Maintain control of your Microsoft Office 365 email data
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lhcorreia
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Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by lhcorreia » Oct 07, 2019 11:51 am

We are a SMB. We're studying adopting Veeam for backing up our corporate Office 365. Veeam Backup server will run in a Azure VM. Our questions are:
1 - is it possible to use an Azure Storage as the backup repository for Veeam Backup for Office 365? If positive, which types of Azure Storage are supported? BLOB? Azure Files? Managed Disks?
2 - is it possible to use an on premise SAN as the backup repository for this backup?
Thanks.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by HannesK » Oct 07, 2019 12:00 pm

Hello,
and welcome to the forums.

1. NTFS and ReFS is possible on local disks (the disk type is not relevant). Please see https://helpcenter.veeam.com/docs/vbo36 ... tml?ver=30 Azure blob is something considered for future. SMB3.0 is only supported on Windows servers (not on Azure Files)
2. not sure how you connect your on-prem SAN with a VM running in Azure :-)

In general: VBO is "just a Windows application". You can install it in 15min and just try it out. It's no rocket science :-)

Best regards,
Hannes

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by lhcorreia » Oct 07, 2019 12:18 pm

Thanks Hannes
As Azure Files supports SMB3.0 it is a pity VBO does not support that configuration. :(

Sorry, I didn't explain correctly about the on-prem SAN. The idea is to have either:
1 - VBO running on-prem, ensuring the Office 365 backup and also acting as a backup server of a Veeam Backup & Replication Server running in Azure (for backing up other info not Office 365 related);
2 - or a Veeam Backup server on-prem connected to the VBO running in Azure. Does you backup server connections support this configuration (Cloud to on-prem backup)?
2a - if the Veeam Backup Server could run itself in a compatible small SAN (2 x 6TB) to avoid an on-prem server it would be even better!

Luis

Mike Resseler
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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by Mike Resseler » Oct 07, 2019 12:42 pm 1 person likes this post

Hi Luis,

Let me clarify a few things.

1. Today, our repository is a jet DB. While technically it is actually possible to run it on Azure files, it would be a very bad idea because it is a database and not flat files.
2. You can run VBO in Azure, and attach a VHD disk to it as repository. Now I am obviously aware that the cost will be a bit higher compared to the data on object storage, the good news is that this will be possible very soon.

So my advice would be to start playing with the current version (if you must) or wait a few more weeks and run version 4 in beta, so you can see how our object storage implemention can benefit your case.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by HannesK » Oct 07, 2019 12:43 pm

Hello,
Veeam Backup for Office 365 (VBO) and Veeam Backup and Replication (VBR) are two independent products. Both are Windows based software products. So you can run it in any place where you can run Windows (on-prem / cloud)

There is no connection between Veeam Backup for Office 365 and Veeam Backup and Replication. They just have a similar user interface. But they do not talk to each other.
Cloud to on-prem backup
that's what most VBO customers do

Best regards,
Hannes

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by lhcorreia » Oct 07, 2019 1:46 pm

"Cloud to on-prem backup"
that's what most VBO customers do.

Yes, I understand, but my question is more was about running Veeam without having a windows server on-prem (currently we don't have any, everything is in the cloud). For instance, use an Azure VM to run the VBO and Veeam B&R and have a SAN on-prem running a Veeam Backup Proxy on it.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by HannesK » Oct 08, 2019 7:38 am 1 person likes this post

Hello,
you can run the central VBO backup server in Azure and a proxy on-prem (assuming you configured your network properly). But the proxy machine is a Windows. So you will have to run a Windows on-prem.

I don't know how you plan to run a Windows on a SAN, because a SAN only offers storage and no compute.

Best regards,
Hannes

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by lhcorreia » Oct 09, 2019 12:45 am

Mike Resseler wrote:
Oct 07, 2019 12:42 pm
Hi Luis,

Let me clarify a few things.

1. Today, our repository is a jet DB. While technically it is actually possible to run it on Azure files, it would be a very bad idea because it is a database and not flat files.
2. You can run VBO in Azure, and attach a VHD disk to it as repository. Now I am obviously aware that the cost will be a bit higher compared to the data on object storage, the good news is that this will be possible very soon.

So my advice would be to start playing with the current version (if you must) or wait a few more weeks and run version 4 in beta, so you can see how our object storage implemention can benefit your case.
Hello Mike
Do you know which types of Azure Storage will be supported in version 4?

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by Mike Resseler » Oct 09, 2019 4:33 am

Hi Luis,

I do :-). But at this moment we are still running some tests so I prefer to wait until I am certain which types will make it to the product.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by Gears » Oct 10, 2019 9:42 pm

Hi Mike,
I am also very interested in this topic since I intend to deploy to Azure within a couple weeks.
I would rather not have to do it twice depending on the release date and features of v4.

Thanks,
Graham

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by nielsengelen » Oct 11, 2019 7:36 am

Once the results are known they will be shared but for now, as Mike said, it's still being tested.
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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by iknowtech » Oct 14, 2019 6:38 am

Best way to currently do it with Azure, that I've found, is with Page Blob VHD's mounted as Unmanaged Disks. Not sure how many mailboxes you have or what your storage requirements are, but you can do multiple 4TB VHD's and combine them as ReFS Storage Pools in Windows Server. Being able to Add Azure Block storage directly as a Repository will be a welcome addition and should definitely reduce costs significantly.

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/prici ... age-blobs/

If you opt for just LRS Page Blob's cost is .045/GB plus transaction costs.
We charge $0.0005 per 10,000 transactions for Standard Page Blobs attached to VM and used as Unmanaged Disks. Any type of operation against against Unmanaged Disks is counted as a transaction including reads, writes, and deletes.


Block Blob pricing offers multiple Tiers.
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/prici ... age/blobs/

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by lhcorreia » Oct 14, 2019 10:40 am

Hi Iknowtech

Have you used this solution with Page Blobs as unmanaged disks in a production environment?
Azure indicates also for pricing for this storage:
- Operations for Page Blobs attached as Unmanaged Disks (performed by VM) and
- Operations for Page Blobs (Non-disks)
In the scenario you indicate is the second pricing also applied? It is quite expensive.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by chi-ltd » Oct 14, 2019 11:54 am

We have a VM built in azure just for o365. Uses local storage on the VM - which i believe is there supported/recommended setup.
Works well. Expect it to cost a lot over time though.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by iknowtech » Oct 14, 2019 2:22 pm

Sorry I only linked the Block Blob pricing as a comparison to the potential cost savings over the current Page Blob (Unmanaged Disks), should Veeam implement a way to mount Block Blobs as a Storage Tier in V4.

You think the Unmanaged Disks is expensive, try and put something together with Managed Disks.

If VOB v4 supports AWS S2 compliant storage, probably your cheapest bet would be something like Vultr backing up to Wasabi.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by yasuda » Oct 14, 2019 3:11 pm

Another argument in favor of backing up to on-prem (or a non-Microsoft cloud) is protection from a major disaster affecting Microsoft.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by lhcorreia » Oct 14, 2019 4:51 pm

iknowtech wrote:
Oct 14, 2019 2:22 pm
Sorry I only linked the Block Blob pricing as a comparison to the potential cost savings over the current Page Blob (Unmanaged Disks), should Veeam implement a way to mount Block Blobs as a Storage Tier in V4.

You think the Unmanaged Disks is expensive, try and put something together with Managed Disks.

If VOB v4 supports AWS S2 compliant storage, probably your cheapest bet would be something like Vultr backing up to Wasabi.
Sorry, I've explained myself badly!
I'm not saying that unmanaged disks are too expensive. I've never used it.
My question raised when I've used Azure Calculator to estimate unmanaged disk costs. It appears two usage dependent factors: "Operations for Page Blobs attached as Unmanaged Disks (performed by VM)" and "Operations for Page Blobs (Non-disks)". The second is quite more expensive than the first.
My question is whether for a Page Blob attached as unmanaged disk MS will also bill for this second factor.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by iknowtech » Oct 14, 2019 5:10 pm

You would not be billed for the "Operations for Page Blobs (Non-Disks)"

I believe this should be the only incurred charges, other than bandwidth if you're performing restores.

If you opt for just LRS Page Blob's cost is .045/GB plus transaction costs.
We charge $0.0005 per 10,000 transactions for Standard Page Blobs attached to VM and used as Unmanaged Disks. Any type of operation against against Unmanaged Disks is counted as a transaction including reads, writes, and deletes.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by BlakevB » Oct 14, 2019 5:17 pm

First, some disclaimers:
- This is not a comprehensive "How-to" post, this is merely to describe a possible scenario for VBO in Azure
- This applies to what is currently GA meaning VBO v3 and VBR 9.5 Update 4. This does not discuss any possible future enhancements with updates/versions not yet released.
lhcorreia wrote:
Oct 07, 2019 1:46 pm
"Cloud to on-prem backup"
that's what most VBO customers do.

Yes, I understand, but my question is more was about running Veeam without having a windows server on-prem (currently we don't have any, everything is in the cloud). For instance, use an Azure VM to run the VBO and Veeam B&R and have a SAN on-prem running a Veeam Backup Proxy on it.
There were many replies but the one I quoted seems to get to the heart of it. Based on your post, you do not currently have an on-prem datacenter and are running everything in the cloud. I am presuming Azure since that was your question.

Based on this, and what others have said, yes you can certainly run VBO in Azure and in fact (this is simply my opinion, not an official opinion of Veeam) I believe it performs better in Azure. You stated you are a SMB sized company, but did not state users. Compute is the first place to start depending on the number of users/objects you intend to back up. Each VBO proxy can protect an estimated 4000-5000 users (that is a rough number as we base it primarily on "objects") with each proxy maxing out at 8 vCPU and 32GB RAM. Right now, max of 10 proxies in a VBO deployment.

This does not mean you need an 8/32 machine if you do not have 4000-5000 users. It is quite possible to protect under 1000 users with 2/8 (in Azure this could be a B2mS or D2_v3, depending on number of jobs, CPU usage etc.). What is great about Azure is that you can resize quickly if you find more resources are needed. These days with Azure, compute isn't so much the concern with cost, storage is.

The above mentioned Azure machines (D2_v3 for example) can attach up to 4 data disks. Unmanaged they are at 4TB each, managed there is 32TB disks available and I believe 64TB is working on becoming GA. So you can really store a lot! If you want to pay for it. Unmanaged you will pay for what you consume only, which can be a great option to start with as you feel out how much space you are going to really consume long term. Azure still makes it easy to convert to managed disks later on which will save you money as at max capacity (according to their calculators) a managed 4TB disk is cheaper than a fully utilized 4TB unmanaged disk. I recommend using standard disks and attaching all 4 so you can stripe them together using storage spaces to take advantage of higher IOPS without having to pay for more expensive disks.

The above should be easy to build. It is a straight forward Windows server OS machine. The question is data growth and storage. Do you want to just backup Exchange data, or SharePoint and OneDrive as well? The last two can really eat space. VBO has options to exclude personal SharePoint sites as well as do OneDrive exclusions (via PowerShell currently) to help minimize storage impact.

As Mike previously mentioned, VBO operates on a JetDB so being a database, need to run it on regular storage. (Again, not talking futures here.) When you start considering long term storage say, pushing a year or more, the amount of storage you have can really add up given you are utilizing page blob. Here is where a cool option comes in from another Veeam product, Backup and Replication (VBR), to help you out.

First a question - Are you using VBR to protect the rest of your environment? If yes, this becomes quite easy. You can use VBR to backup the VBO server thus backing up the storage containing the JetDB. Guess what happens? Just like backing up a SQL server or anything similar, you now have a VBR backup file, a .vbk, that can now be stored long term in object storage options, such as block blob or even deduplication appliances on-prem. Recovery of VBO objects out of the VBR backup is easy using the Veeam Explorers. Given this is being done with long term VBO data, basically "archive" data, it makes sense as you most likely would not be restoring this data direct into O365, rather, you would be pulling out individual emails, PST out an old mailbox for example, or one of the many other options for recovery we have.

There are also several option to make this work if you do want to utilize a SAN on-prem. As previously mentioned, a Windows server would be required on-prem to make this work as well. Also, hybrids with Azure are possible. Veeam is extremely flexible depending on your needs.

For all of the above options, I would HIGHLY recommend getting in touch with your partner whom you regularly purchase your Veeam from, or if you have never purchased Veeam, see if who you typically make your purchases from is a Veeam partner. That is the best place to start in getting this built as your Veeam partner can work with the Veeam team that specifically supports them to help build out a POC for you to decide what works best for your situation. Veeam has many options for trial licensing and willing to work POCs to make sure everything is just right before your purchase. If you simply do not have a Veeam partner, we can get you connected to one that can help you.

I hope this gives you a clearer picture of what you can do with VBO in regards to Azure and the options you have as of today. What is really great is the innovation behind Veeam and there are some cool things coming.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by iknowtech » Oct 15, 2019 4:00 am

The above mentioned Azure machines (D2_v3 for example) can attach up to 4 data disks. Unmanaged they are at 4TB each, managed there is 32TB disks available and I believe 64TB is working on becoming GA. So you can really store a lot! If you want to pay for it. Unmanaged you will pay for what you consume only, which can be a great option to start with as you feel out how much space you are going to really consume long term. Azure still makes it easy to convert to managed disks later on which will save you money as at max capacity (according to their calculators) a managed 4TB disk is cheaper than a fully utilized 4TB unmanaged disk. I recommend using standard disks and attaching all 4 so you can stripe them together using storage spaces to take advantage of higher IOPS without having to pay for more expensive disks.
This is pretty much exactly how I approached it, I'm using VOB server for multi-tenant MSP scenario for lots of SMB's of under 20 seats, and just starting out, so I will be scaling up over time, and it was easiest to to just start with a 16TB (4x4TB) striped unmanaged volume, so I can only pay for the portion of that storage I'm actually using. Good to know that the value changes when you near capacity to managed disks being cheaper. Not sure I ever calculated that when I was researching my setup. Looks like actually once I hit about 6TB of that 16TB is when it would make more sense to switch that over to a Single S60 8TB Managed Disk.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by Polina » Oct 16, 2019 9:37 am

Blake, Jason,

Are you using Standard or Premium disks for your repositories?

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by Mike Resseler » Oct 17, 2019 5:48 am

By the way, for those that are interested. Talk to your system engineer... We might have something good in the pipeline :-D

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by iknowtech » Oct 21, 2019 1:32 am

Polina wrote:
Oct 16, 2019 9:37 am
Blake, Jason,

Are you using Standard or Premium disks for your repositories?
I'm just using Standard LRS Page Blobs at .045/GB, that's already stretching the costs at the upper limit of what I can absorb and be able to pass on to the customer with a bit left in there for myself. Hoping for eventually being able to go directly to Block Blob storage (Hopefully what is being hinted at), then I can pass some savings on to my clients while at the same time taking a bigger piece for myself.

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Re: Backup Office 365 to Azure

Post by Mike Resseler » Oct 21, 2019 8:09 am

@iknowtech It is... Again, especially in your situation, please talk to your system engineer so you can start doing tests

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