VMware Consolidated Backup (VCB)

Version 3

    Important note

    At the beginning of 2010 VMware is announcing the end of availability for VMware Consolidated Backup, cause vSphere backup product strategy, ongoing enhancements, and end of availability plans for VMware Consolidated Backup.

     

    VMware Backup Product Strategy for vSphere

    VMware released vStorage APIs for Data Protection (VADP) with the vSphere 4.0 release in May, 2009. VADP is the next generation of VMware’s backup framework. We have also been working with several backup partners to integrate VADP into their solutions to make backup of vSphere Virtual Machines fast, efficient and easy to deploy compared to VCB and other backup solutions. Several of our major backup partners have already released VADP integrated backup products and we expect most of the major backup partners to have VADP integrated backup software by the upcoming feature release of the vSphere platform in 2010.

     

    See: http://app.connect.vmware.com/e/es.aspx?s=524&e=12880125

     

    -


    Introduction

    VMware Consolidated Backup enables agent-free (and in some cases also LAN-free) backup of virtual machines from a centralized proxy server. It's a scripting framework and could "easy" be integrated with backup programs.

     

    Understanding VMware Consolidated Backup - http://www.vmware.com/pdf/vi3_consolidated_backup.pdf

    VCB official documentation - http://www.vmware.com/support/pubs/vcb_pubs.html

     

     

    Other backup solutions

    Backup solutions for VMware ESXi

    VMware Data Recovery vs VMware Consolidated Backup

    Backup solutions

     

    More info on Virtual Machine Backup Guide:

    http://www.vmware.com/pdf/vi3_35/esx_3/r35u2/vi3_35_25_u2_vm_backup.pdf

     

    Transport mode

    • SAN mode (default) - works LAN free, but requrire a physical VCB proxy with SAN connectivity

    • NBD mode - use LAN connectivity to do backup jobs

    • nbdssl mode - same of nbd but with SSL for encryptions

    • hot-add mode - works in a VM and can do backup LAN free - VCB in hot-add mode, why are backups slow?

     

    See also:

    http://www.yellow-bricks.com/2008/01/15/new-vcb-features/

     

    How make restore?

    VCB does not provide any restore method (there is only a vcbRestore tool, but is quite complicated to use)...

    For file level backup you can use network to restore single file from VCB proxy to the VM...

    For image level backup you can use VMware Converter to restore the VM:

    http://blog.scottlowe.org/2007/03/06/restoring-vcb-full-backups-with-vmware-converter/

     

    -


    Configuration

    http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/vcb_best_practices.pdf

    http://viops.vmware.com/home/docs/DOC-1392 - Proven Practice: Setting Up VMware Consolidated Backup for any Backup Software

    http://blog.vmpros.nl/2009/04/21/vmware-10-steps-to-install-vcb-v15/

     

    Integration with Symantec Backup Exec

    Symantec Backup Exec for Windows Servers - http://www.symantec.com/business/backup-exec-for-windows-servers

    Technical FAQ: Backup Exec 12.5 for VMware - http://eval.symantec.com/mktginfo/enterprise/other_resources/b-backupexec_12.5_faq_10-2008_69739.en-us.pdf

    Configure Backup Exec For VCB Backups  - http://bradspace.net/blog/kb/?p=105&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1

    Shortcut Guide for Setting Up VCB 1.1 and BackupExec

    http://viops.vmware.com/home/docs/DOC-1191 - Proven Practice: Integrating Symantec Backup Exec 12.5 with VCB 1.5

    Installing VCB for Backup Exec 12.5

    vcb & backup exec 12.5 w/ vmware option - Showing of disks in the disk managment

    Best practice for Backup Exec jobs when using VCB

     

    Integration with other backup software

    http://viops.vmware.com/home/servlet/JiveServlet/download/1127-1-1134/Integrating%20Veritas%20NetBackup60.pdf

     

    -


    Debug

    Use the CLI: http://www.petri.co.il/vmware-consolidated-backup-utilities.htm

    VCB 1.5 log file locations

    VCB Proxy Server cannot detect VMFS/LVM signature

    VCB 1.5U1 backup preformace on Fiberchannel Very slow 5mb/s

     

    -


    Running a script before VCB Snapshot

    http://blog.ntgconsult.dk/2009/05/vmware-vcb-example-pre-freeze-and-post-thaw-script.html

    VCB and pre-freeze/post-thaw scripts in Linux VMs

     

    Pre and post scripts location:

    http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1006671 - Running custom quiescing scripts inside Windows virtual machine with ESX 3.5 Update 2 and later