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mc100
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ESXi backup stategy

Post by mc100 »

Hi,
I have a ESXi box running 4 windows server VM stored is on locale disks (no SAN, NFS etc).
I have a VCB license and a free physical windows server that I plan to use as VCB proxy / Veeam console.

I want a weekly copy of the VMs on a second ESXi box (a smaller and slower server then the first ESXi).
The storage of this second ESXi shuld be iSCSI (i plan to buy this http://go.iomega.com/it/products/networ ... rtner=4730)

In this way I have a weekly copy of the VMs to restore in case of them crashing and I also have a second ESX to fire up if the first crashes.

So, to recap:
ESXi1 --> the production machine (storage on local disks)
ESXi2 --> the backup storage machine (storage on iscsi)
win2003Server --> the VCB proxy and Veeam console

Is this going to work?
Thanks

Gostev
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Re: ESXi backup stategy

Post by Gostev »

Hello Marco, sounds like in this scenario you need to perform replication to ESXi (which is not supported at the moment). You will be able to backup the production ESXi1 with local disk fine though, and restore backups to ESXi2 if needed (but restore is manual operation and cannot be scheduled weekly). Thank you.

mc100
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Re: ESXi backup stategy

Post by mc100 »

So, if I understand correctly, I have to connect the Iomega iSCSI storage directly to the physical windows server that acts as a VCB proxy / Veeam console.
But in case of ESXi1 failure I cannot fire on ESXi2 and load the VM from the Iomega storage. This is a problem, as I don't have enough disk space on ESXi2 to restore on it the VMs.

Could I use the Iomega storage as NFS? Will VCB / Veeam backup on it?
In this case I should be able to perform backup on the NFS share and then also use ESXi2 to load VM from it.

Thanks

Gostev
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Re: ESXi backup stategy

Post by Gostev »

Marco,

Veeam Backup backups into VBK files that cannot be simply started up. You need to restore VM from VBK first. Restore can be done to any ESX and to any storage connected to it (NFS will also work).

On the other hand, our replication creates regular VMDK files that can be started up (this is what you need), however replication to ESXi is not currently supported. Thus, I suggest that you use regular ESX as you DR host, if you want to use replication.

Thank you.

mc100
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Re: ESXi backup stategy

Post by mc100 »

Ok, now I understand:
- I can only backup and cannot replicate, as I don't have ESX but ESXi
- backups cannot be directly used, but must be restored

Last question:
if I have a NFS share mouted as disk Z: on the server that acts as VCB / Veeam console and I backup on it, can I restore on the same disk Z: and then start this restored VM by ESXi2?
OR do I need another share to restore on?

Thanks Gostev.

Gostev
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Re: ESXi backup stategy

Post by Gostev »

Yes, you can backup and restore to any drive mounted on Veeam Backup server, without any limitations, so I don't see any problems with this scenario.

When restoring VM, you should use the 2nd restore option "Restore VM files", select all files, and select Z: drive as destination. Restoring VM files directly to storage is very fast and limited only by NAS speed (unlike restoring entire VM to ESXi, where you will face ESXi upload cap of about 5-10MB/s).

After all VM files restore is completed, all you will have left to do is register the VM by double-clicking VMX file in the Datastore Browser withing VMware Infrastructure Client connected to ESXi2 - and you are ready to go.

mc100
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Re: ESXi backup stategy

Post by mc100 »

Ok, thanks.
Now I have a more clear picture and in the next days I will try this solution using demo licenses.
Thanks again.

Gostev
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Re: ESXi backup stategy

Post by Gostev »

Another option is to mount your NAS to a Linux server, if you have one. Veeam Backup has native support for Linux servers, and can use them as backup targets, as well as restore target.

mc100
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Re: ESXi backup stategy

Post by mc100 »

I have a linux server (proxy), but not enough disk space.
This is the reason I have to buy a storage. I'll go for something with NFS.
For the test I'll use an old pc with Openfiler.

Thanks again.

Gostev
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Re: ESXi backup stategy

Post by Gostev »

Actually you do not need local storage on your Linux server. What you do is you simply mount your NAS to that Linux server, after that this NAS will appear on Linux server as a normal folder that you can write backups to.

This may be easier than having to mess with Windows Services for Unix in order to be able to mount NFS storage to Windows Veeam Backup box.

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