Physical rdm backup

So experts!
I've just joined a new company and they use rdms quite extensively.  I've not really worked with rdms.

They have 2tb of data attached to a new win2008r2 VM,  it's full of backup data and they want to shift it off there and put it onto some nas storage.

Which is the best way to go about this?

I am thinking attach the nas to the network the VM is in and get a cifs share in Windows and use something like robocopy to copy it across from  to the nas device.

Also they have an nfs device that they attach to hosts every so often to transfer data off normal datastores.  Is there any way this could be used in conjunction with the physical rdm?

I'm a big fan of Veeam but Veeam doesn't work with physical rdms.

Input appricated  guys!
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piedthepiperAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
When dealing with RDMs in the Virtual Machine, you have to treat the virtual machine as a "physical server", as far as backup, so this means, Agent in the VM, and OS Backups at file level.

Any data transfer will have to be completed from within the VM machine OS.

Robocopy executed in the VM is the best utility, because it will maintain the file/folder permissions, when copying to the NAS.

NFS device, again virtual machine disks e.g. VMDKs can be moved to the NFS datastore, but the Virtual Machine will not detect this.
piedthepiperAuthor Commented:
"NFS device, again virtual machine disks e.g. VMDKs can be moved to the NFS datastore, but the Virtual Machine will not detect this."

I take it you just mean like a svmotion?

Would it be worth while converting it to a virtual rdm and backing it up that way, or just converting it to a vmdk and then backing it up using for example Veeam? Then the vmdk could just be mounted to any vm or by veeam and you could pull out the data you needed?

Or am I completely wrong?
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Cold Migration or Storage vMotion is applicable to a virtual machine disk.

NFS provides a VMware vSphere (ESXi) datastore, which stores VMDKs.

It depends what your Goal is?

We do not use virtual machines to host Windows Shares, we put ALL Windows CIFS shares on NASes....

So I thought you wanted to do the same, move the contents from a virtual machine to a NAS.

or, do you want to move the RDM files to a VMDK ?
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piedthepiperAuthor Commented:
Basically the RDM only holds backup database data .bak files, it is attached directly to the vm in physical mode.

The company want to free up SAN space (Dell Compellent), so the data in that RDM needs to be migrated off that RDM, so that it can be deleted to free up the space.

So it would either be a guest os backup agent as you have to treat it phsyical, or some kind of network share presented to the VM and use robocopy to copy the data across freeing up the RDM for deletion?

Apologies for sounding a bit dumb around RDMs Andrew haha, I have just never used them. Last place we didn't because we didn't see much reason too!
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Okay, so if the company wants to free-up 2TB on the SAN, where does the company currently store it's VMDKs for the VMs, on the same SAN, so it does not make any sense to convert RDM to VMDK, on the same and take up 2TB ?

So you will have to transfer the 2TB of data (in a RDM) to the NAS Windows Share.

So yes, use robocopy in the VM, to copy the data off, no need to create a share, just use the ADMIN D$ (Admin Share on the disk!).

an example :- robocopy D:\*.* //NAS/share
piedthepiperAuthor Commented:
Yup the same SAN!

The only reason I thought about converting it to vmdk, is so that you could just use something like veeam to then back it up and then just delete it.

So basically just get set-up a nas/cifs export for windows and get the windows vm to map the share and transfer cross ?
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
The only reason I thought about converting it to vmdk, is so that you could just use something like veeam to then back it up and then just delete it.

Is the 2TB of data to be used in the future, or archived ? (e.g. to tape or Veeam)

So basically just get set-up a nas/cifs export for windows and get the windows vm to map the share and transfer cross ?

Yes that's it like with any other data, files and folders on a Windows Computer, you need to move files and folders from,
piedthepiperAuthor Commented:
Is the 2TB of data to be used in the future, or archived ? (e.g. to tape or Veeam)

It will only be used in the future if needed for recovery, hence putting it on some different storage than the SAN?

I just thought by converting it to a vmdk and using veeam to back it up, it could be remounted and data/files pulled from it easily at any time using veeam. It was just a random thought in my mind, not sure if it would be viable....I am no expert lol

I am going to go in tomorrow and say look the data on this RDM needs backing up. How do you guys normally do it? Are you guys running agent based backups for this or do you guys present a network share to the VM and copy the data off. However you do it show me and I will crack on with it.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
I don't think if this is just for Archive, it's worth the effort

1. to move 2TB to a NAS with robocopy
2. then backup for access.

he's an idea.... why not use Veeam Backup End Point in the VM to Backup all the 2TB of data on the RDM disk, and this can be backed up straight to your Veeam Repository for recovery?

Download Free Product here

http://www.veeam.com/endpoint-backup-free.html

Once Backup is complete, you can delete the 2TB disk, and LUN.

Later you can access via Veeam.

Quick and Easy!

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piedthepiperAuthor Commented:
Top Class answers
piedthepiperAuthor Commented:
Now that is a clever idea!

Thanks for giving me multiple options to work with!
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