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Best practice to install vCenter and backup / recovery of vCenter

Hello,
Sub: Best deployment strategy to install vCenter Server in a two host ESXi pair with HA

I have to design a system with two HP Servers running VMware ESXi 5.5 with High Availability enabled. I wanted to know the best strategy to install vCenter Server

Currently, I first installed Host 1 with Esxi and then created a VM on it and installed vCenter Server (running on Host 1). I then installed Host 2 with Esxi and then added the Host 1 & 2 into a HA pair with the vCenter Server ... is this a right thing to do? what precautions should I take to avoid loss of vCenter data.

Best deployment strategies appreciated.

Thanks
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zen shaw
Asked:
zen shaw
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
That is how should do it, now you need to think about what Backup application you are going to use to Backup your VMs!

this is how you will prevent data loss.

You don't mention shared storage I assume you have a SAN or NAS connected to the hosts, and this is where vCenter Server VM is stored ?
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zen shawAuthor Commented:
Hi Andrew,
Thank you for your reply.

Yes, I have NAS storage to hold the VMs ...

Do I just need to backup the vCenter Server database or the whole vCenter VM?

Also, the backup software should it be running on one of the VM on the HA pair or in a VM separate from the HA pair as an efficient deployment.

Cheers
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Backup the entire vCenter VM, which includes the SQL DB. (you can also back the SQL DB separately if you like as well!).

Backup Software in a VM in HA Cluster. But make sure you store your backups AWAY from the NAS and ESXi servers.

e.g. standalone NAS.
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zen shawAuthor Commented:
Thanks appreciate your help.

I'll be posting another question on VMware snapshot chain and re-covering the VM. Would be glad to seek your advice.

Thanks
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
no problems, I'll have a look!
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