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backup virtual machine with two backup software

Posted on 2013-05-13
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Last Modified: 2013-05-17
We are using two backup software - Veeam, and IBM TSM for VE. Most of the machines are backed up by TSM and another small part of them are backed up by Veeam( we need it due to instant recovery that is possible).
We have a requirements to have backups  for a whole VM also on tapes , so it's necessary to make a backup of VM with TSM( at least one full VM backup).
Do you think there will be any problem when I backup a virtual machine regularry with Veeam and I create a one full backup with TSM ( jsut to clarify that backups will not be performed at the same time).
Also I want to move some VM to be backed up with TSM  and another with Veeam, instead of TSM. Do I have to perform something special?
VMware servers are version 4.1U1, Veeam and TSM use storage API.
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Question by:dedri
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 500 total points
ID: 39161408
Make sure you stagger the Backup Jobs, using both products, so they *DO NOT* clash, e.g. do not have jobs running at the same time, e.g. both at 1am!

Make sure jobs do not overrun onto the other backup jobs, because snapshots can clash, if they use snapshots.

Otherwise you should experience no issues, we use multiple products to backup VMware VMs with no issue.
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by:RickEpnet
ID: 39161558
Make sure they both do not use the Change Block Tracking from VMware. Also you could use PHD Virtual and export the job to an OVF file and back that up to tape. I am sure you already have significant funds involved with both these products so you shoudl be good with what you have.
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by:dedri
ID: 39161615
RickEpnet, both product uses ChangeBlockTracking. Both product uses vStorage API  and CBT. According to hanccocka, there should not be any problem if the jobs are not overlapping at the same time.
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 500 total points
ID: 39161648
from Anton Gostev from Veeam on CBT:

In essence, CBT is all about CTK files, these are the files which contain change tracking information of the corresponding VMDK file.

The concept is pretty simple, and if you are familiar with AD DirSync control, or Exchange ICS (public folders change tracking) – it is essentially the same: global USN (Update Sequence Number) for each object. CTK file describes the state of each block for tracking purposes, and contain USN for each block in the corresponding VMDK. After any block is updated, it is assigned the new global USN (which is previous USN value that was used on previously processed block plus 1). This way, any application can ask VMware API “tell me if this block was changed since THIS moment”, and the API will easily tell that by simply comparing the provided sequence number with the actual USN on each block. If provided USN is smaller than actual for particular block, it means that the block was changed (and needs to be backed up, replicated or otherwise processed). So multiple processes cannot conflict with each other anyhow. Each process just memorizes the USN corresponding to the snapshot that the application created during processing, and next time it will use the memorized USN to query for changed blocks.

There should be one CTK file per VMDK file, and CTK file cannot grow out of proportion with number of blocks in VMDK (as it stores only 1 record per VMDK block). CTK file is also thousands time smaller than actual VMDK, because it stores only a few bytes of information (USN) for each corresponding 256KB VMDK block (I am 90% sure it is 256KB, used to calculate it once using CTK debug/stats data, just don’t remember for sure – unimportant info escapes my head automatically to prevent overload with useless facts ;) . For the same reasons, I/O overhead is barely noticeable with CBT: change few extra bytes to write for each 256000 bytes of data.

The CTK files are permanent, and should not be deleted after backup/replication.
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