in Nutanix Disaster Recovery .

  • Asynchronous replication schedule (1 hour or greater RPO). For information about protection with Asynchronous replication schedule, see Protection with Asynchronous Replication Schedule and DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • NearSync replication schedule (1–15 minute RPO). For information about protection with NearSync replication schedule, see Protection with NearSync Replication Schedule and DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  • Synchronous replication schedule (0 RPO). For information about protection with Synchronous replication schedule, see Protection with Synchronous Replication Schedule (0 RPO) and DR.

    To maintain the efficiency in protection and DR, Leap allows to protect a guest VM with Synchronous replication schedule to only one AHV cluster and at the different on-prem availability zone.

Protection with Asynchronous Replication Schedule and DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

Asynchronous replication schedules enable you to protect your guest VMs with an RPO of 1 hour or beyond. A protection policy with an Asynchronous replication schedule creates a recovery point in an hourly time interval, and replicates it to the recovery AZs (AZs) for High Availability. For guest VMs protected with Asynchronous replication schedule, you can perform disaster recovery (DR) to different Nutanix clusters at same or different AZs. In addition to performing DR to Nutanix clusters running the same hypervisor type, you can also perform cross-hypervisor disaster recovery (CHDR)—DR from AHV clusters to ESXi clusters, or from ESXi clusters to AHV clusters.

Note: Nutanix provides multiple DR solutions to protect your environment. See Nutanix Disaster Recovery Solutions for the detailed representation of the DR offerings of Nutanix.

Asynchronous Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

The following are the specific requirements for protecting your guest VMs with Asynchronous replication schedule. Ensure that you meet the following requirements in addition to the general requirements of Nutanix Disaster Recovery .

For information about the general requirements of Nutanix Disaster Recovery , see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Requirements.

For information about node, disk and Foundation configurations required to support Asynchronous replication schedules, see On-Prem Hardware Resource Requirements.

Hypervisor Requirements

AHV or ESXi

  • The AHV clusters must be running on AHV versions that come bundled with the supported version of AOS.
  • The ESXi clusters must be running on version ESXi 6.5 GA or newer.

Nutanix Software Requirements

Each on-prem AZ must have a Nutanix Disaster Recovery enabled Prism Central instance.

The primary and recovery Prism Central and Prism Element on the Nutanix clusters must be running the following versions of AOS.

  • AHV clusters
    • AOS 5.17 or newer for DR to different Nutanix clusters at the same AZ.
    • AOS 5.10 or newer for DR to Nutanix clusters at the different AZs.
  • ESXi clusters
    • AOS 5.17 or newer for DR to different Nutanix clusters at the same AZ.
    • AOS 5.11 or newer for DR to Nutanix clusters at the different AZs.

Cross Hypervisor Disaster Recovery (CHDR) Requirements

Guest VMs protected with Asynchronous replication schedule support cross-hypervisor disaster recovery. You can perform failover (DR) to recover guest VMs from AHV clusters to ESXi clusters or guest VMs from ESXi clusters to AHV clusters by considering the following requirements.

  • Both the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters must be running AOS 5.17 or newer for CHDR to Nutanix clusters at the same AZ.
  • Both the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters must be running AOS 5.11.2 or newer for CHDR to Nutanix clusters at different AZs.
  • Install and configure Nutanix Guest Tools (NGT) on all the guest VMs. For more information, see Enabling and Mounting Nutanix Guest Tools in Prism Web Console Guide .

    NGT configures the guest VMs with all the required drivers for VM portability. For more information about general NGT requirements, see Nutanix Guest Tools Requirements and Limitations in Prism Web Console Guide .

  • CHDR supports guest VMs with flat files only.
  • CHDR supports IDE/SCSI and SATA disks only.
  • For all the non-boot SCSI disks of Windows guest VMs, set the SAN policy to OnlineAll so that they come online automatically.
  • In vSphere 6.7, guest VMs are configured with UEFI secure boot by default. Upon CHDR to an AHV cluster, these guest VMs do not start if the host does not support the UEFI secure boot feature. For more information about supportability of UEFI secure boot on Nutanix clusters, see Compatibility Matrix.

  • For information about operating systems that support UEFI and Secure Boot, see UEFI and Secure Boot Support for CHDR.

  • Nutanix does not support vSphere inventory mapping (for example, VM folder and resource pools) when protecting workloads between VMware clusters.

  • Nutanix does not support vSphere snapshots or delta disk files.

    If you have delta disks attached to a guest VM and you proceed with failover, you get a validation warning and the guest VM does not recover. Contact Nutanix Support for assistance.

Table 1. Operating Systems Supported for CHDR (Asynchronous Replication)
Operating System Version Requirements and limitations
Windows
  • Windows 2008 R2 or newer versions
  • Windows 7 or newer versions
  • Only 64-bit operating systems are supported.
Linux
  • CentOS 6.5 and 7.0
  • RHEL 6.5 or newer and RHEL 7.0 or newer.
  • Oracle Linux 6.5 and 7.0
  • Ubuntu 14.04
  • SLES operating system is not supported.

Additional Requirement

The storage container name of the protected guest VMs must be the same on both the primary and recovery clusters. Therefore, a storage container must exist on the recovery cluster with the same name as the one on the primary cluster. For example, if the protected VMs are in the SelfServiceContainer storage container on the primary cluster, there must also be a SelfServiceContainer storage container on the recovery cluster.

Asynchronous Replication Limitations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

Consider the following specific limitations before protecting your guest VMs with Asynchronous replication schedule. These limitations are in addition to the general limitations of Nutanix Disaster Recovery .

For information about the general limitations of Leap, see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Limitations.

  • You cannot restore guest VMs with incompatible GPUs at the recovery Nutanix cluster.
  • You cannot protect guest VMs configured as part of a network function chain.
  • You cannot retain hypervisor-specific properties after cross hypervisor disaster recovery (CHDR).

    CHDR does not preserve hypervisor-specific properties (for example, multi-writer flags, independent persistent and non-persistent disks, changed block tracking (CBT), PVSCSI disk configurations).

Creating a Protection Policy with an Asynchronous Replication Schedule (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

To protect the guest VMs in an hourly replication schedule, configure an Asynchronous replication schedule while creating the protection policy. The policy takes recovery points of those guest VMs in the specified time intervals (hourly) and replicates them to the recovery AZs (AZs) for High Availability. To protect the guest VMs at the same or different recovery AZs, the protection policy allows you to configure Asynchronous replication schedules to at most two recovery AZs—a unique replication schedule to each recovery AZ. The policy synchronizes continuously to the recovery AZs in a bidirectional way.

Before you begin

See Asynchronous Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery) and Asynchronous Replication Limitations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery) before you start.

About this task

To create a protection policy with an Asynchronous replication schedule, do the following at the primary AZ. You can also create a protection policy at the recovery AZ. Protection policies you create or update at a recovery AZ synchronize back to the primary AZ.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Protection Policies in the left pane.
    Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Protection Policies
    Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Protection Policies

  3. Click Create Protection Policy .
    Specify the following information in the Create Protection Policy window.
    Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Select Primary Location
    Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Select Primary Location

    1. Policy name : Enter a name for the protection policy.
      Caution: The name can be of only alphanumeric, dot, dash, and underscore characters.
    2. In the Primary Location pane, specify the following information.
        1. Location : From the drop-down list, check an AZ that hosts the guests VMs to protect.

          The drop-down lists all the AZs paired with the local AZ. Local AZ represents the local AZ (Prism Central). For your primary AZ, you can check either the local AZ or a non-local AZ.

        2. Cluster : From the drop-down list, check the Nutanix cluster that hosts the guest VMs to protect.

          The drop-down lists all the Nutanix clusters registered to Prism Central representing the selected AZ. If you want to protect the guest VMs from multiple Nutanix clusters in the same protection policy, check the clusters that host those guest VMs. All Clusters protects the guest VMs of all Nutanix clusters registered to Prism Central.

        3. Click Save .

          Clicking Save activates the Recovery Location pane. After saving the primary AZ configuration, you can optionally add a local schedule (step iv) to retain the recovery points at the primary AZ.

        4. Click + Add Local Schedule if you want to retain recovery points locally in addition to retaining recovery points in a replication schedule (step d.iv). For example, you can create a local schedule to retain 15 minute recovery points locally and also an hourly replication schedule to retain recovery points and replicate them to a recovery AZ every 2 hours. The two schedules apply differently on the guest VMs.

          Specify the following information in the Add Schedule window.

          Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Add Local Schedule
          Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Add Local Schedule

          1. Take Snapshot Every : Specify the frequency in minutes , hours , days , or weeks at which you want the recovery points to be taken locally.
          2. Retention Type : Specify one of the following two types of retention policy.
            • Linear : Implements a simple retention scheme at the local AZ. If you set the retention number to n, the local AZ retains the n recent recovery points.

              When you enter the frequency in minutes , the system selects the Roll-up retention type by default because minutely recovery points do not support Linear retention types.

            • Roll-up : Rolls up the recovery points into a single recovery point at the local AZ.

              For more information about the roll-up recovery points, see step d.iii.

          3. Retention on Local AZ:PE_A3_AHV : Specify the retention number for the local AZ.
          4. If you want to take application-consistent recovery points, check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point .

            Irrespective of the local or replication schedules, the recovery points are of the specified type. If you check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point , the recovery points generated are application-consistent and if you do not check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point , the recovery points generated are crash-consistent. If the time in the local schedule and the replication schedule match, the single recovery point generated is application-consistent.

            Note: See Application-consistent Recovery Point Conditions and Limitations before you take application-consistent snapshot.
          5. Click Save Schedule .
    3. In the Recovery Location pane, specify the following information.
      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Select Recovery Location
      Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Select Recovery Location

        1. Location : From the drop-down list, select the AZ (AZ) where you want to replicate the recovery points.

          The drop-down lists all the AZs paired with the local AZ. Local AZ represents the local AZ (Prism Central). Select Local AZ if you want to configure DR to a different Nutanix cluster at the same AZ.

          If you do not select a AZ, local recovery points that are created by the protection policy do not replicate automatically. You can, however, replicate the recovery points manually and use recovery plans to recover the guest VMs. For more information, see Protection and Manual DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).

        2. Cluster : From the drop-down list, select the Nutanix cluster where you want to replicate the recovery points.

          The drop-down lists all the Nutanix clusters registered to Prism Central representing the selected AZ. You can select one cluster at the recovery AZ. If you want to replicate the recovery points to more clusters at the same or different AZs, add another recovery AZ with a replication schedule. For more information to add another recovery AZ with a replication schedule, see step e.

          Note: Selecting auto-select from the drop-down list replicates the recovery points to any available cluster at the recovery AZ. Select auto-select from the drop-down list only if all the clusters at the recovery AZ are up and running.
          Caution: If the primary Nutanix cluster contains an IBM POWER Systems server, you can replicate recovery points to an on-prem AZ only if that on-prem AZ contains an IBM Power Systems server.
        3. Click Save .

          Clicking Save activates the + Add Schedule button between the primary and the recovery AZ. After saving the recovery AZ configuration, you can optionally add a local schedule to retain the recovery points at the recovery AZ.

        4. Click + Add Local Schedule if you want to retain recovery points locally in addition to retaining recovery points in a replication schedule (step d.iv). For example, you can create a local schedule to retain one hourly recovery points locally to supplement the hourly replication schedule. The two schedules apply differently on the guest VMs after failover, when the recovery points replicate back to the primary AZ.

          Specify the following information in the Add Schedule window.

          Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Add Local Schedule
          Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Add Local Schedule

          1. Take Snapshot Every : Specify the frequency in minutes , hours , days , or weeks at which you want the recovery points to be taken locally.
          2. Retention Type : Specify one of the following two types of retention policy.
            • Linear : Implements a simple retention scheme at the local AZ. If you set the retention number to n, the local AZ retains the n recent recovery points.

              When you enter the frequency in minutes , the system selects the Roll-up retention type by default because minutely recovery points do not support Linear retention types.

            • Roll-up : Rolls up the recovery points into a single recovery point at the local AZ.

              For more information about the roll-up recovery points, see step d.iii.

          3. Retention on 10.xx.xx.xxx:PE_C1_AHV : Specify the retention number for the local AZ.
          4. If you want to take application-consistent recovery points, check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point .

            Irrespective of the local or replication schedules, the recovery points are of the specified type. If you check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point , the recovery points generated are application-consistent and if you do not check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point , the recovery points generated are crash-consistent. If the time in the local schedule and the replication schedule match, the single recovery point generated is application-consistent.

            Note: See Application-consistent Recovery Point Conditions and Limitations before you take application-consistent snapshot.
          5. Click Save Schedule .
    4. Click + Add Schedule to add a replication schedule between the primary and the recovery AZ.

      Specify the following information in the Add Schedule window. The window auto-populates the Primary Location and Recovery Location that you have selected in step b and step c.

      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Add Schedule (Asynchronous)
      Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Add Schedule (Asynchronous)

        1. Protection Type : Click Asynchronous .
        2. Take Snapshot Every : Specify the frequency in hours , days , or weeks at which you want the recovery points to be taken.

          The specified frequency is the RPO. For more information about RPO, see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Terminology.

        3. Retention Type : Specify one of the following two types of retention policy.
          • Linear : Implements a simple retention scheme at both the primary (local) and the recovery (remote) AZ. If you set the retention number for a given AZ to n, that AZ retains the n recent recovery points. For example, if the RPO is 1 hour, and the retention number for the local AZ is 48, the local AZ retains 48 hours (48 X 1 hour) of recovery points at any given time.
            Tip: Use linear retention policies for small RPO windows with shorter retention periods or in cases where you always want to recover to a specific RPO window.
          • Roll-up : Rolls up the recovery points as per the RPO and retention period into a single recovery point at a AZ. For example, if you set the RPO to 1 hour, and the retention time to 5 days, the 24 oldest hourly recovery points roll up into a single daily recovery point (one recovery point = 24 hourly recovery points) after every 24 hours. The system keeps one day (of rolled-up hourly recovery points) and 4 days of daily recovery points.
            Note:
            • If the retention period is n days, the system keeps 1 day of RPO (rolled-up hourly recovery points) and n-1 days of daily recovery points.
            • If the retention period is n weeks, the system keeps 1 day of RPO, 1 week of daily and n-1 weeks of weekly recovery points.
            • If the retention period is n months, the system keeps 1 day of RPO, 1 week of daily, 1 month of weekly, and n-1 months of monthly recovery points.
            • If the retention period is n years, the system keeps 1 day of RPO, 1 week of daily, 1 month of weekly, and n-1 months of monthly recovery points.
            Note: The recovery points that are used to create a rolled-up recovery point are discarded.
            Tip: Use roll-up retention policies for anything with a longer retention period. Roll-up policies are more flexible and automatically handle recovery point aging/pruning while still providing granular RPOs for the first day.
        4. To specify the retention number for the primary and recovery AZs, do the following.
          • Retention on Local AZ: PE_A3_AHV : Specify the retention number for the primary AZ.

            This field is unavailable if you do not specify a recovery location.

          • Retention on 10.xx.xx.xxx:PE_C1_AHV : Specify the retention number for the recovery AZ.

            If you select linear retention, the remote and local retention count represents the number of recovery points to retain at any given time. If you select roll-up retention, these numbers specify the retention period.

        5. If you want to enable reverse retention of the recovery points, check Reverse retention for VMs on recovery location .
          Note: Reverse retention for VMs on recovery location is available only when the retention numbers on the primary and recovery AZs are different.

          Reverse retention maintains the retention numbers of recovery points even after failover to a recovery AZ in the same or different AZs. For example, if you retain two recovery points at the primary AZ and three recovery points at the recovery AZ, and you enable reverse retention, a failover event does not change the initial retention numbers when the recovery points replicate back to the primary AZ. The recovery AZ still retains two recovery points while the primary AZ retains three recovery points. If you do not enable reverse retention, a failover event changes the initial retention numbers when the recovery points replicate back to the primary AZ. The recovery AZ retains three recovery points while the primary AZ retains two recovery points.

          Maintaining the same retention numbers at a recovery AZ is required if you want to retain a particular number of recovery points, irrespective of where the guest VM is after its failover.

        6. If you want to take application-consistent recovery points, check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point .

          Application-consistent recovery points ensure that application consistency is maintained in the replicated recovery points. For application-consistent recovery points, install NGT on the guest VMs running on AHV clusters. For guest VMs running on ESXi clusters, you can take application-consistent recovery points without installing NGT, but the recovery points are hypervisor-based, and leads to VM stuns (temporary unresponsive VMs) after failover to the recovery AZs.

          Note: See Application-consistent Recovery Point Conditions and Limitations before you take application-consistent snapshot.
          Caution: Application-consistent recovery points fail for EFI-boot enabled Windows 2019 VM running on ESXi when NGT is not installed. Nutanix recommends installing NGT on guest VMs running on ESXi also.
        7. Click Save Schedule .
    5. Click + Add Recovery Location at the top-right if you want to add an additional recovery AZ for the guest VMs in the protection policy.
      • To add an on-prem AZ for recovery, see Protection and DR between On-Prem AZs (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)
      • To add Xi Cloud Services for recovery, see Protection and DR between On-Prem AZ and Xi Cloud Service (Xi Leap).
      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Additional Recovery Location Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Additional Recovery Location

    6. Click + Add Schedule to add a replication schedule between the primary AZ and the additional recovery AZ you specified in step e.
      Perform step d again in the Add Schedule window to add the replication schedule. The window auto-populates the Primary Location and the additional Recovery Location that you have selected in step b and step c.

      By default, recovery point creation begins immediately after you create the protection policy. If you want to specify when recovery point creation must begin, click Immediately at the top-right corner, and then, in the Start Time dialog box, do the following.

        1. Click Start protection at specific point in time .
        2. Specify the time at which you want to start taking recovery points.
        3. Click Save .
    7. Click Next .
      Clicking Next shows a list of VM categories where you can optionally check one or more VM categories to protect in the protection policy. DR configurations using Leap allows you to protect a guest VM by using only one protection policy. Therefore, VM categories specified in another protection policy are not in the list. If you protect a guest VM in another protection policy by specifying the VM category of the guest VM (category-based inclusion), and if you protect the guest VM from the VMs page in this policy (individual inclusion), the individual inclusion supersedes the category-based inclusion. Effectively, only the protection policy that protected the individual guest VM protects the guest VM.

      For example, the guest VM VM_SherlockH is in the category Department:Admin , and you add this category to the protection policy named PP_AdminVMs . Now, if you add VM_SherlockH from the VMs page to another protection policy named PP_VMs_UK , VM_SherlockH is protected in PP_VMs_UK and unprotected from PP_AdminVMs .

    8. If you want to protect the guest VMs category wise, check the VM categories that you want to protect from the list and click Add .
      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Add VM Categories Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Add VM Categories

      Prism Central includes built-in VM categories for frequently encountered applications (for example, MS Exchange and Oracle). If the VM category or value you want is not available, first create the category with the required values, or update an existing category so that it has the values you require. Doing so ensures that the VM categories and values are available for selection. You can add VMs to the category either before or after you configure the protection policy. If the guest VMs have a common characteristic, such as belonging to a specific application or location, create a VM category and add the guest VMs into the category.

      If you do not want to protect the guest VMs category wise, proceed to the next step without checking VM categories. You can add the guest VMs individually to the protection policy later from the VMs page (see Adding Guest VMs Individually to a Protection Policy).

    9. Click Create .
      The protection policy with an Asynchronous replication schedule is created. To verify the protection policy, see the Protection Policies page. If you check VM categories in step h, the protection policy starts generating recovery points of the guest VMs in those VM categories. To see the generated recovery points, click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window and go to VM Recovery Points . Click the recovery points for its information. You can see the time estimated for the very first replication (seeding) to the recovery AZs.
      Figure. Recovery Points Overview Click to enlarge Recovery Points Overview

Application-consistent Recovery Point Conditions and Limitations

This topic describes the conditions and limitations for application-consistent recovery points that you can generate through a protection policy. For information about the operating systems that support the AOS version you have deployed, see the Compatibility Matrix.

  • Before taking an application-consistent recovery point, consider the workload type of your guest VM.

    Applications running in your guest VM must be able to quiesce I/O operations. For example, For example, you can quiesce I/O operations for database applications and similar workload types.

  • Before taking an application-consistent recovery point, install and enable Nutanix Guest Tools (NGT) on your guest VM.

    For installing and enabling NGT, see Nutanix Guest Tools in the Prism Web Console Guide .

    For guest VMs running on ESXi, consider these points.

  • Install and enable NGT on guest VMs running on ESXi also. Application-consistent recovery points fail for EFI boot-enabled Windows 2019 VMs running on ESXi without installing NGT.

  • (vSphere) If you do not enable NGT and then try to take an application-consistent recovery point, the system creates a Nutanix native recovery point with a single vSphere host-based recovery point. The system deletes the vSphere host-based recovery point. If you enable NGT and then try to take application-consistent recovery point, the system directly captures a Nutanix native recovery point.
  • Do not delete the .snapshot folder in the vCenter.

  • The following table lists the operating systems that support application-consistent recovery points with NGT installed.
Table 1. Supported Operating Systems (NGT Installed)
Operating system Version
Windows
  • Windows 2008 R2 through Windows 2019
Linux
  • CentOS 6.5 through 6.9 and 7.0 through 7.3
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6.5 through 6.9 and 7.0 through 7.3.
  • Oracle Linux 6.5 and 7.0
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) 11 SP1 through 11 SP4 and 12 SP1 through 12 SP3
  • Ubuntu 14.04

Application-consistent Recovery Points with Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS)

  • To take application-consistent recovery points on Windows guest VMs, enable Microsoft VSS services.

    When you configure a protection policy and select Take App-Consistent Recovery Point , the Nutanix cluster transparently invokes the VSS (also known as Shadow copy or volume snapshot service).

    Note: This option is available for ESXi and AHV only. However, you can use third-party backup products to invoke VSS for Hyper-V.
  • To take application-consistent recovery points on guest VMs that use VSS, systems invoke Nutanix native in-guest VmQuiesced Snapshot Service (VSS) agent. VSS framework takes application-consistent recovery points without causing VM stuns (temporary unresponsive VMs).
  • VSS framework enables third-party backup providers like Commvault and Rubrik to take application-consistent snapshots on Nutanix platform in a hypervisor-agnostic manner.

  • The default and only backup type for VSS snapshots is VSS_BT_COPY (copy backup).

    Third party Backup products can choose between VSS_BT_FULL (full backup )and VSS_BT_COPY (copy backup) backup types.

  • Guest VMs with delta, SATA, and IDE disks do not support Nutanix VSS recovery points.
  • Guest VMs with iSCSI attachments (LUNs) do not support Nutanix VSS recovery points.

    Nutanix VSS recovery points fail for such guest VMs.

  • Do not take Nutanix enabled application-consistent recovery points while using any third-party backup provider enabled VSS snapshots (for example, Veeam).

Pre-freeze and Post-thaw scripts

  • You can take application-consistent recovery points on NGT and Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) enabled guest VMs. However, some applications require more steps before or after the VSS operations to fully quiesce the guest VMs to an appropriate restore point or state in which the system can capture a recovery point. Such applications need pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts to run the necessary extra steps.
  • Any operation that the system must perform on a guest VM before replication or a recovery point capture is a pre-freeze operation. For example, if a guest VM hosts a database, you can enable hot backup of the database before replication using a pre-freeze script. Similarly, any operation that the system must perform on guest VM after replication or a recovery point capture is a post-thaw operation.
    Tip: Vendors such as CommVault provide pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts. You can also write your own pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts.
Script Requirements
  • For Windows VMs, you must administrator and have read, write, and execute permissions on the scripts.
  • For Linux VMs, you must have root ownership and root access with 700 permissions on the scripts.
  • For completion of any operation before or after replication or recovery point capture, you must have both the pre_freeze and post_thaw scripts for the operation.
  • Timeout for both the scripts is 60 seconds.
  • A script must return 0 to indicate a successful run. A non-zero return value implies that the script execution failed. The necessary log entries are available in the NGT logs.
    Tip: (AHV) For a non-zero return value from the pre-freeze script, the system captures a non application-consistent snapshot and raises an alert on the Prism web console. Similarly, for a non-zero return value from the post-thaw script, the system attempts to capture an application-consistent snapshot once again. If the attempt fails, the system captures a non application-consistent snapshot, and raises an alert on the Prism web console.
  • Irrespective of whether the pre-freeze script execution is successful, the corresponding post-thaw script runs.
Script Location
You can define Python or shell scripts or any executable or batch files at the following locations in Linux or Windows VMs. The scripts can contain commands and routines necessary to run specific operations on one or more applications.
  • In Windows VMs,
    • Batch script file path for pre_freeze scripts:
      C:\Program Files\Nutanix\Scripts\pre_freeze.bat
    • Batch script file path for post_thaw scripts:
      C:\Program Files\Nutanix\Scripts\post_thaw.bat
  • In Linux VMs,
    • Shell script file path for production failover:
      /usr/local/sbin/pre_freeze

      Replace pre_freeze with the script name (without extension).

    • Shell script file path for test failover:
      /usr/local/sbin/post_thaw

      Replace post_thaw with the script name (without extension).

      Note: The scripts must have root ownership and root access with 700 permissions.
Script Sample
Note: The following are only sample scripts and therefore must be modified to fit your deployment.
  • For Linux VMs
    #!/bin/sh
    #pre_freeze-script
    date >> '/scripts/pre_root.log'
    echo -e "\n attempting to run pre_freeze script for MySQL as root user\n" >> /scripts/pre_root.log
    if [ "$(id -u)" -eq "0" ]; then
    python '/scripts/quiesce.py' &
    echo -e "\n executing query flush tables with read lock to quiesce the database\n" >> /scripts/pre_freeze.log
    echo -e "\n Database is in quiesce mode now\n" >> /scripts/pre_freeze.log
    else
    date >> '/scripts/pre_root.log'
    echo -e "not root useri\n" >> '/scripts/pre_root.log'
    fi
    #!/bin/sh
    #post_thaw-script
    date >> '/scripts/post_root.log'
    echo -e "\n attempting to run post_thaw script for MySQL as root user\n" >> /scripts/post_root.log
    if [ "$(id -u)" -eq "0" ]; then
    python '/scripts/unquiesce.py'
    else
    date >> '/scripts/post_root.log'
    echo -e "not root useri\n" >> '/scripts/post_root.log'
    fi
  • For Windows VMs
    @echo off 
    echo Running pre_freeze script >C:\Progra~1\Nutanix\script\pre_freeze_log.txt
    @echo off 
    echo Running post_thaw script >C:\Progra~1\Nutanix\script\post_thaw_log.txt
Note: If any of these scripts prints excessive output to the console session, the script freezes. To avoid script freeze, perform the following.
  • Add @echo off to your scripts.
  • Redirect the script output to a log file.
If you receive a non-zero return code from the pre-freeze script, the system captures a non application-consistent recovery point and raises an alert on the Prism web console. If you receive a non-zero return code from the post-thaw script, the system attempts to capture an application-consistent snapshot once again. If that attempt fails, the system captures a non application-consistent snapshot, and raises an alert on the Prism web console.
Applications supporting application-consistent recovery points without scripts
Only the following applications support application-consistent recovery points without pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts.
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2008, 2012, 2016, and 2019
  • Microsoft Exchange 2010
  • Microsoft Exchange 2013
  • Microsoft Exchange 2016

  • Nutanix does not support application-consistent recovery points on Windows VMs that have mounted VHDX disks.
  • The system captures hypervisor-based recovery points only when you have VMware Tools running on the guest VM and the guest VM does not have any independent disks attached to it.

    If these requirements are not met, the system captures crash-consistent snapshots.

  • The following table provides detailed information on whether a recovery point is application-consistent or not depending on the operating systems and hypervisors running in your environment.
    Note:
    • Installed and active means that the guest VM has the following.
      • NGT installed.
      • VSS capability enabled.
      • Powered on.
      • Actively communicating with the CVM.
Table 2. Application-consistent Recovery Points
Server ESXi AHV
NGT status Result NGT status Result
Microsoft Windows Server edition Installed and active. Also pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts are present. Nutanix script-based VSS snapshots Installed and active. Also pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts are present. Nutanix script-based VSS snapshots
Installed and active Nutanix VSS-enabled snapshots. Installed and active Nutanix VSS-enabled snapshots
Not enabled Hypervisor-based application-consistent or crash-consistent snapshots. Not enabled Crash-consistent snapshots
Microsoft Windows Client edition Installed and active. Also pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts are present. Nutanix script-based VSS snapshots Installed and active. Also pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts are present. Nutanix script-based VSS snapshots
Not enabled Hypervisor-based snapshots or crash-consistent snapshots. Not enabled Crash-consistent snapshots
Linux VMs Installed and active. Also pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts are present. Nutanix script-based VSS snapshots Installed and active. Also pre-freeze and post-thaw scripts are present. Nutanix script-based VSS snapshots
Not enabled Hypervisor-based snapshots or crash-consistent snapshots. Not enabled Crash-consistent snapshots

Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

To orchestrate the failover (disaster recovery) of the protected guest VMs to the recovery AZ, create a recovery plan. After a failover, a recovery plan recovers the protected guest VMs to the recovery AZ. If you have configured two on-prem recovery AZs in a protection policy, create two recovery plans for DR—one for recovery to each recovery AZ. The recovery plan synchronizes continuously to the recovery AZ in a bidirectional way.

About this task

To create a recovery plan, do the following at the primary AZ. You can also create a recovery plan at a recovery AZ. The recovery plan you create or update at a recovery AZ synchronizes back to the primary AZ.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Recovery Plans in the left pane.
    Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: Recovery Plans
    Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: Protection Policies

  3. Click Create Recovery Plan .
    Specify the following information in the Create Recovery Plan window.
    Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: General Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: General

  4. In the General tab, enter Recovery Plan Name , Recovery Plan Description , Primary Location , Recovery Location , and click Next .
    From Primary Location and Recovery Location drop-down lists, you can select either the local AZ (AZ) or a non-local AZ to serve as your primary and recovery AZs respectively. Local AZ represents the local AZ (Prism Central). If you are configuring recovery plan to recover the protected guest VMs to another Nutanix cluster at the same AZ, select Local AZ from both Primary Location and Recovery Location drop-down lists.
  5. In the Power On Sequence tab, click + Add Entities to add the guest VMs to the start sequence.
    Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: Add Entities
    Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: Adding Entities

    1. In the Search Entities by , select VM Name from the drop-down list to specify guest VMs by name.
    2. In the Search Entities by , select Category from the drop-down list to specify guest VMs by category.
    3. To add the guest VMs or VM categories to the stage, select the VMs or VM categories from the list.
      Note: The VMs listed in the search result are in the active state of replication.
    4. Click Add .
      The selected guest VMs are added to the start sequence in a single stage by default. You can also create multiple stages to add guest VMs and define the order of their power-on sequence. For more information about stages, see Stage Management.
      Caution: Do not include the guest VMs protected with Asynchronous, NearSync, and Synchronous replication schedules in the same recovery plan. You can include guest VMs protected with Asynchronous or NearSync replication schedules in the same recovery plan. However, if you combine these guest VMs with the guest VMs protected by Synchronous replication schedules in a recovery plan, the recovery fails.
    5. To automate in-guest script execution on the guest VMs during recovery, select the individual guest VMs or VM categories in the stage and click Manage Scripts .
      Note: In-guest scripts allow you to automate various task executions upon recovery of the guest VMs. For example, in-guest scripts can help automate the tasks in the following scenarios.

      • After recovery, the guest VMs must use new DNS IP addresses and also connect to a new database server that is already running at the recovery AZ.

        Traditionally, to achieve this new configuration, you would manually log on to the recovered VM and modify the relevant files. With in-guest scripts, you have to write a script to automate the required steps and enable the script when you configure a recovery plan. The recovery plan execution automatically invokes the script and performs the reassigning of DNS IP address and reconnection to the database server at the recovery AZ.

      • If guest VMs are part of domain controller AZA.com at the primary AZ AZ1 , and after the guest VMs recover at the AZ AZ2 , you want to add the recovered guest VMs to the domain controller AZB.com .

        Traditionally, to reconfigure, you would manually log on to the VM, remove the VM from an existing domain controller, and then add the VM to a new domain controller. With in-guest scripts, you can automate the task of changing the domain controller.

      Note: In-guest script execution requires NGT version 1.9 or newer installed on the VM. The in-guest scripts run as a part of the recovery plan only if they have executable permissions for the following.
      • Administrator user (Windows)
      • Root user (Linux)
      Note: You can define a batch or shell script that executes automatically in the guest VMs after their disaster recovery. Place two scripts—one for production failover and the other for test failover—at the following locations in the guest VMs with the specified name.
      • In Windows VMs,
        • Batch script file path for production failover:
          C:\Program Files\Nutanix\scripts\production\vm_recovery.bat
        • Batch script file path for test failover:
          C:\Program Files\Nutanix\scripts\test\vm_recovery.bat
      • In Linux VMs,
        • Shell script file path for production failover:
          /usr/local/sbin/production_vm_recovery
        • Shell script file path for test failover:
          /usr/local/sbin/test_vm_recovery
      Note: When an in-guest script runs successfully, it returns code 0 . Any non-zero error code signifies that the execution of the in-guest script was unsuccessful.
      Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: In-guest Script Execution
      Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: In-guest Script execution

        1. To enable script execution, click Enable .

          A command prompt icon appears against the guest VMs or VM categories to indicate that in-guest script execution is enabled on those guest VMs or VM categories.

        2. To disable script execution, click Disable .
  6. In the Network Settings tab, map networks in the primary cluster to networks at the recovery cluster.
    Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings
    Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Mapping

    Network mapping enables replicating the network configurations of the primary Nutanix clusters to the recovery Nutanix clusters, and recover guest VMs into the same subnet at the recovery Nutanix cluster. For example, if a guest VM is in the vlan0 subnet at the primary Nutanix cluster, you can configure the network mapping to recover that guest VM in the same vlan0 subnet at the recovery Nutanix cluster. To specify the source (primary Nutanix cluster) and destination (recovery Nutanix cluster) network information for network mapping, do the following in Local AZ (Primary) and PC 10.xx.xx.xxx (Recovery) panes.
    1. Under Production in Virtual Network or Port Group drop-down list, select the production subnet that contains the protected guest VMs. (optional) If the virtual network is a non-IPAM network, specify the gateway IP address and prefix length in the Gateway IP/Prefix Length field.
    2. Under Test Failback in Virtual Network or Port Group drop-down list, select the test subnet that you want to use for testing failback from the recovery Nutanix cluster. (optional) If the virtual network is a non-IPAM network, specify the gateway IP address and prefix length in the Gateway IP/Prefix Length field.
    3. To add more network mappings, click Add Networks at the top-right corner of the page, and then repeat the steps 6.a-6.b.
      Note: The primary and recovery Nutanix clusters must have identical gateway IP addresses and prefix length. Therefore you cannot use a test failover network for two or more network mappings in the same recovery plan.
    4. Click Done .
    Note: For ESXi, you can configure network mapping for both standard and distributed (DVS) port groups. For more information about DVS, see VMware documentation.
    Caution: Leap does not support VMware NSX-T datacenters. For more information about NSX-T datacenters, see VMware documentation.
  7. To perform VM-level static IP address mapping between the primary and the recovery AZs, click Advanced Settings , click Custom IP Mapping , and then do the following.
    Note: The Custom IP Mapping shows all the guest VMs with static IP address configured, NGT installed, and VNIC in the source subnet specified in the network mapping.
    1. To locate the guest VM, type the name of the guest VM in the filter field.
      A guest VM that has multiple NICs lists in multiple rows, allowing you to specify an IP address mapping for each VNIC. All the fields auto-populate with the IP addresses generated based on the offset IP address-mapping scheme.
    2. In the Test Failback field for the local AZ, Production field for the remote (recovery) AZ, and Test Failover for the remote AZ, edit the IP addresses.
      Perform this step for all the IP addresses that you want to map.
      Caution: Do not edit the IP address assigned to the VNIC in the local AZ. If you do not want to map static IP addresses for a particular VNIC, you can proceed with the default entries.
    3. Click Save .
    4. If you want to edit one or more VM-level static IP address mappings, click Edit , and then change the IP address mapping.
  8. If VM-level static IP address mapping is configured between the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters and you want to use the default, offset-based IP address-mapping scheme, click Reset to Matching IP Offset .
  9. Click Done .
    The recovery plan is created. To verify the recovery plan, see the Recovery Plans page. You can modify the recovery plan to change the recovery location, add, or remove the protected guest VMs. For information about various operations that you can perform on a recovery plan, see Recovery Plan Management.
Stage Management

A stage defines the order in which the protected guest VMs start at the recovery cluster. You can create multiple stages to prioritize the start sequence of the guest VMs. In the Power On Sequence , the VMs in the preceding stage start before the VMs in the succeeding stages. On recovery, it is desirable to start some VMs before the others. For example, database VMs must start before the application VMs. Place all the database VMs in the stage before the stage containing the application VMs, in the Power On Sequence .

Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: Power On Sequence Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: Power On Sequence

To Add a Stage in the Power-On Sequence and Add Guest VMs to It, Do the Following.

  1. Click +Add New Stage .
  2. Click +Add Entities .
  3. To add guest VMs to the current stage in the power-on sequence, do the following.
    1. In the Search Entities by , select VM Name from the drop-down list to specify guest VMs by name.
    2. In the Search Entities by , select Category from the drop-down list to specify guest VMs by category.
    3. To add the guest VMs or VM categories to the stage, select the guest VMs or VM categories from the list.
      Note: The VMs listed in the search result are in the active state of replication.
  4. Click Add .

To Remove a Stage from the Power-On Sequence, Do the Following.

Click Actions > Remove Stage
Note: You see Actions in a stage only when none of the VMs in the stage are selected. When one or more VMs in the stage are selected, you see More Actions .

To Change the Position of a Stage in the Power-On Sequence, Do the Following.

  • To move a stage up or down in the power-on sequence, click or respectively, at the top-right corner of the stage.
  • To expand or collapse a stage, click + or - respectively, at the top-right corner of the stage.
  • To move VMs to a different stage, select the VMs, do the following.
    1. Click More Actions > Move .
    2. Select the target stage from the list.
    Note: You see Move in the More Actions only when you have defined two or more stages.

To Set a Delay Between the Power-On Sequence of Two Stages, Do the Following.

  1. Click +Add Delay .
  2. Enter the time in seconds.
  3. Click Add .

To Add Guest VMs to an Existing Stage, Do the Following.

  1. Click Actions > Add Entities .
    Note: You see Actions in a stage only when none of the VMs in the stage are selected. When one or more VMs in the stage are selected, you see More Actions .
  2. To add VMs to the current stage in the power-on sequence, do the following.
    1. In the Search Entities by , select VM Name from the drop-down list to specify guest VMs by name.
    2. In the Search Entities by , select Category from the drop-down list to specify guest VMs by category.
    3. To add the guest VMs or VM categories to the stage, select the guest VMs or VM categories from the list.
      Note: The VMs listed in the search result are in the active state of replication.
  3. Click Add .

To Remove Guest VMs from an Existing Stage, Do the Following.

  1. Select the VMs from the stage.
  2. Click More Actions > Remove .
    Note: You see More Actions in a stage only when one or more VMs in the stage are selected. When none of the VMs in the stage are selected, you see Actions .

To Move Guest VMs to a Different Stage, Do the Following.

  1. Select the VMs from the stage.
  2. Click More Actions > Move .
    Note: You see More Actions in a stage only when one or more VMs in the stage are selected. When none of the VMs in the stage are selected, you see Actions .
  3. Select the target stage from the list.

Failover and Failback Management

You perform failover of the protected guest VMs when unplanned failure events (for example, natural disasters) or planned events (for example, scheduled maintenance) happen at the primary AZ (AZ) or the primary cluster. The protected guest VMs migrate to the recovery AZ where you perform the failover operations. On recovery, the protected guest VMs start in the Nutanix cluster you specify in the recovery plan that orchestrates the failover.

The following are the types of failover operations.

Test failover
To ensure that the protected guest VMs failover efficiently to the recovery AZ, you perform a test failover. When you perform a test failover, the guest VMs recover in the virtual network designated for testing purposes at the recovery AZ. However, the guest VMs at the primary AZ are not affected. Test failovers rely on the presence of VM recovery points at the recovery AZs.
Planned failover
To ensure VM availability when you foresee service disruption at the primary AZ, you perform a planned failover to the recovery AZ. For a planned failover to succeed, the guest VMs must be available at the primary AZ. When you perform a planned failover, the recovery plan first creates a recovery point of the protected guest VM, replicates the recovery point to the recovery AZ, and then starts the guest VM at the recovery AZ. The recovery point used for migration is retained indefinitely. After a planned failover, the guest VMs no longer run at the primary AZ.
Unplanned failover
To ensure VM availability when a disaster causing service disruption occurs at the primary AZ, you perform an unplanned failover to the recovery AZ. In an unplanned failover, you can expect some data loss to occur. The maximum data loss possible is equal to the least RPO you specify in the protection policy, or the data that was generated after the last manual recovery point for a given guest VM. In an unplanned failover, by default, the protected guest VMs recover from the most recent recovery point. However, you can recover from an earlier recovery point by selecting a date and time of the recovery point.

At the recovery AZ, the guest VMs can recover using the recovery points replicated from the primary AZ only. The guest VMs cannot recover using the local recovery points. For example, if you perform an unplanned failover from the primary AZ AZ1 to the recovery AZ AZ2 , the guest VMs recover at AZ2 using the recovery points replicated from AZ1 to AZ2 .

You can perform a planned or an unplanned failover in different scenarios of network failure. For more information about network failure scenarios, see Nutanix Disaster Recovery and Xi Leap Failover Scenarios.

At the recovery AZ after a failover, the recovery plan creates only the VM category that was used to include the guest VM in the recovery plan. Manually create the remaining VM categories at the recovery AZ and associate the guest VMs with those categories.

The recovered guest VMs generate recovery points as per the replication schedule that protects it even after recovery. The recovery points replicate back to the primary AZ when the primary AZ starts functioning. The approach for reverse replication enables you to perform failover of the guest VMs from the recovery AZ back to the primary AZ (failback). The same recovery plan applies to both the failover and the failback operations. Only, for failover, you must perform the failover operations on the recovery plan at the recovery AZ while for failback, you must perform the failover operations on the recovery plan at the primary AZ. For example, if a guest VM fails over from AZ1 (Local) to AZ2 , the failback fails over the same VMs from AZ2 (Local) back to AZ1 .

Nutanix Disaster Recovery and Xi Leap Failover Scenarios

You have the flexibility to perform a real or simulated failover for the full and partial workloads (with or without networking). The term virtual network is used differently on on-prem clusters and Xi Cloud Services. In Xi Cloud Services, the term virtual network is used to describe the two built-in virtual networks—production and test. Virtual networks on the on-prem clusters are virtual subnets bound to a single VLAN. Manually create these virtual subnets, and create separate virtual subnets for production and test purposes. Create these virtual subnets before you configure recovery plans. When configuring a recovery plan, you map the virtual subnets at the primary AZ to the virtual subnets at the recovery AZ.

Figure. Failover in Network Mapping Click to enlarge Failover in Network Mapping

The following are the various scenarios that you can encounter in Leap configurations for disaster recovery (DR) to an on-prem AZ (AZ) or to Xi Cloud (Xi Leap). Each scenario is explained with the required network-mapping configuration for Xi Leap. However, the configuration remains the same irrespective of disaster recovery (DR) using Leap or Xi Leap. You can either create a recovery plan with the following network mappings (see Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)) or update an existing recovery plan with the following network mappings (see Updating a Recovery Plan).

Scenario 1: Leap Failover (Full Network Failover)

Full network failure is the most common scenario. In this case, it is desirable to bring up the whole primary AZ in the Xi Cloud. All the subnets must failover, and the WAN IP address must change from the on-prem IP address to the Xi WAN IP address. Floating IP addresses can be assigned to individual guest VMs, otherwise, everything use Xi network address translation (NAT) for external communication.

Perform the failover when the on-prem subnets are down and jump the host available on the public Internet through the floating IP address of Xi production network.

Figure. Full Network Failover Click to enlarge Full Network Failover

To set up the recovery plan that orchestrates the full network failover, perform the following.

  1. Open the Network Settings page to configure network mappings in a recovery plan.
  2. Select the Local AZ > Production > Virtual Network or Port Group .

    The selection auto-populates the Xi production and test failover subnets.

  3. Select the Outbound Internet Access switch to allow the Xi NAT to use for Internet access.
  4. Dynamically assign the floating IP addresses to the guest VMs you select in the recovery plan.

    Perform steps 1–4 for every subnet.

Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings

Scenario 2: Xi Network Failover (Partial Network Failover)

You want to failover one or more subnets from the primary AZ to Xi Cloud. The communications between the AZs happen through the VPN or using the external NAT or floating IP addresses. A use case of this type of scenario is that the primary AZ needs maintenance, but some of its subnets must see no downtime.

Perform partial failover when some subnets are active in the production networks at both on-prem and Xi Cloud, and jump the host available on the public Internet through the floating IP address of Xi production network.

On-prem guest VMs can connect to the guest VMs on the Xi Cloud Services.

Figure. Partial Network Failover Click to enlarge Partial Network Failover

To set up the recovery plan that orchestrates the partial network failover, perform the following.

  1. Open the Network Settings page to configure network mappings in a recovery plan.
  2. Select the Local AZ > Production > Virtual Network or Port Group .

    The selection auto-populates the Xi production and test failover subnets.

  3. Select the Outbound Internet Access switch to allow the Xi NAT to use for Internet access.
  4. Dynamically assign the floating IP addresses to the guest VMs you select in the recovery plan.

    Perform steps 1–4 for one or more subnets based on the maintenance plan.

Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings

Scenario 3: Xi Network Failover (Partial Subnet Network Failover)

You want to failover some guest VMs to Xi Cloud, while keeping the other guest VMs up and running at the on-prem cluster (primary AZ). A use case of this type of scenario is that the primary AZ needs maintenance, but some of its guest VMs must see no downtime.

This scenario requires changing IP addresses for the guest VMs running at Xi Cloud. Since you cannot have the subnet active on both the AZs, create a subnet to host the failed over guest VMs. Jump the host available on the public Internet through the floating IP address of Xi production network.

On-prem guest VMs can connect to the guest VMs on the Xi Cloud Services.

Figure. Partial Subnet Network Failover Click to enlarge Partial Subnet Network Failover

To set up the recovery plan that orchestrates the partial subnet network failover, perform the following.

  1. Open the Network Settings page to configure network mappings in a recovery plan.
  2. Select the Local AZ > Production > Virtual Network or Port Group .

    The selection auto-populates the Xi production and test failover subnets for a full subnet failover

    Note: In this case, you have created subnets on the Xi Cloud Services also. Choose that subnets to avoid full subnet failover (scenario 1).
  3. Select the Outbound Internet Access switch to allow the Xi NAT to use for Internet access.
  4. Dynamically assign the floating IP addresses to the guest VMs you select in the recovery plan.

    Perform steps 1–4 for one or more subnets based on the maintenance plan.

Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings

Scenario 4: Xi Network Failover (Test Failover and Failback)

You want to test all the preceding three scenarios by creating an isolated test network so that no routing or IP address conflict happens. Clone all the guest VMs from a local recovery point and bring up to test failover operations. Test failover test when all on-prem subnets are active and on-prem guest VMs can connect to the guest VMs at the Xi Cloud. Jump the host available on the public Internet through the floating IP address of Xi production network.

Figure. Test Failover & Failback Click to enlarge Test Failover & Failback

In this case, focus on the test failover section when creating the recovery plan. When you select a local AZ production subnet, it copies to the test network. You can go one step further and create a test subnet at the Xi Cloud.

Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings

After the guest VMs test failover to Xi Cloud, you can do a test failback to the primary AZ.
Note: Make a test subnet in advance for the failback to the on-prem cluster.
Figure. Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: Network Settings

Failover and Failback Operations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

You can perform test failover, planned failover, and unplanned failover of the guest VMs protected with Asynchronous replication schedule across different Nutanix clusters at the same or different on-prem AZs (AZs). The steps to perform test, planned, and unplanned failover are largely the same irrespective of the replication schedules that protect the guest VMs.

Performing a Test Failover (Leap)

After you create a recovery plan, you can run a test failover periodically to ensure that the failover occurs smoothly when required. To perform a test failover, do the following procedure at the recovery AZ. If you have two recovery AZs for DR, perform the test at the AZ where you want to recover the guest VMs.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Recovery Plans in the left pane.
  3. Select the recovery plan that you want to test.
  4. Click Test from the Actions drop-down menu.
    Figure. Test Failover (Drop-down) Click to enlarge Recovery Plan Configuration: General

    Test Recovery Plan window shows. The window auto-populates the Failover From and Failover To locations from the recovery plan you select in step 3. Failover To location is Local AZ by default and is unavailable for editing.
    Figure. Test Recovery Plan Click to enlarge Test Recovery Plan

  5. Click + Add target clusters if you want to failover to specific Nutanix clusters at the recovery AZ.
    If you do not add target clusters, the recovery plan recovers the guest VMs to any eligible cluster at the recovery AZ.
  6. Click Test .
    The Test Recovery Plan dialog box lists the errors and warnings, if any, and allows you to stop or continue the test operation. If there are no errors or you resolve the errors in step 7, the guest VMs failover to the recovery cluster.
  7. If you see errors, do the following.
    • To review errors or warnings, click View Details in the description.

      Resolve the error conditions and then restart the test procedure.

    • Select one of the following.
      • To stop the failover operation, click Abort .
      • To continue the failover operation despite the warnings, click Execute Anyway .
        Note: You cannot continue the failover operation when the validation fails with errors.
Cleaning up Test VMs (Leap)

After testing a recovery plan, you can remove the test VMs that the recovery plan creates in the recovery test network. To clean up the test VMs, do the following at the recovery AZ where the test failover created the test VMs.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Recovery Plans in the left pane.
  3. Select the recovery plans whose test VMs you want to remove.
  4. Click Clean Up Test VMs from the Actions drop-down menu.
    Clean Up Test VMs dialog box shows with the name of the recovery plan you selected in step 3.
  5. Click Clean .
    Figure. Clean Up Test VMs Click to enlarge Clean Up Test VMs

Performing a Planned Failover (Leap)

If there is a planned event (for example, scheduled maintenance of guest VMs) at the primary AZ (AZ), perform a planned failover to the recovery AZ. To perform a planned failover, do the following procedure at the recovery AZ. If you have two recovery AZs for DR, perform the failover at the AZ where you want to recover the guest VMs.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Recovery Plans in the left pane.
  3. Select a recovery plan for the failover operation.
  4. Click Failover from the Actions drop-down menu.
    Note: If you select more than one recovery plan in step 3, the Failover action is available only when the selected recovery plans have the same primary and recovery locations.
    Specify the following information in the Failover from Recovery Plan window. The window auto-populates the Failover From and Failover To locations from the recovery plan you select in step 3.
    Figure. Planned Failover
    Click to enlarge Planned Failover

    1. Failover Type : Click Planned Failover .
      Warning: Do not check Live Migrate VMs . Live migration works only for the planned failover of the guest VMs protected in Synchronous replication schedule. If you check Live Migrate VMs for the planned failover of the guest VMs protected in Asynchronous or NearSync replication schedule, the failover task fails.
    2. Click + Add target clusters if you want to failover to specific Nutanix clusters at the recovery AZ.
      Figure. Planned Failover: Select Recovery Cluster
      Click to enlarge Planned Failover: Select Recovery Cluster

      If you do not add target clusters, the recovery plan recovers the guest VMs to any eligible cluster at the recovery AZ.
  5. Click Failover .
    The Failover from Recovery Plan dialog box lists the errors and warnings, if any, and allows you to stop or continue the failover operation. If there are no errors or you resolve the errors in step 6, the guest VMs failover to the recovery Nutanix cluster.
  6. If you see errors, do the following.
    • To review errors or warnings, click View Details in the description.

      Resolve the error conditions and then restart the failover procedure.

    • Select one of the following.
      • To stop the failover operation, click Abort .
      • To continue the failover operation despite the warnings, click Execute Anyway .
        Note: You cannot continue the failover operation when the validation fails with errors.
    Note:

    The entities of AHV/ESXi clusters recover at a different path on the ESXi clusters if their files conflict with the existing files on the recovery ESXi cluster. For example, there is a file name conflict if a VM (VM1) migrates to a recovery cluster that already has a VM (VM1) in the same container.

    However, the entities recover at a different path with VmRecoveredAtAlternatePath alert only if the following conditions are met.

    • Prism Element running on both the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters are of version 5.17 or newer.
    • A path for the entity recovery is not defined while initiating the failover operation.
    • The protected entities do not have shared disk/s.

    If these conditions are not satisfied, the failover operation fails.

Performing an Unplanned Failover (Leap)

If there is an unplanned event (for example, a natural disaster or network failure) at the primary AZ (AZ), perform an unplanned failover to the recovery AZ. To perform an unplanned failover, do the following procedure at the recovery AZ. If you have two recovery AZs for DR, perform the failover at the AZ where you want to recover the guest VMs.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Recovery Plans in the left pane.
  3. Select a recovery plan for the failover operation.
  4. Click Failover from the Actions drop-down menu.
    Note: If you select more than one recovery plan in step 3, the Failover action is available only when the selected recovery plans have the same primary and recovery locations.
    Specify the following information in the Failover from Recovery Plan window. The window auto-populates the Failover From and Failover To locations from the recovery plan you select in step 3.
    Figure. Unplanned Failover
    Click to enlarge Unplanned Failover

    1. Failover Type : Click Unplanned Failover and do one of the following.
      • Click Recover from latest Recovery Point to use the latest recovery point for recovery.
      • Click Recover from specific point in time to use a recovery point taken at a specific point in time for recovery.
        Note: If you click Recover from specific point in time , select a Nutanix cluster that hosts the specific point in time recovery point (step 4.b). If you do not select a cluster, or select multiple clusters where the same recovery points exist, the guest VMs fail to recover efficiently because the system encounters more than one recovery point at the recovery AZ. For example, if a primary AZ AZ1 replicates the same recovery points to two clusters CLA and CLB at AZ AZ2 , select either the cluster CLA or the cluster CLB as the target cluster when you click to recover from a specific point in time. If you select both CLA and CLB , the guest VMs fail to recover.

    2. Click + Add target clusters if you want to failover to specific Nutanix clusters at the recovery AZ.
      Figure. Unplanned Failover: Select Recovery Cluster
      Click to enlarge Unplanned Failover: Select Recovery Cluster

      If you do not add target clusters, the recovery plan recovers the guest VMs to any eligible cluster at the recovery AZ.
    Note: If recovery plans contain VM categories, the VMs from those categories recover in the same category after an unplanned failover to the recovery AZ. Also, the recovery points keep generating at the recovery AZ for those recovered VMs. Since the VM count represents the number of recoverable VMs (calculated from recovery points), the recovered VMs and their newly created recovery points sum up. Their sum gives double the count of the originally recovered VMs on the recovery plans page. Now, if some VMs belonging to the given category at the primary or recovery AZ are deleted, the VM count at both AZs still stay the same until the recovery points of deleted VMs expire. For example, when two VMs have failed over, the recovery plans page at the recovery AZ shows four VMs (two replicated recovery points from source and two newly generated recovery points). The page shows four VMs even if the VMs are deleted from the primary or recovery AZ. The VM count synchronizes and becomes consistent in the subsequent RPO cycle conforming to the retention policy set in the protection policy (due to the expiration of recovery points).
  5. Click Failover .
    The Failover from Recovery Plan dialog box lists the errors and warnings, if any, and allows you to stop or continue the failover operation. If there are no errors or you resolve the errors in step 6, the guest VMs failover to the recovery Nutanix cluster.
  6. If you see errors, do the following.
    • To review errors or warnings, click View Details in the description.

      Resolve the error conditions and then restart the failover procedure.

    • Select one of the following.
      • To stop the failover operation, click Abort .
      • To continue the failover operation despite the warnings, click Execute Anyway .
        Note: You cannot continue the failover operation when the validation fails with errors.
    Note: To avoid conflicts when the primary AZ becomes active after the failover, shut down the guest VMs associated with this recovery plan. Manually power off the guest VMs on either primary or recovery AZ after the failover is complete. You can also block the guest VMs associated with this recovery plan through the firewall.

    Note:

    The entities of AHV/ESXi clusters recover at a different path on the ESXi clusters if their files conflict with the existing files on the recovery ESXi cluster. For example, there is a file name conflict if a VM (VM1) migrates to a recovery cluster that already has a VM (VM1) in the same container.

    However, the entities recover at a different path with VmRecoveredAtAlternatePath alert only if the following conditions are met.

    • Prism Element running on both the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters are of version 5.17 or newer.
    • A path for the entity recovery is not defined while initiating the failover operation.
    • The protected entities do not have shared disk/s.

    If these conditions are not satisfied, the failover operation fails.

Performing Failback (Leap)

A failback is failover of the guest VMs from the recovery AZ (AZ) back to the primary AZ. The same recovery plan applies to both the failover and the failback operations. Only, for failover, you must perform the failover operations on the recovery plan at the recovery AZ while for failback, you must perform the failover operations on the recovery plan at the primary AZ.

About this task

To perform a failback, do the following procedure at the primary AZ.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Recovery Plans in the left pane.
  3. Select a recovery plan for the failover operation.
  4. Click Failover from the Actions drop-down menu.
    Note: If you select more than one recovery plan in step 3, the Failover action is available only when the selected recovery plans have the same primary and recovery locations.
    Specify the following information in the Failover from Recovery Plan window. The window auto-populates the Failover From and Failover To locations from the recovery plan you select in step 3.
    Figure. Unplanned Failover
    Click to enlarge Unplanned Failover

    1. Failover Type : Click Unplanned Failover and do one of the following.
      Tip: You can also click Planned Failover to perform planned failover procedure for a failback.
      • Click Recover from latest Recovery Point to use the latest recovery point for recovery.
      • Click Recover from specific point in time to use a recovery point taken at a specific point in time for recovery.
    2. Click + Add target clusters if you want to failover to specific Nutanix clusters at the primary AZ.
      If you do not add target clusters, the recovery plan recovers the guest VMs to any eligible cluster at the primary AZ.
    Note: If recovery plans contain VM categories, the VMs from those categories recover in the same category after an unplanned failover to the recovery AZ. Also, the recovery points keep generating at the recovery AZ for those recovered VMs. Since the VM count represents the number of recoverable VMs (calculated from recovery points), the recovered VMs and their newly created recovery points sum up. Their sum gives double the count of the originally recovered VMs on the recovery plans page. Now, if some VMs belonging to the given category at the primary or recovery AZ are deleted, the VM count at both AZs still stay the same until the recovery points of deleted VMs expire. For example, when two VMs have failed over, the recovery plans page at the recovery AZ shows four VMs (two replicated recovery points from source and two newly generated recovery points). The page shows four VMs even if the VMs are deleted from the primary or recovery AZ. The VM count synchronizes and becomes consistent in the subsequent RPO cycle conforming to the retention policy set in the protection policy (due to the expiration of recovery points).
  5. Click Failover .
    The Failover from Recovery Plan dialog box lists the errors and warnings, if any, and allows you to stop or continue the failover operation. If there are no errors or you resolve the errors in step 6, the guest VMs failover to the recovery cluster.
  6. If you see errors, do the following.
    • To review errors or warnings, click View Details in the description.

      Resolve the error conditions and then restart the failover procedure.

    • Select one of the following.
      • To stop the failover operation, click Abort .
      • To continue the failover operation despite the warnings, click Execute Anyway .
        Note: You cannot continue the failover operation when the validation fails with errors.
    Note: To avoid conflicts when the primary AZ becomes active after the failover, shut down the guest VMs associated with this recovery plan. Manually power off the guest VMs on either primary or recovery AZ after the failover is complete. You can also block the guest VMs associated with this recovery plan through the firewall.

    Note:

    The entities of AHV/ESXi clusters recover at a different path on the ESXi clusters if their files conflict with the existing files on the recovery ESXi cluster. For example, there is a file name conflict if a VM (VM1) migrates to a recovery cluster that already has a VM (VM1) in the same container.

    However, the entities recover at a different path with VmRecoveredAtAlternatePath alert only if the following conditions are met.

    • Prism Element running on both the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters are of version 5.17 or newer.
    • A path for the entity recovery is not defined while initiating the failover operation.
    • The protected entities do not have shared disk/s.

    If these conditions are not satisfied, the failover operation fails.

Monitoring a Failover Operation (Leap)

After you trigger a failover operation, you can monitor failover-related tasks. To monitor a failover, perform the following procedure at the recovery AZ. If you have two recovery AZs for DR, perform the procedure at the AZ where you trigger the failover.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Recovery Plans in the left pane.
  3. Click the name of the recovery plan for which you triggered failover.
  4. Click the Tasks tab.
    The left pane displays the overall status. The table in the details pane lists all the running tasks and their individual statuses.
Leap Role-Based Access Control (RBAC)

You can configure RBAC policies allowing other Prism Central Active Directory users (non-administrator roles) to perform operations on recovery points and recovery plans. This section guides you to configure recovery plan RBAC policies. For information about RBAC policies for recovery points, see Controlling User Access (RBAC) in the Nutanix Security Guide . Perform the following steps to configure recovery plan RBAC policies.

Note: You can configure recovery plan RBAC policies for Leap deployments with single IAM v2 enabled Prism Central version 2022.4 or newer only.
  1. Create a custom role in Prism Central. See Creating a Custom Role.

    You must create a custom role because none of the in-built roles support recovery plan operations.

    Tip: To modify or delete a custom role, see Modifying a Custom Role. For more information about user role management, see Security and User Management in the Prism Central Guide .
    1. Assign permissions to the custom role. See Custom Role Permissions.
  2. Assign entities to the custom role. See Assigning a Role.
    The custom role is created. The Active Directory (AD) users or User Groups can now log on to Prism Central, view the assigned recovery plans, and perform recovery plan operations. For recovery plan operations, see Failover and Failback Operations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
    Note: After an entity failover, the Access Control Policies (ACP) where the access is based on ownership, project, or category is retained on the recovery AZ. The access to an entity is revoked in the following scenarios.
    • When you perform an unplanned failover of the entity.

      The entity access is revoked because the entity UUID changes after the unplanned failover.

    • When the entity access is cluster based.
Creating a Custom Role

About this task

To create a custom role, do the following:

Procedure

  1. Go to the roles dashboard (select Administration > Roles in the pull-down menu) and click the Create Role button.

    The Roles page appears. See Custom Role Permissions for a list of the permissions available for each custom role option.

  2. In the Roles page, do the following in the indicated fields:
    1. Role Name : Enter a name for the new role.
    2. Description (optional): Enter a description of the role.
      Note: All entity types are listed by default, but you can display just a subset by entering a string in the Filter Entities search field.
      Figure. Filter Entities Click to enlarge Filters the available entities

    3. Select an entity you want to add to this role and provide desired access permissions from the available options. The access permissions vary depending on the selected entity.

      For example, for the VM entity, click the radio button for the desired VM permissions:

      • No Access
      • View Access
      • Basic Access
      • Edit Access
      • Set Custom Permissions

      If you select Set Custom Permissions , click the Change link to display the Custom VM Permissions window, check all the permissions you want to enable, and then click the Save button. Optionally, check the Allow VM Creation box to allow this role to create VMs.

      Figure. Custom VM Permissions Window Click to enlarge displays the custom VM permissions window

    4. Recovery Plan : Click the radio button for the desired permissions for recovery plan operations ( No Access , View Access , Test Execution Access , Full Execution Access , or Set Custom Permissions ). If you specify custom permissions, click the Change link to display the Custom Recovery Plan Permissions window, check all the permissions you want to enable (see Custom Role Permissions), and then click the Save button.
      Figure. Custom Recovery Plan Permissions Window Click to enlarge displays the custom recovery plan permissions window

    5. Blueprint : Click the radio button for the desired blueprint permissions ( No Access , View Access , Basic Access , or Set Custom Permissions ). Check the Allow Blueprint Creation box to allow this role to create blueprints. If you specify custom permissions, click the Change link to display the Custom Blueprint Permissions window, check all the permissions you want to enable, and then click the Save button.
      Figure. Custom Blueprint Permissions Window Click to enlarge displays the custom blueprint permissions window

    6. Marketplace Item : Click the radio button for the desired marketplace permissions ( No Access , View marketplace and published blueprints , View marketplace and publish new blueprints , or Set custom permissions ). If you specify custom permissions, click the Change link to display the Custom Marketplace Item Permissions window, check all the permissions you want to enable, and then click the Save button.
      Note: The permission you enable for a Marketplace Item implicitly applies to a Catalog Item entity. For example, if you select No Access permission for the Marketplace Item entity while creating the custom role, the custom role will not have access to the Catalog Item entity as well.

      Figure. Custom Marketplace Permissions Window Click to enlarge displays the custom marketplace item permissions window

    7. Report : Click the radio button for the desired report permissions ( No Access , View Only , Edit Access , or Set Custom Permissions ). If you specify custom permissions, click the Change link to display the Custom Report Permissions window, check all the permissions you want to enable, and then click the Save button.
      Figure. Custom VM Permissions Window Click to enlarge displays the custom report permissions window

    8. Cluster : Click the radio button for the desired cluster permissions ( No Access or Cluster Access ).
    9. Subnet : Click the radio button for the desired subnet permissions ( No Access or Subnet Access ).
    10. Image : Click the radio button for the desired image permissions ( No Access , View Only , or Set Custom Permissions ). If you specify custom permissions, click the Change link to display the Custom Image Permissions window, check all the permissions you want to enable, and then click the Save button.
      Figure. Custom Image Permissions Window Click to enlarge displays the custom image permissions window

    11. OVA : Click the radio button for the desired OVA permissions ( No Access , View Only , Full Access or Set Custom Permissions ). If you specify custom permissions, click the Change link to display the Custom OVA Permissions window, check all the permissions you want to enable, and then click the Save button.
      Figure. Custom OVA Permissions Window Click to enlarge

    12. Object Store : Click the radio button for the desired object store permissions ( No Access , View Access , Full Access or Set Custom Permissions ). If you specify custom permissions, click the Change link to display the Custom Object Store Permissions window, check the Allow Object Store creation to allow creation of an object store, check all the permissions you want to enable, and then click the Save button.
      Note: For information about objects store permissions and workflows, see Role-Based Access Control Workflows for Objects in the Objects User Guide .
      Figure. Custom Object Store Permissions Click to enlarge

  3. Click Save to create the role. The page closes and the new role appears in the Roles view list.
Modifying a Custom Role

About this task

Perform the following procedure to modify or delete a custom role.

Procedure

  1. Go to the roles dashboard and select (check the box for) the desired role from the list.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • To modify the role, select Update Role from the Actions pull-down list. The Roles page for that role appears. Update the field values as desired and then click Save . See Creating a Custom Role for field descriptions.
    • To delete the role, select Delete from the Action pull-down list. A confirmation message is displayed. Click OK to delete and remove the role from the list.
Custom Role Permissions

A selection of permission options are available when creating a custom role.

The following table lists the permissions you can grant when creating or modifying a custom role. When you select an option for an entity, the permissions listed for that option are granted. If you select Set custom permissions , a complete list of available permissions for that entity appears. Select the desired permissions from that list.

Entity Option Permissions
App (application) No Access (none)
Basic Access Abort App Runlog, Access Console VM, Action Run App, Clone VM, Create AWS VM, Create Image, Create VM, Delete AWS VM, Delete VM, Download App Runlog, Update AWS VM, Update VM, View App, View AWS VM, View VM
Set Custom Permissions (select from list) Abort App Runlog, Access Console VM, Action Run App, Clone VM, Create App, Create AWS VM, Create Image, Create VM, Delete App, Delete AWS VM, Delete VM, Download App Runlog, Update App, Update AWS VM, Update VM, View App, View AWS VM, View VM
VM Recovery Point No Access (none)
View Only View VM Recovery Point
Full Access Delete VM Recovery Point, Restore VM Recovery Point, Snapshot VM, Update VM Recovery Point, View VM Recovery Point, Allow VM Recovery Point creation
Set Custom Permissions (Change) Abort App Runlog, Access Console VM, Action Run App, Clone VM, Create App, Create AWS VM, Create Image, Create VM, Delete App, Delete AWS VM, Delete VM, Download App Runlog, Update App, Update AWS VM, Update VM, View App, View AWS VM, View VM
Note:

You can assign permissions for the VM Recovery Point entity to users or user groups in the following two ways.

  • Manually assign permission for each VM where the recovery point is created.
  • Assign permission using Categories in the Role Assignment workflow.
Tip: When a recovery point is created, it is associated with the same category as the VM.
VM No Access (none)
View Access Access Console VM, View VM
Basic Access Access Console VM, Update VM Power State, View VM
Edit Access Access Console VM, Update VM, View Subnet, View VM
Full Access Access Console VM, Clone VM, Create VM, Delete VM, Export VM, Update VM, Update VM Boot Config, Update VM CPU, Update VM Categories, Update VM Description, Update VM Disk List, Update VM GPU List, Update VM Memory, Update VM NIC List, Update VM Owner, Update VM Power State, Update VM Project, View Cluster, View Subnet, View VM.
Set Custom Permissions (select from list) Access Console VM, Clone VM, Create VM, Delete VM, Update VM, Update VM Boot Config, Update VM CPU, Update VM Categories, Update VM Disk List, Update VM GPU List, Update VM Memory, Update VM NIC List, Update VM Owner, Update VM Power State, Update VM Project, View Cluster, View Subnet, View VM.

Granular permissions (applicable if IAM is enabled, see Granular Role-Based Access Control (RBAC)) for details.

Allow VM Power Off, Allow VM Power On, Allow VM Reboot, Allow VM Reset, Expand VM Disk Size, Mount VM CDROM, Unmount VM CDROM, Update VM Memory Overcommit, Update VM NGT Config, Update VM Power State Mechanism

Allow VM creation (additional option) (n/a)
Blueprint No Access (none)
View Access View Account, View AWS AZ, View AWS Elastic IP, View AWS Image, View AWS Key Pair, View AWS Machine Type, View AWS Region, View AWS Role, View AWS Security Group, View AWS Subnet, View AWS Volume Type, View AWS VPC, View Blueprint, View Cluster, View Image, View Project, View Subnet
Basic Access Access Console VM, Clone VM, Create App,Create Image, Create VM, Delete VM, Launch Blueprint, Update VM, View Account, View App, View AWS AZ, View AWS Elastic IP, View AWS Image, View AWS Key Pair, View AWS Machine Type, View AWS Region, View AWS Role, View AWS Security Group, View AWS Subnet, View AWS Volume Type, View AWS VPC, View Blueprint, View Cluster, View Image, View Project, View Subnet, View VM
Full Access Access Console VM, Clone Blueprint, Clone VM, Create App, Create Blueprint, Create Image, Create VM, Delete Blueprint, Delete VM, Download Blueprint, Export Blueprint, Import Blueprint, Launch Blueprint, Render Blueprint, Update Blueprint, Update VM, Upload Blueprint, View Account, View App, View AWS AZ, View AWS Elastic IP, View AWS Image, View AWS Key Pair, View AWS Machine Type, View AWS Region, View AWS Role, View AWS Security Group, View AWS Subnet, View AWS Volume Type, View AWS VPC, View Blueprint, View Cluster, View Image, View Project, View Subnet, View VM
Set Custom Permissions (select from list) Access Console VM, Clone VM, Create App, Create Blueprint, Create Image, Create VM, Delete Blueprint, Delete VM, Download Blueprint, Export Blueprint, Import Blueprint, Launch Blueprint, Render Blueprint, Update Blueprint, Update VM, Upload Blueprint, View Account, View App, View AWS AZ, View AWS Elastic IP, View AWS Image, View AWS Key Pair, View AWS Machine Type, View AWS Region, View AWS Role, View AWS Security Group, View AWS Subnet, View AWS Volume Type, View AWS VPC, View Blueprint, View Cluster, View Image, View Project, View Subnet, View VM
Marketplace Item No Access (none)
View marketplace and published blueprints View Marketplace Item
View marketplace and publish new blueprints Update Marketplace Item, View Marketplace Item
Full Access Config Marketplace Item, Create Marketplace Item, Delete Marketplace Item, Render Marketplace Item, Update Marketplace Item, View Marketplace Item
Set Custom Permissions (select from list) Config Marketplace Item, Create Marketplace Item, Delete Marketplace Item, Render Marketplace Item, Update Marketplace Item, View Marketplace Item
Report No Access (none)
View Only Notify Report Instance, View Common Report Config, View Report Config, View Report Instance
Full Access Create Common Report Config, Create Report Config, Create Report Instance, Delete Common Report Config, Delete Report Config, Delete Report Instance, Notify Report Instance, Run Report Config, Share Report Config, Share Report Instance, Update Common Report Config, Update Report Config, View Common Report Config, View Report Config, View Report Instance, View User, View User Group
Cluster No Access (none)
View Access View Cluster
Update Access Update Cluster
Full Access Update Cluster, View Cluster
VLAN Subnet No Access (none)
View Access View Subnet, View Virtual Switch
Edit Access Update Subnet, View Cluster, View Subnet, View Virtual Switch
Full Access Create Subnet, Delete Subnet, Update Subnet, View Cluster, View Subnet, View Virtual Switch
Image No Access (none)
View Only View Image
Set Custom Permissions (select from list) Copy Image Remote, Create Image, Delete Image, Migrate Image, Update Image, View Image
OVA No Access (none)
View Access View OVA
Full Access View OVA, Create OVA, Update OVA and Delete OVA
Set custom permissions Change View OVA, Create OVA, Update OVA and Delete OVA
Image Placement Policy No Access (none)
View Access View Image Placement Policy, View Name Category, View Value Category
Full Access Create Image Placement Policy, Delete Image Placement Policy, Update Image Placement Policy, View Image Placement Policy, View Name Category, View Value Category
Set Custom Permissions (select from list) Create Image Placement Policy, Delete Image Placement Policy, Update Image Placement Policy, View Image Placement Policy, View Name Category, View Value Category
File Server No Access (none)
Allow File Server creation
Note: The role has full access if you select Allow File Server creation .

The following table describe the permissions.

Note: By default, assigning certain permissions to a user role might implicitly assign more permissions to that role. However, the implicitly assigned permissions will not be displayed in the details page for that role. These permissions are displayed only if you manually assign them to that role.
Permission Description Assigned Implicilty By
Create App Allows to create an application.
Delete App Allows to delete an application.
View App Allows to view an application.
Action Run App Allows to run action on an application.
Download App Runlog Allows to download an application runlog.
Abort App Runlog Allows to abort an application runlog.
Access Console VM Allows to access the console of a virtual machine.
Create VM Allows to create a virtual machine.
View VM Allows to view a virtual machine.
Clone VM Allows to clone a virtual machine.
Delete VM Allows to delete a virtual machine.
Export VM Allows to export a virtual machine
Snapshot VM Allows to snapshot a virtual machine.
View VM Recovery Point Allows to view a vm_recovery_point.
Update VM Recovery Point Allows to update a vm_recovery_point.
Delete VM Recovery Point Allows to delete a vm_recovery_point.
Restore VM Recovery Point Allows to restore a vm_recovery_point.
Update VM Allows to update a virtual machine.
Update VM Boot Config Allows to update a virtual machine's boot configuration. Update VM
Update VM CPU Allows to update a virtual machine's CPU configuration. Update VM
Update VM Categories Allows to update a virtual machine's categories. Update VM
Update VM Description Allows to update a virtual machine's description. Update VM
Update VM GPU List Allows to update a virtual machine's GPUs. Update VM
Update VM NIC List Allows to update a virtual machine's NICs. Update VM
Update VM Owner Allows to update a virtual machine's owner. Update VM
Update VM Project Allows to update a virtual machine's project. Update VM
Update VM NGT Config Allows updates to a virtual machine's Nutanix Guest Tools configuration. Update VM
Update VM Power State Allows updates to a virtual machine's power state. Update VM
Update VM Disk List Allows to update a virtual machine's disks. Update VM
Update VM Memory Allows to update a virtual machine's memory configuration. Update VM
Update VM Power State Mechanism Allows updates to a virtual machine's power state mechanism. Update VM or Update VM Power State
Allow VM Power Off Allows power off and shutdown operations on a virtual machine. Update VM or Update VM Power State
Allow VM Power On Allows power on operation on a virtual machine. Update VM or Update VM Power State
Allow VM Reboot Allows reboot operation on a virtual machine. Update VM or Update VM Power State
Expand VM Disk Size Allows to expand a virtual machine's disk size. Update VM or Update VM Disk List
Mount VM CDROM Allows to mount an ISO to virtual machine's CDROM. Update VM or Update VM Disk List
Unmount VM CDROM Allows to unmount ISO from virtual machine's CDROM. Update VM or Update VM Disk List
Update VM Memory Overcommit Allows to update a virtual machine's memory overcommit configuration. Update VM or Update VM Memory
Allow VM Reset Allows reset (hard reboot) operation on a virtual machine. Update VM, Update VM Power State, or Allow VM Reboot
View Cluster Allows to view a cluster.
Update Cluster Allows to update a cluster.
Create Image Allows to create an image.
View Image Allows to view a image.
Copy Image Remote Allows to copy an image from local PC to remote PC.
Delete Image Allows to delete an image.
Migrate Image Allows to migrate an image from PE to PC.
Update Image Allows to update a image.
Create Image Placement Policy Allows to create an image placement policy.
View Image Placement Policy Allows to view an image placement policy.
Delete Image Placement Policy Allows to delete an image placement policy.
Update Image Placement Policy Allows to update an image placement policy.
Create AWS VM Allows to create an AWS virtual machine.
View AWS VM Allows to view an AWS virtual machine.
Update AWS VM Allows to update an AWS virtual machine.
Delete AWS VM Allows to delete an AWS virtual machine.
View AWS AZ Allows to view AWS Availability Zones.
View AWS Elastic IP Allows to view an AWS Elastic IP.
View AWS Image Allows to view an AWS image.
View AWS Key Pair Allows to view AWS keypairs.
View AWS Machine Type Allows to view AWS machine types.
View AWS Region Allows to view AWS regions.
View AWS Role Allows to view AWS roles.
View AWS Security Group Allows to view an AWS security group.
View AWS Subnet Allows to view an AWS subnet.
View AWS Volume Type Allows to view AWS volume types.
View AWS VPC Allows to view an AWS VPC.
Create Subnet Allows to create a subnet.
View Subnet Allows to view a subnet.
Update Subnet Allows to update a subnet.
Delete Subnet Allows to delete a subnet.
Create Blueprint Allows to create the blueprint of an application.
View Blueprint Allows to view the blueprint of an application.
Launch Blueprint Allows to launch the blueprint of an application.
Clone Blueprint Allows to clone the blueprint of an application.
Delete Blueprint Allows to delete the blueprint of an application.
Download Blueprint Allows to download the blueprint of an application.
Export Blueprint Allows to export the blueprint of an application.
Import Blueprint Allows to import the blueprint of an application.
Render Blueprint Allows to render the blueprint of an application.
Update Blueprint Allows to update the blueprint of an application.
Upload Blueprint Allows to upload the blueprint of an application.
Create OVA Allows to create an OVA.
View OVA Allows to view an OVA.
Update OVA Allows to update an OVA.
Delete OVA Allows to delete an OVA.
Create Marketplace Item Allows to create a marketplace item.
View Marketplace Item Allows to view a marketplace item.
Update Marketplace Item Allows to update a marketplace item.
Config Marketplace Item Allows to configure a marketplace item.
Render Marketplace Item Allows to render a marketplace item.
Delete Marketplace Item Allows to delete a marketplace item.
Create Report Config Allows to create a report_config.
View Report Config Allows to view a report_config.
Run Report Config Allows to run a report_config.
Share Report Config Allows to share a report_config.
Update Report Config Allows to update a report_config.
Delete Report Config Allows to delete a report_config.
Create Common Report Config Allows to create a common report_config.
View Common Report Config Allows to view a common report_config.
Update Common Report Config Allows to update a common report_config.
Delete Common Report Config Allows to delete a common report_config.
Create Report Instance Allows to create a report_instance.
View Report Instance Allows to view a report_instance.
Notify Report Instance Allows to notify a report_instance.
Notify Report Instance Allows to notify a report_instance.
Share Report Instance Allows to share a report_instance.
Delete Report Instance Allows to delete a report_instance.
View Account Allows to view an account.
View Project Allows to view a project.
View User Allows to view a user.
View User Group Allows to view a user group.
View Name Category Allows to view a category's name.
View Value Category Allows to view a category's value.
View Virtual Switch Allows to view a virtual switch.
Assigning a Role

About this task

In addition to configuring basic role maps (see Configuring Role Mapping), you can configure more precise role assignments (AHV only). To assign a role to selected users or groups that applies just to a specified set of entities, do the following:

Procedure

  1. Log on to Prism Central as "admin" user or any user with "super admin" access.
  2. Configure Active Directory settings.
    Note: You can skip this step if an active directory is already configured.
    Go to Prism Central Settings > Authentication , click + New Directory and add your preferred active directory.
  3. Click the hamburger menu and go to Administration > Roles .
    The page displays system defined and custom roles.
  4. Select the desired role in the roles dashboard, then click Actions > Manage Assignment .
  5. Click Add New to add Active Directory based users or user groups, or IDP users or user groups (or OUs) to this role.
    Figure. Role Assignment Click to enlarge role assignment view

    You are adding users or user groups and assigning entities to the new role in the next steps.

  6. In the Select Users or User Groups or OUs field, do the following:
    1. Select the configured AD or IDP from the drop-down.
      The drop-down displays a list of available types of user or user group such as Local User, AD based user or user groups, or SAML based user or user groups. Select Organizational Units or OU for AD or directories that use SAML based IDP for authentication.
      Figure. User, User Group or OU selection Click to enlarge Displaying the User, User Group or OU selection drop-down list.

    2. Search and add the users or groups in the Search User field.

      Typing few letters in the search field displays a list of users from which you can select, and you can add multiple user names in this field.

  7. In the Select Entities field, you can provide access to various entities. The list of available entities depends on the role selected in Step 4.

This table lists the available entities for each role:

Table 1. Available Entities for a Role
Role Entities
Consumer AHV VM, Image, Image Placement Policy, OVA, Subnets: VLAN
Developer AHV VM, Cluster, Image, Image Placement Policy, OVA, Subnets:VLAN
Operator AHV VM, Subnets:VLAN
Prism Admin Individual entity (one or more clusters), All Clusters
Prism Viewer Individual entity (one or more clusters), All Clusters
Custom role (User defined role) Individual entity, In Category (only AHV VMs)

This table shows the description of each entity:

Table 2. Description of Entities
Entity Description
AHV VM Allows you to manage VMs including create and edit permission
Image Allows you to access and manage image details
Image Placement Policy Allows you to access and manage image placement policy details
OVA Allows you to view and manage OVA details
Subnets: VLAN Allows you to view subnet details
Cluster Allows you to view and manage details of assigned clusters (AHV and ESXi clusters)
All Clusters Allows you to view and manage details of all clusters
VM Recovery Points Allows you to perform recovery operations with recovery points.
Recovery Plan (Single PC only)

Allows you to view, validate, and test recovery plans. Also allows you to clean up VMs created after recovery plan test.
Individual entity Allows you to view and manage individual entities such as AHV VM, Clusters, and Subnets:VLAN
  1. Repeat Step 5 and Step 6 for any combination of users/entities you want to define.
    Note: To allow users to create certain entities like a VM, you may also need to grant them access to related entities like clusters, networks, and images that the VM requires.
  2. Click Save .

Self-Service Restore

The self-service restore (also known as file-level restore) feature allows you to do a self-service data recovery from the Nutanix data protection recovery points with minimal intervention. You can perform self-service data recovery on both on-prem and Xi Cloud Services.

You must deploy NGT 2.0 or newer on guest VMs to enable self-service restore from Prism Central. For more information about enabling and mounting NGT, see Enabling and Mounting Nutanix Guest Tools in the Prism Web Console Guide . When you enable self-service restore and attach a disk by logging into the VM, you can recover files within the guest OS. If you fail to detach the disk from the VM, the disk is detached automatically from the VM after 24 hours.

Note:
  • You can enable self-service restore for a guest VM through a web interface or nCLI.
  • NGT performs the in-guest actions For more information about in-guest actions, see Nutanix Guest Tools in the Prism Web Console Guide .
  • Self-service restore supports only full snapshots generated from Asynchronous and NearSync replication schedules.
Self-Service Restore Requirements

The requirements of self-service restore of Windows and Linux VMs are as follows.

Self-Service Restore General Requirements

The following are the general requirements of self-service restore. Ensure that you meet the requirements before configuring self-service restore for guest VMs.

License Requirements

The AOS license required depends on the features that you want to use. For information about the AOS license required for self-service restore, see Software Options.

Hypervisor Requirements

AHV or ESXi

  • The AHV clusters must be running on AHV versions that come bundled with the supported version of AOS.
  • The ESXi clusters must be running on version ESXi 6.5 GA or newer.

Nutanix Software Requirements

Prism Centrals and their registered on-prem clusters (Prism Elements) must be running the following versions of AOS.

  • AOS 5.18 or newer with AHV.
  • AOS 5.18 or newer with ESXi.
  • AOS 5.19 or newer with Xi Cloud Services.
  • You have installed NGT 2.0 or newer. For more information about enabling and mounting NGT, see Enabling and Mounting Nutanix Guest Tools in the Prism Web Console Guide .
  • You have set disk.enableUUID=true in the .vmx file for the guest VMs running on ESXi.
  • You have configured Nutanix recovery points by adding guest VM to an Asynchronous protection policy.
  • You have attached an IDE/SCSI or SATA disk

Requirements for Guest VMs Running Windows OS

The following are the specific requirements of self-service restore for guest VMs running Windows OS. Ensure that you meet the requirements before proceeding.

  • You have enough logical drive letters to bring the disk online.
  • You have one of the following Windows OS as the guest OS.
    • Windows Server 2008 R2 or newer
    • Windows 7 through Windows 10

Requirements for Guest VMs Running Linux OS

The following are the specific requirements of self-service restore for guest VMs running Linux OS. Ensure that you meet the requirements before proceeding.

  • You have appropriate file systems to recover. Self-service restore supports only extended file systems (ext2, ext3, and ext4) and XFS file systems.
  • Logical Volume Manager (LVM) disks for which the volume group corresponds to only a single physical disk are mounted.
  • You have one of the following Linux OS as the guest OS.
    • CentOS 6.5 through 6.9 and 7.0 through 7.3
    • Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6.5 through 6.9 and 7.0 through 7.3
    • Oracle Linux 6.5 and 7.0
    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) 11 SP1 through 11 SP4 and 12 SP1 through 12 SP3
    • Ubuntu 14.04 for both AHV and ESXi
    • Ubuntu 16.10 for AHV only
Self-Service Restore Limitations

The limitations of self-service restore of Windows and Linux VMs are as follows.

Self-Service Restore General Limitations

The following are the general limitations of self-service restore.

  • Volume groups are not supported.
  • Snapshots created in AOS 4.5 or later releases are only supported.
  • PCI and delta disks are not supported.

Limitations of Guest VMs Running Windows OS

The following are the specific limitations of self-service restore for guest VMs running Windows OS.

  • File systems. Self-service restore does not support dynamic disks consisting of NTFS on simple volumes, spanned volumes, striped volumes, mirrored volumes, and RAID-5 volumes.
  • Only 64-bit OSes are supported.
  • Self-service restore does not support disks created as Microsoft Storage Space devices by using Microsoft Windows Server 2016 or newer.

Limitations of Guest VMs Running Linux OS

Whenever the snapshot disk has an inconsistent filesystem (as indicated by the fsck check), the disk is only attached and not mounted.

Enabling Self-Service Restore

After enabling NGT for a guest VM, you can enable the self-service restore for that guest VM. Also, you can enable the self-service restore for a guest VM while you are installing NGT on that guest VM.

Before you begin

For more information, see Enabling and Mounting Nutanix Guest Tools in the Prism Web Console Guide .

Ensure that you have installed and enabled NGT 2.0 or newer on the guest VM.

About this task

To enable self-service restore, perform the following procedure.

Procedure

  1. Log on to Prism Central.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Virtual Infrastructure > VMs in the left pane.
  3. Select the guest VM where you want to enable self-service restore.
  4. Click Manage NGT Applications from the Actions drop-down menu.
    Figure. Enabling Self-Service Restore Click to enlarge Enable Self -Service Restore

    Note: If the guest VM does not have NGT installed, click Install NGT from the Actions drop-down menu and select to enable Self Service Restore (SSR) .
  5. Click Enable below the Self Service Restore (SSR) panel.
  6. Click Confirm .
    Self-service restore feature is enabled on the guest VM. You can now restore the desired files from the guest VM.
Self-Service Restore for Windows VMs

You can restore the desired files from the guest VM through the web interface or by using the ngtcli utility of self-service restore.

Restoring a File through Web Interface (Windows VM)

After you install NGT in the Windows guest VM, you can restore the desired files from the VM through the web interface.

Before you begin

Ensure that you have configured your Windows VM to use NGT. For more information, see Installing NGT on Windows Machines in the Prism Web Console Guide .

About this task

To restore a file in Windows guest VMs by using web interface, perform the following.

Procedure

  1. Log in to the guest Windows VM by using administrator credentials.
  2. Click the Nutanix SSR icon on the desktop.
  3. Type the administrator credentials of the VM.
    Note: If you use:
    • NETBIOS domain name in username field (for example, domain\username ), then you will be able to log on to SSR only if your account is explicitly added to Administrators group on the server. If username is added to any domain group, which is then added to Administrators group, then logon will fail. Also, you must type NETBIOS domain name in capital letters (domain name has to be written in the same way as you see in the output of command net localgroup administrators ).
    • FQDN in username (for example domain.com\username ), then you will only be able to logon if username user is a member of the domain admins group.
    Note: The snapshots that are taken for that day are displayed. You also have an option to select the snapshots for the week, month, and the year. In addition, you can also define a custom range of dates and select the snapshot.
    Figure. Snapshot Selection Click to enlarge Select Snapshot

  4. Select the appropriate tab, This Week , This Month , This Year .
    You can also customize the selection by clicking Custom Range tab and selecting the date range in the From and To fields.
  5. Select the check box of the disks that you want to attach from the snapshot.
  6. Select Mount from the Disk Action drop-down menu.
    Figure. Mounting of Disks Click to enlarge disk mount

    The selected disk or disks are mounted and the relevant disk label is displayed.
  7. Go to the attached disk label drive in the VM and restore the desired files.
  8. To view the list of all the mounted snapshots, select Mounted Snapshots .
    This page displays the original snapshot drive letters and its corresponding current drive letters. The original drive letters get assigned to the disk at the time of the snapshot. Mounted drive letters are on which the snapshotted disk is mounted right now.
    Figure. List of Mounted Snapshots Click to enlarge mounted snapshots list

    1. To detach a disk, click the disk label and click Unmount .
      You can unmount all the disks at once by clicking Select All and then clicking Unmount .
  9. To detach a disk, select the check box of the disk that you want to unmount and then from the Disk Action drop-down menu, select Unmount .
Restoring a File through Ngtcli (Windows VM)

After you install NGT in the Windows guest VM, you can restore the desired files from the VM through the ngtcli utility.

Before you begin

Ensure that you have configured your Windows VM to use NGT. For more information, see Installing NGT on Windows Machines in the Prism Web Console Guide .

About this task

To restore a file in Windows guest VMs by using ngtcli, perform the following.

Procedure

  1. Log in to the guest Windows VM by using administrator credentials.
  2. Open the command prompt as an administrator.
  3. Go to the ngtcli directory in Program Files > Nutanix .
    > cd c:\Program Files\Nutanix\ngtcli
    Tip:
    > python ngtcli.py
    creates a terminal with auto-complete.
  4. Run the ngtcli.cmd command.
  5. List the snapshots and virtual disks that are present for the guest VM.
    ngtcli> ssr ls-snaps

    The snapshot ID, disk labels, logical drives, and create time of the snapshot is displayed. You can use this information and take a decision to restore the files from the relevant snapshot that has the data.

    List the snapshots with a specific number.
    ngtcli> ssr ls-snaps snapshot-count=count_value

    Replace count_value with the number that you want to list.

  6. Attach the disk from the snapshots.
    ngtcli> ssr attach-disk disk-label=disk_label snapshot-id=snap_id

    Replace disk_label with the name of the disk that you want to attach.

    Replace snap_id with the snapshot ID of the disk that you want to attach.

    For example, to attach a disk with snapshot ID 16353 and disk label scsi0:1, type the folllowing command.

    ngtcli> ssr attach-disk snapshot-id=16353 disk-label=scsi0:1
    After successfully running the command, a new disk with label gets attached to the guest VM.
    Note: If sufficient logical drive letters are not present, bringing disks online action fails. In this case, you should detach the current disk, create enough free slots by detaching other self-service disks and reattach the disk again.
  7. Go to the attached disk label drive and restore the desired files.
  8. Detach a disk.
    ngtcli> ssr detach-disk attached-disk-label=attached_disk_label

    Replace attached_disk_label with the name of the disk that you want to attach.

    Note: If the disk is not removed by the guest VM administrator, the disk is automatically removed after 24 hours.
  9. View all the attached disks to the VM.
    ngtcli> ssr list-attached-disks
Self-Service Restore for Linux VMs

The Linux guest VM user with sudo privileges can restore the desired files from the VM through the web interface or by using the ngtcli utility.

Restoring a File through Web Interface (Linux VM)

After you install NGT in the Linux guest VM, you can restore the desired files from the VM through the web interface.

Before you begin

About this task

To restore a file in Linux guest VMs by using web interface, perform the following.

Procedure

  1. Log in to the guest Linux VM as a user with sudo privileges.
  2. Click the Nutanix SSR icon on the desktop.
  3. Type the root or sudo user credentials of the VM.
    The snapshots that are taken for that day is displayed. You also have an option to select the snapshots for the week, month, and the year. In addition, you can also define a custom range of dates and select the snapshot. For example, in the following figure snapshot taken on this month is displayed.
    Figure. Snapshot Selection Click to enlarge Select Snapshot

  4. Select the appropriate tab, This Week , This Month , This Year .
    You can also customize the selection by clicking Custom Range tab and selecting the date range in the From and To fields.
  5. Select the check box of the disks that you want to attach from the snapshot.
  6. Select Mount from the Disk Action drop-down menu.

    The selected disk or disks are mounted and the relevant disk label is displayed.

    Figure. Mounting of Disks Click to enlarge

  7. Go to the attached disk label partitions in the VM and restore the desired files.
    Note: If the disk gets updated between the snapshots, the restore process may not work as expected. If this scenario occurs, you need to contact support to help with the restore process.
  8. To view the list of all the mounted snapshots, select Mounted Snapshots .
    This page displays the original snapshot drive letters and its corresponding current drive letters. The original drive letters gets assigned to the disk at the time of the snapshot. Mounted drive letters are on which the snapshotted disk is mounted right now.
    Figure. List of Mounted Snapshots Click to enlarge

    1. To detach a disk, click the disk label and click Unmount .
      You can unmount all the disks at once by clicking Select All and then clicking Unmount .
  9. To detach a disk, select the check box of the disk that you want to unmount and then from the Disk Action drop-down menu, select Unmount .
Restoring a File through Ngtcli (Linux VM)

After you install NGT in the Linux guest VM, you can restore the desired files from the VM through the ngtcli utility.

Before you begin

About this task

To restore a file in Linux guest VMs by using ngtcli, perform the following.

Procedure

  1. Log in to the guest Linux VM with sudo or root user credentials.
  2. Go to the ngtcli directory.
    > cd /usr/local/nutanix/ngt/ngtcli
  3. Run the python ngtcli.py command.
    Tip: This command creates a terminal with auto-complete.
  4. List the snapshots and virtual disks that are present for the guest VM.
    ngtcli> ssr ls-snaps

    The snapshot ID, disk labels, logical drives, and create time of the snapshot is displayed. You can use this information and take a decision to restore the files from the relevant snapshot that has the data.

    To list the snapshots with a specific number.
    ngtcli> ssr ls-snaps snapshot-count=count_value

    Replace count_value with the number that you want to list.

  5. Attach the disk from the snapshots.
    ngtcli> ssr attach-disk disk-label=disk_label snapshot-id=snap_id

    Replace disk_label with the name of the disk that you want to attach.

    Replace snap_id with the snapshot ID of the disk that you want to attach.

    For example, to attach a disk with snapshot ID 1343 and disk label scsi0:2,

    ngtcli> ssr attach-disk snapshot-id=1343 disk-label=scsi0:2

    After successfully running the command, a new disk with new label is attached to the guest VM.

  6. Go to the attached disk label partition and restore the desired files.
    Note: If the disk gets updated between the snapshots, the restore process may not work as expected. If this scenario occurs, you need to contact support to help with the restore process.
  7. Detach a disk.
    ngtcli> ssr detach-disk attached-disk-label=attached_disk_label

    Replace attached_disk_label with the name of the disk that you want to attach.

    For example, to remove the disk with disk label scsi0:3, type the following command.

    ngtcli> ssr detach-disk attached-disk-label=scsi0:3
    Note: If the disk is not removed by the guest VM administrator, the disk is automatically removed after 24 hours.
  8. View all the attached disks to the VM.
    ngtcli> ssr list-attached-disks

Protection with NearSync Replication Schedule and DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

NearSync replication enables you to protect your guest VMs with an RPO of as low as 1 minute. A protection policy with a NearSync replication creates a recovery point in a minutely time interval (between 1–15 minutes), and replicates it to the recovery AZs (AZs) for High Availability. For guest VMs protected with NearSync replication schedule, you can perform disaster recovery (DR) to a different Nutanix cluster at same or different AZs. In addition to DR to Nutanix clusters of the same hypervisor type, you can also perform cross-hypervisor disaster recovery (CHDR)—disaster recovery from AHV clusters to ESXi clusters, or from ESXi clusters to AHV clusters.

Note: Nutanix provides multiple DR solutions to secure your environment. See Nutanix Disaster Recovery Solutions for the detailed representation of the DR offerings of Nutanix.

The following are the advantages of protecting your guest VMs with a NearSync replication schedule.

  • Protection for the mission-critical applications. Securing your data with minimal data loss if there is a disaster, and providing you with more granular control during the recovery process.
  • No minimum network latency or distance requirements.
  • Low stun time for guest VMs with heavy I/O applications.

    Stun time is the time of application freeze when the recovery point is taken.

  • Allows resolution to a disaster event in minutes.

To implement the NearSync feature, Nutanix has introduced a technology called lightweight snapshots (LWSs). LWS recovery points are created at the metadata level only, and they continuously replicate incoming data generated by workloads running on the active clusters. LWS recovery points are stored in the LWS store, which is allocated on the SSD tier. When you configure a protection policy with a NearSync replication schedule, the system allocates the LWS store automatically.

Note: The maximum LWS store allocation for each node is 360 GB. For the hybrid systems, it is 7% of the SSD capacity on that node.

Transitioning in and out of NearSync

When you create a NearSync replication schedule, the schedule remains an hourly schedule until its transition into a minutely schedule is complete.

To transition into NearSync (minutely) replication schedule, initial seeding of the recovery AZ with the data is performed, the recovery points are taken on an hourly basis, and replicated to the recovery AZ. After the system determines that the recovery points containing the seeding data have replicated within a specified amount of time (default is an hour), the system automatically transitions the replication schedule into NearSync schedule depending on the bandwidth and the change rate. After you transition into the NearSync replication schedule, you can see the configured minutely recovery points in the web interface.

The following are the characteristics of the process.

  • Until you are transitioned into NearSync replication schedule, you can see only the hourly recovery points in Prism Central.
  • If for any reason, a guest VM transitions out of NearSync replication schedule, the system raises alerts in the Alerts dashboard, and the minutely replication schedule transitions out to the hourly replication schedule. The system continuously tries to get into the minutely replication schedule that you have configured. If the transition is successful, the replication schedule automatically transitions back into NearSync, and alerts specific to this condition are raised in the Alerts dashboard.

To transition out of the NearSync replication schedule, you can do one of the following.

  • Delete the NearSync replication schedule that you have configured.
  • Update the NearSync replication schedule to use an hourly RPO.
  • Unprotect the guest VMs.
    Note: There is no transitioning out of the NearSync replication schedule on the addition or deletion of a guest VM.

Repeated transitioning in and out of NearSync replication schedule can occur because of the following reasons.

  • LWS store usage is high.
  • The change rate of data is high for the available bandwidth between the primary and the recovery AZs.
  • Internal processing of LWS recovery points is taking more time because the system is overloaded.

Retention Policy

Depending on the RPO (1–15 minutes), the system retains the recovery points for a specific time period. For a NearSync replication schedule, you can configure the retention policy for days, weeks, or months on both the primary and recovery AZs instead of defining the number of recovery points you want to retain. For example, if you desire an RPO of 1 minute and want to retain the recovery points for 5 days, the retention policy works in the following way.

  • For every 1 minute, a recovery point is created and retained for a maximum of 15 minutes.
    Note: The recent 15 recovery points are only visible in Prism Central and are available for the recovery operation.
  • For every hour, a recovery point is created and retained for 6 hours.
  • One daily recovery point is created and retained for 5 days.

You can also define recovery point retention in weeks or months. For example, if you configure a 3-month schedule, the retention policy works in the following way.

  • For every 1 minute, a recovery point is created and retained for 15 minutes.
  • For every hour, a recovery point is created and retained for 6 hours.
  • One daily recovery point is created and retained for 7 days.
  • One weekly recovery point is created and retained for 4 weeks.
  • One monthly recovery point is created and retained for 3 months.
Note:
  • You can define different retention policies on the primary and recovery AZs.
  • The system retains subhourly and hourly recovery points for 15 minutes and 6 hours respectively. Maximum retention time for days, weeks, and months is 7 days, 4 weeks, and 12 months respectively.
  • If you change the replication schedule from an hourly schedule to a minutely schedule (Asynchronous to NearSync), the first recovery point is not created according to the new schedule. The recovery points are created according to the start time of the old hourly schedule (Asynchronous). If you want to get the maximum retention for the first recovery point after modifying the schedule, update the start time accordingly for NearSync.

NearSync Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

The following are the specific requirements for protecting your guest VMs with NearSync replication schedule. Ensure that you meet the following requirements in addition to the general requirements of Nutanix Disaster Recovery .

For more information about the general requirements of Nutanix Disaster Recovery , see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Requirements.

For information about node, disk and Foundation configurations required to support NearSync replication schedules, see On-Prem Hardware Resource Requirements.

Hypervisor Requirements

AHV or ESXi

  • The AHV clusters must be running on version 20190916.189 or newer.
  • The ESXi clusters must be running on version ESXi 6.5 GA or newer.

Nutanix Software Requirements

Each on-prem AZ must have a Leap enabled Prism Central instance.

The primary and recovery Prism Centrals and their registered Nutanix clusters must be running the following versions of AOS.

  • AOS 5.17.1 or newer for DR to different Nutanix clusters at the same AZ.
  • AOS 5.17 or newer for DR to Nutanix clusters at the different AZs.

Cross Hypervisor Disaster Recovery (CHDR) Requirements

Guest VMs protected with NearSync replication schedule support cross-hypervisor disaster recovery. You can perform failover (DR) to recover guest VMs from AHV clusters to ESXi clusters or guest VMs from ESXi clusters to AHV clusters by considering the following requirements.

  • Both the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters must be running AOS 5.18 or newer.
  • Install and configure Nutanix Guest Tools (NGT) on all the guest VMs. For more information, see Enabling and Mounting Nutanix Guest Tools in Prism Web Console Guide .

    NGT configures the guest VMs with all the required drivers for VM portability. For more information about general NGT requirements, see Nutanix Guest Tools Requirements and Limitations in Prism Web Console Guide .

  • CHDR supports guest VMs with flat files only.
  • CHDR supports IDE/SCSI disks only.
    Tip: From AOS 5.19.1, CHDR supports SATA disks also.
  • For all the non-boot SCSI disks of Windows guest VMs, set the SAN policy to OnlineAll so that they come online automatically.
  • In vSphere 6.7, guest VMs are configured with UEFI secure boot by default. Upon CHDR to an AHV cluster, these guest VMs do not start if the host does not support the UEFI secure boot feature. For more information about supportability of UEFI secure boot on Nutanix clusters, see the Compatibility Matrix.

  • For information about operating systems that support UEFI and Secure Boot, see UEFI and Secure Boot Support for CHDR.

  • Nutanix does not support vSphere inventory mapping (for example, VM folder and resource pools) when protecting workloads between VMware clusters.

  • Nutanix does not support vSphere snapshots or delta disk files. If you have delta disks attached to a VM and you proceed with failover, you get a validation warning and the VM does not recover. Contact Nutanix Support for assistance.
Table 1. Operating Systems Supported for CHDR (Asynchronous Replication)
Operating System Version Requirements and limitations
Windows
  • Windows 2008 R2 or newer versions
  • Windows 7 or newer versions
  • Only 64-bit operating systems are supported.
Linux
  • CentOS 6.5 and 7.0
  • RHEL 6.5 or newer and RHEL 7.0 or newer.
  • Oracle Linux 6.5 and 7.0
  • Ubuntu 14.04
  • SLES operating system is not supported.

Additional Requirements

  • Both the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters must be of minimum three-nodes.
  • The recovery AZ container must have as much space as the protected VMs working size set of the primary AZ. For example, if you are protecting a VM that is using 30 GB of space on the container of the primary AZ, the same amount of space is required on the recovery AZ container.

NearSync Replication Limitations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

Consider the following specific limitations before protecting your guest VMs with NearSync replication schedule. These limitations are in addition to the general limitations of Nutanix Disaster Recovery .

For information about the general limitations of Nutanix Disaster Recovery , see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Limitations.

  • All files associated with the VMs running on ESXi must be located in the same folder as the VMX configuration file. The files not located in the same folder as the VMX configuration file might not recover on a recovery cluster. On recovery, the guest VM with such files fails to start with the following error message. Operation failed: InternalTaskCreationFailure: Error creating host specific VM change power state task. Error: NoCompatibleHost: No host is compatible with the virtual machine
  • Deduplication enabled on storage containers having guest VMs protected with NearSync replication schedule lowers the replication speed.
  • Cross hypervisor disaster recovery (CHDR) does not preserve hypervisor-specific properties (for example, multi-writer flags, independent persistent and non-persistent disks, changed block tracking (CBT), PVSCSI disk configurations).

  • On CHDR, NearSync replication schedules do not support retrieving recovery points from the recovery AZs.

    For example, if you have 1 day retention at the primary AZ and 5 days retention at the recovery AZ, and you want to go back to a recovery point from 5 days ago. NearSync replication schedule does not support replicating 5 days retention back from the recovery AZ to the primary AZ.

Creating a Protection Policy with a NearSync Replication Schedule (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

To protect the guest VMs in a minutely replication schedule, configure a NearSync replication schedule while creating the protection policy. The policy takes recovery points of the protected guest VMs in the specified time intervals (1–15 minutes) and replicates them to the recovery AZ (AZ) for High Availability. To maintain the efficiency of minutely replication, the protection policy allows you to configure a NearSync replication schedule to only one recovery AZ. When creating a protection policy, you can specify only VM categories. If you want to include VMs individually, you must first create the protection p policy—which can also include VM categories and then include the VMs individually in the protection policy from the VMs page.

Before you begin

Ensure that the primary and the recovery AHV or ESXi clusters at the same or different AZs are NearSync capable. A cluster is NearSync capable if the capacity of each SSD in the cluster is at least 1.2 TB.

See NearSync Replication Requirements (Nutanix Disaster Recovery) and NearSync Replication Limitations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery) before you start.

About this task

To create a protection policy with a NearSync replication schedule, do the following at the primary AZ. You can also create a protection policy at the recovery AZ. Protection policies you create or update at a recovery AZ synchronize back to the primary AZ.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Protection Policies in the left pane.
    Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Protection Policies
    Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Protection Policies

  3. Click Create Protection Policy .
    Specify the following information in the Create Protection Policy window.
    Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Select Primary Location
    Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Select Primary Location

    1. Policy name : Enter a name for the protection policy.
      Caution: The name can be of only alphanumeric, dot, dash, and underscore characters.
    2. In the Primary Location pane, specify the following information.
        1. Location : From the drop-down list, select an AZ (AZ) that hosts the guest VMs to protect.

          The drop-down lists all the AZs paired with the local AZ. Local AZ represents the local AZ (Prism Central). For your primary AZ, you can check either the local AZ or a non-local AZ.

        2. Cluster : From the drop-down list, select the cluster that hosts the guest VMs to protect.

          The drop-down lists all the Nutanix clusters registered to Prism Central representing the selected AZ. If you want to protect the guest VMs from multiple Nutanix clusters in the same protection policy, select the clusters that host those guest VMs. All Clusters protects the guest VMs of all Nutanix clusters registered to Prism Central.

        3. Click Save .

          Clicking Save activates the Recovery Location pane. After saving the primary AZ configuration, you can optionally add a local schedule to retain the recovery points at the primary AZ.

        4. Click + Add Local Schedule if you want to retain recovery points locally in addition to retaining recovery points in a replication schedule (step d.iv). For example, you can create a local schedule to retain 15 minute recovery points locally and also an hourly replication schedule to retain recovery points and replicate them to a recovery AZ every 2 hours. The two schedules apply differently on the guest VMs.

          Specify the following information in the Add Schedule window.

          Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Add Local Schedule
          Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Add Local Schedule

          1. Take Snapshot Every : Specify the frequency in minutes , hours , days , or weeks at which you want the recovery points to be taken locally.
          2. Retention Type : Specify one of the following two types of retention policy.
            • Linear : Implements a simple retention scheme at the local AZ. If you set the retention number to n, the local AZ retains the n recent recovery points.

              When you enter the frequency in minutes, the system selects the Roll-up retention type by default because minutely recovery points do not support Linear retention types.

            • Roll-up : Rolls up the recovery points into a single recovery point at the local AZ.

              For more information about the roll-up recovery points, see step d.iii.

          3. Retention on Local AZ:PE_A3_AHV : Specify the retention number for the local AZ.
          4. If you want to take application-consistent recovery points, check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point .

            Irrespective of the local or replication schedules, the recovery points are of the specified type. If you check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point , the recovery points generated are application-consistent and if you do not check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point , the recovery points generated are crash-consistent. If the time in the local schedule and the replication schedule match, the single recovery point generated is application-consistent.

            Note: See Application-consistent Recovery Point Conditions and Limitations before you take application-consistent snapshot.
          5. Click Save Schedule .
    3. In the Recovery Location pane, specify the following information.
      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Select Recovery Location
      Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Select Recovery Location

        1. Location : From the drop-down list, select the AZ (AZ) where you want to replicate the recovery points.

          The drop-down lists all the AZs paired with the local AZ. Local AZ represents the local AZ (Prism Central). Select Local AZ if you want to configure DR to a different Nutanix cluster at the same AZ.

          If you do not select a AZ, local recovery points that are created by the protection policy do not replicate automatically. You can, however, replicate the recovery points manually and use recovery plans to recover the guest VMs. For more information, see Protection and Manual DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).

        2. Cluster : From the drop-down list, select the cluster where you want to replicate the recovery points.

          The drop-down lists all the Nutanix clusters registered to Prism Central representing the selected AZ. You can select one cluster at the recovery AZ. To maintain the efficiency of minutely replication, a protection policy allows you to configure only one recovery AZ for a NearSync replication schedule. However, you can add another Asynchronous replication schedule for replicating recovery points to the same or different AZs. For more information to add another recovery AZ with a replication schedule, see step e.

          Note: Selecting auto-select from the drop-down list replicates the recovery points to any available cluster at the recovery AZ. Select auto-select from the drop-down list only if all the clusters at the recovery AZ are NearSync capable and are up and running. A cluster is NearSync capable if the capacity of each SSD in the cluster is at least 1.2 TB. All-flash clusters do not have any specific SSD sizing requirements.

          Caution: If the primary Nutanix cluster contains an IBM POWER Systems server, you can replicate recovery points to an on-prem AZ only if that on-prem AZ contains an IBM Power Systems server.
        3. Click Save .

          Clicking Save activates the + Add Schedule button between the primary and the recovery AZ. After saving the recovery AZ configuration, you can optionally add a local schedule to retain the recovery points at the recovery AZ.

        4. Click + Add Local Schedule if you want to retain recovery points locally in addition to retaining recovery points in a replication schedule (step d.iv). For example, you can create a local schedule to retain one hourly recovery points locally to supplement the hourly replication schedule. The two schedules apply differently on the guest VMs after failover, when the recovery points replicate back to the primary AZ.

          Specify the following information in the Add Schedule window.

          Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Add Local Schedule
          Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Add Local Schedule

          1. Take Snapshot Every : Specify the frequency in minutes , hours , days , or weeks at which you want the recovery points to be taken locally.
          2. Retention Type : Specify one of the following two types of retention policy.
            • Linear : Implements a simple retention scheme at the local AZ. If you set the retention number to n, the local AZ retains the n recent recovery points.

              When you enter the frequency in minutes, the system selects the Roll-up retention type by default because minutely recovery points do not support Linear retention types.

            • Roll-up : Rolls up the recovery points into a single recovery point at the local AZ.

              For more information about the roll-up recovery points, see step d.iii.

          3. Retention on 10.xx.xx.xxx:PE_C1_AHV : Specify the retention number for the local AZ.
          4. If you want to take application-consistent recovery points, check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point .

            Irrespective of the local or replication schedules, the recovery points are of the specified type. If you check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point , the recovery points generated are application-consistent and if you do not check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point , the recovery points generated are crash-consistent. If the time in the local schedule and the replication schedule match, the single recovery point generated is application-consistent.

          5. Click Save Schedule .
    4. Click + Add Schedule to add a replication schedule between the primary and the recovery AZ.

      Specify the following information in the Add Schedule window. The window auto-populates the Primary Location and Recovery Location that you have selected in step b and step c.

      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Add Schedule (NearSync)
      Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Add Schedule (NearSync)

        1. Protection Type : Click Asynchronous .
        2. Take Snapshot Every : Specify the frequency in minutes (anywhere between 1-15 minutes) at which you want the recovery points to be taken.

          The specified frequency is the RPO. For more information about RPO, see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Terminology.

        3. Retention Type : When you enter the frequency in minutes in step ii, the system selects the Roll-up retention type by default because NearSync replication schedules do not support Linear retention types.
          Roll-up retention type rolls up the recovery points as per the RPO and retention period into a single recovery point at a AZ. For example, if you set the RPO to 1 hour, and the retention time to 5 days, the 24 oldest hourly recovery points roll up into a single daily recovery point (one recovery point = 24 hourly recovery points) after every 24 hours. The system keeps one day (of rolled-up hourly recovery points) and 4 days of daily recovery points.
          Note:
          • If the retention period is n days, the system keeps 1 day of RPO (rolled-up hourly recovery points) and n-1 days of daily recovery points.
          • If the retention period is n weeks, the system keeps 1 day of RPO, 1 week of daily and n-1 weeks of weekly recovery points.
          • If the retention period is n months, the system keeps 1 day of RPO, 1 week of daily, 1 month of weekly, and n-1 months of monthly recovery points.
          • If the retention period is n years, the system keeps 1 day of RPO, 1 week of daily, 1 month of weekly, and n-1 months of monthly recovery points.
          Note: The recovery points that are used to create a rolled-up recovery point are discarded.
          Tip: Use roll-up retention policies for anything with a longer retention period. Roll-up policies are more flexible and automatically handle recovery point aging/pruning while still providing granular RPOs for the first day.
        4. To specify the retention number for the primary and recovery AZs, do the following.
          • Retention on Local AZ: PE_A3_AHV : Specify the retention number for the primary AZ.

            This field is unavailable if you do not specify a recovery location.

          • Retention on 10.xx.xx.xxx:PE_C1_AHV : Specify the retention number for the recovery AZ.
        5. If you want to enable reverse retention of the recovery points, check Reverse retention for VMs on recovery location .

          Reverse retention maintains the retention numbers of recovery points even after failover to a recovery AZ in the same or different AZs. For example, if you retain two recovery points at the primary AZ and three recovery points at the recovery AZ, and you enable reverse retention, a failover event does not change the initial retention numbers when the recovery points replicate back to the primary AZ. The recovery AZ still retains two recovery points while the primary AZ retains three recovery points. If you do not enable reverse retention, a failover event changes the initial retention numbers when the recovery points replicate back to the primary AZ. The recovery AZ retains three recovery points while the primary AZ retains two recovery points.

          Maintaining the same retention numbers at a recovery AZ is required if you want to retain a particular number of recovery points, irrespective of where the guest VM is after its failover.

        6. If you want to take application-consistent recovery points, check Take App-Consistent Recovery Point .

          Application-consistent recovery points ensure that application consistency is maintained in the replicated recovery points. For application-consistent recovery points, install NGT on the guest VMs running on AHV clusters. For guest VMs running on ESXi clusters, you can take application-consistent recovery points without installing NGT, but the recovery points are hypervisor-based, and leads to VM stuns (temporary unresponsive VMs) after failover to the recovery AZs.

          Caution: Application-consistent recovery points fail for EFI-boot enabled Windows 2019 VM running on ESXi when NGT is not installed. Nutanix recommends installing NGT on guest VMs running on ESXi also.
        7. Click Save Schedule .
    5. Click + Add Recovery Location if you want to add an additional recovery AZ for the guest VMs in the protection policy.
      • To add an on-prem AZ for recovery, see Protection and DR between On-Prem AZs (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)
      • To add Xi Cloud Services for recovery, see Protection and DR between On-Prem AZ and Xi Cloud Service (Xi Leap).
      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Additional Recovery Location Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Additional Recovery Location

    6. Click + Add Schedule to add a replication schedule between the primary AZ and the additional recovery AZ you specified in step e.

      The Add Schedule window shows that auto-populates the Primary Location and the additional Recovery Location . Perform step d again to add the replication schedule.

      By default, recovery point creation begins immediately after you create the protection policy. If you want to specify when recovery point creation must begin, click Immediately at the top-right corner, and then, in the Start Time dialog box, do the following.

        1. Click Start protection at specific point in time .
        2. Specify the time at which you want to start taking recovery points.
        3. Click Save .
    7. Click Next .
      Clicking Next shows a list of VM categories where you can optionally check one or more VM categories to protect in the protection policy. DR configurations using Leap allows you to protect a guest VM by using only one protection policy. Therefore, VM categories specified in another protection policy are not in the list. If you protect a guest VM in another protection policy by specifying the VM category of the guest VM (category-based inclusion), and if you protect the guest VM from the VMs page in this policy (individual inclusion), the individual inclusion supersedes the category-based inclusion. Effectively, only the protection policy that protected the individual guest VM protects the guest VM.

      For example, the guest VM VM_SherlockH is in the category Department:Admin , and you add this category to the protection policy named PP_AdminVMs . Now, if you add VM_SherlockH from the VMs page to another protection policy named PP_VMs_UK , VM_SherlockH is protected in PP_VMs_UK and unprotected from PP_AdminVMs .

    8. If you want to protect the guest VMs category wise, check the VM categories that you want to protect from the list and click Add .
      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Add VM Categories Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Add VM Categories

      Prism Central includes built-in VM categories for frequently encountered applications (for example, MS Exchange and Oracle). If the VM category or value you want is not available, first create the category with the required values, or update an existing category so that it has the values you require. Doing so ensures that the VM categories and values are available for selection. You can add VMs to the category either before or after you configure the protection policy. If the guest VMs have a common characteristic, such as belonging to a specific application or location, create a VM category and add the guest VMs into the category.

      If you do not want to protect the guest VMs category wise, proceed to the next step without checking VM categories. You can add the guest VMs individually to the protection policy later from the VMs page (see Adding Guest VMs Individually to a Protection Policy).

    9. Click Create .
      The protection policy with a NearSync replication schedule is created. To verify the protection policy, see the Protection Policies page. If you check VM categories in step h, the protection policy starts generating recovery points of the guest VMs in those VM categories. To see the generated recovery points, click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window and go to VM Recovery Points . Click the recovery points for its information. You can see the time estimated for the very first replication (seeding) to the recovery AZs.
      Figure. Recovery Points Overview Click to enlarge Recovery Points Overview

    Tip: DR using Leap with a NearSync replication schedule also allows you to recover the data of the minute just before the unplanned failover. For example, with a 10 minutely protection policy, you can use the internal lightweight snapshots (LWS) to recover the data of the ninth minute when there is an unplanned failover.

Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

To orchestrate the failover of the protected guest VMs to the recovery AZ, create a recovery plan. After a failover, a recovery plan recovers the protected guest VMs to the recovery AZ. If you have configured two recovery AZs in a protection policy, create two recovery plans for DR—one for recovery to each recovery AZ. The recovery plan synchronizes continuously to the recovery AZ in a bidirectional way.

For more information about creating a recovery plan, see Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).

Failover and Failback Operations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

You can perform test failover, planned failover, and unplanned failover of the guest VMs protected with NearSync replication schedule across different Nutanix clusters at the same or different on-prem AZ (AZ). The steps to perform test, planned, and unplanned failover are largely the same irrespective of the replication schedules that protect the guest VMs.

Refer Failover and Failback Management for test, planned, and unplanned failover procedures.

Protection with Synchronous Replication Schedule (0 RPO) and DR

Synchronous replication enables you to protect your guest VMs with a zero recovery point objective (0 RPO). A protection policy with Synchronous replication schedule replicates all the writes on the protected guest VMs synchronously to the recovery AZ (AZs) for High Availability. The policy also takes recovery points of those protected VMs every 6 hours—the first snapshot is taken immediately—for raw node (HDD+SSD) size up to 120 TB. Since the replication is synchronous, the recovery points are crash-consistent only. For guest VMs (AHV) protected with Synchronous replication schedule, you can perform DR only to an AHV cluster at the same or different AZ. Replicating writes synchronously and also generating recovery points helps to eliminate data losses due to:

  • Unplanned failure events (for example, natural disasters and network failure).
  • Planned failover events (for example, scheduled maintenance).

Nutanix recommends that the round-trip latency (RTT) between AHV clusters be less than 5 ms for optimal performance of Synchronous replication schedules. Maintain adequate bandwidth to accommodate peak writes and have a redundant physical network between the clusters.

To perform the replications synchronously yet efficiently, the protection policy limits you to configure only one recovery AZ if you add a Synchronous replication schedule. If you configure Synchronous replication schedule for a guest VM, you cannot add an Asynchronous or NearSync schedule to the same guest VM. Similarly, if you configure an Asynchronous or a NearSync replication schedule, you cannot add a Synchronous schedule to the same guest VM.

If you unpair the AZs while the guest VMs in the Nutanix clusters are still in synchronization, the Nutanix cluster becomes unstable. Therefore, disable Synchronous replication and clear stale stretch parameters if any on both the primary and recovery Prism Element before unpairing the AZs. For more information about disabling Synchronous replication, see Synchronous Replication Management.

Note: Nutanix provides multiple disaster recovery (DR) solutions to secure your environment. See Nutanix Disaster Recovery Solutions for the detailed representation of the DR offerings of Nutanix.

Synchronous Replication Requirements

The following are the specific requirements for protecting your AHV guest VMs with Synchronous replication schedule. Ensure that you meet the following requirements in addition to the general requirements of Leap.

For information about the general requirements of Nutanix Disaster Recovery , see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Requirements.

For information about node, disk and Foundation configurations required to support Synchronous replication schedules, see On-Prem Hardware Resource Requirements.

Hypervisor Requirements

AHV

The AHV clusters must be running on version 20190916.189 or newer.

Note: Synchronous replication schedules support only AHV.

Nutanix Software Requirements

  • Each on-prem availability zone (AZ) must have a Leap enabled Prism Central instance.

    The primary and recovery Nutanix Clusters can be registered with a single Prism Central instance or each can be registered with different Prism Central instances.

  • The primary and recovery Prism Central and Prism Element on the registered Nutanix clusters must be running on the same AOS version.
    • AOS 5.17 or newer.
    • AOS 5.17.1 or newer to support Synchronous replications of UEFI secure boot enabled guest VMs.

    • AOS 5.19.2 or newer for DR to an AHV cluster in the same AZ (registered to the same Prism Central). For DR to an AHV cluster in the same AZ, Prism Central must be running version 2021.3 or newer.

Additional Requirements

  • For optimal performance, maintain the round trip latency (RTT) between Nutanix clusters to less than 5 ms. Also, maintain adequate bandwidth to accommodate peak writes and have a redundant physical network between the clusters.
  • The storage container name of the protected guest VMs must be the same on both the primary and recovery clusters. Therefore, a storage container must exist on the recovery cluster with the same name as the one on the primary cluster. For example, if the protected guest VMs are in the SelfServiceContainer storage container on the primary cluster, there must also be a SelfServiceContainer storage container on the recovery cluster.
  • For hardware and Foundation configurations required to support Synchronous replication schedules, see On-Prem Hardware Resource Requirements.

  • The clusters on the primary AZ and the recovery AZ communicate over the ports 2030, 2036, 2073, and 2090. Ensure that these ports have open access between both the primary and the recovery clusters (Prism Element). For the complete list of required ports, see Port Reference.
  • If the primary and the recovery clusters (Prism Element) are in different subnets, open the ports manually for communication.
    Tip: If the primary and the recovery clusters (Prism Element) are in the same subnet, you need not open the ports manually.
    • To open the ports for communication to the recovery cluster, run the following command on all CVMs of the primary cluster.

      nutanix@cvm$ allssh 'modify_firewall -f -r remote_cvm_ip,remote_virtual_ip -p 2030,2036,2073,2090 -i eth0'

      Replace remote_cvm_ip with the IP address of the recovery cluster CVM. If there are multiple CVMs, replace remote_cvm_ip with the IP addresses of the CVMs separated by comma.

      Replace remote_virtual_ip with the virtual IP address of the recovery cluster.

    • To open the ports for communication to the primary cluster, run the following command on all CVMs of the recovery cluster.

      nutanix@cvm$ allssh 'modify_firewall -f -r source_cvm_ip,source_virtual_ip -p 2030,2036,2073,2090 -i eth0'

      Replace source_cvm_ip with the IP address of the primary cluster CVM. If there are multiple CVMs, replace source_cvm_ip with the IP addresses of the CVMs separated by comma.

      Replace source_virtual_ip with the virtual IP address of the primary cluster.

    Note: Use the eth0 interface only. eth0 is the default CVM interface that shows up when you install AOS.

Synchronous Replication Limitations

Consider the following specific limitations before protecting your guest VMs with Synchronous replication schedule. These limitations are in addition to the general limitations of Nutanix Disaster Recovery .

For information about the general limitations of Leap, see Nutanix Disaster Recovery Limitations.

  • You cannot restore guest VMs with incompatible GPUs at the recovery cluster.
  • You cannot protect guest VMs configured as part of a network function chain.
  • You cannot protect guest VMs with affinity policies.
  • You cannot resize a guest VM disk while the guest VM is in replication. See KB-9986 for more information.

Creating a Protection Policy with the Synchronous Replication Schedule

To protect the guest VMs in an instant replication schedule, configure a Synchronous replication schedule while creating the protection policy. The policy replicates all the writes on the protected guest VMs synchronously to the recovery AZ (AZ) for High Availability. For a raw node (HDD+SSD) size up to 120 TB, the policy also takes crash-consistent recovery points of those guest VMs every 6 hours and replicates them to the recovery AZ—the first snapshot is taken immediately. To maintain the efficiency of synchronous replication, the protection policy allows you to add only one recovery AZ for the protected VMs. When creating a protection policy, you can specify only VM categories. If you want to protect guest VMs individually, you must first create the protection policy—which can also include VM categories, and then include the guest VMs individually in the protection policy from the VMs page.

Before you begin

See Synchronous Replication Requirements and Synchronous Replication Limitations before you start.

About this task

To create a protection policy with the Synchronous replication schedule, do the following at the primary AZ. You can also create a protection policy at the recovery AZ. Protection policies you create or update at a recovery AZ synchronize back to the primary AZ.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Protection Policies in the left pane.
    Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Protection Policies
    Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Protection Policies

  3. Click Create Protection Policy .
    Specify the following information in the Create Protection Policy window.
    Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Select Primary Location
    Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Select Primary Location

    1. Policy name : Enter a name for the protection policy.
      Caution: The name can be of only alphanumeric, dot, dash, and underscore characters.
    2. In the Primary Location pane, specify the following information.
        1. Location : From the drop-down list, select an AZ (AZ) that hosts the guest VMs to protect.

          The drop-down lists all the AZs paired with the local AZ. Local AZ represents the local AZ (Prism Central). For your primary AZ, you can check either the local AZ or a non-local AZ.

        2. Cluster : From the drop-down list, select the AHV cluster that hosts the VMs to protect.

          The drop-down lists all the Nutanix clusters registered to Prism Central representing the selected AZ. If you want to protect the guest VMs from multiple AHV clusters in the same protection policy, select the AHV clusters that host those guest VMs. All Clusters protects the guest VMs of all Nutanix clusters registered to Prism Central. Select All Clusters only if all the clusters are running AHV.

        3. Click Save .

          Clicking Save activates the Recovery Location pane. Do not add a local schedule to retain the recovery points locally. To maintain the replication efficiency, Synchronous replication allows only the replication schedule. If you add a local schedule, you cannot click Synchronous in step d.

    3. In the Recovery Location pane, specify the following information.
      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Select Recovery Location
      Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Select Recovery Location

        1. Location : From the drop-down list, select the AZ (AZ) where you want to replicate the recovery points.

          The drop-down lists all the AZs paired with the local AZ. Local AZ represents the local AZ (Prism Central). Select Local AZ if you want to configure DR to a different AHV cluster at the same AZ.

          If you do not select a AZ, local recovery points that are created by the protection policy do not replicate automatically. You can, however, replicate the recovery points manually and use recovery plans to recover the guest VMs. For more information, see Protection and Manual DR (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).

        2. Cluster : From the drop-down list, select the AHV cluster where you want to replicate the guest VM writes synchronously and recovery points.

          The drop-down lists all the Nutanix clusters registered to Prism Central representing the selected AZ. You can select one AHV cluster at the recovery AZ. Do not select an ESXi cluster because DR configurations using Leap support only AHV cluster. If you select an ESXi cluster and configure a Synchronous replication schedule, replications fail.

          Note: Selecting auto-select from the drop-down menu replicates the recovery points to any available cluster at the recovery AZ. Select auto-select from the drop-down list only if all the clusters at the recovery AZ are running on AHV and are up and running.
        3. Click Save .

          Clicking Save activates the + Add Schedule button between the primary and the recovery AZ. Do not add a local schedule to retain the recovery points locally. To maintain the replication efficiency, Synchronous replication allows only the replication schedule. If you add a local schedule, you cannot click Synchronous in step d.

    4. Click + Add Schedule to add a replication schedule between the primary and the recovery AZ.

      Specify the following information in the Add Schedule window. The window auto-populates the Primary Location and Recovery Location that you have selected in step b and step c.

      Figure. Protection Policy Configuration: Add Schedule (Synchronous)
      Click to enlarge Protection Policy Configuration: Add Schedule (Synchronous)

        1. Protection Type : Click Synchronous .
        2. Failure Handling : Select one of the following options to handle failure. For example, if the connection between the primary and the recovery AZ breaks and VM writes on the primary cluster stops replicating.
          • Manual : Select this option if you want to resume the VM writes on the primary AZ only when you manually disable Synchronous replication.
          • Automatic : Select this option to resume VM writes on the primary AZ automatically after the specified Timeout after seconds.
            Note: The minimum timeout period is 10 seconds. For a guest VM that is configured for AHV Metro recovery, the timeout period specified in the Witness configured recovery plan takes precedence. For example, if the timeout period in the protection policy is 10 seconds and then you specify 40 seconds in the Witness recovery plan (automatic), the timeout period for failure handling shall be 40 seconds only.
        3. Click Save Schedule .

          Clicking Save Schedule disables the + Add Recovery Location button at the top-right because to maintain the efficiency of synchronous replication, the policy allows you to add only one recovery AZ.

      By default, recovery point creation begins immediately after you create the protection policy. If you want to specify when recovery point creation must begin, click Immediately at the top-right corner, and then, in the Start Time dialog box, do the following.

        1. Click Start protection at specific point in time .
        2. Specify the time at which you want to start taking recovery points.
        3. Click Save .
    5. Click Next .
      Clicking Next shows a list of VM categories where you can optionally check one or more VM categories to protect in the protection policy. DR configurations using Leap allows you to protect a guest VM by using only one protection policy. Therefore, VM categories specified in another protection policy are not in the list. If you protect a guest VM in another protection policy by specifying the VM category of the guest VM (category-based inclusion), and if you protect the guest VM from the VMs page in this policy (individual inclusion), the individual inclusion supersedes the category-based inclusion. Effectively, only the protection policy that protected the individual guest VM protects the guest VM.

      For example, the guest VM VM_SherlockH is in the category Department:Admin , and you add this category to the protection policy named PP_AdminVMs . Now, if you add VM_SherlockH from the VMs page to another protection policy named PP_VMs_UK , VM_SherlockH is protected in PP_VMs_UK and unprotected from PP_AdminVMs .

    6. If you want to protect the guest VMs category wise, check the VM categories that you want to protect from the list and click Add .
      Prism Central includes built-in VM categories for frequently encountered applications (for example, MS Exchange and Oracle). If the VM category or value you want is not available, first create the category with the required values, or update an existing category so that it has the values you require. Doing so ensures that the VM categories and values are available for selection. You can add VMs to the category either before or after you configure the protection policy. If the guest VMs have a common characteristic, such as belonging to a specific application or location, create a VM category and add the guest VMs into the category.

      If you do not want to protect the guest VMs category wise, proceed to the next step without checking VM categories. You can add the guest VMs individually to the protection policy later from the VMs page (see Adding Guest VMs Individually to a Protection Policy).

    7. Click Create .
      The protection policy with Synchronous replication schedule is created. To verify the protection policy, see the Protection Policies page. If you check VM categories in step f, the protection policy starts generating recovery points of the guest VMs in those VM categories. To see the generated recovery points, click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window and go to VM Recovery Points . Click the recovery points for its information. You can see the time estimated for the very first replication (seeding) to the recovery AZs.
      Figure. Recovery Points Overview Click to enlarge Recovery Points Overview

Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

To orchestrate the failover of the protected guest VMs to the recovery AZ, create a recovery plan. After a failover, a recovery plan recovers the protected guest VMs to the recovery AZ. If you have configured two recovery AZs in a protection policy, create two recovery plans for DR—one for recovery to each recovery AZ. The recovery plan synchronizes continuously to the recovery AZ in a bidirectional way.

For more information about creating a recovery plan, see Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).

Synchronous Replication Management

Synchronous replication instantly replicates all writes on the protected guest VMs to the recovery cluster. Replication starts when you configure a protection policy and add the guest VMs to protect. You can manage the replication by enabling, disabling, pausing, or resuming the Synchronous replication on the protected guest VMs from the Prism Central.

Enabling Synchronous Replication

When you configure a protection policy with Synchronous replication schedule and add guest VMs to protect, the replication is enabled by default. However, if you have disabled the Synchronous replication on a guest VM, you have to enable it to start replication.

About this task

To enable Synchronous replication on a guest VM, perform the following procedure at the primary AZ (AZ). You can also perform the following procedure at the recovery AZ. The operations you perform at a recovery AZ synchronize back to the primary AZ.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Virtual Infrastructure > VMs > List in the left pane.
  3. Select the guest VMs on which you want to enable Synchronous replication.
  4. Click Protect from the Actions drop-down menu.
  5. Select the protection policy in the table to include the guest VMs in the protection policy.
  6. Click Protect .
Pausing Synchronous Replication

The protected guest VMs on the primary cluster stop responding when the recovery cluster is disconnected abruptly (for example, due to network outage or internal service crash). To come out of the unresponsive state, you can pause Synchronous replication on the guest VMs. Pausing Synchronous replication temporarily suspends the replication state of the guest VMs without completely disabling the replication relationship.

About this task

To pause Synchronous replication on a guest VM, perform the following procedure.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Virtual Infrastructure > VMs > List in the left pane.
  3. Select the guest VMs on which want to pause the Synchronous replication.
  4. Click Pause Synchronous Replication from the Actions drop-down menu.
Resuming Synchronous Replication

You can resume the Synchronous replication that you had paused to come out of the unresponsive state of the primary cluster. Resuming Synchronous replication restores the replication status and reconciles the state of the guest VMs. To resume Synchronous replication on a guest VM, perform the following procedure.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Virtual Infrastructure > VMs > List in the left pane.
  3. Select the guest VMs on which want to resume Synchronous replication.
  4. Click Resume Synchronous Replication from the Actions drop-down menu.

Failover and Failback Operations (Nutanix Disaster Recovery)

You can perform test failover, planned failover, and unplanned failover of the guest VMs protected with Synchronous replication schedule across the AHV clusters at the different on-prem AZ (AZ). The steps to perform test, planned, and unplanned failover are largely the same irrespective of the replication schedules that protects the guest VMs. Additionally, a planned failover of the guest VMs protected with Synchronous replication schedule also allows for live migration of the protected guest VMs.

Refer Failover and Failback Management for test, planned, and unplanned failover procedures.

Cross-Cluster Live Migration

Planned failover of the guest VMs protected with Synchronous replication schedule supports live migration to another AHV cluster. Live migration offers zero downtime for your applications during a planned failover event to the recovery cluster (for example, during scheduled maintenance).

Cross-Cluster Live Migration Requirements

The following are the specific requirements to successfully migrate your guest VMs with Live Migration.

Ensure that you meet the following requirements in addition to the requirements of Synchronous replication schedule (Synchronous Replication Requirements) and general requirements of Leap (Nutanix Disaster Recovery Requirements).

  • Stretch L2 networks across the primary and recovery AZs.

    Network stretch spans your network across different AZs. A stretched L2 network retains the IP addresses of guest VMs after their Live Migration to the recovery AZ.

  • Both the primary and recovery Nutanix clusters must have identical CPU types.

    The primary and recovery Nutanix clusters must have identical CPU feature set. If the CPU feature sets (set of CPU flags) are unidentical, Live Migration fails.

  • Both the primary and recovery Nutanix clusters must run on the same AHV version.
  • If the primary and the recovery Nutanix clusters (Prism Element) are in different subnets, open the ports 49250–49260 for communication. For the complete list of required ports, see Port Reference.
Cross-Cluster Live Migration Limitations

Consider the following limitation in addition to the limitations of Synchronous replication schedule (Synchronous Replication Limitations) and general limitations of Leap (Nutanix Disaster Recovery Limitations) before performing live migration of your guest VMs.

  • Live migration of guest VMs fails if the guest VMs are part of Flow security policies.
    Tip: To enable the guest VMs to retain the Flow security policies after the failover (live migration), revoke the policies on the guest VMs and Export them to the recovery AZ. At the recovery AZ, Import the policies. The guest VMs read the policies automatically after recovery.

Performing Cross-Cluster Live Migration

If due to a planned event (for example, scheduled maintenance of guest VMs) at the primary AZ (AZ), you want to migrate your applications to another AHV cluster without downtime, perform a planned failover with Live Migration to the recovery AZ.

About this task

To live migrate the guest VMs, do the following procedure at the recovery AZ.

Procedure

  1. Log on to the Prism Central web console.
  2. Click the hamburger icon at the top-left corner of the window. Go to Policies > Recovery Plans in the left pane.
  3. Select a recovery plan for the failover operation.
    Caution: The Recovery Plans page displays many recovery plans. Select the recovery plan that has Stretch Networks . If you select a recovery plan having Non-stretch networks , the migration fails. For more information about selection of stretch and non-stretch networks, see Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
  4. Click Failover from the Actions drop-down menu.
    Specify the following information in the Failover from Recovery Plan window. The window auto-populates the Failover From and Failover To locations from the recovery plan you select in step 3.
    Note: If you select more than one recovery plan in step 3, the Failover action is available only when the selected recovery plans have the same primary and recovery locations.
    Figure. Planned Failover
    Click to enlarge Planned Failover

    1. Failover Type : Click Planned Failover and check Live Migrate VMs .
    2. Click + Add target clusters if you want to failover to specific clusters at the recovery AZ.
      If you do not add target clusters, the recovery plan migrates the guest VMs to any AHV cluster at the recovery AZ.
  5. Click Failover .
    The Failover from Recovery Plan dialog box lists the errors and warnings, if any, and allows you to stop or continue the test operation. If there are no errors or you resolve the errors in step 6, the guest VMs migrate and start at the recovery cluster. The migration might show a network latency of 300-600 ms. You cannot see the migrated guest VMs on the primary cluster because those VMs come up at the recovery cluster after the migration.
  6. If you see errors, do the following.
    • To review errors or warnings, click View Details in the description.

      Resolve the error conditions and then restart the failover procedure.

    • Select one of the following.
      • To stop the failover operation, click Abort .
      • To continue the failover operation despite the warnings, click Execute Anyway .
        Note: You cannot continue the failover operation when the validation fails with errors.

AHV Metro (Witness Option)

The Witness option extends the capability of metro availability to AHV clusters using Nutanix Disaster Recovery . To automate the recovery process, the recovery plan configuration is enhanced to automatically handle the failure execution. The Witness is a service within Prism Central (including scale-out deployments) that monitors communication between the metro pair of clusters (primary and recovery AHV clusters). When the communication between both the clusters is interrupted for a configurable time interval, the service executes an unplanned failover depending on the failure type and the actions you have configured in the associated recovery plan.

Figure. AHV Metro Workflow Click to enlarge AHV Metro

Witness continuously reads the health status from the metro pair of AHV clusters. If the communication between the two clusters is unavailable for a set time period, the service pauses the Synchronous replication between the clusters. If the primary cluster is unavailable, the service can also automatically trigger an unplanned failover automatically to start the guest VMs specified in the Witness configured recovery plan at the recovery cluster.

You can configure AHV metro for the clusters registered to the same Prism Central (same AZ). If one of your clusters is running ESXi and you want the witness capability , see the Witness Option in Data Protection and Recovery with Prism Element . Nutanix recommends deploying the single Prism Central on a different AHV or ESXi cluster (that is, a different fault domain) to help avoid a single point of failure (see AHV Metro Requirements and Recommendations). Prism Central VMs residing in a separate fault domain provide an outside view that can distinguish a cluster failure from a network interruption between the Metro Availability clusters.

The following table describes the cluster failure scenarios and the witness response behavior. For more information about recovery workflows in each scenario, see AHV Metro Recovery Workflows.

Table 1. Witness Response Behaviors
Failure scenario Recovery plan Failure Execution Mode : Automatic (Witness) Recovery plan Failure Execution Mode : Manual or no recovery plan
Protection policy failure handling: Manual Protection policy failure handling: Automatic Protection policy failure handling: Manual Protection policy failure handling: Automatic
Primary cluster outage
  • Guest VMs fail over automatically (unplanned failover) to the recovery cluster after the timeout period set in the recovery plan. See Performing an Unplanned Failover (Leap) for more information.
    Note: The timeout period set in the recovery plan supersedes the automatic failure-handling value in the protection policy.
  • Administrative intervention is required to delete the guest VMs on the primary cluster when the primary cluster becomes functional.
  • Guest VM I/O operations freeze (read-only state).
  • Administrative intervention is required to manually perform an unplanned failover of the guest VMs. See Performing an Unplanned Failover (Leap) for more information.
  • The recovery plan must be configured for the efficient recovery of guest VMs. For information about creating recovery plans, see Creating a Recovery Plan (Nutanix Disaster Recovery).
Complete network failure in the primary cluster (connection loss between the primary cluster and Prism Central and recovery cluster)
  • Guest VMs fail over automatically (unplanned failover) to the recovery cluster after the timeout period set in the recovery plan. See Performing an Unplanned Failover (Leap) for more information.
    Note: The timeout period set in the recovery plan supersedes the automatic failure-handling value in the protection policy.
  • Administrative intervention is required to delete the guest VMs on the primary cluster when the primary cluster becomes functional.
  • Guest VM I/O operations freeze (read-only state).
  • Administrative intervention is required to pause the Synchronous replication.
    Note: Synchronous replication pauses only when there is network connectivity between Prism Central and the metro pair of clusters. Contact Nutanix Support to recover the guest VMs when there is no network connectivity.
  • Guest VM I/O operations continue to run on the primary cluster after synchronous replication is paused
  • Synchronous replication pauses after the timeout period set in the protection policy.
    Note: The synchronization status does not update until there is network connectivity between the primary cluster and Prism Central.
  • Guest VMs continue to run on the primary cluster.
Recovery cluster outage or complete network failure in the recovery cluster
  • Synchronous replication pauses on all the guest VMs after the timeout period set in the recovery plan.
  • Guest VMs continue to run on the primary cluster.
  • The ability to automatically recovering the guest VMs (unplanned failover) ceases because there is no communication with the recovery cluster.
  • Guest VM I/O operations freeze (read-only state).
  • Administrative intervention is required to pause the Synchronous replication.
  • Guest VMs I/O operations continue to run on the primary cluster after synchronous replication is paused
  • Synchronous replication pauses after the timeout period set in the protection policy.
  • Guest VMs I/O operations continue to run on the primary cluster.