Using Azure for your DR Site with SolarWinds Backup

Summary:

Since a number of disaster recovery strategies include Azure as a location to recover to, this document is focused on using SolarWinds Backup and its Recovery Console to keep warm standby virtual images up to date within Azure. This is a great feature for companies that wish to have their DR systems ready to go should they need them. Keep in mind that using the "Continuous restore" feature of the Recovery Console will update the image with changes after every backup that is completed of the production system.

Document Scope:

- Creating a Hyper-V capable Virtual Machine in Azure

- Enabling the Hyper-V role on the Virtual Machine

- Configuring SolarWinds Backup - Recovery Console to create warm standby images

Let's get started...

1.First, you'll want to make sure you have a subscription to Azure. They do offer a free trial if you don't have a subscription. Once you have your account you'll then want to provision a Virtual Machine in Azure. Be sure to choose a system that Azure allows you to enable Hyper-V on. In my example, I'm using a D2s_v3 system. There are others that you can choose from as well, but the key is to choose a D?_v3 or an E?_v3 system. These allow the Hyper-V role to be enabled on them.

For Example, this is my system.

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Create the Virtual Machine in Azure

2. Click "Virtual Machines" on the left menu

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3. Click "Add" at the top

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4. Search For "Windows Server 2016"

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5. Choose: "Windows Server 2016 Datacenter"

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6. On the Right, Click "Create"

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7. Step 1: Basics, Enter the requested information

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8. Click "OK", at the bottom

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9. Step 2: Choose your Machine Size, this is where you choose a D?s_v3 or E?s_v3. Choose the one that is right for you and Click "Select" at the bottom.

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10. Step 3: Settings, choose any additional settings you want to configure, then click "OK" at the bottom

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11. Step 4: Summary, Azure presents you with a summary of your choices. If your choices are acceptable, then click "Create" at the bottom.

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Start the Virtual Machine

12. Once the system is created, you'll then Start it. Go to "Virtual Machines" on the left menu

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13. Then at the menu at the top, click "Start"

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Connect to the Virtual Machine

14. Once the system is started, you'll want to connect to it and enable the "Hyper-V Role"

15. You can click the machine name in the list and then click "Connect" at the top. An RDP file will be downloaded. If you wish you can simply run Remote Desktop and enter the Public IP address into an RDP connection screen and access it that way as well.

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Enable the Hyper-V Role

16. Server Manager -> Add roles and features

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17. Click "Next"

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18. Click "Role based feature-based installation", then click "Next"

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19. Server Selection -> Choose your Server, then click "Next"

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20. Select "Hyper-V", click "Next"

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21. Follow any additional prompts then click "Install"

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Download the Recovery Console

22. Download Recovery Console to your Azure Hyper-V System , Go to "https://Backup.Management", "Downloads" on the left menu, "Recovery Console", Click the Windows dropdown, Select  "Windows x64"

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Install the Recovery Console

23. Install the Recovery Console on the Hyper-V system. Simply double click the .exe file that was downloaded

Configure the Recovery Console

24. Configure the Recovery Console to recover your production systems for Disaster Recovery into HYPER-V.

25. Get the "Device Name", "Password", and "Security code" from the cloud console, Click the "Device Name", Copy the information from the "Modification" Tab

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26. Go back to the Recovery Console

27. Click "Add"

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28. Enter the "Device Name", "Password", and "Security code" (or passphrase)

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29. Click "Virtual Disaster Recovery", click "Next"

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30. Make sure the “Restore Target” is set to “HyperV

31. Set the "Machine Name" and "Location" of where you want the Virtual Machine to be restored to. This is typically the default location where Hyper-V Stores them.

      a. This is the typical location: "C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Hyper-V\Virtual Machines"

32. Set the "Virtual Switch", "IP Address", etc…

33. LocalSpeedVault should be disabled in this configuration since the recovery is "Cloud to Cloud"

34. Click "OK"

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35. Click "Yes" to the prompt

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36. You should see “Continuous Restore” checked, the restore will begin momentarily and will update the image with the changes every time there is a backup that occurs for this system.

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37. You can check that the system is there by simply launching the Hyper-V manager.

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38. You are Done!