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sglee
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Reliability of USB Passthru Setup in VMWare Server (DELL PowerEdge T320)

Hi,
 
 I have a virtual machine running SBS2011 in VMWare ESXi Host and I run Windows Server Backup in SBS2011.
 In the past, I have backed up to Shared folder on the network ("\\BackupPC\SBSBackupFolder").
 Two issues with this: (1) It is a new complete backup every time. There is no incremental backup  (2) It is taking too long.
 So I like to do two things.
 (1) I like to hook up External USB 3.0 hard drives to VMWare Server to cut down on backup time. Not only I do Windows Server backup, I run other backup jobs. Therefore I need to keep about 2 or 3 Ext. USB HDs attached to the host. Do you see any problems with myidea of attaching multiple ext. USB HDs via USB pass thru (in VM Settings)?
 (2) DELL Poweredge T320 server came with USB 2.0. I like to add USB 3.0 PCI card to save time in multiple backup jobs. Is that a good idea to add USB 3.0 PCI card to this server? Any particular brand that you recommend?

Thanks.
* USBVMwareDell

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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert PRO / EE Fellow/British Beekeeper)

8/22/2022 - Mon
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert PRO / EE Fellow/British Beekeeper)

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sglee

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Adding USB Controller to VM@Andrew,
"I would recommend the use of PCI passthrough and then passthrough the entire USB controller to VM" --> Is this what you are referring to?
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sglee

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Andrew,
 I read an article and thank you.
 Putting that aside, have you experienced something bad personally when you attached ext. USB HDs to the VMWare host directly to do what I intend to do?
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sglee

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I hear you.
"A better solution is to backup across the network, to a network device, e.g. CIFS/Windows Share." --> can you name a couple of products that you have used and worked well?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert PRO / EE Fellow/British Beekeeper)

Western Digital have many Cloud Devices, which are effectively a hard drive with a NAS attached.

Synology NAS a little more money.

Qnap/Thecus.
pgm554

How many VM's do you have on that box anyway?
sglee

ASKER
How many VM's do you have on that box anyway? --> 4 VMs. Three of them is not important. But one VM runs SBS2011 and it keeps a big database software that takes a long time to backup evert night. I like to do local Windows server backup because it is the best way to restore when the server crashes. At this point, I can only store Window Server Backup off the shared drive on the network and can't do incremental backup which sucks.
Then I have to run VM backup using NAKIVO and that takes time.
So overall I need to find the solution to do three types of backup daily at night and each takes a long time.
If I can let SBS2011 VM see local USB HDs (USB 3.0 drives thru USB 3.0 PCIe card), then I can run all those backups fast and everyday.
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pgm554

Are you using the paid for version of Vmware?
The backup API makes all the difference in the world for quick backups and restores.
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sglee

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"we always like our VM backups stored on storage which is not part of the server the VM is hosted on!" --> I agree.
"He would not be able to use Nakivo, if he was using the ESXi FREE version" --> actually NAKIVO can backup VMs on Free version of ESXi. The only thing is that it can't use CBT function.

I get this message in Nakivo.
"CBT cannot be enabled for the "PC1" VM. VMware CBT cannot be enabled automatically in VMs that run on Free ESXi. Backup will be performed using proprietary change tracking technology."
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert PRO / EE Fellow/British Beekeeper)

do you require any additional help to close this question and select a solution ?
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