Failover is the process of recovering VMs and vApps to a secondary (recovery) site in the event of disaster at your primary site. To failover your critical VMs and vApps, use the Disaster Recovery wizard.


The Disaster Recovery wizard does not control any storage array functionality. Duplication (mirroring) of the metadata storage and the storage used by the VMs which are to be restarted must be turned off before you attempt failover to your recovery site.

To fail over VMs and vApps to a secondary site:

  1. In XenCenter, select the secondary pool, and on the Pool menu, click Disaster Recovery to open the Disaster Recovery wizard.
  2. Select Failover and then click Next.


    If you use Fibre Channel shared storage with LUN mirroring to replicate the data to the secondary site, before you attempt to recover data, mirroring must be broken so that the secondary site has Read/Write access.

  3. Select the storage repositories (SRs) containing the pool metadata for the VMs and vApps that you want to recover. By default, the list on this wizard page shows all SRs that are currently attached within the pool. To scan for more SRs, choose Find Storage Repositories and then select the storage type to scan for:
    • To scan for all the available Hardware HBA SRs, select Find Hardware HBA SRs.
    • To scan for software iSCSI SRs, select Find Software iSCSI SRs and then enter the target host, IQN and LUN details in the dialog box.

    When you have selected the required SRs in the wizard, click Next to continue.

  4. Select the VMs and vApps that you wish to recover and choose the appropriate Power state after recovery option to specify whether you want the wizard to start them up automatically as soon as they have been recovered, or whether you prefer to wait and start them up manually yourself after failover is complete. Click Next to progress to the next wizard page and begin failover prechecks.
  5. The wizard performs a number of pre-checks before starting failover, for example, to ensure that all the storage required by the selected VMs and vApps is available. If any storage is missing at this point, you can click Attach SR on this page to find and attach the relevant SR. Resolve any issues on the prechecks page, and then click Failover to begin the recovery process.
  6. A progress page is displayed showing whether recovery was successful for each VM and vApp. Failover may take some time depending on the number of VMs and vApps you are recovering, as the metadata for the VMs and vApps are exported from the replicated storage, the VMs and vApps are re-created in the primary pool, the SRs containing the virtual disks are attached to the re-created VMs, and VMs are started, if specified.
  7. When the failover is complete, click Next to see the summary report. Click Finish on the summary report page to close the wizard.

    Once your primary site is available again and you want to return to running your VMs on that site, you will need to work through the Disaster Recovery wizard again, but this time selecting the Failback option on the first page; see Failback.


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