When you create a protection group for array-based replication, you specify array information and then Site Recovery Manager computes the set of virtual machines into a datastore group. Datastore groups contain all the files of the protected virtual machines.

Protection groups consist of virtual machines that use the same datastore group. A datastore group consists of consistency groups. All of the virtual machines and templates in a consistency group replicate their files together, and all the virtual machines in the consistency group recover together. You can have a virtual machine with files on different datastores. In this case, Site Recovery Manager combines the datastores that contain files for a single virtual machine to create a datastore group.

A datastore group is the smallest unit of storage that Site Recovery Manager can recover or test independently. When you create an array-based protection group, it initially contains only those virtual machines that store all of their files on one of the datastore groups that Site Recovery Manager associates with the protection group. A protection group can contain one or more datastore groups, but a datastore group can belong to only one protection group.

You can add virtual machines to a protection group by creating them on one of the datastores that belong to the datastore groups that Site Recovery Manager associates with the protection group. You can also add virtual machines to the protection group by using Storage vMotion to move their storage to one of the datastores in the datastore group. You can remove a member from a protection group by moving the virtual machine's files to another datastore.

To configure array-based replication, you must assign each virtual machine to a resource pool, folder, and network that exist at the recovery site. You can specify defaults for these assignments by selecting inventory mappings. Site Recovery Manager applies inventory mappings when you create the protection group. If you do not specify inventory mappings, you must configure them individually for each member of the protection group. Site Recovery Manager does not protect virtual machines that you did not configure or that you incorrectly configured for replication, even if they reside on a protected datastore.

Site Recovery Manager determines the composition of a datastore group by the set of virtual machines that have files on the datastores in the group, and by the devices on which those datastores are stored.

You create array-based protection groups to enable the protection of virtual machines in datastore groups that you configure to use array-based replication.

You can change the name and description of an array-based protection group and add or remove datastore groups that are part of the protection group.