Looking for advice on a VMware disaster plan (speeding recovery)

Posted on 2010-01-06
Last Modified: 2012-05-08
December 30th one of our servers bit it.  We overnighted a power supply that didn't arrive for 5 days, but that's another story (*cough* fedex *cough*).  We had in effect a fairly good backup and recovery model, the server mostly hosted VMware machines, so all we had to do was copy them off and run them on another server.

This is when I learned that copying 200+ gigs of data takes a really really long time (yes, there are 200+ gigs worth of data, not just bloated vmware files) and we would much rather not be down for hours copying data.

We have more than enough space to mirror the data elsewhere, but do not know of replication software that can work across the network and will back up a running VMware on a fairly consistent basis (no more than 10 minutes old on our mail server).  Would be nice if said product would made 1 backup and then do backups on a transactional level thereafter and did not eat my network alive, although I could dedicate a nic for it I guess.

Basically I'd love advice on some software solution that I could hit server A with a sledgehammer and then bring up one of my VMs on server B without lost data.  I know VMotion is capable of this, however that's a level of cost (last I checked) our company is not ready to eat, and it's a little bit more than we need.  Advice appreciated.
Question by:MildlyDisturbed
    LVL 27

    Accepted Solution

    take a look at this:

    Eliminating duplicate backup copies of the same data from multiple computers results in substantial storage and network bandwidth cost savings. The Acronis® Backup & Recovery" 10 Deduplication module provides affordable file and block level software deduplication functionality, helping organizations of all sizes to make a better use of their storage infrastructure and save costs.
    LVL 27

    Assisted Solution

    LVL 32

    Assisted Solution

    What are you running VMWare ESXi or ESX?  If either case, go into the vmware forums and search for Ghetto VCB.

    That will allow you to perform hot backups of running vm's.

    If money is no object, consider licensing VCB inconjunction with Arcserve backup or Backup Exec.
    LVL 21

    Assisted Solution

    I would also give something like this a try
    If you don't have a common storage platform (NAS/SAN) ... one way to  'replicate' your VMs is to back them up often (say once every two hours - so as to not overly load your Host) and then get the backup software to replicate it to another location/storage volume.
    It could work!
    LVL 21

    Assisted Solution

    This is a piece of software I saw being demo'ed recently. Was quite chuffed at what it did  ... it could also help you ...
    LVL 40

    Assisted Solution

    Do you have a DR site with an ESX host? If so, I HIGHLY recommend VEEAM to replicate your VM/VMs to this site. That way, you can do exactly what you wanna do...just power on the replicated VM when the source gets corrupted/goes down.


    Write Comment

    Please enter a first name

    Please enter a last name

    We will never share this with anyone.

    Featured Post

    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

    Not many admins are aware that GPOs can be activated and deactivated time-based. Time to change that :)
    A quick step-by-step overview of installing and configuring Carbonite Server Backup.
    This tutorial will show how to configure a single USB drive with a separate folder for each day of the week. This will allow each of the backups to be kept separate preventing the previous day’s backup from being overwritten. The USB drive must be s…
    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…

    779 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

    15 Experts available now in Live!

    Get 1:1 Help Now