14 Replies Latest reply: Oct 9, 2010 2:19 PM by SSnyderNuii RSS

    Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?

    citybird Novice

      Hi

       

      I feel like this question should be answered in at least ten knowledgebase articles and other documentations, yet i seem to be unable to find any of them ...

       

      I have BackupExec 2010 and vSphere 4.0 Enterprise Plus (3 ESX 4 servers). So far, I've been testing the nbd transport mode, which works, but gets slow sometimes on VMs with disks >100GB (i read that this is a problem with the service console of vmware esx 4 - not sure though).

       

      Anyhow, since I have all the necessary hardware on site, i thought i could as well connect the server running backupexec (and vsphere server) to the san directly using FC...

       

      ... but i can't find a guide, neither from vmware nor from backupexec nor EMC, on what i should pay attention while doing this. Those questions came up before I've even touched the FC-Controller:

      - vsphere 4.0 has this storage API thingy ... backupexec 2010 apparently supports it. does that mean that i don't have to install vmware VCB?

      - I'm running backupexec 2010 and vSphere Server on the same box...any problems with that?

      - i feel really uncomfortable that windows might write something to my vmfs luns, and destroying them with it... (like auto-signing or auto-initializing of new disks). how do i prevent windows from doing so?

      - i read about a problem with multi-pathing and san backup mode ... i could just install EMC powerpath, which would handle the multipathing. does that work with vsphere storage api?

       

      any answers (or links to documents i'm apparently unable to find) are very much appreciated.

       

      best regards,

        • 1. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
          chellquist Novice

          Hi

          Sorry I can't help you but just for the information.

          I've spent the whole day to googling and trying to find this wery same infromation. I'm also sucessfully runing BE2010 with "nbd transport mode" but want to use SAN mode instead. I've tried to get some support on symantec forum but no result yet https://www-secure.symantec.com/connect/forums/howto-config-vmware-agent-san-backup

           

          I have Win2008r2, Powerpath 5.3-64bit, Emc clariions, Backupexec 2010 with vmware agent enabled, and vSphere 4.0

          I've done the config like we did with vcb in older setups.

          diskpart automount disable and diskpart automount scrub

          And

          "NoAutoMount"=dword:00000001

           

          I haven't presented the vmfs luns to the backup server yet just because it would be nice to have some kind of documentation of how it should be done and what the requirements are

           

          Have someone seen documentation on this or information of how to get this stuff running ?

           

          Message was edited by: chellquist becuse of realy bad typings

          • 2. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
            Marcelo Soares Virtuoso vExpert

            You can attach your windows machine to the SAN, no problem. Just make sure it will not format the LUNs or attribute drive letters to them, you can find information on how to do that and all the process here: http://www.vmware.com/pdf/vsphere4/r40/vsp_vcb_15_u1_admin_guide.pdf

             

            About the BE2010 support, I am really not sure if it have support for the vStorage API, so I suppose you will need to install VCB. Anyway, if you already do nbd backups I think you will not need to install any additional software, just change the nbd do san mode.

             

            Marcelo Soares

            VMWare Certified Professional 310/410

            Technical Support Engineer

            Globant Argentina

             

            Consider awarding points for "helpful" and/or "correct" answers.

            • 3. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
              chellquist Novice

              Yes I've read the vcb documentation and changed the default resignaturing behaviour in windows so it should be saft to connect. There isn't much about win2008r2 in the vcb documentation but I already found out that standard version still uses automount enabled as default.

               

              BE2010 uses the vStorage API and that should exists a documentation or whitepaper of this I think.

              • 4. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                citybird Novice

                Hi,

                 

                I had the time to experiment a bit this morning and I was very successful.

                 

                Here's what I did:

                - I've uninstalled VCB from my backupexec / vsphere server host (same machine)

                - i've put one esx server into maintenance mode

                - set VMware DRS to manual

                - set up a new LUN in EMC, new Storage Group, and added the new LUN, the maintenance ESX-Server and the Backup-Server into that Storage Group

                - rescan host bus adapter on the ESX host, create VMFS storage on the new lun

                - exit maintenance mode on ESX host

                - set up a dummy VM on this new lun, install windows or something (doesn't really matter, but i prefered to actually have something to backup)

                - reboot your backup exec / vsphere box. make sure the LUN gets recognized in compmgmt.msc, but DO NOT initialize the disk or even dare of giving it a drive letter. Just look if its there, no other clickies...

                - Set up a Backup Job in Backup-Exec. I've used a Full VMware Backup of the VM, only activated SAN transport mode...

                 

                ... and it ran like a charm with speeds up to 4000MB/min.

                 

                I however still have the same problem that the Backupjob gets slower and slower the longer it lasts ... I'm currently backing up my exchange server (all disks are on the same LUN), and what started with 3300MB/min is now down to 1400-ish after two hours, still decreasing.

                • 5. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                  Marcelo Soares Virtuoso vExpert

                  The slowness may be due to the compression VCB does. You can try with the -F 1 option so the compression will be disabled.

                   

                  Marcelo Soares

                  VMWare Certified Professional 310/410

                  Technical Support Engineer

                  Globant Argentina

                   

                  Consider awarding points for "helpful" and/or "correct" answers.

                  • 6. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                    citybird Novice

                    indeed! I've just checked the CPU load on the backup server and it's almost 100% (which is quite remarkable on a two cpu, 4 virtual cpus system). The server is an HP Proliant DL380 G4 and has two P4 3.6GHz Xeon CPUs with Hyperthreading, but no multicore and is about 5 years old ... It's soon to be replaced with an i7 based HP Proliant DL380 G6 which should then be able to handle the load.

                    • 7. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                      chellquist Novice

                      Hi perfect test you did. I'll attach my luns later this weekend. My backup server is a dl380g6 18gb memory. I'll report my performance finding when I have them

                      • 8. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                        ericdaly Enthusiast

                        Hi Chellquist,

                            Any update on how your testing on G6 went? I am planning a project which will include BE2010 using VMware agent and would like to get some feedback on the SAN speeds/gotchas etc .

                         

                        Thanks

                        Eric

                        • 9. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                          manoelgjr Lurker

                          Hello folks,

                           

                          Thank you for the testing performed! Looks that there is not much documentation available for this process. I had setup BackupExec to use SAN transport mode and felt like I had to share with the community, so this is officially my first post to a VMware forum :).

                           

                          Anyway, let me share with you guys what I did and what was the result:

                           

                          I am running: VMware ESX and vCenter 4.1. On the Backup side I have Symantec BackupExec 2010 SP2, or R2 like they are calling now. My VMs are stored on a HP MSA 2000 iSCSI storage.

                           

                          To setup the VMs backup using SAN transport I kind of followed the steps previously posted. The idea of having a VMware LUN published to a Windows server scared me quite a bit, perhaps, I mapped the LUN as a "READ-ONLY" LUN, so it doesn't even allow Windows to activate, assign letters, anything. As far as I understand this is the safest way to go and it works fine.

                           

                          I setup a backup job to use SAN transport, backed up my VMs to disc first. I could get an average throughput of 2.5 GB/min, not bad. After that I have a duplication job that sends the data to tape.

                           

                          Actually, the setup was pretty straight forward and it is working fine. I will be doing some extra tests as the week goes on and will report any issues.

                          • 10. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                            Rumple Master

                            Anyone done a restore yet?  One of the things I found out I absolutely hate about BE 12.5 is that it would restore the entire vmdk's to local disk and then afterwards run vmware converter to restore them into the vmfs volume.

                            Have any errors with the vmconverter and ti would delete the damn restored files and need to start the whole process over again.

                             

                            I really hope they changed that in 2010...

                            • 11. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                              manoelgjr Lurker

                              I did a couple of test restores. It does not require the Converter as it did on 12.5. You have the ability to restore the VM to a different vCenter if you want to, or you can restore to the same one, select the host, datastore, vm name... all the good stuff. It is neat!

                              • 12. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                                BondIT Lurker

                                Thanks for the info - im just looking at this now so this is helpful

                                 

                                Can anyone tell me if you need enough space on the BE2010 server to hold each vm or does the job pass the data directly to the tape without staging it somewhere first?

                                 

                                Thanks

                                • 13. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                                  SSnyderNuii Novice

                                  I was able to do a backup using the guidelines posted above. However, I am not getting an error when backing up the BE server itself. Is anyone else getting this?:

                                   

                                  - AOFO: Initialization failure on: "System?State". Advanced Open File Option used: Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS).

                                  V-79-10000-11226 - VSS Snapshot error. The Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) snapshot provider selected returned: "Unexpected provider error". Ensure that all provider services are enabled and can be started. Check the Windows Event Viewer for details.

                                  The following volumes are dependent on resource: "C:" "
                                  ?\VOLUME{9E7180B6-AF43-11DF-A464-806E6F6E6963}" .

                                   

                                  The volume in question is my unmounted iSCSI VMFS volume. Is this normal?

                                   

                                  Thanks!

                                   

                                  Shane

                                  • 14. Re: Howto set up BackupExec 2010 to use SAN transport mode with vSphere 4?
                                    SSnyderNuii Novice

                                    Also, I'm able to backup VMs when selected underneath the ESXi host. But when selecting the same VM underneath vCenter, I get an error:

                                     

                                    VMVCB::
                                    IRVESX02\VCGuestVm\(DC)ha-datacenter(DC)\vm\TestServer

                                    Success

                                     

                                    VMVCB::
                                    VCENTER\VCGuestVm\(DC)Irvine(DC)\vm\TestServer

                                    FAIL

                                    Backup- VMVCB::
                                    VCENTER\VCGuestVm\(DC)Irvine(DC)\vm\TestServerV-79-57344-38277 - Unable to open a disk of the virtual machine.

                                    VixDiskLib_Open() reported the error: Invalid connection handle

                                     

                                    What am I missing?

                                     

                                    Thanks,

                                    Shane