Discussions specific to the VMware vSphere hypervisor
Post Reply
Posts: 46
Liked: 2 times
Joined: Jun 12, 2015 3:34 pm
Full Name: McK Admins

Are Active Full backups best practice?

Post by McKITGuys »

Hi all,

Took over managing Veeam for a customer and just getting their backups going again. All is well except still "playing" with settings as their repository space is limited.

They are using forward incremental backups with 90 days of retention and set for a monthly full backup end of month. First problem was found out that once we got near 90 days, not enough space for the newest full backup. Also found out (did not know previously) that with full backups in the chain, that the oldest month of backups is not deleted until all the incremental points in the chain are past the 90 days. Using a recent example, with full backups on June 30 and July 31st, even though some of the July incremental (.vib) files are past 90 days, none of the backups from that time (July 1 to July 30) are deleted - I thought the ones over 90 days (July 1 - 6) would get "rolled-into" the June 30th backup each night.

So this means that if they want to keep 90 days of backups, they will actually be keeping from 90 to 120 days of backups until the full chain of backups is past the 90 days. They do not have enough space for this. I have had to set the retention period back to 84 days so that the oldest month gets deleted well before the newest monthly backup or it runs out of space. On another site with a smaller repository with much larger monthly backups, I have had to reduce the time to 45 days.

But then it begs the question, what is the value of these monthly full backups? Do we still need them? Is it that a restore is much faster if one can go back to a point 30 or 60 or 90 days if needed and then just process the incrementals from that point? Or is it safer? Or why do we keep these? Or is this something people "used to do"? They would have a lot more space available with the monthly ones.

Opinions and comments please.

Veeam Software
Posts: 20946
Liked: 2067 times
Joined: Jul 11, 2011 10:22 am
Full Name: Alexander Fogelson

Re: Are Active Full backups best practice?

Post by foggy »

One of the possible solutions is to make more frequent active fulls (say, monthly). Depending on the data change rate, this may result in less space occupied by the entire chain due to a smaller number of increments on disk, even though more fulls will exist. As for the need for active fulls in general, please see this thread for some considerations. In general, you can switch to forever forward incremental mode to enable the merge of the oldest one into the full backup file, which is the most space-efficient method. Here's also another good reading on a similar matter.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], Nhutmvu and 13 guests