Portrait Ruben Carballo de Cal
von Ruben Carballo de la Cal
Cloud Engineer, aus Basel

#knowledgesharing #level 100

How does data replication work?

Monday morning is 3 a.m., the phone rings... a disaster has impacted a data center, all the data is gone, and business resumes in four hours... That’s exactly why you need a remote physical location for data replication.

With Nutanix Data Protection you can protect/replicate everything that is running in a Nutanix cluster, whether it is a VM, a Volume Group (only supported by Prism Element replication), or a File Share.

Depending on your business requirements, Nutanix can help you achieve this using multiple "flavors" (asynchronous or synchronous) that are available.

  • Asynchronous replication
    • Hypervisor agnostic
    • Delay replication time 1h
  • Near Sync
    • Asynchronous replication from 1 min up to 15 mins
    • Hypervisor agnostic
    • Support only one to one replication
    • Different technology used for Near Sync: Lightweight Snapshots (LWS).
  • Synchronous replication – Metro availability
    • Hypervisor agnostic
    • Metro cluster configuration for VMWare
    • 0ms replication delay
    • Possible to automate failover using a Witness VM for ESXi and Prism Central for AHV

Nutanix's data protection is very granular and flexible at the topology level, and it allows you to configure different scenarios:

  • Two-Way Mirroring (aka one to one)
    That’s the most common protection strategy and consists of mirroring the infrastructure from site A to site B. It’s possible to configure a protection domain A (from A to B) and protection domain B (from B to A) to make both sites act active-passive, spread the workload, and avoid an outage on all the VMs as in case of issues, only 50% of the VMs would be affected and the rest runs intact.
  • One to Many
    In this replication scenario, A is the main location there are multiple remote locations. The main workload is running on-site A and sites B and C (remote locations) act as backup for specific workloads.
  • Many to One
    Imagine there are multiple branch offices, and all the data is backed up to a main central location. This is a classical example of ROBO data protection architecture where all the workload running on ROBO clusters is backed up to a main big cluster.
  • Many to Many
    That topology allows the most flexible setup. Using it you ensure the best application continuity and protection strategy.
  • Cloud as recovery site – Xi Leap

Nutanix offers the possibility to use its integrated cloud solution as a recovery site, Xi Leap. Xi Leap eliminates the need for a dedicated Disaster Recovery Site, and It’s managed by Prism Central. There are a few points to focus on:

  • Availability Zones
    • All Nutanix clusters connected to a Prism Central instance or Xi Leap Zone. Depending on the architecture, it can represent a DataCenter, server room, or geographic territory.
  • Protection Policies
    • Define the RPO (Recovery Point Objective), retention period.
  • Categories
    • Used to assign VMs to protection policies.
  • Recovery Plans
    • Englobe the specifications of the disaster recovery plan like VMs boot order, IP address management, and virtual networking mappings.

Xi Leap availability zones over the world:

  • US West
  • US East
  • UK
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Japan

Xi Leap is “cross hypervisor” DR (from ESXi to AHV), minimum RPO is 1h, allows the customer to save money, rack space, cooling power, network switches ports as a secondary infrastructure, which is not used often, is not in place.




Nutanix data protection allows multiple topologies and replication setup choices to fit 100% of your business requirements. It is possible to combine all the options and create complex recovery scenarios to guarantee data persistence and availability.  

Even is possible to configure the Cloud as a recovery site… Nutanix is cloud-friendly!!



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