Using tape as a backup target
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luckyinfil
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Veeam 7 Design Configurations with tape drives/libraries

Post by luckyinfil »

Hi there,

I'm looking for information regarding how to design and implement the fastest/most efficient veeam backup infrastructure taking into account the newly supported tape libraries/drives. First off, based on the documentation, there are 3 transport modes: Direct SAN access, virtual appliance, and network based access (from fastest to slowest). Let's go over each one.

Direct SAN Access
In this setup, the backup proxy server is a physical server which is connected to the fiber channel switches and is zoned directly to all the datastores. In order to keep all the backup traffic on the SAN fabric, the backup proxy server must be also configured as a backup repository with fiber channel access to the repository storage.

Now, let's assume we want to add a fiber channel based tape library into this configuration. If we only have 1 backup proxy server, you can zone that tape library to the Direct SAN Access proxy server (will you have to install Veeam B&R on these proxy servers?). In this example, all the traffic on the entire Veeam backup infrastructure will be over the fiber channel network (Datastore -> FC switch -> DSA Proxy Server -> FC Switch -> Tape Library). Now for my question, is it possible to scale and how do you do it when you have multiple Direct SAN Access proxy servers? Let's assume we have an environment that is fairly large and the only way to complete the backups in the backup window is to have multiple proxy servers. If you zone all the proxy servers to the FC tape library, is it correct to assume that there is a mechanism in place to deal with concurrent "backup to tape jobs" (from different proxy servers in this case) interfering with each other? I assumed this is the case because i see the media pools being "locked" during a Backup to Tape job. Do you need to use the enterprise manager to manage these proxy servers that are now full blown veeam servers?

Is there any documentation on how to design/configure the backup infrastructure to be completely FC based?


Virtual Appliance mode
In this setup, the backup proxy server is a virtual machine which utilizes the hotadd capabilities in VMware. The hosts/cluster where this VM resides will have access to all the datastores.

Reading through much of this forum and from googling, there doesn't appear to be a method of keeping the tape backup traffic on the fiber channel network. In another thread, it was recommended to create a physical server and attach the tape library to that. In order for the backup traffic to be transfered from the backup repository to the tape library, the traffic must traverse the network. Is this correct or is there a method of transfering this data through the FC network by zoning the FC tape drive directly to the VM? This is the only way i see it working:

Backup Repository -> FC Switch -> Virtual Appliance -> Network -> Physical Veeam B&R Server -> Tape



Any help would be appreciated in answering some of these questions for me.

Dima P.
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Re: Veeam 7 Design Configurations with tape drives/libraries

Post by Dima P. »

Hello John,
all the traffic on the entire Veeam backup infrastructure will be over the fiber channel network (Datastore -> FC switch -> DSA Proxy Server -> FC Switch -> Tape Library)
This scenario would work but please note that the schema needs to be corrected a little bit. There is not mechanism right now to scale proxies for tapes, the only possible way to set this up is to have DSA proxy and Veeam B&R with tape drivers installed so it would look like this: Data store -> FC switch -> DSA Proxy Server=Physical Veeam B&R Server -> FC Switch -> Tape Library
is it possible to scale and how do you do it when you have multiple Direct SAN Access proxy servers
Right now as a part of tape support feature scaling proxies it is not supported, but library traffic handling would be reviewed in future releases.
Is there any documentation on how to design/configure the backup infrastructure to be completely FC based?
You can use Veeam v7 user guide, however it contains basic recommendations on architecture.

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