NetApp MetroCluster Disaster Recovery Solutions
MetroCluster, included with NetApp's ONTAP storage operating system, is high-availability and disaster recovery software that combines array-based clustering with synchronous replication to provide rapid, zero data loss disaster recovery between datacenters separated by up to 185 miles (300km). By synchronously mirroring volumes between storage controllers, MetroCluster allows zero Recovery Point Objective (RPO) and under two-minute Recovery Time Objective (RTO) for mission-critical applications. MetroCluster supports SAN and NAS hosts, is available in 2-, 4- and 8-node configurations, and integrates with NetApp SnapMirror for asynchronous, near-zero data lass protection for datacenters separated by longer distances. Storage costs are kept at a minimum via inline data reduction technologies including deduplication, compression, and compaction.
Progent offers online or onsite access to a NetApp subject matter expert with NCIE, NCDA and NASAP certifications who can provide advanced support to help you design, deploy, manage, optimize, update or troubleshoot a disaster recovery solution based on NetApp MetroCluster technology. Progent also offers support for other NetApp SAN and NAS storage solutions including ONTAP, SnapMirror, SnapVault and Open Systems SnapVault (OSSV), FlexPod private cloud converged infrastructure, Virtual Storage Console, MultiStore, vFiler, OnCommand Unified Manager Core with OnCommand Reporting and OnCommand Insight, plus NetApp's hybrid Flash FAS, all Flash AFF, V-Series and N-Series hardware portfolio. (See NetApp SAN Integration Consulting.)
Key Features of NetApp MetroCluster
MetroCluster provides local high-availability (HA) and rapid, single-command remote disaster recovery (DR) for an organization's storage infrastructure by connecting two clusters, one each at two geographically separated datacenters, in a bi-directional peered storage network where you can quickly switchover either cluster to handle the storage and services of the other cluster in addition its own workloads. By running the Storage Virtual Machines (SVMs) from the offline cluster on the surviving cluster, MetroCluster allows continuous access to data during an outage of a storage cluster or datacenter.
In a four-node configuration, each datacenter has a two-node failover cluster configured as a high-availability (HA) pair with mirrored non-volatile RAM (NVRAM) and multipath storage between the two local nodes. If either node in an HA pair stops working, automatic failover allows the surviving local partner to take over the offline node's operation without incurring downtime. For DR clusters at separate sites, MetroCluster supports active-active and active-passive configurations. In an active-active configuration, both sites serve independent workloads during normal operation. In an active-passive (or active standby) deployment, the cluster at a selected primary site hosts all application workloads in a steady state and switchover only occurs from the protected primary site to the backup site. In this mode, no switchover is required if the secondary site fails but resource utilization is relatively low. You can also configure local HA pairs to operate in active-passive mode.
NetApp's MetroCluster supports bi-directional active-active disaster recovery for optima resource utilization
Switchover between clusters at different datacenters and failover between nodes in a datacenter's cluster can be planned (e.g. for non-intrusive maintenance, testing or upgrades) or unplanned, as in a site disaster. Switchback is the process by which the surviving cluster in one datacenter returns switched-over resources to the original cluster at the other datacenter. Giveback, or failback, is the process by which an offline node in local cluster is returned to a steady operational state.
To provide zero RPO disaster recovery, MetroCluster uses synchronous replication between storage clusters so that any change made at one datacenter is automatically propagated to the other datacenter. The replication process includes storage replication with NetApp SyncMirror, nonvolatile NVRAM replication, and replication of the cluster configuration. For MetroCluster to preserve the identity of the storage access paths during switchover, you must set up an L2 spanned Ethernet network and a single SAN fabric across the two datacenter sites.
MetroCluster requires both datacenters to have the same hardware and disk configurations. A variety of components from multiple vendors are supported. In a four-node deployment, each cluster uses NetApp's standard clustered Data ONTAP cluster interconnects, usually a switchless, back-to-back connection between the two HA nodes. Two Fibre Channel (FC) or FCIP switches at each datacenter connect to the HA nodes via FC initiators and FC-VI interfaces and connect to storage with SAS-to-FC bridges. (Direct-attached configurations do not require FC switches.) This allows all nodes in both clusters to see all the storage. Brocade FC switches supported by MetroCluster allow DR clusters to be up to 185 miles apart. The Clustered Data ONTAP storage OS supports both switchless configurations and a variety of cluster interconnect switches.
Core components and connections for a 4-node MetroCluster configuration
How Progent Can Help You with MetroCluster and Other NetApp Storage Solutions
Progent's team of seasoned IT consultants can help you plan, deploy, manage, upgrade, test and troubleshoot a disaster recovery solution built around NetApp MetroCluster. Progent can help you design a two-node, four-node or eight-node topology for your MetroCluster environment that aligns with your functional requirements and IT budget. Progent can make sure you follow best practices for installing your MetroCluster environment by providing help with tasks such as assigning disk pools and shelf IDs, arranging aggregate and plexes layout, provisioning NetApp FlexVol volumes, configuring NetApp Snapshot, provisioning Cisco and Brocade switches, implementing a tiebreaker, and setting up a TCP/IP configuration replication network between your peered clusters. Progent can also help you streamline the management of your MetroCluster ecosystem and non-disruptively test your disaster recovery solution to prove compliance with industry standards and government regulations. In addition, Progent offers FlexPod integration consulting to help you incorporate MetroCluster into a resilient private cloud infrastructure that consolidates servers, network fabric and storage assets for hosting critical applications.
Progent can provide as-needed expertise to guide you through occasional technical roadblocks and also offers comprehensive project management outsourcing or co-sourcing. Progent offers remote and on-premises consulting services and gives you easy access to the breadth and depth of knowledge of more than 100 veteran subject matter experts. In addition to offering the support of a NetApp-certified network architect, Progent can provide the services of a Cisco-certified CCIE network infrastructure consultant, a VMware VCDX-certified virtual networking expert, a Microsoft-certified Exchange specialist, a Citrix-certified XenDesktop consultant, and other IT consulting experts.
Additional Zero-Downtime Solutions Provided by Progent's Experts
Progent's Microsoft and Cisco-certified engineers can assist your business to design an efficient, fault-tolerant information network that resolves key challenges encompassing a broad array of networking solutions and processes including:
Workplace Recovery Planning
Progent's disaster recovery engineers can help you design a workplace recovery strategy that will allow you to resume IT functionality in the event of an information network catastrophe. Progent can assist you to create a complete disaster recovery strategy that includes scheduled disaster recovery evaluations and drills. Progent's Microsoft and Cisco-authorized consultants can also help you create an affordable, zero-downtime system architecture that takes into account availability issues covering a wide range of infrastructure technologies and processes. For more information, see Disaster Recovery Consulting.
Fully Managed Cloud Backup: ProSight Data Protection Services
ProSight Data Protection Services provide small and mid-sized businesses a low cost end-to-end service for reliable backup/disaster recovery (BDR). For a low monthly cost, ProSight DPS automates and monitors your backup activities and allows fast restoration of critical data, apps and VMs that have become lost or damaged as a result of component breakdowns, software glitches, disasters, human mistakes, or malicious attacks like ransomware. ProSight DPS can help you back up, retrieve and restore files, folders, applications, system images, plus Microsoft Hyper-V and VMware virtual machine images. Critical data can be protected on the cloud, to a local device, or to both. Progent's backup and recovery consultants can deliver advanced support to configure ProSight Data Protection Services to be compliant with regulatory standards such as HIPAA, FIRPA, and PCI and, whenever needed, can help you to recover your critical data. Read more about ProSight DPS Managed Cloud Backup.
Windows Server 2016 Disaster Recovery
Progent's Windows Server 2016 disaster recovery/business continuity experts can assist you to design a disaster recovery solution based on Microsoft's latest Failover Clustering technologies such as Cluster OS Rolling Upgrade for non-intrusive migration to Windows Server 2016, Storage Replica for zero-data-loss recovery, Storage Spaces Direct for enterprise-class network-attached storage using industry-standard hardware, VM Load Balancing for improving the speed and fault-tolerance of Failover Clusters while reducing TCO and operational expenses, and Cloud Witness for fast, economical deployment of a stretch cluster quorum arbitration point. For details, go to Microsoft Server 2016 Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Consulting.
Microsoft Windows Server 2012 Failover Clusters
Windows Server 2008 R2 introduced enterprise-class fault tolerance and recoverability to Microsoft's clustering solution. Windows Server 2012 R2 builds on this technology and delivers significant improvements offering more scalability, non-stop storage uptime for server applications, simpler management, quicker automatic failover, and more options for designing clusters. To learn more, see Windows Server 2012 Clustering Integration.
VMware Site Recovery Manager (SRM) Disaster Recovery Solutions
VMware's Site Recovery Manager is an extension to VMware vCenter that allows you to orchestrate, automate and test a repeatable runbook for restoring applications and services quickly following a breakdown. SRM supports centrally controlled and automated recovery, application mobility, plus non-intrusive site relocation, failback and site re-protect. SRM also enables non-disruptive testing for disaster recovery, updates and fixes and can generate reports to confirm full service restoration, validate SLAs and demonstrate disaster recovery compliance. Progent offers the skills of a VCDX certified VMware SRM consultant to assist you to design, configure, test and maintain a DR system based on VMware Site Recovery Manager.
Fault Tolerant Load Balancing
Progent provides high availability load balancing consulting that addresses network load balancing, load balanced programs, network infrastructure routing, and content dispatching products including F5 Networks 3DNS. Non-stop load balancing solutions for which Progent offers consulting expertise include Windows Server 2003 and 2008 Network Load Balancing Manager, Citrix Access Suite and Presentation Server, Cisco Content Services Switch, Cisco Content Engine and ACNS, and F5 Networks 3-DNS. To find out more, see High Availability Load Balancing.
Zero Downtime Colocation
Progent's Data Center consultants can help you identify high availability data centers that meet the specific requirements of your business. Fault tolerant co-location sites are particularly attractive to small and mid-size businesses due to of their low cost and simplified logistics compared to pursuing a do-it-yourself strategy. Attempting to create an in-house data center that offers even a basic level of fault tolerance is too costly for most small companies. Progent is ready to show you how to get all the advantages of non-stop Internet data centers by offering a complete range of engineering and support services. To read more, see Fault Tolerant Data Centers Consulting.
Fault Tolerant Inter-office Connectivity
Progentís interoffice connectivity consultants can help businesses achieve non-stop interoffice connections via fully redundant system architectures with automatic failover. Progentís Cisco-premier CCIE engineers can plan and deploy ultra-reliable Inter-office connections based on non-stop EIGRP routers or non-stop OSPF deployment of Cisco routers. Progent can show you how redundant connections and transparent fail-over can provide economical non-stop interoffice connectivity. To find out more, see Failsafe Inter-office Networking.
24x7 Internet Connections
Progent's Cisco-certified IT professionals can help you design an affordable, fault tolerant Internet connection architecture that can deliver 24x7 Internet connectivity via a broad array of fault tolerant Internet network solutions including high availability BGP, automatic fail-over, and multiple ISPs. Progent can provide Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert consultants to help you apply the most advanced techniques for fault tolerant Internet access to implement an affordable, fully redundant Internet network with automatic failover and other capabilities to deliver non-stop Internet connections. For details, see Fault Tolerant Internet Connectivity Solutions.
Backup and Restore Technology Consulting Experts
Progent can provide economical remote access to engineers skilled in a broad array of utilities and services that deliver solutions for protecting Microsoft Windows, Apple Mac, and Linux physical and virtual servers and desktops as well as notebooks and smartphones. Progent offers expertise for leading data protection products such as Acronis, Symantec Backup Exec, BackupAssist, HP Data Protector, Double-Take Backup, MozyPro, Retrospect for Macintosh, Apple Time Machine, vSphere Data Protection, and Solaris FLARs. Progent can assist your company to install, upgrade, or troubleshoot backup solutions for a range of topologies such as local, remote, cloud, or hybrid. To learn more, see Backup and Restore Solutions Consulting Services.
System Center Data Protection Manager Backup and Recovery Consultants
Progent's expert Microsoft SCDPM support professionals can assist your company to create an effective workplace recovery strategy, design a cost-effective fault-tolerante network infrastructure, install a Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager-powered recovery system, thoroughly validate your DPM system, educate your administrative staff or local consultants how to manage System Center Data Protection Manager, or provide complete IT outsourcing such as off-site hosting of SCDPM servers in Progent's world-class data center. To find out more, visit Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager Consulting and Support Services.
Barracuda Backup On-premises and Cloud Backup and Disaster Recovery
Barracuda Backup is an affordable, subscription-based backup and disaster recovery platform for small and mid-size businesses. A Barracuda Backup deployment can incorporate a purpose-built hardware storage device manufactured by Barracuda or a virtual appliance with comparable features but which uses your existing storage infrastructure. Barracuda Backup protects vital company data produced on-premises, at one or more remote sites, or in the cloud. For disaster preparedness, you can replicate data to the Barracuda Cloud, to Amazon AWS, or to any location with a Barracuda appliance. Progent is a Barracuda partner and Progent's Barracuda Backup consulting experts offer a broad array of consulting services to help you to plan, integrate, manage and repair a BDR system based on Barracuda technology. For details, see Barracuda Backup and disaster recovery consulting and management.
Altaro VM Backup Software for Data Protection and Disaster Recovery
Altaro VM Backup software provides small organizations a reliable and budget-friendly solution for backing up and restoring Hyper-V and VMware-powered virtual machines. Altaro VM Backup can be deployed in local, offsite, multi-site, and cloud-hosted architectures and also enables low-cost cloud backup to Azure storage. Headline capabilities include industry-leading Augmented Inline Deduplication to reduce backup storage requirements, Continuous Data Protection with backup intervals as low as five minutes for reducing your Recovery Point Objective, military-grade encryption, item-level restore capability for specific files and emails, extensive support for Windows Server CSV and for vCenter for managing large-scale environments, and the ability to leverage Microsoft VSS technology to back up live virtual machines without downtime. Progent is an Altaro partner and can provide a wide range of consulting services to assist you to design, deploy, manage and troubleshoot a backup/restore solution based on Altaro VM Backup software. For more information, see Altaro VM Backup Consulting Services.
Consulting for Double-Take Software for Data Backup and Recovery
Double-Take Software offers a family of tools intended to provide small businesses a variety of affordable alternatives for replicating and recovering vital workloads such as Exchange Server, SQL, RIM Blackberry, and Microsoft Office SharePoint. Progentís business continuity planning experts have in-depth experience incorporating Double-Take products into small business IT systems to achieve an advanced level of fault tolerance and business continuity capability at an affordable cost. To learn more, see Consulting for Double-Take Solutions for Data Backup.
CRISC-Certified Network Risk Mitigation
The Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control (CRISC) certification program was established by ISACA to verify an IT professional's ability to plan, implement, and maintain IS control mechanisms to mitigate risk. Progent can provide the expertise of a CRISC-certified engineer to assist your company to create and execute a business continuity strategy that follows leading practices identified by CRISC and geared to align with your organization's risk appetite, business objectives, and IT budget. For more information, visit CRISC-Certified network risk mitigation specialists.
Contact Progent for NetApp SAN Storage Solutions
If you are looking for expertise to help you design, deploy or troubleshoot a SAN storage solution based on NetApp technology, call Progent at 800-993-9400 or visit Contact Progent.