Solved

VMWare Backup Desaster Recovery Strategy

Posted on 2009-04-08
7
929 Views
Last Modified: 2012-05-06
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?
0
Comment
Question by:mbwjk
7 Comments
 
LVL 32

Assisted Solution

by:nappy_d
nappy_d earned 50 total points
ID: 24095463
I would point you in the direction of VCB for VMWare.  Since you have a two node ESX environment, if you don't already have it, consider getting Virtual Centre Foundations.  For about $2500USD, you will get HA(High Availability, for clustering), upto 3 licenses for ESX servers and VCB.  WIth VCB, you can make snap shot copies of all your servers.  VMWare has a module for CA Arcserve as well and Backup Exec. store.vmware.com/store/vmware/en_US/DisplayProductDetailsPage/productID.82529400/

Another option to look at is VMWare SRM(Site Recovery Manager) great for complete disaster recovery scenarios for VMWare - www.vmware.com/products/srm/
0
 
LVL 10

Expert Comment

by:itprotocall
ID: 24095507
Using the VCB framework you could take snapshots of live VMs on the production ESX servers.
These snapshots can be then transported to the DR server over LAN (simple file level backup/restore or an online replication solution)

In case of a disaster you use vmware converter to import the VM files into new virtual machines on the DR server.
0
 
LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:nappy_d
ID: 24095623
Vmare
0
How to run any project with ease

Manage projects of all sizes how you want. Great for personal to-do lists, project milestones, team priorities and launch plans.
- Combine task lists, docs, spreadsheets, and chat in one
- View and edit from mobile/offline
- Cut down on emails

 
LVL 42

Accepted Solution

by:
paulsolov earned 350 total points
ID: 24095732
Since you already have a NetApp 20050 you have several options.  To have online backups of your VMs Snapshot Manager for VI does a great job although you'll need to Snapmanager for SQL and Exchange to properly quiesce the databases if you're runnig them.

I would suggest Vizioncore's VReplicator or VRangar and instead of purchasing a box to support Windows 2008 and VMWare Server 2 I would recommend standing up an ESXi server.  With VReplicator and VRanager you can backup directly to a different host (I haven't tested ESXi as the destination but I believe that it's supported).

Paragon Drive Backup is a good product but it doesn't support VMWare natively.  If you're looking for an imaging product you can try Acronis TrueImage or Symantec Backup Exec System Recovery Server.  Both of these products will image the virtual machines and allow you to use vmware converter to directly restore backup to your Virtual Center using vConverter (it knows the formats natively).  These products can also be used to restore the images to physical servers if you ever need to.

BTW, if you have a NetApp you may want to look at NFS datastores, NetApp recommends them for VMWare implementations because of the 2X requirerements for LUNs if you're doing any Snap functions.  NFS is uses think provisioning



0
 

Author Comment

by:mbwjk
ID: 24095993
Thank you for your comments. A problem, I think,  you did not considered yet is the fact, that we have VMs wich have RAW-Devices mapped from the NetApp. In case of a disaster-recovery, there is no more NetApp and the new server will have to provide the former RAW-device as virtual drive. So, if I only copy or save the VMDK files of our running machine (consistend or not), the recovered VM won' t have access to its data-drive (e.g. the database of our exchange server). In that scenario, would an imaging program (like Backup-Exec) do that job and provide the former RAW-device to the VM as a v-disk?
Or is there another way to backup the RAW-mapped-drive and then recover it as a v-disk?
0
 
LVL 42

Assisted Solution

by:paulsolov
paulsolov earned 350 total points
ID: 24096578
With imaging software you can restore to a VMDK or a RDM or to different physical hardware.  You can use vConverter to restore the OS VMDK and them connect the LUN via RDM and restore the data partition from the OS since the imaging software is installed on the OS side.
0
 
LVL 2

Assisted Solution

by:rami_ejailat
rami_ejailat earned 100 total points
ID: 24121741
Check Acronis True Image Virtual Edition:
http://www.acronis.eu/enterprise/products/ATIVE
Acronis True Image Virtual Edition is a cost-effective, and scaleable solution for IT organisations that need to backup, restore, or test up to 99 virtual servers on a single, physical server  for one set price. There are no additional charges for backing up and restoring new virtual machines residing on a single host server.
0

Featured Post

Get up to 2TB FREE CLOUD per backup license!

An exclusive Black Friday offer just for Expert Exchange audience! Buy any of our top-rated backup solutions & get up to 2TB free cloud per system! Perform local & cloud backup in the same step, and restore instantly—anytime, anywhere. Grab this deal now before it disappears!

Join & Write a Comment

The Delta outage: 650 cancelled flights, more than 1200 delayed flights, thousands of frustrated customers, tens of millions of dollars in damages – plus untold reputational damage to one of the world’s most trusted airlines. All due to a catastroph…
Last article we focus in how to VMware: How to create and use VMs TAGs – Part 1 so before follow this article and perform the next tasks, you should read the first article how to create the TAG before using them in Veeam Backup Jobs.
In this Micro Tutorial viewers will learn how they can get their files copied out from their unbootable system without need to use recovery services. As an example non-bootable Windows 2012R2 installation is used which has boot problems.
This Micro Tutorial steps you through the configuration steps to configure your ESXi host Management Network settings and test the management network, ensure the host is recognized by the DNS Server, configure a new password, and the troubleshooting…

746 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question

Need Help in Real-Time?

Connect with top rated Experts

16 Experts available now in Live!

Get 1:1 Help Now