Using Azure Quickstart to Deploy the Zerto Cloud Appliance

Overview

While deploying the Zerto Cloud Appliance (ZCA) in Azure is straightforward, it does require that a Resource Group, networking, and network security groups (NSGs) exist in Azure already.

We wanted to eliminate the separate pre-requisite build steps and have the Resource Group, Network, NSGs, and storage all deploy along with the ZCA. Fortunately, Microsoft made that possible with Azure Resource Manager (ARM) templates. ARM templates house all the settings necessary to fully deploy a simple or complex solution in Azure.

Deployment

Prerequisites

  1. An Azure Subscription.
  2. An account in Azure that has owner permissions to the subscription and the ability to add web apps in Azure.
  3. An operational site-to-site connection between on-premises and Azure. For proofs of concept and testing, a software VPN like SoftEther can be used. For production deployments you can use a hardware VPN or ExpressRoute.
  4. For complete prerequisite requirements, see the Zerto Virtual Replication Azure Guidelines https://zerto.io/2BMLkPY

Installation Steps

  1. Go to https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/resources/templates/?term=zerto
  2. Select the “Create a Zerto Cloud Appliance”.

3. Click on the Deploy to Azure button. It will launch the Azure portal and begin the installation. This page provides the link and a complete list of parameter definitions for the deployment in Azure.

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/resources/templates/201-zerto-zca/

  1. The Zerto Cloud Appliance Marketplace VM, along with the networking and NSG’s, will begin to deploy. It takes about 15 minutes to complete the ZCA deployment.
  2. The deployment process is shown in the Azure portal.

  1. The next step is to RDP to the Zerto Cloud Appliance by clicking on the Virtual Machine object in the Resource Group and complete the ZCA installation. For detailed steps on how to configure the ZCA, see this blog post with video steps: http://virtualizationinformation.com/zerto-quick-tip-installing-zerto-virtual-replication-appliance-5-5-update-1-in-azure/

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Preparing Azure for a Zerto Cloud Appliance Installation – Part 4: Storage Accounts

Storage Accounts

Creating a new Storage Account like we will do in this step isn’t required to do a ZCA installation because the ZCA installer will create it automatically. However, as part of the installation, you can also select existing storage accounts so this post shows you if you have storage accounts already existing, you can use them.

From the main menu, select Storage accounts and create a new storage Account.

In the create storage account, give it a name that makes it easy to locate. I’m using msignitesa, the Resource Manager deployment model, General purpose, Premium (you can use standard), LRS and Disabled for secure transfer required. Be sure to use the Resource Group you created.

Go to the Resource Group you created and you will see the network, network security group and the storage account in the Resource Group.

This is the final post in this series. You now have everything you need to start the ZCA installation.

Preparing Azure for a Zerto Cloud Appliance Installation – Part 3: Network Security Groups

In the previous post in this series, we created Resource Groups and Networks and Subnets. In this post we continue to create what we need in the Azure environment for our Zerto Cloud Appliance installation.

Network Security Groups

Using similar steps as the creation of Resource Group and Networks,   from the main menu, go to Network Security Groups (NSGs) so we can create the Network Security Groups for the subnets.  Click +Add and give the Network Security Group a name. I used ms-ignite-demo-subnet-nsg and use the ms-ignite-rg Resource Group.

Once it’s created, open the Network Security Group so you can add some firewall rules. I’m going to show you how to create the rules using RDP and these rules could actually be assigned at different levels like individual NICs, but for the purpose of showing how to put inbound and outbound firewall rules, we’ll apply them to the subnets. For more on the design and usage of NSGs, read this post.

Additionally, since you most likely have a commercial firewall on-premises, there are commercial offerings in the Azure marketplace that allows your network and security teams to use the platform that they are accustomed to using. For example, if you use Cisco ASA, there is an Azure marketplace appliance available to use.

In the Resource Group, go down to Inbound Rules.

We want to use the drop-down selector for the Service. Choose RDP to allow Remote Desktop connections.

Once you click OK, it shows the firewall rules in the main table.

In this menu, select Subnets to associate the firewall rules to the subnets. Click the +Associate and select the virtual network you created and associate the subnets.

Once you have associated all the subnets you need, then you can close the blade.

Navigate over to the Resource Group you created. You will see the network and subnets in the Resource Group.

At this point, you actually have what you need to install Zerto Virtual Replication. During the Zerto Cloud Appliance installation, it will create a storage account. However, in version 5.5U1 Zerto added the ability to use an existing storage account. In the next post, we’ll create a storage account.