5 Questions about Zerto Virtual Replication for Amazon AWS

By Shannon Snowden, Zerto’s Sr. Technical Marketing Architect

In our last post, we showed the architecture and talked about the upcoming support for Zerto Virtual Replication (ZVR) to Amazon AWS. In this post, we cover some of the common questions we heard at Amazon re:Invent in Las Vegas.

How does ZVR work with AWS?

Zerto federates disparate systems together by working with the existing management infrastructure and reduces complexity by not adding more layers of abstraction. In this case, ZVR works with AWS as it is designed by simply importing EC2 instances from S3 storage. The configuration takes just a few steps.

  • A VPN connection is made to AWS using AWS VPC for VM replication
  • ZVR is installed on an instance in AWS — we call this the Zerto Cloud Appliance (ZCA). All of the necessary services run in the ZCA.
  • ZVR in AWS is paired based on the VPN connection between sites. It can be paired to one or more sites
  • VPG configuration and recovery capability is similar to what is available today in non-AWS site pairings
  • Whenever there is a   failover test, failovers or migrations use cases, the replicated VMs are imported from S3 into EC2 as EC2 Instances

Is ZVR converting the VMDK’s to another format?

No, since ZVR works at the hypervisor layer replicating blocks of data, there is no need to convert the VMDK files to another format. Instead, the target of the replication simply needs to be an instance in AWS and the replicated data is stored on the AWS S3 Volume.

Will there still be a very granular Point in Time Journal for recoveries?

Yes, the points in time are made every few seconds for very low RPO. In testing, we are seeing the same low RPOs between the enterprise data center to AWS as we normally see between enterprise data centers.

Will the failover testing still be non-disruptive?

Yes. non-disruptive testing is critical in achieving the lowest possible RTOs and meeting SLAs. Testing can be performed anytime, even in the middle of the day since it does not impact the production systems.

Can I perform data center migrations using ZVR and AWS?

Yes, data center migrations are one of the new options that ZVR to AWS provides. Using Virtual Protection Groups (VPGs), which are affinity groupings of virtual machines and found only in ZVR, you can migrate or fail them all over as one logical entity. Of course, this is one of the major benefits of non-disruptive testing — where you know that it will work and have confidence that you can meet the downtime window requirements of the migration.

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