Configuring VMware Consolidate Backup for both SAN and Network TRANSPORT_MODE

We have a virtual environment with three ESX servers and one Virtual Center server. The ESX Servers are connected to a SAN. We are using VCB together with the Backup Exec integration to take image level backups of these virtual machines. The problem is that some of the machines are stored on the SAN and some on the ESX servers (locally). This cause the backup to fail for the machines stored on the local disks. (Perfectly normal).

I was wondering if there is any option to enable both SAN and NBD transport mode. Thus, when SAN is not available then use network instead.

Something like this: TRANSPORT_MODE="san" and "nbd";

Is there anyway of doing this?
Tomasz CzyzSystem AdministratorAsked:
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Naga Bhanu Kiran KotaCommented:

are you using the post and pre-scripts to backup the VMs. What is the version of backup exec check if the scripts that you have been using are compatible with VCB 1.5

can you post how exactly have you configured your backups and the backup scripts setup.

Tomasz CzyzSystem AdministratorAuthor Commented:

I am using the standard pre and post-scripts that came with the "Integration Module Integration for Symantec Backup Exec for Windows Servers - Backup Exec for ESX 3.5 Update 2"

The backup server is running Symantec Backup Exec 12 Rev. 1364
Precommand in Backup Exec: "C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware Consolidated Backup Framework\backupexec\pre-backup.bat" VMware <vmname>-FullVM
Postcommand in Backup Exec: "C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware Consolidated Backup Framework\backupexec\post-backup.bat" VMware

This works perfectly well for the virtual machines located on the SAN but not for the ones located on the local disk of the ESX Server. Which is completely understandable since I the config.js file is configured for a SAN - TRANSPORT_MODE="san"
Naga Bhanu Kiran KotaCommented:

i was checking options available when using the scripted solution and this seems to be a limitation with the available scripts.

Backupexec R 12.5 has a little more integration but that again does not have the option to do mixed backup.

This talks about how to setup the vcb backup using the backup exec 11

This talks about how to setup the backup for r12.5

One thing that you can certainly try is add -m nbd to the precommand

Precommand in Backup Exec: "C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware Consolidated Backup Framework\backupexec\pre-backup.bat" VMware <vmname>-FullVM -m nbd

for the vms that are running on local disk of the ESX server

I have used R12 version CA ARCserve and that works seamlessly with the VCB framework and you can be tension free once you have setup you have run the pre-populate script which will populate the backup manager console with the VMs on ESX server and you can run the backups by selecting the desired VMs and this supports mixed mode backup i.e running a FullVM (raw Mode) and file(filemode) for Windows operating systems.


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Tomasz CzyzSystem AdministratorAuthor Commented:

Thank you for a detailed answer. I tried -m nbd but it did not work. So I wrote my own VB script that would change the setting in the config.js file from san to nbd. I then edited the pre-backup.bat file to run this script before it starts the imageing process.

I attach a copy of the pre-backup.bat which show how the scripts were implemented.


REM A workaround around the fact that only the first 10
REM command line options are easily accessible in a DOS
REM batch file.

set arg=%0
set jobname=%0
IF %0.==. GOTO save
SET arg=%arg% %0
GOTO loop

cscript "C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware Consolidated Backup Framework\backupexec\SwopConfigJStoNBD.vbs"

REM Call into the VCB framework.
for /f %%i in ('"%VCBBASE%\backupexec\gettimestamp.bat"') do set timestamp=%%i
cscript /nologo "%VCBBASE%\backupexec\command.wsf" -pre "%VCBBASE%" %arg% > "%temp%\pre_%jobname%%timestamp%.log" 2>&1

cscript "C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware Consolidated Backup Framework\backupexec\SwopConfigJStoSAN.vbs"

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Tomasz CzyzSystem AdministratorAuthor Commented:
I guess the only easy way solving this would be to use Backup Exec 12.5 or some other backup software with built in support for Virtual Center.
Naga Bhanu Kiran KotaCommented:

I have seen the possibilities on Backup exec 12.5 and that still does not do a mixed backup i.e. run both SAN and NBD backups.

In CA arcserve it actually runs a script to obtain the location of the VMDKs and sets the mode of backup for each VM against the VMs UUID.

So when the backup is initiated from the backup software it intutively backups up the VMs based on the location of the VMDKs. You also edit the ini file that stores these information when you want to use NBD for VMs residing on the SAN when the VCB proxy is not configured to access the LUNs or if there are any issues with the FC adapter on the VCB proxy.

I thought of recemending a custom script but wanted to update but was not really aware about your scripting abilities. Its great to know the way you have resolved the issue.

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