backup strategy question

I have 5 esx 4.1 hosts, and about 80 vms residing on them.  I have used Backup Exec to do machine backups to tape for a while, and i have been using vranger for weekly images as well.

I am looking to finally get away from using the tapes altogether, at least for daily, and just use vranger and save those.  We are using the new vranger, 5.2

The only problem i have is that my company is big on DR (or BCP) testing, and practices, so we need to have data leave the building each night.  with BE, we have too much at this point to go in the window we have, so we were looking at doing the ranger backups, and then putting that repository to tape, only problem is that it takes over 26 hours to back it up to tape, which again kills that idea.

so for storage, we have 1 Western Digital portable with 6 TB of storage.  We have another with 4 TB of storage (both were 4, I just upgraded one with new drives)  I also have another JBOD from dell that has about 3TB also.

I have the 4TB and the dell thing set as repositories, and I can keep about 3 days total before they run out of space.  I was working on trying to do a backup of the repository to the other portable drive each day, but it is not working, for there is not enough time.

I had an idea of using 2 backup jobs, one nightly for MWF, and one for TTH.  2 different repositoies that relate to the day of the backup.  this way I can take drives offsite each night, and still have backups running.

unfortunately BE is not running fast enough for me to get a copy on tape, that would solve all of my issues.  :)

Anyone have any thoughts as to how I could make this a little more manageable?
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Wayside_TechAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)Connect With a Mentor VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Checkout my Backup Article

VMware ESX/ESXi Backup Guide


Veeam Backup and Replication is the world leader to backing up Virtual Environment.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Have you thought of OffSite Backup via the Internet?

We use Iron Mountain
http://www.ironmountain.co.uk/whatwedo/remote-data-protection/

and Gigasoft Data Backup.
http://www.gigasoftdatabackup.co.uk/

All data is encrypted at source before it leaves your network using their applications. It's then transferred via https://.

Gigasoft, can complete full and incremental backups to the destination. (and pre-load a Full backup, so incrementals can be used quicker)
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Wayside_TechAuthor Commented:
Thanks, I forgot to include in my original question that we did look at offsite backup, but either thru a pipe to a storage company, or having a rack at a DR site, the cost was too high for my bosses to justify it for this OR next year.  Thats why I am looking at it like this instead...

trust me, that is the preferred method of doing this, I wish it was possible.
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enggsukhwinderCommented:
The way i'm doing the backup application called Acronis. Very best and simple way to take your ESX/Esxi and VM's backup and restore, Tested 101% works.

Cheers :)
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Wayside_TechAuthor Commented:
which acronis product are you using?
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Wayside_TechAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the link.  We are using ranger as I said, but we do have a license to use Veeam as well, but I hadnt tried it yet.  any reason to use the Veeam instead of ranger in your estimation?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Vizioncore vRanger and Veeam Backup are both very good products. Vizioncore has a good pedigree of virtual applications, and was the first company to launch a VM Backup application called EX Ranger, but Veeam has caught them up with Veeam Backup and Replication, and has now become the World Leader.

If you are using vRanger, and are happy with vRanger Backup and Restore, I would not necessarily change, unless you require the features of Veeam. e.g. the ability to start VMs from Backup, without restore.
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