Veeam design for small new vmware setup

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Veeam design for small new vmware setup

Veeam Logoby fspeece » Fri Apr 10, 2015 8:58 pm

Hello, a few questions about where to put my veeam and vCenter installs and on what options I have for backups. Please link if other posts or resources already answer my questions.

I'm going to be deploying the following setup:
2 new vmware virtual hosts, no shared storage. vmware essentials basic license, about 20 VMs to start with. VMs will be fresh installs, P2Vs, or V2Vs from our old citrix hosts.
Each vHost will have a RAID10 set of disks for the VMs to run on normally, plus a single 1TB drive to hold backups (we don't have a lot of data). I plan on backing up the VMs so that (for example) VM1 on HostA gets backed up on HostA and also replicated or backed up to HostB, in the case that HostA dies, I can restore the VM manually on HostB. Does that sound like a good plan?

I have another server that runs our physical server backups currently with spare RAM/CPU, I'm thinking I can run veeam and vCenter software on that physical server, so that if something happens to the physical virtual hosts, I can manipulate VMs and do Restores. Also we can save a windows license or 2. How does the veeam software connect to the storage on the virtual hosts? Do I just create a datastore on top of the 1TB drive I have, and veeam uses vCenter to view that space? I have no experience with veeam, and some experience with vmware but its been a while. Using veeam so that we do not need higher vmware licensing and shared storage, plus we have at least 2 servers for each critical role (database servers are not virtualized).

I believe veeam and vcenter using the SQL Express DB and being on the same server would probably be fine for my small deployment (I don't see us going over 50 VMs for a very long time) from a resource perspective.

Thank you for any help!
fspeece
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Re: Veeam design for small new vmware setup

Veeam Logoby Vitaliy S. » Sat Apr 11, 2015 10:25 am

Hello Fred,
fspeece wrote:Each vHost will have a RAID10 set of disks for the VMs to run on normally, plus a single 1TB drive to hold backups (we don't have a lot of data). I plan on backing up the VMs so that (for example) VM1 on HostA gets backed up on HostA and also replicated or backed up to HostB, in the case that HostA dies, I can restore the VM manually on HostB. Does that sound like a good plan?

Yes, replicating VMs to the secondary host is, indeed, a good idea, however I would not recommend storing backup files on the VMFS (virtual disk attached to the VM on either host A or B), because of these reasons > Don't Store Backups on VMFS...But why not?

I would suggest re-using your spare physical server as a backup repository.

fspeece wrote:I have another server that runs our physical server backups currently with spare RAM/CPU, I'm thinking I can run veeam and vCenter software on that physical server, so that if something happens to the physical virtual hosts, I can manipulate VMs and do Restores.

Yes, but I would also place vCenter Server on either of the hosts and do backup/replication jobs against it in order to protect it.

fspeece wrote:How does the veeam software connect to the storage on the virtual hosts? Do I just create a datastore on top of the 1TB drive I have, and veeam uses vCenter to view that space? I have no experience with veeam, and some experience with vmware but its been a while. Using veeam so that we do not need higher vmware licensing and shared storage, plus we have at least 2 servers for each critical role (database servers are not virtualized).

Veeam server connects to the hosts and storage over network connection. If I were you I would place a proxy server on each host to be able to run hotadd backup mode for better job performance rates. Here is a corresponding topic for further reading > Virtual Appliance Mode (Hot Add)
fspeece wrote:I believe veeam and vcenter using the SQL Express DB and being on the same server would probably be fine for my small deployment (I don't see us going over 50 VMs for a very long time) from a resource perspective.

Yes, it's fine, though I would still suggest virtualizing your vCenter Server.

Thank you!
Vitaliy S.
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Re: Veeam design for small new vmware setup

Veeam Logoby fspeece » Mon Apr 13, 2015 3:31 pm

Thanks for the info, I will read up on those topics.

Am I correct that it would be a bad idea to have veeam and vcenter both in VMs sitting on HostA, then if hostA went down, I would not be able to run restores, before somehow getting veeam working again?

But vCenter on a VM is recommended so that I can do easy backups and restores on it I assume (no vMotion consideration because no shared storage)? I do need to worry about the backups on that physical server now though (if I put vcenter and veeam on it).

Is veeam dependant on vCenter for restores?

"place a proxy server on each host" does that require another VM and windows license on each host then?

We got new virtual host servers with storage on them, no extra storage on the spare physical server, plus if I can get the backup traffic just on the virtual hosts I figured that would be better. We don't have a separate backup network either (probably don't need one).
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Re: Veeam design for small new vmware setup

Veeam Logoby Vitaliy S. » Mon Apr 13, 2015 3:49 pm

fspeece wrote:Am I correct that it would be a bad idea to have veeam and vcenter both in VMs sitting on HostA, then if hostA went down, I would not be able to run restores, before somehow getting veeam working again?

If you're talking about replicas, then you will be able to power them on via vSphere Client. As regards backup jobs and backup functionality, then you need to have a backup server present to do this.

fspeece wrote:But vCenter on a VM is recommended so that I can do easy backups and restores on it I assume (no vMotion consideration because no shared storage)? I do need to worry about the backups on that physical server now though (if I put vcenter and veeam on it).

Yes, I recommend to deploy vCenter Server, so you could also replicate or backup it up via Veeam. You can still have Veeam backup server deployed as physical.
fspeece wrote:Is veeam dependant on vCenter for restores?

You need to have connection to the virtual infrastructure to do the restore. If vCenter Server is not available, then you can add ESXi hosts to the backup console directly and then start the restore process.
fspeece wrote:"place a proxy server on each host" does that require another VM and windows license on each host then?

Yes, or you can use the default proxy server which is installed together with our backup server.
fspeece wrote:We got new virtual host servers with storage on them, no extra storage on the spare physical server, plus if I can get the backup traffic just on the virtual hosts I figured that would be better. We don't have a separate backup network either (probably don't need one).

OK, given the amount of resources available, virtual repository is fine to use.

Hope this helps!
Vitaliy S.
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Re: Veeam design for small new vmware setup

Veeam Logoby fspeece » Mon Apr 13, 2015 4:17 pm

Helps a lot, thanks for the quick detailed responses!

For the backup storage I have on the new virtual hosts, I'm still a little confused as to how I would connect to it and use that space. I have a 1TB drive on each host. If I put veeam on my spare physical server how does veeam connect to that spare and use it as a backup destination? It would go over the normal network, or possibly over another network if I wanted to configure that. For the space it would be a simple single disk at the hardware level, with a datastore on top of that, then a VMDK on top of that, with the VM backups and replicas inside the VMDK(s)? Does that space need to be attached to a VM? Not sure if I have that whole logical structure/design correct in my head.

I'm sure once I start setting on this up and playing around with it it will become clear but just trying to figure out as much as possible ahead of time for planning purposes.
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Re: Veeam design for small new vmware setup

Veeam Logoby Vitaliy S. » Mon Apr 13, 2015 4:25 pm

fspeece wrote:If I put veeam on my spare physical server how does veeam connect to that spare and use it as a backup destination?

You need to create a repository server on the host. In your case it will be any existing Windows Server with VMDK disk added to it. Keep in mind that if you just want to replicate VMs from one host to another, there will be no need to create extra repository on the ESXi host. Replication job will store VMs in their native format.
fspeece wrote:It would go over the normal network, or possibly over another network if I wanted to configure that.

Yes, traffic will go from ESXi host to your physical server and then to the repository VM via network.
fspeece wrote:For the space it would be a simple single disk at the hardware level, with a datastore on top of that, then a VMDK on top of that, with the VM backups and replicas inside the VMDK(s)?

Correct.
fspeece wrote:Does that space need to be attached to a VM? Not sure if I have that whole logical structure/design correct in my head.

Yes, to the VM that will added as a repository managed by your backup console.
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Re: Veeam design for small new vmware setup

Veeam Logoby fspeece » Mon Apr 13, 2015 6:19 pm

Ok with all that said I think for me, the best setup would be to replicate each VM to the opposite virtual Host, ready to turn on if either host dies or I need to do some maintenance.
-Have vCenter as a VM on either Host. I could put it on my spare physical server but better to put as a VM. AD, DNS, DHCP, and network are all off the VMs anyway.
-Veeam installed on my spare server and add some storage to that server (the storage I just purchased is actually the correct drive type so I can move those 1TB drives I purchased).
-I can then do backups on the physical server. CPU is a little weak but the server doesn't do anything else so should be ok.
-We don't restore data from backup really ever, this is primarily for DR.
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Re: Veeam design for small new vmware setup

Veeam Logoby Vitaliy S. » Tue Apr 14, 2015 11:31 am

Yes, your plan looks good to me.
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