Afi multi-geo capabilities help you can comply with data residency requirements and backup your Microsoft 365 or Google Workspace data to multiple Afi geo-regions. For example, a multinational company with branches in the United States and Europe can backup users' data to the relevant Afi data-center region based on the users' country. Supported Afi regions include the USA, Canada, the EU, the United Kingdom, and Australia.
As a part of multi-region backup support, Afi provides out-of-the-box integration with Microsoft 365 multi-geo tenants. During a Microsoft 365 multi-geo tenant onboarding, Afi detects if the tenant has the multi-geo feature enabled and allows to configure a geo-location-based resource mapping for multi-geo tenants.
For Google Workspace tenants and Microsoft 365 tenants without native multi-geo support, Afi offers a multi-region backup as well, but with manual resource mapping instead of an automatic one.
Note: This feature is not available in a standard Afi SaaS backup subscription for tenants without Microsoft 365 multi-geo support. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more details
How to setup a multi-region backup account with Afi
To set up a multi-region backup account with Afi, you will need to add your Microsoft 365 or Google Workspace domain to several Afi regions and then configure geo-locations mapping in the corresponding Afi region.
To start a multi-geo setup, create an account at https://app.afi.ai and follow the wizard to add a Google Workspace or Microsoft 365 domain to one of the selected Afi regions. In the case of a Microsoft 365 tenant with native multi-geo support, Afi will automatically detect it and enable the multi-geo feature. Alternatively, please contact email@example.com to enable the multi-geo feature after your domain is added to a first Afi region.
After choosing a region to store the backup data and clicking on the Start button, the service will perform a short account setup. Then it will redirect you to the Multi-geo tab in the Afi backup panel and prompt you to finish configuration by selecting Microsoft 365 geo-locations to be backed up in this Afi region.
Example: the screenshot below shows how to map the following Microsoft 365 geo-locations to the Afi EU region: Europe/Middle East/Africa, France, and Germany.
When you have chosen geo-locations for this Afi region, click on Apply to finish setup (in case of a Google Workspace domain or Microsoft 365 domain without the native multi-geo support, please click on Apply without selecting any geo-locations).
After the geo-locations mapping is configured, the service will start domain resources synchronization, and you can add your domain to other Afi regions. To add another region, open the dropdown at the top of the screen, click on the Add data source button, and follow the same procedure.
In the case of a Microsoft 365 tenant with multi-geo support, Afi synchronizes domain resources in each region based on the geo-locations mapping, so each Afi data source contains only a regional subset of resources (users, sites, teams) from the domain. Please note that, for a proper setup, geo-location mappings in each Afi region shouldn't intersect. For example, if you select the United Kingdom geo-location for the Afi UK region, you shouldn't add this geo-location in the Afi EU region).
For tenants without Microsoft 365 multi-geo support, Afi synchronizes all domain resources to each Afi data source, so you should plan and manually configure resources for the backup in each data source. To simplify this task, you can use Organizational units or AAD Groups for backup mass management (for example, you can create AAD groups EU Users and US Users and protect only one of the groups in each Afi data source).
How to reconfigure a geo-locations mapping
You can check or reconfigure a geo-locations mapping for each Afi region at Service -> Settings -> Multi-geo tab (use the dropdown at the top of the screen to switch between them). Please note that, for large domains, it takes some time to perform resources synchronization after mapping change.
After the synchronization, resources that no longer belong to the selected Afi region based on the geo-locations configuration will be marked as Archived. Their backups will be preserved in the corresponding Afi region according to the configured retention rules.
Example: Let's suppose that, during the initial setup, an account admin configures the United Kingdom and France geo-locations to backup in a single Afi EU region. Then the account admin decides to add another Afi UK region to the setup and remove United Kingdom resources from the Afi EU region. After reconfiguration, the service marks the United Kingdom resources as Archived in EU data source but preserves their backups. The same resources in a new Afi UK data source are backed up from scratch.
Multi-geo setup limitations
Self-service backup access (backup access for end-users) is available only for tenants with native Microsoft 365 multi-geo support. For other tenants, backup access is available only for account and access group admins.