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Hyper-V Backup software for Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV)

Posted on 2011-03-09
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I have 2 Windows Server 2008 R2 machines that are in a cluster on a Fiber SAN.  I would like to know what products you would recommend that would provide the following:

-Host based backup and restore for CSV VM's.  I would like to be able to backup the entire host, or just the VM's, and be able to restore.

-File level restore (without having to install guest backup software).  It would be fanastic to be able to mount a VHD offline and pull a file off it.

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Question by:B1izzard
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Expert Comment

by:TSGITDept
ID: 35095605
Microsoft System Center with Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) and Data Protection Manager (DPM) might be worth looking into.
Plus with VMM you can do live migration of virtual machines from one host server to another (similar to VMWare's Vmotion)
    http://www.microsoft.com/systemcenter/en/us/products.aspx

Symantec Backup Exec also has a Hyper-V host agent that covers file level backup within the virtual machines.
    Symantec Backup Exec 2010 R2 Agent for Microsoft Hyper-V FAQ
    http://eval.symantec.com/mktginfo/enterprise/other_resources/b-backup_exec_2010_r2_agent_for_ms_hyper_v_FAQ.en-us.pdf

I'm not sure if either solution is completely free of installing a guest agent but there defintely is for the Symantec product if you're backing up SQL, Exchange, or SharePoint.  Those require a specific guest agent within the VM.
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Author Comment

by:B1izzard
ID: 35095798
>> Plus with VMM you can do live migration of virtual machines from one host server to another

Interesting.  I have the option to do a live migration from within the existing Cluster without VMM.  Am I missing something here?  Does it do somoething special that the regular Failover Cluster doesn't?

Backups seem like such a hassle in Hyper-V vs VMWare, which has many more options.
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TSGITDept earned 500 total points
ID: 35096841
Clustering is one thing but there are some strict requirments and complexities involved in clustering.  Applications need to be cluster aware, your configuration has strict requirements, service packs can be complicated because certain changes are replicated through the cluster, whether you want them to or not, you need to be running Windows Server Enterprise, SQL Enterprise, etc...  And you save money by not needing to purchase Enterprise SQL licenses and all of the other costs associated with clustering.

Conversely, with Hyper-V + Virtual Machine Manager + a SAN, you can have some of the benefits of clustering without having to pay for, build, and maintain a cluster.

With W2008 R2 Hyper-V, if a VM needs more processing power or you want to move it so that you can take the host server down for maintenance you can move a running VM without downtime.

Windows Server 2008 R2 & Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 - Hyper-V Live Migration Overview & Architecture
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=FDD083C6-3FC7-470B-8569-7E6A19FB0FDF&%3Bdisplaylang=en

...With Hyper-V™ live migration, you can move running VMs from one Hyper-V™ physical host to another without any disruption of service or perceived downtime. Live migration is integrated with Windows Server 2008® R2 Hyper-V™ and Microsoft® Hyper-V™ Server 2008 R2. Since Hyper-V™ live migration can move running virtual machines without downtime, it will facilitate greater flexibility and value:• Provides better agility: Datacenters with multiple Hyper-V™ physical hosts will be able to move running VMs to the best physical computer for performance, scaling, or optimal consolidation without impacting users.• Reduces costs and increase productivity: Datacenters with multiple Hyper-V™ physical hosts will be able to service those systems in a more controlled fashion, scheduling maintenance during regular business hours. Live migration makes it possible to keep VMs online, even during maintenance, increasing productivity for both users and server administrators. Datacenters will be also able to reduce power consumption by dynamically increasing consolidation ratios and powering off un-used physical hosts during times of lower demand
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Author Closing Comment

by:B1izzard
ID: 35245653
Thanks!
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