Are you Really Prepared in the Event of an Orchestrator Disaster?

Author by Christopher Mank

One of the many beauties of the System Center suite of products are the published articles on TechNet on Disaster Recovery.  The applications that make up System Center are built on the capability of backing up the SQL databases that store the actual data and in the event of a disaster, you can simply recover the DB.  Pretty easy right? Well, yes, that is true.  But as I found out recently while working with a client's DEV Orchestrator environment, simply backing up the Orchestrator DB is not sufficient without also backing up the SQL service master key. If you take a quick browse out to the TechNet article on how to backup Orchestrator (found here), you will notice this is spelled out right there in black and white. How To Backup Orchestrator Since the Orchestrator DB allows one the ability to encrypt certain data (like variables, etc.), this means that SQL stores an encryption key to ensure this data is safe.  For more information on how this all works, you can refer to the TechNet article on how to restore an Orchestrator backup (found here).  Below is the section we are primarily speaking of. Orchestrator Cryptography Image So...are you really prepared in the event of an Orchestrator disaster?  If you have not already done so, backup your Orchestrator SQL service master key!  To perform this action, refer to the following link for detailed instructions.  I hope this helps any of those who may have missed this step in their Disaster Recovery planning. Until the Whole World Hears, Christopher


Christopher Mank

Systems Architect