Backing up ESXi to USB stick - how frequently?

Read Hanccocka's article here:

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Software/VMWare/A_5409-How-to-Backup-an-ESXi-installation-on-an-USB-Flash-Drive-or-SD-card-for-security-or-redundancy.html

How frequently do you need to perform this backup in order to be confident that it will be valid for restoration later?

Is this something you can just do once, shortly after you initially install ESXi and rest easy knowing you have a second copy of the installation if you need it later?
 
Or do you have to redo the backup under certain circumstances because the contents of the USB key have changed (e.g. installing an update for ESXi, changing some major configuration setting, etc.)
LVL 31
Frosty555Asked:
Who is Participating?
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

RickEpnetCommented:
After any change to the Hyper-visor would be advisable.
Make sure and have any scratch drive or logs be written to a Shared Storage or local disk.  

If you do not have anything writing to the SD-Card or USB Drive failure should be very rare.
0
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
My article is *"not designed"* as a regular backup feature. It's designed to ensure you have an original copy of the original installation. and it's probably not supported in VMware Support circles either! But as a get you out of the donkey pooh situation, in case of failure, however unlikely.

Once you have deployed your installation, taken a copy of the USB Flash drive. You should use the following commands, to take regular configuration backups of ESXi of changes made to the Hypervisor configuration.

Back up the host configuration to the file C:\backup.txt:

 vicfg-cfgbackup <conn_options> -s C:\backup.txt

Reset the host, that is, restore to factory settings:

 vicfg-cfgbackup <conn_options> -r

Restore a configuration previously saved to C:\backup.txt to the host:

 vicfg-cfgbackup <conn_options> -l C:\backup.txt

see also here

https://pubs.vmware.com/vsphere-51/index.jsp?topic=%2Fcom.vmware.vcli.ref.doc%2Fvicfg-cfgbackup.html

To redploy your installation, in case of flash failure (unusual), use your backup or image to a new flash drive, and then restore the configuration file above.

I would not recommend the regular removal of a flash drive from a production environment. It's the constant removal and insertion of usb flash drives/sd cards, that cause them to fail.
0

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
VMware

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.