How to configure Disaster Recovery System (DRS) with Cisco CUCM

The Disaster Recovery System (DRS) provides full data backup and restore capabilities for all servers in a Cisco Unified Communications Manager cluster. It can be invoked from Cisco Unified Communications Manager Administration, or from any IM and Presence Service node. The Disaster Recovery System allows you to perform regularly scheduled automatic or user-invoked manual data backups.

The Disaster Recovery System performs a cluster-level backup, which means that it collects backups for all servers in a Cisco Unified Communications Manager cluster to a central location and archives the backup data to physical storage device.

DRS restores its own settings (backup device settings and schedule settings) as part of the platform backup/restore. DRS backs up and restores the drfDevice.xml and drfSchedule.xml files. When the server is restored with these files, you do not need to reconfigure DRS backup device and schedule.

When you perform a system data restoration, you can choose which nodes in the cluster you want to restore.

Supported features and components

Disaster Recovery System can back up and restore the following components. The system backs up all of its components automatically.

  • Cisco Unified Communications Manager database (CCMDB), includes Cisco Unified Communications Manager, Call Detail Records Analysis and Reporting, and Call Detail Records
  • Platform
  • Music On Hold (MOH) Audio Files
  • BAT Bulk Provisioning Service (BPS)
  • CCM Preference Files (CCMPREFS)
  • TFTP Phone device files (TFTP)
  • SNMP Syslog Component (SYSLOGAGT SNMP)
  • Trace Collection Tool (TCT)
  • Cluster Manager (CLM)
  • Cisco Extended Functions (CEF)
  • Reporter

In addition, the Disaster Recovery System backs up and restores the following components of the IM and Presence Service if you have IM and Presence nodes installed in the cluster:

  • Trace Collection Tool (TCT)
  • IM and Presence Preference Files (PREFS)
  • IM and Presence Database (DB)
  • XMPP Configuration Files (XCP)
  • Syslog Component (SYSLOGAGT)
  • Platform
  • Cluster Manager (CLM)
  • IM and Presence Configuration Files (CUP)

System requirements

To back up data to a remote device on the network, you must have an SFTP server that is configured. Cisco allows you to use any SFTP server product, but recommends SFTP products that have been certified with Cisco Technology Partners.

SFTP server information

Use below information to determine which SFTP solution fits your system:

  • SFTP server on Cisco Prime Collaboration Deployment – This server is provided and tested by Cisco, and supported by Cisco TAC.
  • SFTP server from Technology Partner – These servers are third party provided, third party tested and jointly supported by TAC and Cisco vendor.
  • SFTP server from another third party – These servers are third party provided, have limited Cisco testing and are not officially supported by Cisco TAC.

Cisco uses following servers for internal testing.  You may use one of these servers, but must contact vendor for support:

Master and Local Agent

The Disaster Recovery System contains two key functions: Master Agent (MA) and Local Agent (LA).

Master Agent:

  • The Master Agent coordinates backup and restore activity with Local Agents. 
  • The system automatically starts the Master Agent service on each node of the cluster, but the Master Agent is functional only on the publisher node.
  • The Master Agents on the subscriber nodes do not perform any functions.

Local Agent:

  • The server has a Local Agent to perform backup and restore functions.
  • Each node in a Cisco Unified Communications Manager cluster, including the node that contains the Master Agent, must have its own Local Agent to perform backup and restore functions.
  • By default, a Local Agent automatically gets started on each node of the cluster, including IM and Presence nodes.

You can monitor Master and Local Agent services using CUCM RTMT tool. Please Click Here to view my document about how to setup CUCM RTMT alerts.

Configuration Steps

Now let’s discuss about how to configure DRS for backup and restore functionality.

Access DRS:

Disaster Recovery System can be accessed on Cisco Unified Communications Manager (CUCM) nodes, IM and Presence nodes, Unity connection nodes, Finesse nodes and CUIC nodes using OS Admin credentials.

Follow below steps to login to Disaster Recovery System:

  1. First Navigate to CUCM console, then select Disaster Recovery System from Navigation drop down and select Go:

Or type in below URL in address bar of the browser:

https://CUCM Pub hostname/drf/

  • Login using CUCM Operating System Administration credentials.
  • Below is the landing page of DRS after login:

DRS Backup Menu options:

Let’s have a look at all the options available under Backup menu:

Add Backup Device (SFTP Server and drive):

  1. Navigate to Backup -> Backup Device

2. Click Add New to create back up device.

3. Populate fields as described below:

  • Backup device name – Descriptive name of the SFTP server
  • Hostname / IP address – hostname or ip address of SFTP server
  • Path name – SFTP directory where back up will be saved (don’t include SFTP root path)
  • User name – username to connect to SFTP drive
  • Password – Password to connect to SFTP drive
  • Number of backups to store on Network Directory – defines how many backups you would like to store in SFTP drive. Previous backup will be deleted based on the number selected here. Max is 14.

4. Click Save to add this backup device.  DRS will connect to SFTP server and drive using provided credentials to test connectivity.  If connectivity is successful, then device will be added.

Add Scheduler:

  1. Navigate to Backup -> Scheduler

2. Click Add New to create new scheduler:

3. Fill up details as below:

  • Schedule Name – descriptive name of the schedule
  • Backup Device name – select backup device added from previous heading
  • Select features – available options are: UCM, CDR_CAR, PLM, IM_AND_PRESENCE.  Put check mark against necessary component.  Ideally select all.
  • List of components which will be backed up.  These will be selected based on the selection done in previous step
  • Start backup at Date – select any past date except today’s date
  • Start backup at Time – select time when to run backup.  Ideally this should be during non-working hours or non-peak hours.
  • Frequency:
    • Once
    • Daily
    • Weekly
    • Monthly

4. Click Save.

5. If you have multiple schedules, then you can enable or disable a particular schedule by clicking respective button.

Take Manual Back up:

  1. Navigate to Backup -> Manual backup

2. Fill in details as below:

  • Device name – Select SFTP device from the drop down
  • Select Features – select components to take backup of
  • If you want to estimate the size of backup, then click on Estimate Size button
  • Then click on Start Backup button to start manual backup

3. Estimated size is based on the last successful backup.  So if you are running it for the first time, then you will not get estimated size.  If there was a successful backup done earlier, then you’ll get message like below:

View History of backup job:

  1. Navigate to Backup -> History

2. You’ll see history of backup jobs along with their status, what features were backedup etc.

Review Current Status of backup:

  1. Navigate to Backup -> Current Status

2. You’ll see status of last backup job:

In addition to above, Disaster Recovery backup/restore is also available for below servers:

  • Unity Connection
  • Finesse
  • CUIC

If you want to learn more about these servers or have any specific question, please do drop a comment. All your feedbacks are most important.