Tape Devices in a Virtual Machine Tape Server

Discussions specific to tape backups

Re: Tape Devices in a Virtual Machine Tape Server

Veeam Logoby Matt@Work » Mon Apr 17, 2017 4:03 pm

Thats what we do now, I'l keep it that way.
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Re: Tape Devices in a Virtual Machine Tape Server

Veeam Logoby v.Eremin » Mon Apr 17, 2017 4:36 pm

Good to know. This way not only will you stay compliant with both VMware and Veeam, but also get a through support in case you need it. Thanks.
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Re: Tape Devices in a Virtual Machine Tape Server

Veeam Logoby VladV » Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:20 pm

I'm sorry to dig up an old thread but would like to point out something. At least from my point of view...

Because I'm in the process of purchasing a tape library I've started planing for deployment. One thing I noticed was the KB mention in this topic which states that VMWare does not support Tape drives/libraries connected to ESXi 5 and up.

I am planning to add a SAS HBA card and dedicate it to an existing VM by using DirectPath I/O. This way, the card bypasses VMWare and is connected directly to the OS. After that, it shouldn't matter what you connect to the HBA from VMWare's perspective as it almost completely bypasses the hypervisor.

Is my thinking wrong? Are there other factors using this configuration that may affect stability or performance? I mean, I have been using this config to attach JBODs to Windows Storage Spaces for a long time now without any issues.
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Re: Tape Devices in a Virtual Machine Tape Server

Veeam Logoby francs » Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:29 pm

I've learned this the hard way, after spending hours trying to make tape work through a VM.
Don't waste your time.
There's a reason it is not supported.
Even if you do get the OS and Veeam to see and use the library and tape devices you still end up with strange intermittent errors.
It's also not a Veeam/Windows only problem. I've had problems getting tape to work properly with TSM in a VM on ESX and even TSM on virtualized IBM Power servers.
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Re: Tape Devices in a Virtual Machine Tape Server

Veeam Logoby Dima P. » Wed Dec 13, 2017 2:17 pm

Thanks francs. I completely agree - it's better to stick with supported configuration, as otherwise you may end up with an issue which we cannot fix as it’s related to third party components.
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Re: Tape Devices in a Virtual Machine Tape Server

Veeam Logoby infused » Tue Dec 19, 2017 11:08 pm

Just use AWS VTL. It's so damm good. http://www.tecfused.com/2017/07/veeam-a ... ary-guide/
http://www.infused.co.nz - My Blog.
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Re: Tape Devices in a Virtual Machine Tape Server

Veeam Logoby Anders » Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:38 pm

Just want to add that I've used both FC Attached Tape and SAS attached tape in virtual machines based on vmware 5.5 and 6.0 without any issues.

The trick is to attach the entire HBA Card to the virtual machine (thereby limiting the VM from vMotion etc) - But performance and stability is super. Filling up 2 LTO7 tapes at max speed (600 MB/s) is possible.

Its not optimal, but if you NEED the tape server to be virtual, its a working solution. The solutions I've been involved in, have been to provide easy faalback to the old backup solution to restore old files from tape, by moving the HBA to the old backup server (that was virtualized and put on the same host)
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