Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

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Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby timstumbo » Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:50 pm

I have a single physical host separate from our production environment running VMWare for three virtual servers for my backup environment.

I have one VM host acting as the primary backup server, a second VM host that acts at the proxy and also host the WAN accelerator. The third VM host is the repository server.

I'm currently using the Direct SAN Access mode on the proxy and it's working, I'm just not sure if I have it setup the correct way. The SAN access is configured in the ESXi host and the VM's on that host can see the data stores through that. After reading around I've seen a lot on using the Windows Microsoft iSCSI Initiator for connecting the servers to the SAN. Obviously this method would have to be used if the backup server was a physical server, but is this also the recommend method even for a virtual backup server?

Thanks
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby PTide » Fri Dec 18, 2015 9:47 am

Hi,

Firstly, Direct SAN is only applicable if you use either FC or iSCSI connection between proxy and production storage.

Secondly, there is no point using Direct SAN with virtual proxy because Direct SAN is intended to bypass ESXi I/O stack thus increasing backup performance.

May I ask you what is your bottleneck statistics? Also, do you see [san] anywhere in your session log?

Thank you.
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby foggy » Fri Dec 18, 2015 9:53 am

In your case I'd put a proxy VM on the host where VMs you backup reside, to utilize hotadd transport mode.

Also, are you storing your backups on the repository VM? This is not considered as best practice.
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby timstumbo » Fri Dec 18, 2015 1:59 pm

Thanks for the responses!

PTide, I was under the impression I was utilizing a iSCSI connection between the proxy and the production storage. The iSCSI connection is just made within the VMWare configuration instead of using the Microsoft iSCSI Initiator. I currently have Direct SAN mode selected and I have the Failover option unchecked and the backup is running and completing. That means it has to be working over Direct SAN Access right?

So there's no point in using Direct SAN on a virtual host even if that host doesn't reside within the production host cluster?

The bottleneck is showing as the source on all the test backups I've done so far. I'm getting about 75MB/s right now on the backups.

Foggy, I'll try install another proxy within the production cluster to see if that increases backup performance.

No we have a dedicated VM that's directly connected to a Synology RS815+, the repository lives on the iSCSI LUNS on the Synology.

Thanks for all the help!
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby PTide » Fri Dec 18, 2015 2:43 pm

The iSCSI connection is just made within the VMWare configuration instead of using the Microsoft iSCSI Initiator.
Do you mean that your production storage is connected to your standalone physical host (the one with proxy VM inside) via iSCSI and presented to VMware host as a Datastore? And no iSCSI connection between production storage and proxy?

So there's no point in using Direct SAN on a virtual host even if that host doesn't reside within the production host cluster?
Correct.

No we have a dedicated VM that's directly connected to a Synology RS815+, the repository lives on the iSCSI LUNS on the Synology.
Why not to connect your iSCSI LUNs directly to VBR VM and assign repository role to VBR?
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby timstumbo » Fri Dec 18, 2015 2:58 pm

Yes, the production storage is connected directly to the standalone physical host bypassing the production network. (Utilizing the isolated storage network)

I can connect the iSCSI LUNs directly to the primary backup server, I was just testing it on a separate server to see if it increased performance. That's also why I setup a separate VM for the proxy as well, just to see if it made a difference from a performance standpoint.

I'm going to try to run everything off a single VM and see if I get the same performance, If so I'll get rid of the other 2 VM's. A lot easier to manager 1 server rather than 3.

Is 75MB/s a decent speed considering my setup?

Thanks
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby timstumbo » Fri Dec 18, 2015 3:11 pm

We have Veeam Essentials licensing that's why we can only use the 3 host in the production cluster. We went ahead and removed the older 4th host so we could stay with the Essentials licensing until we could budget for upgrading our licensing.

That's why I have the isolated 4th host that's not in our production environment. It already had ESXi setup on it so I just figured it would be easier to have B&R as a VM from a management standpoint instead of turning the host into a physical box and installing B&R. I'm willing to do that if it would benefit us I just don't see how it could.
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby PTide » Fri Dec 18, 2015 3:25 pm

The backup proxy using the Direct SAN Access transport mode must have a direct access to the production storage via a hardware or software HBA. Please check this screenshot and compare to your own job session log - if Direct SAN was utilized then log would contain [san]. I suspect that in your case it's [nbd].

Is 75MB/s a decent speed considering my setup?
Not bad, however a faster storage could increase the speed.
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby timstumbo » Fri Dec 18, 2015 4:01 pm

Looks like it's utilizing both. Here is a portion of the log..


Code: Select all
[i][18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Detecting san access level
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: disks ['60060160ca913a00b8aeed542e342937565241494420','60060160ca913a0033b2ed5409f3d9c8565241494420','6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048','60060160ca913a0061b1ed5452afcea0565241494420','60060160ca913a0066ec1355dca7df53565241494420','60060160ca913a00dcafed5461dfc803565241494420','60060160ca913a00acb6ed54016cfab5565241494420','6c81f660e99fed001c89ce5213806420504552432048','60060160ca913a0089b0ed54b5cdb8a6565241494420','60060160ca913a0048b3ed5407276e0f565241494420','60060160ca913a009fb5ed54b5e14f29565241494420','60060160ca913a0040b4ed5423737dbd565241494420','60060160ca913a002b8bf15528241834565241494420','6848f690ee7597001c889c580aff0f1c504552432048','6b083fe0eb0291001c7ef20105648455504552432048']
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: Proxy disk [Local DELL Disk (naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a)] is accessible through san, diskName (vmfs lun) is [naa.6c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a], uuid = [02000000006c81f660e99fed001c89ce7d1611c51a504552432048]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Proxy [BACKUPPROXY]: only some disks are accessible through san and can failover to network mode
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info                     (15 proxy disk(s) correspond to san, but vm's disks are on 1 datastores)
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Detected san storage access level for proxy [BACKUPPROXY] - [PartialSan]
[18.12.2015 08:51:07] <01> Info     [ProxyDetector] Detected mode [san;nbd] for proxy [BACKUPPROXY][/i]
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby PTide » Fri Dec 18, 2015 4:15 pm

Then, if you are 100% positive that your proxy server is NOT connected via Microsoft iSCSI to your production storage, please open a case with support and post your case ID here because what I can see in your log is not normal.

Thank you.
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby PTide » Mon Dec 21, 2015 12:53 pm

Could you please clarify if any of production datastore LUNs are visible from proxy's "Device manager" panel?

Thank you.
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby danswartz » Wed Dec 23, 2015 10:06 pm

PTide wrote:Secondly, there is no point using Direct SAN with virtual proxy because Direct SAN is intended to bypass ESXi I/O stack thus increasing backup performance..


This isn't totally true. I run a virtual backup proxy, and found direct SAN mode to be about 2X as fast as NBD. I use a vmxnet3 vnic on the proxy, which is a virtualized 10gbe nic. I had also played with passing through a 10gbe nic to the virtualized proxy, and that worked extremely well too.
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby PTide » Thu Dec 24, 2015 8:56 am

found direct SAN mode to be about 2X as fast as NBD. I use a vmxnet3 vnic on the proxy, which is a virtualized 10gbe nic
If so, may I ask you what kind of NIC were you using as your ESXi management interface?

Keep in mind that NBD is actually the least efficient method, however it works good on 10Gb. Also with physical proxy the difference in performance direct-SAN vs NBD would be even more noticeable.
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby danswartz » Thu Dec 24, 2015 3:12 pm

The management NIC is 1gb only. Each host has only one 10gb interface, and that is for storage only. I know physical would be even better, but that would involve spinning up a physical host for only that purpose - not worth it to me...
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Re: Direct SAN Access connection on virtual backup server

Veeam Logoby PTide » Thu Dec 24, 2015 4:21 pm

The management NIC is 1gb only.
This. If an NBD mode is utilized the system retrieves the VM disks via the ESX(i) management interface. In the case that you've described NBD via 1Gb NIC competes with a direct-SAN via 10Gb NIC, which is not fair :wink: Another thing to mention about direct-SAN via 10Gbit vs NBD via 1Gbit - only 2x faster, that's not very impressive.
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