Azure Site Recovery: Features & Pricing

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Bottom Line:

Microsoft Azure Site Recovery is one of the top offerings in DRaaS. For any company already on Azure, it’s clearly a good choice – the compatibility with the Microsoft platform is of course excellent. For x86 platforms in general, it does well in low-complexity environments that can handle a self-service model.

Microsoft ASR can touts its highly positive user reviews, yet it isn’t known for support of high-complexity environments or the challenges of managed service recovery. However, its extensive global presence, integration with other Microsoft platforms, low cost, and unlimited, pay-as-you-go testing make it a top candidate for environments that aren’t particularly complex.

Service Description:

Microsoft provides infrastructure, platform and software services as well as DRaaS through its Azure Cloud Services. Azure Site Recovery is part of the Operations Management Suite. Microsoft built ASR internally, and added InMage technology after acquiring the company a couple of years back. That enabled Microsoft to provide DR for VMware, Hyper-V, and physical workloads.

ASR helps ensure business continuity by keeping apps and workloads running during outages. It replicates workloads running on physical and virtual machines (VMs) from a primary site to a secondary location. When an outage occurs at the primary site, it fails over to secondary location, and users can access apps from there. After the primary location is running again, ASR can fail back to it.

Additional services: Azure offers a complete range of compute, network, storage, analytics, archiving, and backup services.


Workloads Supported:

Physical and virtual x86, on-premises VMs, Azure Stack VMs, and physical servers.

Regional Presence:

35 locations across the Americas, Europe and Asia.


Up to 300+ server images and can support application-specific replication and recovery via additional scripting.


  • Replication of Azure VMs from one Azure region to another.
  • Replication of on-premises VMware VMs, Hyper-V VMs, physical servers (Windows and Linux), Azure Stack VMs to Azure.
  • Replication of on-premises VMware VMs, Hyper-V VMs managed by System Center VMM, and physical servers to a secondary site.
  • Some limitations when replicating from on-premises to multiple regions, or between certain regions.
  • Azure Site Recovery can replicate an Azure VM to a different Azure region directly from the Azure portal.


Failover, and failback from a single location in the Azure portal. You can run planned failovers for expected outages with zero-data loss, or unplanned failovers with minimal data loss (depending on replication frequency) for unexpected disasters. You can easily fail back to your primary site when it’s available again.

Recovery time:

  • Less than four hours. You can reduce RTO further by integrating with Azure Traffic Manager.
  • For each Protected Instance configured for On-Premises-to-On-Premises Failover, Microsoft guarantees at least 99.9% availability of the Site Recovery service.
  • For each Protected Instance configured for On-Premises-to-Azure and Azure-to-Azure Failover, a two-hour Recovery Time Objective is available.


Self-service. The services are available as SaaS or a virtual ASR appliance. The appliance was added to automate some areas of customer onboarding.


Encryption and key management.


Support ranges from basic self-service to Premier, which gives 24/7 unlimited access to support engineers, and more. Microsoft has improved its documentation and support. However, users report complexity of setup and operations for ASR that leads them to utilize partners for onboarding or management. The Azure Automation library provides production-ready, application-specific scripts that can be downloaded and integrated with Site Recovery.

Key Markets and Use Cases:

Ideal for those looking for low cost and unlimited, pay-as-you-go testing in low-complexity, x86-only environments, anywhere in the world.


$16 per month per instance protected for recovery from Azure to customer site. $25 when recovering to Azure. No long-term contracts are required to try ASR. All testing and data storage are based on actual utilization.

Micrsoft ASR Summary:

Microsoft ASR

Workload Support x86
Regions Covered Global
Best RTO Less than 2 hours
Delivery Self service
Key Markets Low complexity x86
Analyst Eval Leader
Price Low
Key Differentiator Supports Azure
Drew Robb
Drew Robb
Drew Robb is a contributing writer for Datamation, Enterprise Storage Forum, eSecurity Planet, Channel Insider, and eWeek. He has been reporting on all areas of IT for more than 25 years. He has a degree from the University of Strathclyde UK (USUK), and lives in the Tampa Bay area of Florida.

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