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How can I use Veeam in an effort to shrink a VHD?

Post by bitbucket »

Running latest Veeam 11a, latest vSphere 7.03+, VMware ESXi, 7.0.3, 21313628

I have a Windows Server 2016 VM running SQL 2016. There was a ridiculously designed DB that had a huge "logfile" database from a vendor with a less than stellar reputation for support. We've been having to increase the volume/HDD size in order to accommodate this mess until recently, up to the 2TB maximum for this filesystem. I fixed the table and need to shrink this thing back down to 250GB or so. This is a data volume, not the OS. It only has the vendor app and SQL DB on it.

Taking this SQL server down for maintenance is not an issue, I just don't want to waste any time shrinking this thing down. Being able to start this process on a Friday evening and have it finished by Sunday night is the goal. I'm always leary of ways I've accomplished this in the past with P2V/V2V conversions or vmks cli tools for "hole-punching" and sdelete and vmotion etc. Using these methods has often left me having to rollback after a day of waiting for some command to complete.

I was wondering if there is a way for me to utilize Veeam to simply restore the data to a smaller drive? The drive is thick-provisioned-lazy-zeroed. Ideally shut the VM down, back it up, delete big drive, replace with small drive, restore to small drive, power on. I'm just not sure how to have the OS and Veeam be OK with a smaller drive. Most of the posts I have found for this are over 5 years old, I'm hoping there's better ways of doing this now.

Thanks for reading!
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Re: How can I use Veeam in an effort to shrink a VHD?

Post by Mildur »

Hi bitbucket

You could use Veeam Agent to restore the volume to a smaller disk.
Restore is only possible if there are no necessary blocks after the 250GB Size. If there are blocks used by the system in the end of the 2TB disk, restoring the volume to a 250GB drive won't work. You must restore the entire 2TB disk.

Shrink the volume while doing the restore:

2GB volume restore to 1GB volume

Product Management Analyst @ Veeam Software
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