soda0091
Contributor
Contributor

Full Virtual Machine backup

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I currently have an ISCSI Equal Logic where all of my VM's reside. I would like to know what would be the best way to back up the VMs so that I can do a full restore of a VM if it were to become corrupted. Each of the VMs currently have Netbackup 6.5.2 installed on them. I also have Equal logic snapshots running.

Thanks.

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Texiwill
Leadership
Leadership

Hello,

CHeck out http://vmprofessional.com/index.php?content=esx3backups for a comparison of products.

You can also look into VISBU and vmkbk.pl


Best regards,
Edward L. Haletky
VMware Communities User Moderator
====
Author of the book 'VMWare ESX Server in the Enterprise: Planning and Securing Virtualization Servers', Copyright 2008 Pearson Education.
Blue Gears and SearchVMware Pro Blogs -- Top Virtualization Security Links -- Virtualization Security Round Table Podcast

--
Edward L. Haletky
vExpert XIV: 2009-2022,
VMTN Community Moderator
vSphere Upgrade Saga: https://www.astroarch.com/blogs
GitHub Repo: https://github.com/Texiwill

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8 Replies
Lightbulb
Virtuoso
Virtuoso

VCB would be one way to go (Supports ISCSI now). You can integrate it into the Netbackup environment see http://entsupport.symantec.com/docs/293350

This will add a little expense to your environment (New Windows 2003 system)

You could backup the VMs using the netbackup client software, just like physical systems, but event if you cordon off the backup traffic to another vswitch --> pnic your CPU on the host is still going to get thrahed by the client backup process.

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Nick_F
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Given you already use NetBackup I'd set up a VCB proxy server with NetBackup Enterprise Server installed on it then configure that to control the VCB backups (lots of docs from both EMC and Symantec on how to do this). With 6.5.2 you even get the option to do a full image backup but with individual file level restoration in the same backup pass (file level 3 type in the snapshot options). Only issue we've found is it crashes database servers so we do LAN backups of these using NetBackup agents, they aren't proper images though. Each ESX server needs to be covered by a NetBackup Enterprise Client licence to (as far as I understand it).

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Erik_Zandboer
Expert
Expert

I would suggest to take a look at esXpress. It is a great product for taking full images from VMs, and it scales very well (VCB is much harder to scale).

For a total backup solution, I would suggest to use both: esXpress for your system virtual disks and smaller virtual datadisks, and the netbackup agent for larger datadisks (SQL / fileserver / Exchange etc).

This resutls in "best of both worlds": You can restore your system disks with ease using esXpress (for VCB you have to use converter which is not so great in my opinion). On the other hand you have your netbackup backups, so you can perform file level restores with ease as well... You might even decide to run full image backups only on weekends for some more static VMs....

About scaling esXpress, take a look at one of my blogs:

Visit my blog at http://www.vmdamentals.com
ShouldEye
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

To make VCB more scalable you can use the vcbMounter command on every ESX server. This will allow parallel image backups equal to the number of ESX servers you have. If you have the budget however I would use esXpress.

Texiwill
Leadership
Leadership

Hello,

CHeck out http://vmprofessional.com/index.php?content=esx3backups for a comparison of products.

You can also look into VISBU and vmkbk.pl


Best regards,
Edward L. Haletky
VMware Communities User Moderator
====
Author of the book 'VMWare ESX Server in the Enterprise: Planning and Securing Virtualization Servers', Copyright 2008 Pearson Education.
Blue Gears and SearchVMware Pro Blogs -- Top Virtualization Security Links -- Virtualization Security Round Table Podcast

--
Edward L. Haletky
vExpert XIV: 2009-2022,
VMTN Community Moderator
vSphere Upgrade Saga: https://www.astroarch.com/blogs
GitHub Repo: https://github.com/Texiwill
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lamw
Community Manager
Community Manager

100% free solution: http://communities.vmware.com/docs/DOC-8760

=========================================================================

--William

VMware ESX/ESXi scripts and resources at:

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soda0091
Contributor
Contributor

If I don't use VCB and I just mount the ISCI drive and then backup that, will that allow me to backup a running VM?

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soda0091
Contributor
Contributor

I wanted to thank everyone for their input. I was able to configure my Equal Logic SAN to do a snap shot of the VMs. Equal Logic provides an interface that lets you configure and schedule VM snapshots.

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