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StorageBeast
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Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by StorageBeast » Dec 15, 2016 11:46 am

Hello,

This year we have been through a major technology refresh addressing all systems that make up our infrastructure. Going forward we want to make sure we maximise our investment by using all the latest technologies available to us. Our storage system from Nimble was chosen for its vast array, no pun intended, of features including support for VVols. With the latest updates to VVols from VMWare the time has come to implement this. Veeam is our central backup and recovery tool so we need it to support VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness.

Kind Regards,

James

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by vmniels » Dec 15, 2016 12:35 pm

We already support vVols for a while now so you should be able to leverage it without an issue.
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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by dyernj » Dec 15, 2016 12:46 pm

Hey Niels,

I believe this is related specifically to integration with Nimble snapshots - which only works when the VM is stored on VMFS rather than VVols.

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by jimhurst » Dec 15, 2016 12:51 pm

Yes, but at the moment VEEAM Explorer doesn't support direct access to Nimble storage snapshots if taken from a VVOL. This means we can't leverage native storage snapshots for restores, or utilise Nimble replication capabilities by having VEEAM accessing and backing up from replicated snapshots, rather than pulling from source. This would be very useful when considering a WAN or multisite environment. Until such time as VEEAM fully support Nimble VVOL snapshots, we have to fall back on VMFS datastores which is a step backwards.

So please consider fully supporting Nimble VVOL asap. I would very much like to see this functionality and it would help me persuade our business to invest further in VEEAM.

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by saintdle » Dec 15, 2016 1:13 pm

I wasn't aware this was a particular issue, or rather unable to take advantage of the Nimble/VVOls features. At the moment I have a number of customers loving the Veeam/Nimble integration, especially with the fact they can schedule snapshot creation and leverage backups from snapshots. This also means we can look at using Veeam as the whole protection solution instead of introducing something like VMware SRM.

I think VVOLs support with the Nimble features would be a great addition going forward, I am getting more customers looking at using VVOLs now the technology has started to mature, add to the fact that many vendors have a decent VVOls offering going forward, I'm seeing more customers interested or picking up on VVOLs as a feature they are interested in.
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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by jimhurst » Dec 15, 2016 1:40 pm

Don't get me wrong, as a long term Nimble customer we are thrilled to now be able to leverage integration with VEEAM, it's a game changer for us. It's just disappointing that having adopted VVOLs and developed accompanying VMware stroage policies we now need to look at taking a step backwards from that to traditional VFMS datastores in order to fully utilise all of the available features in VEEAM 9.5.

be nice to have Nimble VVOL support from VEEAM soon #justsayin

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by dellock6 » Dec 15, 2016 8:17 pm

I'm trying to figure out which specific support you are talking about, because if it's backups from storage snapshots, to be honest you do not need them when VVOLs technology is properly implemented like in Nimble, snapshot commit even on highly transactional vms take just a few seconds without any stun at all. I did a test comparing vmfs and vvol and it was 27 minutes against 5 seconds commit:

http://www.virtualtothecore.com/en/back ... are-vvols/

If the need on the other hand is the snapshot explore, that I see the point, but I was looking first to confirm which part of the integration was mostly needed.
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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by Gostev » Dec 16, 2016 12:04 am

Fast snapshot commit is basically the ONLY thing VVOLs deliver. Exploring snapshots is by far not the only thing you're losing - you lose everything else our storage integration delivers and even more!

From the top of my head:
• Direct SAN access for backup and restore
• Backup from secondary array
• Veeam Explorer for Storage Snapshots
• Snapshot-only "backup" jobs
• Nimble replicatied copies orchestration
• Replication from storage snapshots

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by Noblesoft » Dec 20, 2016 6:53 pm

I'll throw my hat in the ring on this one too... having the ability to restore files, application items, or entire VMs from VVOL storage snapshots would be a game-changer for us.


The major detractor from VVOLs for us is that recovery options are very limited at present... you cannot simply mount a snapshot of a vvol as a new datastore and attach it to a VM like you can with traditional VMFS datastores/volumes. This is largely a weakness in the vSphere web interface I expect, and maybe they will address it, but as it stands the only recovery option we have for a VVOL snapshot is to shut the VM down and roll the entire VMDK back to a prior snapshot. We can take storage-integrated backups of course, and restore files from that, but we cannot make those as frequently as we can make snapshots.

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by joatmon » Dec 30, 2016 7:46 pm

We recently purchased Veeam as a replacement for our current backup solution and loved the fact that it supported Nimble integration and used the nimble SAN snapshots for backup. Then we find out from our Nimble engineer that if we choose to use VVols, that we will lose the ability to utilize the SAN snapshots for backup. Please add this functionality ASAP.

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by snowman386 » Jan 05, 2017 10:00 pm

We have delayed our veeam purchase because of this. Hopefully it is not a major enhancement because it sees the VMs on the VVols and sees the VMFS snapshots.

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by DaveWatkins » Jan 06, 2017 10:35 pm 1 person likes this post

I'd be interested to hear if some of these things are actually possible. The VVOL architecture makes some things impossible (DirectSAN backups being one of them) so it may be that these are VMWare imposed limitations rather than Veeam imposed limitations. No idea if that's the case but it'd be interesting to know one way or the other

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by snowman386 » Jan 09, 2017 3:26 pm

I put in a ticket with Nimble about this and they indicated that VMware does not actually have the API support to edit the metadata of VMs on VVols. It does seem it is not a Veeam limitation at this point.

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by Gostev » Jan 19, 2017 8:47 pm

Recalled one more thing: you cannot replicate to a VVol datastore because writing to a non-leaf disk (such as a snapshot backing file of a replica restore point) is not supported with VVols. So many limitations, so few benefits...

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Re: Request: VVol integration with Nimble Storage awareness

Post by WimVD » Jan 19, 2017 10:54 pm

If you look at it from a Veeam standpoint (and backup in general) I agree vvol's currently have few benefits.
But the idea behind vvol's is great: Expose the native storage array capabilities to the hypervisor.
With vvol's you can create a VM and automatically have your storage array protect it with storage snapshots, encryption, QoS limits and replicated to a secondary array with failover orchestration.
All without ever touching your storage management console and not having to create, manage and monitor LUN's/datastores.

Correct me if I'm wrong but the issue at the moment is there is no VDDK alternative for vvol's.
If VMware provides the ability to mount and read vvol's on a Windows machine Veeam can implement the same features like direct san backup/restore, snapshot explorer,... just like with VMFS.
When that happens count me in on the vvol bandwagon, at the moment however the backup limitations are holding us off.

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