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cby
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Veeam Backup - multiple concurrent VM snapshots

Post by cby »

Hi

We have a number of large VMs backed up daily with Veeam. There are 3 backup jobs defined each containing 2 VMs. The backups are scheduled to kick in at 10 minute intervals. This all works fine. We get an average performance of approx. 90MB/s with VCB/NBD transfers (though see earlier post relating to odd behaviour when using VCB/SAN http://forum.veeam.com/forums/viewtopic ... =behaviour). The backup time is approaching 3 hours. We have a limited time in which to complete the backups and the number of VMs will increase substantially over the coming months. Backups go form the FC SAN to FATA disks and from there to tape.

My understanding is that a VM snapshot is taken prior to the Veeam backup. With our backups ever increasing we need the snapshot to take place while all the VMs are in a quiesced state (between midnight and 3am). Is it possible therefore to instruct Veeam backup to activate the VM snapshot to be taken at a different time rather than just before the actual backup takes place? That way we can get all the VM snapshots taken within a very short period and allow the backups to go ahead at their own speed when they kick in at their scheduled times.

One way to address the issue is to have every VM in its own job scheduled to start within minutes of each other. But that will cause a heavy load on the network and may ultimately take longer to complete. Is there an alternative?

Thanks.

Gostev
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Re: Veeam Backup - multiple concurrent VM snapshots

Post by Gostev »

Hello, I understand your use case and reasons... unfortunately the way it is currently implemented, snapshot is created before the actual backup takes place. Also, I believe that recommended limit for concurrent VCB jobs is 8, so having 1 VM per job and starting them all at once is probably not a good idea.

So to address the future growth of your environment, I think best would be to make VCB SAN mode work. It is really a preferred method because it completely offloads backup activity from ESX and network, and performance-wise you could double or even triple your current backup speed. May be you should engage both your vendor (and VMware if needed) to understand why VCB fails. Although personally I am 99% sure that the issue is with the HBA adaptor and/or its connectivity - since failures are intermittent and not seen with NBD mode. May be you should try to just replace one?

Of course, another way is to simply add new VCB/Veeam Backup server, and move some backup jobs there - you will have to do this sooner or later anyway.

I will also keep your feature request for scheduled snapshots in mind, but at a first sight it does not look so simple to add in the current architecture.

cby
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Re: Veeam Backup - multiple concurrent VM snapshots

Post by cby »

Gostev

Thanks for the response. As I suspected, the multiple concurrent jobs approach for each VM is not recommended.

I am currently following up with our supplier to establish what could be the cause of the VCB/SAN backup problems. Though I should add that HBAnywhere does not report any errors with either of the HBAs.

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