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mellerbeck
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iSCSI initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by mellerbeck » Mar 24, 2010 10:10 pm

So typically with VMware and an EqualLogic you would use an iscsi initiator from within the vm to attach to a volume with your exchange DB on it. This way you can use equallogic tools to queicise the exchange datastore. What should I do if I were to use veeam to backup such a VM?

Thanks,

Michael

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Gostev » Mar 24, 2010 10:36 pm

Michael, from your description I understand that you are talking about physical RDM disk on VM. This is actually not so typical configuration from my experience. Unfortunately, processing of VMs with pRDM disks is not supported by any image-level backup tools (including ours), because VMware cannot snapshot pRDM disks. Thank you.

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Alex » Jun 24, 2010 6:48 pm

Actually Michael is describing the exact same config(I think) as we have.

We have an Equallogic SAN, with 3 ESX servers. within ESX3.5(upgrade to 4 planned soon) we have a VM and within this VM which is an Windows 2003 R2 server we have an iSCSI initiator which connects an iSCSI LUN on the SAN.
I think this is not a RDM(raw disk media?).

You can use the equallogic software on the VM itself to make a snapshot, and restore from there, but veeam will not see this additional disk. As far as I know.. I am only trialing this software to see if it can replace our current backup tool.

BTW I love to have a full backup of the VM's now. It gives me piece of mind, and I know I can restore the full VM(which I just tested succesfully with a simple VM)

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Gostev » Jun 24, 2010 7:11 pm

I think what you are talking about is often referred as "mapping via guest initiator". Essentially, there are 2 ways to map raw SAN LUN to guest:

1. Using RDM (raw disk mapping)
a. Physical mode (pRDM)
b. Virtual mode (vRDM)

2. Using mapping via guest initiator

Here is a good blog post about pros and cons between 1 and 2:
Deciding between RDMs or the MS iSCSI Initiator

Veeam Backup can correctly process 1b configuration only, but not 1a and 2 (because VMware cannot snapshot such disks, and snapshots are essential for image level backups).

There is a lot of information on the internet on how vRDM compares to pRDM, each has own pros and cons. Most people choose to use vRDM because VMotion does not work for VMs with pRDM disks. Mapping via guest initiator is used much more rarely than RDM (in my experience).

Hope this helps.

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Alex » Jun 24, 2010 8:14 pm

Thanks for your quick response(it has been praised often I have read)

I will read into this vRDM, since I would like to keep the Vmotion working.
Are there any plans of using SAN vendors snapshottechnology to use with veeam backup? I would imagine that for example equallogic snapshottechnology would be great to have included in your product. Or am I thinking to easy about this?

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Gostev » Jun 24, 2010 8:29 pm

Yes, there are some significant roadblocks with using SAN snapshots for "real" VMware backup (when you pull the data off SAN). We are not planning on implementing this feature in the near term.

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Replicating VMs with SAN LUNs

Post by essexboy80 » Mar 21, 2011 12:28 pm

[merged]

Hi All,

I have got Veeam Enterprise and I am successfully using it to replicate many of my VMs.

But I have got some VM's that I want to replicate that have got additional disks attached via iSCSI LUNs.

Is there any way to replicate these across using Veeam or any other add-ins.

Thanks

Paul

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Backup VM with local disk from MS iscsi initiator

Post by stevenfoo » Apr 13, 2011 9:00 am

[merged]

Hi

I am using Veeam 3.1 (haven't upgrade yet) to backup some of our VMs.

One a particular VM install with windows 2000. Inside this VM with windows 2000, I have also a Microsoft initiator installed and have a lun presented from SAN storage
to a disk. This disk is visible to Windows OS. The OS disk and other 2 disks are presented from VMWare level from local physical disk.

Summary:
C: OS (local disk, presented from VMware)
E: Local Disk (local disk, presented from VMware)
F: Local Disk (local disk, presented from VMware)
N: Local Disk presented from Microsoft iSCSI Initiator connected to SAN lun.

Veeam is able to see it as C: E: F (SCSI drives) at the VM Disk during the selection at the Backup Destination => Advance => VM Disks tab.
eg. SCSI(0:0), SCSI(0:1), SCSI(0:2)

I actually choose All disks at the VM Disks tab.

However when the backup is done it only backup C: E: F:, N: is totally not found and not backup.

I tried to look into the Windows Disk management properties for the particular N: drive, it shows UNKNOWN(Port 2, Target ID:0, LUN:0)

The C: E: F: drives show something like SCSI(Port 1, TargetID:2, LUN:0), (Port 1, TargetID:1, LUN:0), (Port 1, TargetID:0, LUN:0)

Anything could be done so that Veeam able to backup N: drive for this case ?

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Vitaliy S. » Apr 13, 2011 9:49 am

Hi Steven,

It is not possible to backup this drive in the current configuration, as this disk is not visible to VMware VM configuration. The only way to backup this drive is to convert it to vRDM as it is mentioned in the posts above.

Thanks.

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by stevenfoo » Apr 14, 2011 9:44 am

Do you mean I have provision the iscsi lun to the VMWare server and then create a virtual disk for the VM host? This is a vRDM ?

How abut RDM? How does this work? Thru NFS?

Alexey D.

Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Alexey D. » Apr 14, 2011 10:00 am

Here's the link to topic at VMware's forum describing how to do this: http://communities.vmware.com/thread/179161
Also, you can refer to Admin Guide for more detailed description: http://www.vmware.com/pdf/vsphere4/r41/ ... _guide.pdf (starting from page 28).

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by vmbackupuser » Jul 20, 2011 11:12 am

Hi, I understand the Veeam nor VMware can snapshot an iscsi volume presented to a VM.
However, what if an iscsi lun/datastore is presented directly to the ESX Host, then the VM creates vdisks on top of this iscsi datastore.... Would these VM vdisks be snapshot capable by VMware/Veeam?

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Gostev » Jul 20, 2011 11:44 am

Yes for RDM disks in virtual compatibility mode, and No for RDM disks in physical compatibility mode.

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Exchange 2003 Back up question

Post by frankenherder » Sep 28, 2011 12:29 pm

[merged]

Hello,

I am a newbie and just joined the forum. I have done multiple searches and cannot find my answer so here is my first post.

We just got a new Dell San and for the first time running VMware ESX 4.1/ I have Veeam BR 5.0.

Currently, my Exchange 2003 server is in a VM, however, the data is in a seperate LUND (I think that is what it is called) set up by our vendor. The exchange has an ISCSI connection within the VM to the Volume on the SAN.

I just created a backup job of the Exchange VM using the application aware check box. My question is will this grab the Mailstores from the L: drive (iscsi holing the EDB files) or do I need to create a seperate back up job to back up that Lund directly on the SAN?

Any thoughts are appreciated. Also if you think I should move the data from the LUND back into the VM itself. I want to have the safest backup and restore set up possible.

Thanks
Matt

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by joergr » Sep 28, 2011 4:59 pm 1 person likes this post

Hi,

me, personally, I´d like to have my most important servers (for example exchange 2010 machines) to be a) used b) stored and c) backed up in one single place. Not just to have a clean and slick backup but also to be able to have everything up and running in a test lab or in case of a disaster in another datacenter without the need to assemble the inside structure of a vm again. Thus, although I know you could tickle a very small performance gain when using iscsi volumes mapped via sw initiator directly into the guest, I don´t like the idea to have parts of my most important vms located in different places. My recommendation consequently can only be to store it all in one place. And for me, this place is the VMFS Datastore.

Best regards,
Joerg

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Gostev » Sep 28, 2011 8:38 pm

I like to say that virtualization is about virtualizing everything. Why virtualize only part of infrastructure, and miss all the storage virtualization benefits? Makes little sense to virtualize at all in this case, because all the cool stuff is coming from virtualized storage.

About a year ago, one of our big customers told me something that I thought was funny. Essentially, they have invested in nearly half year long research project to determine what is better for their workloads of these 3 choices: in-guest iSCSI, RDM in physical mode, or RDM in virtual mode. In the end, VMDK was determined as the clear winner :) even though it was not in the list originally, because of the VMDK performance FUD that was popular at a time. In reality, performance difference appeared to be totally negligible (and often hard to measure), but the benefits were simply overwhelming.

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by frankenherder » Sep 29, 2011 12:59 pm

Thanks for the reply and to who ever moved my question to this thread.

We actually are having an issue with our Iscsi connection where when we reboot we need to reactivate the disk then start the both stores. I think it would be wise to expand our D: drive and bring the stores back into the VM. Not sure if it is a W2003 thing or not.

Just a note that this forum is great and I have learned a lot. We were sold Veeam by our reseller and assumed it was just a back up program. I am excited about the other features it has and can't wait to learn them. I am scared about the test labs and all that but once I get comfortable I will give it a shot.

Is there any online training or anything for Veeam?

Regards,

Matt

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Re: iscsi initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Gostev » Sep 29, 2011 1:04 pm

I believe there are plenty of YouTube videos around specific features recorded by our engineers, users and partners. Also, there are deep-dive recorded webinars for vPower functionality (linked in sticky FAQ topic). Lots of other useful links there in FAQ, too... covers pretty much everything new users want to know.

Real, proper end-user online training is currently in the works AFAIK.

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Server iSCSI Drives

Post by skeeter » Oct 06, 2011 6:37 pm

[merged]

I have a Windows Server which has a local C Drive and an F Drive which is an iSCSI target. Is there a way to have VEEAM backup/replicate the server to another ESX host and convert the iSCSI target to a local VMDK file/drive so that the data from the SAN drive would be available on the remote ESX host in the event of a disaster?

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Backing Up Network Mounted Partitions?

Post by chewie71 » Aug 17, 2012 2:34 am

[merged]

Is it possible to backup network mounted (NFS, SMB, iSCSI) partitions on a VM that are not native VMFS disks in the VM?

For example, we still have quite a few physical hosts... and I was wondering if it was possible to NFS mount some of their file systems read only in a VM....and back it up with Veeam?

Thanks,
Matt

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Re: iSCSI initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by hannisch » Aug 17, 2012 12:02 pm 1 person likes this post

We are goinig back from vrdm to vmdk. If I compare vmdk and rdm, the raw disks have no better performance. If you are using rdm in virtual mode and you want to make snapshots, there is one important thing to know. Before snapshotting vmware checks the blocksize. In raw device configuration (vrdm) the blocksize is not taken fom the lun. It´s taken from the volume the vmdk-file, which links to the raw device lun resists. So if you got an error by snapshotting a vm with vrdm lun, have a look on this. In this case you can move the vmdk file to a volume, where the blocksize is bigger. There is a vmware kb article, too

Sven

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Backup iSCSI volumes within a VM

Post by bparson » Sep 27, 2012 8:19 pm

[merged]

Currently running Veeam Backup & Replication 6 on a Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit server. This server is the only Veem server in our infrastructure servicing all of the roles.

There are a few VMs in our environment that have a 2nd NIC installed within them that point directly to our SAN. These VMs can anywhere from 1-2 volumes within that are accessed using the Microsoft iSCSI initiator. I have noticed that Veeam does not back up data on these volumes. My questions are:

1. Is Veem even able to do this?
2. Should I create virtual disks instead for these volumes (which of course would be hosted on the SAN anyway) and not use direct access to the SAN from within my VMs for purposes of simplifying and ensuring consistent backups?

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Re: iSCSI initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by dellock6 » Sep 27, 2012 10:10 pm

1. No (if you cannot snapshot a disk you cannot take a backup)
2. absolutely yes, there are so many advantages in virtualizing every disk, and you can bypass the 2 Tb limit (if needed) by using dynamic disk.

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[MERGED] Backup the VM hard disk from NAS case ID : 00152479

Post by freshVirtual » Nov 02, 2012 7:47 am

Hello there,
Actually one of my VM are getting low space, so i map/share 1 TB storage space as \"E\" drive for the VM from my NAS.
SO , it is possible to backup entire VM (include the \"E\" drive offer by NAS) or possible to backup only for the \"E\" drive?
(case ID : 00152479 )
Thanks.

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Re: iSCSI initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Vitaliy S. » Nov 02, 2012 8:29 am 1 person likes this post

Hi Jeff, backup of in-guest mapped drives/network shares is not supported, as these disks are not visible on VMware level.

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Re: iSCSI initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by freshVirtual » Nov 02, 2012 8:37 am

Vitaliy S. wrote:Hi Jeff, backup of in-guest mapped drives/network shares is not supported, as these disks are not visible on VMware level.
Hi ,
Thanks for support .
So , if like that , can use another way to backup my mapped drives (as the NAS share storage )? Because all my important data inside it and i want to backup all of them.

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Re: iSCSI initiated volumes from within a VM

Post by Vitaliy S. » Nov 02, 2012 8:43 am

The only way I see it is to either use vRDMs (if applicable) or backup this drive using Windows tools and then place the backup image on the drive that is backed up by Veeam.

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