We have two VMWare ESX Server in a cluster and a NetApp 2050, standing physically beside the ESX Server. We are running about 10 guest-servers on the ESX environment, some of them have RAW-devices mapped for their data-partitions. We are still testing this environment and having only test-systems running. We have not decided a entire backup strategie yet.
For the case of a complete disaster (serverroom burns down), we are planning to buy another server having Windows Server 2008 64bit and VMWare Server 2 installed. This machine would have a very strong hardware and enough TB to store all our VMs with their respective data. The server would stand in another room, far from the serverroom and is connected via 1GB Ethernet.
Now we are looking for a strategie to backup our ESX-VMs, so that we are able to restore the backups on the VMWare server 2. We were thinking of installing usual backup programs, e.g. "Paragon Drive Backup", and store the images on the new Windows 2008 server' s harddisk. In case of a desaster recovery, we would create new VMs, assign enough virtual harddisks with sufficient space to each machine and restore the image on the new VM, using the recovery ISO-CD of the backup-programm.
There are several problems we see here: Saving all our VM-Servers to the new 2008 server' s NTFS-share via usual backup programs would take far too long; having in mind that this must happen beside our usual backup of the ESX/Netapp environment (wich we have not madea strategy for so far). The recovery-cd doesn' t recognize the servers network adapter, so we cannot access the images.
Any ideas on how to backup our VMs, so that we can simply restore them on the VMWare Server 2?