Tag Archives: VMCE

My Veeam VMCE-A Course and Exam Experience

vmce_a_logoFirst up a bit of a back story – as a Veeam Vanguard I was lucky enough to have received the required training last June in order to qualify for my VMCE exam, which I wrote and passed in August of 2016!  A nice little perk of the program if you ask me!  Anyways, earlier this month a handful of us were again lucky to participate in the next level of training, the VMCE-A Design & Optimization course in an online pilot, thus, qualifying us to write the VMCE-A exam.    Under normal circumstances I would take a lot of time to study up and possibly create guides on this blog for the certifications I write – however, with VeeamON right around the corner and the ability to take advantage of a “Free Second Chance” offer for writing certifications on site my normal study strategies didn’t apply.  I couldn’t pass up the chance of at the very least getting a look at the exam, even if it meant failing – hey, a free second chance!

So with the course fresh on my memory I studied where I could between it and my exam appointment at the conference, be it on the car ride to the airport, at 30,000 feet in the air and during a few meals at the conference.  Anyways, the tl;dr version is I passed the exam….barely – getting only 4% over the pass mark of 70%.  Not a mark I’d certainly be super proud of, but in the end a pass is a pass and I’ll take it!

On to the exam!

exam_multiplechoiceThe VMCE-A D&O exam is 40 randomized questions, all multiple choice.  Some questions have only one answer, while some are in the “Select 2, Select3” format.  As mentioned earlier a passing score is 70% or higher.  As far as the content goes I can’t say a lot as NDA’s are in effect, however what I can say is that all questions I received are fully covered within the VMCE-A D&O course material – and in fact, at the end you get a nice little detailed breakdown on how you scored in the different sections covered in the course (Design & Sizing, Infrastructure, Security, Optimization, Automation & Compliance, and Troubleshooting).  This certainly helps you to nail down where you might want to freshen up in order to improve your skill-sets.

One big thing I will say is that this exam is tough!  For as easy as Veeam can be to simply get up and running there is a lot to know about their complete suite of products – and a lot to cover in order to test on all of the features and benefits of just Veeam Backup & Replication.  Now being a customer I’m not designing these Veeam solutions day in and day out, so I focused a lot of my attention on the design section, as well as other parts of VBR that I don’t use that often.  But just as with the VMCE it’s not enough to solely focus on just VBR – Veeam ONE, Cloud Connect, etc – these are all free game for testing on this exam – so if you don’t use them I would certainly recommend brushing up on them.   I can’t stress enough that all of the content I was tested on in the exam is covered within the course materials (textbook/slides) – so pay attention during the course!  I can say, that if you see something labeled as a best practice or a formula you should remember these – Remember, this is an architect exam based on designing Veeam environments!  Just keep that in the back of your mind while studying!

As far as timing goes you have 1 hour (add another 30 minutes if English isn’t your first language) to complete the 40 questions.  I found this to be more than enough time.  Just like VMware’s VCP exams you can flag certain questions for review, and go back and forth between questions on the exam at your leisure.  The strategy I took, since I had no idea how much of a time crunch their might be, was to simply go through the questions answering the ones I knew I was right and flagging any that I was unsure of for review after.  This process took me roughly 30 minutes, which allowed me another 30 minutes to go back and review those questions I didn’t quite have a grasp of.  My review took roughly 10 minutes – after that I went through every question again, double-checking and tallying in my head how many I knew I had right, hoping to come up with a score high enough to make me feel comfortable enough to click that dreadful ‘End Exam’ button.  In the end I knew I was I close, but ended it anyways!

You will get your score immediately after completing the exam – so you know whether it was a pass or fail right away – no painful time spent wondering Smile  Also, as mentioned earlier, upon exiting the facility you will get a print out showing how you scored in each category.  I’m certainly happy I passed and know that I can for sure improve in some areas – maybe another study guide is in the cards for me!

The Veeam Certification Paths

For those that don’t know Veeam currently has 2 different certifications.  The VMCE, which documents proof  that the engineer has the necessary level of knowledge to correctly deploy, configure and administrator Veeam Availability Suite.  Then, the VMCE-A D&O which adds on the knowledge from the VMCE, bringing in more of a design and optimize feel to the test, all the while following the Veeam best practices.  Once you have achieved both the VMCE and the VMCE-A, Veeam accredits you with the title of the Veeam Certified Architect, or VMCA.  The VMCA is not a separate certification and does not require a separate step – it’s simply a designation handed to those whom have completed the requirements for both the VMCE and VMCE-A, along with passed both exams.

VeeamCertificationPath

A little about the course

Honestly, even if you don’t go through with the exam the VMCE-A Design and Optimization course is an awesome course to take.  I guarantee you will get something out of it even if you design on a daily basis.  For me, being a customer and administrator of these products it was an awesome opportunity to walk through the Veeam design methodologies, and deep diving into each step one by one to come out with the full solution.  The course has a couple of design scenarios inside of it, of which there is really no right or wrong answer.  We broke into a couple of different groups to do these and it was amazing to see just how different the end designs were.  The instructors take the opportunity to pick away at these designs, trying to understand your though process and figure out how you think – asking a lot of questions in regards to why you set it up the way you did!  This to me was the biggest advantage of the course – having that interaction and learning other ways to accomplish similar results – and seeing where you might be going astray in your though process.

So with that I hope this helps anyone else who might be on the fence about taking either the course or the exam.  I can proudly say that I am a VMCA now and that feels great (and I’m glad I don’t have to cash in that second chance as it’s a very tough exam – or at least it was to me).

VMCE v9 Study Guide – Module 10 – Veeam ONE Reporting

VMCE Logo

Just as was with the Veeam ONE dashboards post this post is a lengthy one – and quite honestly just created to help me remember all of the different reports and options available within Veeam Reporter.  Again, just as with Veeam ONE Monitor – Reporter is on the exam and you will need to know a little bit about what all it can provide.

Veeam Reporter contains a number of useful reports that can help us to monitor both our virtual infrastructure along with our backup infrastructure.

  • VMware Infrastructure Assessment
    • ensures that your VMs can be successfully backed up by looking for configuration and incompatibilities that may affect backup job
    • helps predict the amount of future changes on disks that may have an influence on your backup window, consumed backup capacities, or WAN bandwidth allocated
    • Contains the following reports
      • Datastore Performance Assessment – helps to assess current load on storage in order to best define values in Backup I/O control
      • VM Change Rate Estimation – helps to predict sizes of incremental backups by tracking change rate
      • VM Configuration Assessment – lists VMs that could face issues when getting backed up.
  • Veeam Cloud Connect Report Pack
    • Tracks our VCC Infrastructure
    • Contains following Reports
      • Cloud Connect Inventory – displays inventory information for VBR and Cloud Connect components including licensing
      • Cloud Connect Replication Provisioning – helps define whether existing plans for hardware match our hosts and datastore capabilities to avoid potential issues caused by over provisioning.
      • Over Provisioned Backup Repositories – tracks and calculates the number of days left before we will breach a specified threshold in terms of space utilization
      • Veeam Cloud Connect User Report – Allows providers to analyze configuration and quota usage on repositories.  Helps to prevent running out of space and keeps an eye on users activities and quotas
  • Veeam Backup and Replication Report  Pack
    • Analyzes health, performance and efficiency of VBR.
    • Contains the following reports…
      • Backup Alarms Overview –  displays most frequently triggered alarms and most affected VBR infrastructure objects
      • Backup Billing – allows MSPs to generate billing statements for customers.
      • Backup Copy Job – Helps to analyze traffic savings of Backup Copy Jobs and WAN Accelerators
      • Backup Copy Job GFS Backup Files – Allows administrators to easily track GFS restore points and when certain backups will be removed including the size and day they are to be removed.
      • Backup Infrastructure Assessment – helps to improve job configuration and implement necessary hardware and software recommendations.  Helps you attain a lower backup window, lower resource consumption and more efficiency throughout your whole VBR environment
      • Backup Inventory – displays information on the state of backup infrastructure components and licensing details
      • Backup Job Data Exclusions – reviews exclusion settings configured in jobs.
      • Backup Jobs Historical Information – exhaustive information on the state of recent jobs.
      • Capacity Planning for Backup Repositories – analyze configuration of space utilization of repositories to forecast how long until the repository reaches capacity.
      • Current Backup Alarms State Overview – detects and resolves current and most pressing issues with VBR
      • Delegated Restore Permissions Overview – audits restore permissions.
      • Job Configuration Change Tracking – reviews user activity and tracks changes made to jobs.
      • Job Configuration Dump – helps to review settings of the current configuration of VBR jobs.
      • Latest Backup Job Status – helps administrators monitor recent VM protection operations.
      • Orphaned VMs – discovers VMs present in existing backups, but missing within a VBR job.
      • Protected VMs – helps to discover which VMs in the environment have up to date restore points and which are set to be backed up, but do not have a recent restore point.
      • Protected VMs Job Schedule – publishes the time table for scheduled jobs and their respective VMs
      • Replica Billing – assesses storage management costs for replication and auto generate billing statements.
      • Restore Operator Activity – tracks restore activities across all different restore methods as well as most popular recovery items.
      • Scale-Out Backup Repository Configuration – shows configuration and utilization of SOBR and their respective extents
      • SQL Backup Job Historical Information – tracks historical stats of SQL Backup jobs
      • SureBackup Jobs Overview – validates completion status and results of verification tests for SureBackup jobs.
      • Tape Backups – Maintains a record of all VMs archived to tape
      • Tape Exportation – information in regards to backup files located on tapes that have been exported from tape libraries.
      • Tape GFS Configuration – Information about GFS Media Pools – what tapes are exported, where they are stored, what tapes are assigned to certain media sets.
      • Tape Media Retention Period – information on retention policy settings configured for tape media pools.
      • Tape Vaults Overview – what vaults do we have, what tapes are archived in the vaults and what was their previous location.
      • Unmapped datastore LUNS – which shared datastores are not mapped to a proxy, thus no Direct SAN mode.
      • Veeam Backup Files Growth – capacity planning to asses historical growth of backup files.
      • Verified VMs – allows for a quick view of SureBackup results and confirm backups are recoverable.
      • VM Backup Compliance Overview – lists VMs that do not meet the requirement of having a certain number of backup copies available.
      • VM Backup Status – provides info on the backup status of all protected VMs
      • VM Change Rate History – track jobs who’s backup files and replicas grow too fast.
      • VM Failover Plan Overview – analyzes failover plan configuration and provides information on how much data is consumed by replica VMs on the target datastores.
      • VMs Backed up by Multiple Jobs – Finds VMs which are included in more than one job.
      • VMs with no Archive Copy – helps to assess whether mission critical VMs have backup copies stored on secondary backup repositories or tape.
  • VMware Overview Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Cluster Configuration – allows you to keep an eye on the state of hardware resources provided to cluster and verify configuration settings of clusters
      • Datastore Capacity – shows information on the amount of used and free space on datastores, virtual and logical disks.
      • Datastore Configuration – helps to monitor storage capacities ensuring VMs have sufficient room to run.
      • Datastore space usage history –  analyzes amount of space consumed historically showing growth, both high and low on your datastores.
      • Guest Disk Free Space – Information on VM guest disks such as capacity, free space, etc.
      • Guest Disk Space Usage – evaluates disk health based on capacity, free and used space.
      • Host Configuration – documents host configuration in the environment
      • Hypervisor Version – evaluates what versions each host is running.
      • Infrastructure Overview – monitors health and state of objects within your virtual environment.
      • VMs Configuration – documents current configuration of VMs such as cpu, power state, usage, VMware tools, Guest OS, etc.
      • VMs Growth –  tracks number of VMs in the environment and how it has been changing.
  • VMware Monitoring Report Pack
    • Contains the following Reports
      • Alarms Current State Overview – shows unresolved alarms from Veeam ONE Monitor
      • Alarms Overview – Shows most common alarms and most affected virtual infrastructure objects
      • Cluster Hosts Performance – helps to tweak DRS settings, performance settings and cluster health – from a host point of view
      • Cluster Performance – Same as cluster hosts performance but from a cluster point of view
      • Datastore Performance – shows historical and current IOPS/errors, etc.
      • Host Performance – stats on CPU, memory, disk, and network.
      • Host Uptime –top and lowest uptime for hosts (top 5).  Also how long each host was down, etc.
      • Multiple Clusters Performance – aggregates historical data for clusters.  Top consuming hosts, VMS, usage trends, etc.
      • Resource Pool and vApp Performance – stats on resources for vApps and resource pools.
      • VM Performance – resource statistics on VMs and trending.
      • VM Uptime – Top/Lowest uptime for top 5 VMs.  Also shows how long each VM has been down.
  • VMware Optimization Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Active Snapshots – shows VMs with snapshots, when they were created, size of snapshot and how old they are.
      • Garbage Files – shows space consumed by files that do not belong to VMs
      • Idle Templates – shows templates that haven’t been utilized in a specified period, including location, size and last time accessed.
      • Idle VMs – shows VMs that have been idle for a specified period.
      • Inefficient Datastore Usage – shows amount of space consumed by VMs that have been inactive for one month, six month, and one week.
      • Orphaned VM Snapshots – Shows amount of space consumed by snapshots that are no longer in use by the VM.
      • Oversized VMs – detects VMs with more RAM/CPU than they require.
      • Powered Off VMs – shows VMs that were powered off for a specified period.
      • Undersized VMs – identifies VMs which require more CPU/Memory.
  • VMware Capacity Planning Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Capacity Planning –  forecasts how many days remain before we meet a specific threshold.
      • Host Failure Modeling – Simulates failover of one ore more hosts to forecast CPU/Memory usage on the remaining hosts.
      • How many more VMs can be provisioned – calculates how many more VMs we can support before we meet a specified threshold.
      • Over provisioned Datastores – assesses potential impact of over provisioning thin provisioned VMs on datastores.
  • VMware Configuration Tracking Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Infrastructure Changes Audit – analyzes recently infrastructure changes
      • Infrastructure Changes by Object – detailed information on changes to a specific object.
      • Permissions by Object –  audits permissions to specific objects.
      • Permissions by User – audits permission based on user
  • Hyper-V Infrastructure Assessment
    • Contains the following reports
      • Configuration Assessment – compares Hyper-V infrastructure against a set of recommended settings and best practices.  Mitigates issues that might prevent VMs from being backed up.
      • Performance Assessment – analyzes Hyper-V infrastructure to confirm its configured optimally.
  • Hyper-V Overview Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Alarms Overview – review the triggered alarms from Veeam ONE Monitor
      • Cluster Configuration – documents current configuration of clusters and reports on memory, cpu and storage utilization
      • Datastore Capacity – documents configuration of CSVs, SMB shares and local disk, reports on total capacity, free, used and provisioned and calculates trends.  Also includes top 3 VMs in terms of capacity usage.
      • Host Configuration – documents current configuration of hosts and reports on CPU, Memory, Network and storage utilization
      • Infrastructure Overview – Shows properties of SCVMM servers, clusters, CSVs, SMB Shares, local disks, hosts and networks.  Distribution of MV by power states, integration services status.
      • VMs Configuration – provides details on cpu, memory, power state, disk usage, etc.
      • VMs Growth – tracks how the number of VMs within the environment changes and how it influenced resources.
  • Hyper-V Monitoring Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Failover Cluster Performance – shows top consuming hosts within cluster as well as CPU, Memory, Disk and Network resource utilization
      • Host Performance – Shows top consuming VMs on a host as well as all CPU, Memory, Disk and network resource utilization
      • Local Datastore Performance – Lists top 3 consuming VMs as well as read/write latency, read/write rate, and IOP Statistics
      • VM Performance – Shows stats around CPU, Memory, disk and network as well as trending.
      • VM Uptime – shows top 5 VMs with most and least uptime, as well as all VMs whose uptime is lower than specific thresholds
      • Windows 2008 CSV Performance – Aggregates all Win 2008 CSVs to show read/write rates and IOPS as well as top 3 consuming VMs
      • Windows 2012 CSV Performance – same as Windows 2008 but the addition of directed/redirected access mode.
  • Hyper-V Optimization Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Active Snapshots – shows snapshot age and size for all VMs containing snapshots.
      • Idle VMs – Shows CPU, Memory, disk and network utilization of idle VMs
      • Oversized VMs – Shows oversized VMs by CPU and Memory as well as all VMs with static memory.
      • Powered Off VMs – Shows VMs that have been powered off between a specified time period.
      • Undersized VMs – Identifies VMs who need more CPU/Memory.
  • Hyper-V Capacity Planning Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Capacity Planning – allows you to project how many days you have remaining across all aspects of your environment
      • Host Failure Modeling – allows you simulate failures of one or more hosts.
      • Over-provisioned Datastores – shows top 5 over and under provisioned datastores as well as datastores with least amount of free space remaining.
  • Custom Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Custom Infrastructure – allows you drill down into infrastructure objects and data not covered in other reports.
      • Hyper-V Custom Performance – can define specific metrics to monitor in terms of CPU, memory, network and disk for Hyper-V, CSVs and SMB Shares
      • Hyper-V Raw Performance Data – can get detailed raw data of all Hyper-V Metrics
      • Inventory – provides the most complete and up to date configuration information of all objects in the virtual environment
      • Report Builder – Merges data generated by separate custom reports into a single document.
      • VMware Custom Performance – allows you to define specific metrics in terms of CPU, Memory, Network and Disk for vSphere.
      • VMware Raw Performance data – get detailed raw data in terms of CPU, memory, network and disk for vSphere.
  • vCloud Director Report Pack
    • Contains the following reports
      • Catalogs Overview – shows an inventory of catalogs for selected organizations
      • Multiple Organizations vDC Performance – aggregates historical data for selected organizations (CPU, disk, network)  Lists top consuming vApps and VMs
      • Multiple vApps Performance – shows performance and resource statistics for a specific time period in the scope of a vApp.  Rates VMs by resource usage level and trends.
      • Organization Configurations –shows current configuration of organizations within the vCloud Director Infrastructure
      • Organization vDC Performance – shows performance stats for a specific organization datacenter across a specific time frame.
      • Provider vDC Performance – shows provider virtual datacenter statistics over a specific timeframe
      • vApp Configuration – Shows vApp configuration as well as top 5 cpu consuming vapps, memory, storage, etc.  shows number of powered on/off/resolved/and suspended vApps.
      • vApp Performance – shows CPU, memory, disk, network stats for a specific vApp and shows top consuming VMs.
      • VM Performance – shows performance stats for specific VMs
      • VM Uptime – shows top 5 highest/least VMs in terms of uptime, as well as VMs who have uptime values lower/greater than a specified threshold.
  • Offline Report Pack
    • allows you to export raw data/inventory into a couple external formats.
    • Contains the following reports
      • Infrastructure Overview (visio) – exports your inventory and configuration specifics to visio format.
      • Raw Data Analysis – Creates an Excel workbook containing detailed raw data on all objects within VMware.

VMCE Study Guide – Module 10 – Veeam ONE Dashboards

VMCE Logo

I apologize for the repetitiveness between this post and the Veeam ONE user guide, but honestly I learn a lot by writing things down – and since I wrote it down I’ll share it.  There isn’t alot of information here about each and every dashboard – there is a lot of them and to go through them would be very exhausting.  That said, Veeam ONE Dashboards is on the course outline for the VMCE exam, and there is a good chance you will end up getting some questions around them – so best to go through them all….  With that said, here’s a portion of Module 10 of the VMCE Study Guide.

Veeam ONE Dashboards

Veeam ONE contains many different dashboards dealing with both your infrastructure and your Backup Infrastructure.

Backup Infrastructure Dashboards

  • Backup Infrastructure Summary – shows the latest state of the backup operations in your virtual environment and indicates the most used resources in the backup infrastructure with the following charts.
    • Backup Jobs by  Status, Replication Jobs by Status, SureBackup Jobs by Status
    • Top Repository Servers by Used Space
    • Top Proxy Servers by Weekly processed disks
  • Backup Repositories Overview – overview and performance analysis for repositories.
    • Repositories Overview (# of repos, # of VM backups in repos, space occupied by full/incremental backups)
    • Top Repositories by used space
    • Top Repositories by days left
    • Top Repositories by weekly backup window
  • Backup Repository Summary – information about an individual repository
    • Repository Overview
    • Capacity Planning (# of days before no space)
    • Free space usage (amount of used storage vs amount of available storage.
  • Proxy Servers Overview – configuration and performance overview for proxies
    • Proxy Server Overview – break down of proxies by transport mode
    • Top proxies by processed VMs – top 5 backup proxies that process the greatest number of VMs over the past 7 days
    • Top Proxy by Transferred Data – top 5 backup proxies that transferred the greatest amount of data over the past 7 days
    • Top Proxies by Weekly Backup Window – detect the most busy proxy servers over the last 7 days
  • Proxy Server Summary – details on an individual proxy
    • Proxy Server Overview (number of task currently processing, transport mode, number of VMs processed over the last 7 days, number of VM disk processing task that can be assigned at the same time.
    • Number of processed disks – how many VM disk the proxy processed over the past 7 days
    • Transferred data – amount of backup data the proxy has transferred over the past 7 days.
    • Backup Window Utilization – estimates how busy the proxy was during the past 7 days.
  • WAN Accelerators Overview
    • WAN Accelerator Overview – number of WAN Accelerators, number of VMs stored in restore points that were transferred using acceleration, total network traffic sent by accelerators, amount of saved traffic.
    • Top Accelerators by Acceleration Efficiency – shows 5 accelerators that save the greatest amount of traffic over the past 7 days.
    • Top Accelerators by Transferred Data – top 5 accelerators that transferred the greatest amount o VM data over the past 7 days.
  • WAN Accelerator Summary
    • Overview – number of vms stored in restore points or received by the accelerator, amount of network traffic/saved traffic
    • Accelerator Efficiency – accelerators that save the greatest amount to traffic.
    • Transferred Data by day – shows the amount of VM data that was read from the source and the amount that was actually transferred.
  • Tape Servers Overview
    • Overview – shows number of tape servers and the tape libraries connected to them
    • top Tape servers by processed VMs – top 5 tape servers that process and archive to tape the greatest number of VMs over the last 7 days
    • Top tape servers by transferred data – top 5 tape servers that archived the greatest amount of data to tape over the past 7 days
    • Top tape servers utilization – detect the most busy tape servers over the past 7 days (cumulative time it was retrieving, processing and transferring data)
  • Tape Servers Summary
    • Overview – number of libraries connected to the server
    • Number of Processed VMs – how many VMs the tape server processed over the past 7 days
    • Processed Data – amount of data the tape servers has archived over the past 7 days
    • Backup Window Utilization – estimates how busy the tape server was over the past 7 days.
  • Cloud Repositories Overview
    • Overview – The number of repositories created for cloud connect users, number or repository leases expiring in the next 30 days, number of VMs in backups on repositories, cumulative amount of storage occupied by VM backups on all managed repositories
    • Top Cloud Repositories by Utilization – 5 cloud repositories that have the greatest amount of used storage
    • Top Cloud Repositories with least days left – top 5 repos that can run low on storage space sooner than others
    • Top repositories by daily utilization growth – How fast the amount of space on the repositories has grown over the past 7 days.
  • Cloud Repository Summary
    • Overview – name of user owning repository, date when expires, number of VMs stored in the repository, amount of space occupied
    • Capacity Planning – user quota, amount of free space, number of days before the repo runs out of space.
    • Space Utilization by Day – amount of used storage space against the amount of available space
    • Number of VMs by day – number of VMs whose backups were written to the repository during the past period.
  • Cloud Gateways Overview
    • Overview – number of cloud gateways managed, number of connections to gateways over the past 24 hours, amount of backup data that was transferred through all gateways, average amount of time during which the gateways were utilized over the past 24 hours.
    • User Connections – most loaded cloud gateways in terms of user connections
    • Data Transferred – amount of transferred data by most utilized gateways
  • Cloud Gateway Summary
    • Overview – number of users that have been connected over the past day, week, or month, TCPIP port used for external connections, Amount of backup data processed over the past day, week, or month, Amount of time that the gateway was retrieving, processing and transferring data
    • User Connections/Sessions – how many times the connection to the gateway was established to transfer backup traffic
    • Data Transferred/Processed Data – amount of backup data that the cloud gateway transferred to the cloud repo over the past period
    • Weekly/Monthly Summary – estimates just how busy the gateway was during the period.

VMware Infrastructure Dashboards

  • Virtual Infrastructure Summary – provides the health state overview for the selected object, available on the root node, as well as folders, resource pools, hosts clusters, datacenters or the vCenter Server.
    • Host State, Datastore State, VM State – healthy objects are green, those with warnings are yellow, and errors are red
    • Latest Alarms – the last 15 alarms that were triggered on the selected object
    • Alarms by Object – shows the last 15 objects with the highest number of alarms.  Displayed in an X/X format – i.e. 3/1 means 3 alarms, 1 warning.
  • ESXi Host Summary
    • Datastore State/VM State – health of the objects on the host
    • Resource Usage – capacity and performance summary for the hosts CPU and Memory
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for the host and all its child objects
    • Alarms by Object – 15 child objects with the greatest number of alarms
  • Virtual Machine Summary
    • Selected Object – shows the health state for the selected VM\
    • CPU/Memory Usage – amount of CPU/Memory resources the VM is consuming
    • Guest Disk Usage – amount of available and used guest disk usage – broke down by disk  By default the top 5 utilized disks of the VM are shown.  Requires VMware tools
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for the VM
    • Parent Object Health Status – shows current state of the host where the VM is running, as well as the state of the datastore where the VM resides.
  • Datastore Summary
    • Hosts State/VM state – shows health of hosts attached to datastore and VMs residing on datastore
    • Disk Space Usage – amount of available, used, and provisioned disk space
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for datastore and objects working with this datastore
    • Latest Disk Latency – current read/write latency values and the average

Hyper-V Dashboards

  • Virtual Infrastructure Summary
    • Host/Datastore/VM States – displays health of associated objects
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for respective objects
    • Alarms by Object – 15 objects with highest number of alarms
  • Host Summary
    • Datastore/VM state – health of associated objects
    • Resource Usage – capacity/usage summary for CPU/Memory on host/overview of volumes connected to host (capacity, free space
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms
    • Alarms by object – 15 objects with highest level of alarms
  • VM Summary
    • CPU/Memory Usage – Dynamic memory VMs show usage, static memory show 100% all the time
    • Datastore Usage – amount of storage available/consumed where the VMs reside
    • Latest alarms – last 15 alarms for the VM
    • Parent Object Health Status – health of the host VM is running on.
  • Local Storage Summary
    • Hosts/VM State – health of hosts connected, VMs hosted.
    • Disk Space Usage – amount of available/used disk space
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for local storage
    • Latest Disk Latency – current read/write as well as average
  • SMB Share Summary
    • Hosts/VM state – health of connected hosts, VMs residing on share
    • Disk Space Usage – amount of available/used capacity
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for share/hosts that work with share
    • Latest Disk Speed – current read/write rate, along with average over the past hour
  • Cluster Shared Volume Summary
    • Host/VM State – I’ve typed what this is enough Smile
    • Disk Space usage – free/available capacity on CSVs
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for CSVs
    • Latest Disk Speed – current direct and redirected I/O values as well as average for past hour

vCloud Director Dashboards

  • vCD Infrastructure Summary
    • Top 5 orgs by VM Errors/Warnings /Healthy– orgs with greatest number of errors/warnings/no alarms
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for vCD segment
    • Alarms by Object – 15 objects with greatest number of alarms
  • Provider vDCs Overview
    • Error/Warning/Health Objects – provider vDCs by state (error/warning/healthy)
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms triggered for vDCs
    • Alarms by Object – 15 objects with the greatest number of alarms
  • Provider vDC Summary
    • CPU/Memory/Storage Usage – amount of currently consumed CPU, memory and storage resources for the vDC
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms associated with vDC and its underlying objects
    • Alarms by Object – current state of hosts/datastores providing resources to the vDC
  • Organizations Overview
    • Error/Warning/Healthy Objects – groups VMs by orgs by health status
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms triggered for orgs
    • Alarms By Object – 15 objects with greatest number of alarms.
  • Organization Summary
    • VMs by State – summary health of VMs in the organization
    • Latest Blocking Tasks – last 15 suspended operations that require approval
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for orgs, org vDCs, VMs and vApps associated with orgs
    • Alarms by Object – 15 objects with greatest number of alarms
  • Organization vDC Summary
    • VMs by State – typed this too much Smile
    • Expired vApps – vApps whose runtime/storage lease is expired.
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for org vDC and child objects
    • Alarms by Object – 15 objects with greatest number of alarms
  • vApp Summary
    • VMs by State – see previous dashboard
    • VMs by Tools State – groups VMs in the vApp by VMware Tools State.
    • VMs by Power State – groups VMs in the vApp by their power status
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for the vApp and VMs within it.
    • Alarms by Object – 15 objects with the greatest number of alarms
  • VM Summary
    • CPU/Memory Usage – show the amount of CPU/Memory resources VM is consuming
    • Guest Disk Usage – amount of available and used guest disk usage (needs VMware Tools)
    • Latest Alarms – last 15 alarms for the VM
    • Parent Object Health Status – current health state of host

VMCE v9 Study Guide- Module 9 – Tape Device Support

VMCE Logo

I’ve taken a little break from the VMCE Study Guide creation but truth be told participating in the #VDM30in30 will probably help get me back into the swing of things.  Today we will continue along with the guide, jumping ahead slightly to Module 9 and tape support.  I’ve not used tape at all within Veeam so this was definitely a good excercise for me to go through before going and writing the VMCE certification.

Requirements and Configurations

As far as support goes, Veeam Backup & Replication supports the following devices…

  • LTO3 or later tape libraries
  • Physical and Standalone drives, along with virtual tape libraries
  • Partitions of physical or VTLs which are presented to VBR
  • Drives can be connected via FC, SAS, or SCSI when connecting directly, iSCSI remote connections are also supported.
  • If multiple driver installation modes are supported for the storage device, then the driver that supports multiple open handles must be utilized.

When determining which block size to use, VBR will scan all the drives within the same library or all the standalone drives which are connected to one tape server.  It compares all of the available sizes which the drives support and then uses the maximum size available that is supported among all of them.

Deploying tape support within Veeam

The Veeam tape environment contains a number of components required to make it work…

Veeam Tape Server

The first step in configuring VBR to utilize tape is deploying a tape server.  A tape server, like a lot of other Veeam Infrastructure components can be any Windows-based machine that has been added to VBR, including the Backup Server itself in small environments.  For larger environments, to balance traffic load with a lot of data processing, or to configure remote data archiving a dedicated tape server should be utilized.  Once connected to the tape server, Tape devices are automatically discovered by VBR.  Keep in mind, although we can connect many different tape devices to one tape server, we can only connect the tape server to one Veeam Backup Server.  That said, if we remove a tape server from one instance of VBR and connect it to another, VBR will recognize all of the library settings automatically, however you will need to reconfigure jobs to point to the new library.

Veeam Backup Database

Veeam catalogs all of the information about its archived data and stores this in the Veeam Backup Database.  Tapes will stay in the database until you manually remove it.  The information available about the tape, such as backups which are written to it is always available, even if the tape isn’t inserted into the library.  Having all off this information stored “offline” allows administrators to quickly find the location of required information to restore.  When the restore task is started, VBR will prompt administrators to insert the required tape.  The following catalogs are utilized by VBR

  • Tape Catalog – contains information in regards to files and folders which have been archived to tape with the File To Tape jobs, along with backup files which have been produced by Backup to Tape jobs.  This information is available within the FILES view.
  • Backup Catalog – This contains information in regards to the VMs that have backups archived to tape media with Backup To Tape jobs.  This is available by selecting Backups->Tape.

Veeam supports the following technologies within a tape infrastructure

  • Media Pools
    • Logical container created by VBR to organize and administer tapes
    • Tapes must be placed into a media pool before we can utilize it, therefore we must have at least one manually created custom media pool before we can write data to tape.  We can have as many custom media pools as required.  A media pool can be a target for any number of tape jobs as well.  A custom media pool can have a number of different rules associated with it.
      • Tape Replenishment – can manually specify particular tapes, or have the pool pull from the “Free” pool as required.
      • Media Sets – assign sets of tapes to hold data from a particular time frame.
      • Data Retention – Choose the period for which the data on the tapes will be protected from overwriting.
      • Parallel Processing – allows the media pool to use multiple tape devices simultaneously.  Can process several tape jobs or split data within one job across different drives.
      • Encryption – Software encryption
      • Export tapes to vault
    • Another type of media pool is a GFS media pool.
      • used to store data to tape in the GFS format, common for long time archiving.
      • Contains 4 predefined media sets tied to a tiered retention scheme; Weekly, Monthly Quarterly, Yearly
      • Predefined media sets can be disabled if you do not need them, for example if you don’t keep quarterly jobs we can disable the Quarterly media set.
      • One GFS media pool can support multiple tape GFS jobs.
      • GFS media pools contain only FULL backups
    • There are a number of “service” media pools which are created by default in VBR.  These cannot be modified or removed in any way.
      • Free – all newly introduced tapes are placed into this pool.  Used to replenish any custom pools when needed.
      • Unrecognized –  contains tapes that have been loaded to a device but require further identification from the user.  Normally require the user to run an inventory or catalog job.
      • Imported – contains non-empty tapes that have been identified by the tape catalog job.
      • Retired – contains tapes that have been retired and reached the maximum number of re-writes.  Also can contain tapes that have had some sort of mechanical malfunction.In order to create backups in the GFS (Grandfather, father, son) mode, we must create a GFS Media Pool
    • Once a tape has been allocated to a custom media pool it wall always be tied to it.  When a tape with expired data comes back online, VBR automatically places it into its corresponding custom media pool.
    • When a tape is manually moved to another media pool it will be marked as free and data lost
    • Media pools are global, meaning we can use tapes in different libraries without the need to re catalog them – meaning we can restore data from tapes inserted into any tape library, regardless of the media pool they belong to
      • The only exception to this rule is when hardware encryption is utilized.  When this is utilized we must insert the encrypted tape into a device with the same encryption standard.
    • If a media pool (custom or GFS) uses multiple tape libraries we are able to set up Tape Library Failover.  The failover order is user defined, and the job always reverts back to the primary library on the next run.  One tape library within the media pool will always be marked as the primary however can failover to the next library if the following occurs.
      • The tape library is offline
      • The tape library has no free tapes
      • The tape library as no free drives.
  • Media Sets
    • A media set is a set of tapes that is used for continuously writing backup data.
    • Media sets always starts with a free tape, and data blocks are always appended to the previous one and rely on the following configuration options available
      • Create a new media set for each backup session – VBR will produce a separate set of tapes for each backup session.
      • Starting a new media set for a certain period of time – Can define a new set of tapes for a given time frame, for instance, each week use a different set of tapes. – normally used to move certain backup timeframes offsite.
      • Always continuing one media set – Will continuously use tapes in the media set, not splitting archives on to separate sets of tapes – Normally used when tapes are not exported from libraries.
    • Media sets are convenient if we need to move certain timeframes of data offsite as it allows us to ensure certain backup retention points are on certain tapes.  That said, depending on the configuration it can cause inefficiencies in your tape utilization.
    • Some instances will cause VBR to forcibly start a new media set, overriding any media pool settings, for instance
      • a required tape is offline
      • a required tape is hardware or software protected
      • a library is offline and all drives are busy.
  • Backup Sets
    • Backup sets are a set of files that have been archived to tape during one tape job session.  If there is a large amount of data being archived to tape, a backup set can most certainly span multiple tapes.
  • Media Vaults
    • Media Vaults are logical containers that help to organize offline tapes.
    • Created by end user.
    • Basically allow you to specify that certain tapes belong to a vault, meaning they have been moved offsite, etc.
    • Allows for a convenient representation of the tapes available within VBR, and those that are offline and in storage.
    • Can be set to be moved to a vault automatically after a tape goes offline.
    • Tapes can be moved between vaults.
    • Show up as “offline” within their media pool.
    • VBR stores the following information in regards to tapes in a media vault
      • What tapes are stored in a particular location
      • Which tapes have expired and can be overwritten
      • Which tapes comprise a particular media set that is needed for a restore.
    • Media Vaults normally are created to mimic physical storage locations.
  • Data Retention
    • Configured on the media pool and applied to all tapes which belong to it.
    • Can choose between the following policies
      • Never Overwrite Data
      • Define a particular time period to protect data
      • Not to protect data at all.
    • If a tape contains several backup sets, it will not be expired until the backup set with the longest retention period expires.
  • Tape Protection
    • Software option to prohibit overwriting, erasing, or appending data to a protected tape
    • This OVERRIDES any Data Retention settings on the media pool
    • Can be overridden at any time, at which point the data retention settings will be applied again.
    • When tapes are protected the following are disabled; appending data to tapes, erasing tapes, marking tapes as free, and removing tapes from the catalog.
    • If using forward or reverse incremental backup chains you must ensure that the retention period for the tape archive is not less than that of the backup to disk job.

The Virtual Synthesized Full Backup for Tapes

When utilizing the Forever incremental backup chain you may end up being left with long chains of increments.  Having these long chains of increments can require loading a large number of tapes during a restore depending on how it needs to chain the data together.  To help combat this Veeam allows for creating a Virtual Synthesized Full Backup.   Basically Veeam will periodically synthesize a full backup using the respective incremental located on the repository directly on the tape (Directly on tape, not requiring additional repository space).  Some requirements/limitations of the Virtual Synthesized full backup are

  • The source backup job must not have a scheduled synthetic or active full.  If it does, the tape will not run the virtual full even if it is configured.
  • The virtual full is created automatically once a week if the job produces forever forward incremental – the day of week this happens is customizable, but it cannot be disabled.

The Synthesized Virtual Full Backup process is as follows…

  • On the day the tape job runs it creates a (.vsb.) file and stores this on the backup repository – the vsb file contains only pointers to data blocks inside the files of the backup chain located on disk.
  • Depending on the file pointers, the tape job detects what backup chain and what data blocks located on the repository are required to synthesize a full backup.  It then takes these blocks and writes the directly to tape as a full backup file (.vbk)
  • Once the full backup has been written, the vsb file is removed from the repository.

Backing up to tape with Veeam.

Veeam contains a couple of different jobs that will write data to tape

  1. Backup To Tape Job
    • Archives Veeam backups created on disk to tape
    • Doesn’t create new backups, simply locates already existing backups produced by both backup/backup copy jobs and copies them to tape.
    • One tape job can have an unlimited number of source jobs linked to it.
    • Backup jobs can have the following source jobs
      • Backup Jobs – when a backup job is a source it scans the proper repositories and picks restore points created by the backup job.  When the configuration of the source backup job is changed, the tape job automatically updates to reflect those changes
      • Backup Copy Jobs – When using a backup copy job as a source the tape job will copy the full backup file once, then, only increments after that.  Since the latest restore point of a backup copy jobs are marked as active until another restore point has been created, the backup to tape job will not copy them.  Therefore, backup to tape jobs with a backup copy job as the source will always be one restore point behind.
      • Backup Repositories – When a backup repository is used as a source for a Backup to Tape job, Veeam will archive new Veeam Backup files (created by the same backup server) as soon as they appear on disk.   Explicit windows can be set for the tape job instead of continuously monitoring and archive in the background.
      • Endpoint Backup Jobs – Backup files created by endpoint backup jobs can also be used as the source to a Backup to Tape job.
    • Linked Jobs – Rather than linking backup jobs to tape jobs you can also setup  a tape device as a secondary destination in your backup job.  In this case, Veeam waits for the backup job to create a new backup file and then copies it to tape.
    • Backup to tape works as follows
      • Backup to Tape job addresses the backup catalog to detect backups matching job criteria
      • Files are queued for archiving
      • Veeam connects to the data movers and starts transfer process
      • source data move gets data from repository, target data mover sends data to tape
      • Tape job retrieves a list of tapes for writing from the media pool.
      • Data is processed and Backup Catalog is updated.
  2. GFS Tape Jobs
    • GFS jobs can use any backup job as a source that is processed in forever forward incremental, forward incremental, or reversed incremental.
    • Full backups are processed depending on when the individual media sets within the media pool have been setup.
    • If two periods overlap, the backup with the longest retention is archived.
    • If the source job creates more than one full backup within 24 hours the tape job only copies the first one.
    • If the restore point has been locked, GFS job will wait up to 7 days for it to become available.
    • If the job is manually cancelled it will automatically start again the next day (00:00)
    • If there is a technical issue the GFS job will archive the two most recent missed backups for each media set once it has been fixed.
  3. File to Tape jobs
    • File to Tape jobs allow you to copy any Windows or Linux files to tape.
    • Can be used to process Veeam backups as well, but treats them as simple files rather than backups.
    • File To Tape compresses sources files to files which have been stored on tape and copies just the changes.  Both full and incremental modes can be used with the File To Tape job.
    • Can copy files from any server which has been added to the VBR infrastructure
    • File to tape jobs are more efficient when copying fewer larger files than a lot of smaller files
    • jobs will timeout if they fail to complete within three weeks.
    • The process of File to Tape is as follows
      • Job detects files that match the job criteria
      • Files are queued for archive
        • If it is a first run or scheduled full, all files are queued
        • If it is an incremental, the tape catalog is addressed to detect if any data has been modified since the last backup.
      • Connects to the data mover and begins the transfer
      • Tape job addresses media pools associated with the job, media pool allots proper tapes for writing.
      • Catalog is updated as job is processing with new data.

Restoring from tape

Veeam supports a few different options for restoring from tape

  • Restore VM backups to repository or disk
    • Allows to copy VM backups from tape to a disk or repository of your choice.
    • The restored backup is registered within VBR console so you are able to perform any other type of restore operation to it later on.
    • You can restore from any restore point on the tape, at which VBR will restore the VM to the selected point in time.
  • Restore VM to Virtual Infrastructure
    • Process includes all of the options that a restore VM from disk does
    • Can select a restore point, change VM configuration settings, etc.
    • It first copies the VM to a temporary location such as a repository or folder on disk and then performs a standard VM restore back to your virtual environment.
  • Restore Files from Tape
    • This is used for restoring files and folders that were backed up using the Files to Tape backup job
    • Can be restored directly to their original location or to another location.
    • All ownership and permissions are preserved.
    • Can be restored from any restore point on tape.

No matter which restore method is selected, Veeam will scan the backup catalog and get all of the required tapes that need to be available to perform the process.  If all the tapes are online Veeam will begin the restore – if some are offline, VBR will list the names of the required tapes and wait for them to come online.

Interesting and testable tidbits around tape

  • Tape helps administrators implement the 3-2-1 rule; 3 copies of your data, 2 types of media, 1 copy offsite.
  • VBR uses MTF (Microsoft Tape Format) to write data to the tape
  • VBR DOES NOT support WORM (Write Once, Read Many)
  • When determining a block size, Veeam will use the maximum size available supported within the tape library.
  • Veeam does not write data directly to tape – the backups are first created on disk and then copied to the tape.
  • Synthesized Virtual Full backups are written directly to tape, utilizing full and incrementals from the repository
  • Synthesized Virtual full backups utilize a data pointer file on the repository with a .vsb extension
  • Synthesized virtual full backups will not run if the source job has an active/synthesized full scheduled
  • If a synthesized virtual full backup is scheduled the same day that a full backup has run, it simply copies the full backup to tape without generating the .vsb file.
  • Tape protection overrides any Data Retention settings which have been set on the media pool
  • Parallel processing cannot be enabled for jobs writing to a GFS Media Pool
  • Backup to Tape Jobs which use Backup Copy jobs as the source will always be one restore point behind since the latest restore point from a backup copy job is marked as active and Backup to Tape jobs will not process active restore points.
  • Tape Servers automatically get the Data Mover service installed on them, just like proxies.

VMCE v9 Study Guide – Module 10 -Veeam ONE Auto Discovery, Business View and Alarms

VMCE LogoVeeam ONE is essentially a management program, providing monitoring, reporting and alerting for your virtual infrastructure, whether that be Hyper-V or VMware.  The module for this course is broken down into 9 different sub modules, so lets look at each one in turn.

 

Auto Discovery of Backup and Virtual Infrastructure

During the initial configuration of Veeam ONE users are prompted to chose and add their virtual infrastructure type – the options presented are

  • VMware vCenter Server
  • Hyper-V Host, Failover Cluster or SCVMM server
  • Skip Virtual infrastructure configuration

After selecting your desired virtual infrastructure you will be prompted for it’s name, either IP or FQDN, and some credentials to connect – along with the required port to connect on.  After installation we have the ability add other types of servers such as a standalone ESXi host and a vCloud Director server on the inventory pane inside the Infrastructure view.

Once completed the initial configuration, the servers, both vSphere, Hyper-V or Veeam that you have setup during the installation will be propagated to all Veeam ONE components, such as monitor, reporter and business view and data will begin being collected  immediately as well as during its default scheduled time (weekdays @ 3 am).

Once a connection has been established Veeam ONE will start pulling information and data on the top level scope you’ve added, plus all children.  Individual hosts/clusters can be excluded after the face from the Monitored Hosts tab.  Subsequently, datastores can be excluded as well on the Monitored Datastores tab.  If you want to exclude certain VMs it is done a little differently.  Instead we use rules to exclude VMs.  By default an inclusion rule that adds all VMs is configured.  If you want to establish another inclusion rule, then you must disable this default rule.  You do not need to do this when creating exclusion rules.  You can create rules based on the following criteria.

  • By object name – add/exclude VMs based on VM name
  • By infrastructure location – Apply rule that applies to VMs only within a certain hierarchy of the infrastructure.

When creating our rules we can use the * and/or the ? wildcard.  The * stands for zero or more characters where the ? stands for just a single character.  If adding multiple conditions to a VM you need to specify whether you would like to apply the rule if any condition evaluates to true or if all conditions evaluate to true.

When prompted to add your Backup Infrastructure you simply need to pass the FQDN Name of either your Veeam Backup & Replication server or your Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager server and pass the required credentials.  You also have the ability to skip this step and add Veeam later.   If we connect a Backup & Replication server, data for the job sessions for the previous week is collected.  If we add an Enterprise Manager instance, Veeam ONE first builds a hierarchy of Veeam B&R servers, then collects the data for the job sessions for the previous week from each one of them.

Business Categorization

Categorization within Veeam ONE is done by a the Business View component which is installed alongside everything.  Business view allows you to create categorization models and values to help organize your infrastructure and display your infrastructure from a business standpoint.  This completely integrates into Veeam ONE Monitor and Reporter, so any groups you create within Business View will be available in the other Veeam ONE components.

Some examples of categories one might create in Veeam ONE Business View are…

  • Business Unit,
  • Department
  • Location
  • Purpose
  • SLA

Business View also supports reading and writing vSphere tags as well, meaning you can map business view categories and groups to vSphere tags and vice versa.  That said there are some default out of the box categories that Business View comes with..

  • Datastore – groups VMs by their datastore
  • Last Backup Date – dynamically groups VMs by the age of the latest backup or replica restore point created
  • Sample Business View Category – dynamically groups VMs by name
  • SLA – static groups for all types of virtual infrastructure objects.  Includes two groups; Mission Critical and Other
  • Storage Type – dynamically groups storage objects by type.
  • VM Network – dynamically groups VMs by connected network
  • VMs with Snapshots – dynamically groups VMs with snapshots by snapshot age.

You can add more custom categories, but keep in mind the maximum number of categories Veeam ONE supports is 25.

Pre-Defined Alerting

Veeam ONE Monitor comes with over 150 predefined alarms that can alert you on almost every aspect of your virtual and backup infrastructures.  In terms of data protection there are alarms already setup to…

  • connectivity issues an inability of backup infrastructure components to communicate with each other.
  • state of the VBR software installed on infrastructure components
  • Failing of jobs or jobs completed with warnings
  • Configuration issues, such as repositories running out of space
  • Long running jobs that exceed the backup window
  • License and pre-paid support expirations.

Alarms within Veeam ONE work in the following way

  • When Veeam ONE monitor detects that the behavior or state of an object meets an alarm criteria, it triggers the alarm with the corresponding severity level
  • Once triggered, Monitor console will display the alarm details and associated information in regards to the alarm.  At this point you can view, acknowledge, or resolve the alarm
  • After the alarm has fired, Monitor performs a responsive action; email, SNMP, and/or running a custom script.
  • Once the alarm has been resolved, Monitor updates the alarm status within the console.
  • If the state or condition returns to normal, Monitor will send a notification with the updated status.

Each alarm has rules associated with it that are used to trigger the alarm.  Each alarm can have up to 8 rules which are linked together either by AND or OR operators.  The rules can be setup as the following types of triggers.

  • Event-Based Rules – alert when specific events that occur in the backup or virtual infrastructure.  These can be events issued by the hypervisor, or by Veeam Backup & Replication.
  • Rules for a specific condition or state – these are rules that trigger when a condition is met, or a state has changed on your infrastructure objects.

Alarms also have a severity level attached to them of one of the following

  • Error (red) – indicates a critical situation or major problem
  • Warning (yellow) – indicates a potential problem or non critical issue.  Has the potential to move to an Error (red) if left unresolved.
  • Resolved (green) – indicates that the issue or alarm has been eliminated because of the changed conditions.
  • Information (blue) – indicates general information about the specific condition.

Alarms can be associated to objects by applying them directly to the object, on a group level using groups from Business View, or on the Infrastructure level by applying an alarm to all of a certain object type within the environment.

Interesting and testable tidbits about Veeam ONE Auto Discovery, Business View and Alarms

  • Cannot add a single ESXi host during the initial install, only vCenter Server.  ESXi and vCloud Directory are available to be added only after the initial install.
  • Ability to skip adding the infrastructure configuration during the install.
  • Backup Infrastructure can be added by either the Veeam Backup & Replication Server or the Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager.
  • The default data collection period for reporter and business view is weekdays @ 3am.  If at the end of an installation data will begin being collected immediately.
  • You cannot add the Backup Infrastructure inside of the Free edition of Veeam ONE UNLESS your VBR is licensed as a cloud connect only server.
  • When adding a VBR server, data is collected for the previous week only on all job sessions.
  • The maximum number of categories that Veeam ONE Business View supports is 25.
  • Each monitor alarm can have up to 8 rules associated with it.

VMCE v9 Study Guide – Module 5 – Creating Backup Jobs

VMCE LogoFinally, we get into the heart and soul of Veeam Backup & Replication; creating backup jobs. In this section we will kick off Module 5 and take a look at creating backup jobs from within Veeam Backup & Replication.

Before we go through the process of creating a backup job however there are a number of options and settings that we should completely understand!

Veeam Backup File types

.vbk – full backup file

.vib – forward incremental changes

.vrb – reverse incremental changes

.vbm – backup metadata

.vlb – transaction log backup

.vsb – synthetic backup used when creating virtual synthesized full backups for tape.

.bco – configuration backup

Backup Methods

Veeam Backup provides 3 methods for storing backups; Reverse Incremental Backup, Forward  Incremental Backup, Forever Forward incremental backup.

Reverse Incremental Backup

  • Consists of the last full backup and a set of reverse incremental backups to roll back in time.
  • Allows you to immediately restore a VM using the most recent state without having to chain together incremental.  When restoring from a later restore point, Veeam applies the required reverse incremental backup into the full backup and restores the VM from the full backup.
  • Performs as follows
    • During the first run Veeam creates a full backup
    • During subsequent runs, Veeam copies only blocks that have changed and injects these into the full backup file, resulting in the full backup always containing the most recent state.  During this, Veeam takes the blocks that are being replaced and builds a reverse incremental file with them and adds this to the backup chain.
    • Veeam checks the retention policy of the job.  If there is an outdated restore point it removes this from the backup chain

Forever Forward Incremental Backup

  • Consists of the first full backup, and subsequent incrementals following it.
  • Processed as follows
    • During the first run, Veeam creates a full backup
    • During subsequent runs, Veeam copies only changed VM data and saves these as an incremental backup file.
    • After adding the new restore point Veeam checks the retention period for the job.  If an outdated restore point is detected it transforms the backup chain as follows
      • Takes the restore point immediately following the full backup and injects those blocks into the full backup, thus moving the full backup ahead one restore point.
      • Deletes the restore point that was injected into the full backup

Forward Incremental Backup

  • produces a backup chain consisting of a full backup and set of incrementals following it.  In addition to this, synthetic or active full backups are created that split the backup chain into smaller chunks of chains.
  • Processed as follows
    • During the first run, Veeam creates a full backup file
    • During subsequent runs, Veeam copies only changed blocks and saves them as an incremental backup.
    • On days where a synthetic or active full backup is scheduled Veeam does the following
      • Active Full Backups
        • Veeam completes another full backup using data from the production datastore
      • Synthetic Full Backups
        • Veeam takes the incremental that was created in step 2, along with all other incrementals in the chain and merges them with the original full backup, creating a second full backup on disk.
        • Veeam then deletes the incremental that was created within step 2 as it is redundant data and already injected into the synthetic full.
        • This new synthetic full is now used as a starting point for future incrementals
    • The retention policy is then checked for the job and processed as follows
      • Veeam looks for outdated restore points and then looks to see if it is possible to delete them
      • Veeam needs to maintain a full backup and subsequent incrementals in order to restore to a certain point in time, therefore if a full backup has expired but some of its incrementals have not, Veeam will wait till the next full backup has expired in order to delete the first chain of backups
      • At times you may have more restore points on disk then expected.

Transforming incrementals into reverse incrementals

If we are creating synthetic full backups we can additionally chose to transform our forward incrementals to reverse incrementals.  In this case, Veeam will take the existing chain full and incrementals and transform it to reverse incremental restore points, allowing us to only keep one full backup on disk at a time, with reverse incremental restore points before it, and incremental restore points after.

Retention Policy for Deleted VMs

  • Applied only to reverse incremental, forever forward incremental, and forward incremental with synthetic full and transform
  • By default, VMs backups are set to remain on disk.
  • Space is not actually removed, it is flagged to be overwritten by other backups.

Storage Level Corruption Guard (Health Check for Backup Files)

VBR can periodically perform health checks for the latest restore points within backup files.  During this process VBR performs a CRC and hash check for both the metadata and blocks within the backup file to verify integrity.  This process is performed once a day when the health check is scheduled – if the backup session runs twice on the same day, it will not be run a second time.  The process of a health check is as follows

  • If corrupt blocks are detected in the metadata for a full backup file, Veeam marks the chain starting from this full as corrupted and triggers a health check retry
    • During the rety Veeam will transfer data blocks of the complete VM from the source datastore, creating a new full backup file.
  • If corrupt blocks are found in the meta data for an incremental file, Veeam removes the information about this incremental in the restore point configuration.
    • During the retry, Veeam transports incremental data relatively from the latest valid restore point – again, obtaining its data from the source datastore, creating a new incremental backup file on the repository.
  • If corrupt blocks are found in the actual backup file itself, full or incremental, Veeam marks these blocks as corrupt.
    • During the retry data blocks that were corrupt are transferred from the source datastore directly into the latest restore point.

Compression and Deduplication

Veeam provides 5 options in terms of compression

  • None – no compression – recommended when storing backups on storage devices that already have hardware compression
  • Dedupe-Friendly – optimized compression level for low CPU usage
  • Optimal – recommended compression level.  Best ratio between size and time.
  • High – Provides additional 10% over Optimal, but has 10x higher CPU usage
  • Extreme – smallest size of backup file but most demanding performance wise – recommended to have a proxy with at least 6 caores.

Deduplication allows us to save space as well in VBR and provides us with 4 options

  • Local Target (16TB) – recommended for backup jobs that may produce large (16TB+) backup files.  Uses 4MB block size in order to lower metadata size.
  • Local Target – recommended for backup to SAN, DAS, or local storage – uses 1MB block size.
  • LAN Target – recommended for NAS – uses 512 k block size.
  • WAN Target – recommended for backup over slower WAN – uses 256K block size

When we change compression settings for existing jobs any new settings will not be applied to already existing backups.  Compression will only be applied to new backup files created

When we change deduplication settings previously created files will not be affected.  New files created will not be deduplicated until we create an active full backup.

How do we do it?

The process of creating a backup job is as follows

  • There are a number of ways to kick off the Job wizard.
    • From the Jobs node in the Backup & Replication view right-click on jobs and select Backup->VMware (or Hyper-V)
    • From the Home tab, click Backup Job and then VMware
    • From the Virtual Machines view select the VM and right-click selecting either Add to Backup Job->Name of existing job or Add to Backup Job->New job.
  • Give the job a name and a description
  • In the Virtual Machines step of the wizard we need to select the VMs and VM containers we would like to backup.  If we select a contain, all child objects belonging to that container will be backed up – any change in our environment, like a new VM being added to that container will automatically be picked up by the job and processed.  To add our VMs select ‘Add’
    • We will now have a number of different views; Hosts and Clusters, VMs and Templates, Datastores and VMs, and Tags.
    • Select the desired VM/VM Containers and click ‘Add’
  • Here we can also exclude different VMs or disks…  Note, VM log files are automatically excluded to help reduce the size of the backup file and increase efficiency.
    • VMs from VM containers
      • From the VMs tab, click Add and select which VMs you wish to exclude from the job.  You will be presented with same multiple views as you were when you were choosing VMs to be backed up
    • Specific VM disks
      • On the disks tab select the VM in the list and click ‘Edit’.  If you are backing up a container or by tags you may need to Add the VM first by clicking ‘Add’ to manually place it in the list.
      • Chose which disks you would like to exclude from the VM – You can exclude all disks, 0:0 disks (system disks) or browse through a list of custom IDE/SCSI/Sata disks.
      • If you wish you Veeam can remove these disks from the VMs configuration file so you are able to power on the VM when restoring.  To do so, select the ‘Remove excluded disks from VM configuration’ checkbox.
    • VM templates
      • On the templates tab clear the Backup VM templates checkbox
      • If you wish so, you can alternatively clear the Exclude templates from incremental backup checkbox to only process templates in the full backup file.
  • Still on the Virtual Machines section we have the option to re-order the processing of VMs by selecting the VM and using the Up/Down buttons.  That said, if you are backing up a VM from a container or using tags you will not be able to do this as they are processed randomly.  To do so, you would need to add them as standalone VMs.  Also take note, with Parallel processing enabled you may find unexpected results with the processing order.  In cases where resources for a higher priority VM are not fully available but enough resources for a lower priority VM are, the lower VM may be processed first.
  • On the storage tab we will specify which backup proxy we would like to use, which repository to backup up to, the retention policy, any secondary destinations for the backups as well as any advanced settings we’d like to apply…
    • Backup Proxy has a couple different options
      • Automatic – Veeam will detect backup proxies that have access to the source datastore and automatically assign one to process VMs within the job.  This is done on a per VM basis.  Before processing a new VM, Veeam analyzes the available proxies, looking at their transport modes and current workload to select the optimal proxy for that VM
      • Use selected – This allows you to explicitly state which backup proxies can be used within the job.  At least two selections are recommended for HA or network loss.
    • Backup Repository – Select a destination repository to store the backups on.
      • If you already have a backup stored on the repository you can map to those already existing files.  To do so select the Map Backup link below the repository selection.
    • Retention Policy – Specify the number of restore points that you wish to store on the repository, keeping in mind all of the information we went through in the Retention sections above.
    • Secondary Destination – Allows for us to archive our backups to a secondary destination, either a backup repository or tape.  When this option is selected we will see an additional step appear.   In the additional step we link this backup job to another backup copy job or backup to tape job.
    • Advanced.  There are a number of advanced settings we can set on the storage step of the backup job as well.  Note, after configuring all of these settings you can save them as the default settings for future jobs.
      • Backup Settings
        • Select the desired backup method  to store the backup chain; Reverse Incremental, Incremental w/ Synthetic or active full or Forever forward incremental.  See earlier in the post on each backup type.
        • Select whether or not to create a synthetic full – synthetic full will build a full backup out of the restore points already located on the backup repository.  Also select the Days to create the synthetic full on.  If creating a synthetic full you can also specify whether to transform any previous backup chains to rollbacks
        • Select whether to create an active full backup (retrieves all source data from the datastore), and specify to create it monthly or weekly and specify days.
      • Maintenance Settings
        • Storage Level Corruption guard – check to periodically perform a health check on the latest restore point in the backup chain.  Helps to prevent a corrupted restore point.  If the health check discovers a corrupt block it starts the health check retry and transfers the data from the source datastore to a new backup file or the latest backup file, depending on the scenario – explained above.
        • Full Backup File Maintenance
          • Remove deleted VMs data after – specifies the number of days to keep backup data for VMs that have been deleted from the production environment
          • Defragement and compact full backup file – check to perform and schedule a compact operation.   Compact will create a new empty file and copy data blocks from the full backup to it.  If the backup files contains deleted VMs, they will be removed.  More info above.
      • Storage Settings
        • Data Reduction
          • Enable Inline data deduplication – clear the checkbox to disable deduplication.
          • Exclude swap file blocks – By default Veeam looks at the NTFS MFT file to identify the blocks that make up hiberfil.sys and pagefile.sys and excludes them from the backup.  Clear this checkbox if you prefer to back these files up
          • Exclude delete file blocks – By default Veeam does not copy file blocks that were deleted ormarked as dirty.  If you would rather copy these, clear this checkbox
        • Compression Level – Select the desired compression level for the job (None, Dedup-Friendly, Optimal, High, or Extreme).
        • Storage Optimization  – Select the type of backup target you plan to use; Local Target, LAN target, or WAN target.  Veeam will use different data block size to optimize backup performance.
        • Encryption
          • Check and provide a password to encrypt the backups on disk.
          • If you enable this on an existing job a full backup will be created on the next run and it and all subsequent incrementals will be encrypted.
      • Notification Settings
        • Can be used to send SNMP notifications for the job, to customize notifications on a per job basis rather than utilizing the global settings.
        • Can also set backup details to a VM attribute of choosing, either overwriting or appending.
      • vSphere Settings
        • Choose whether to enable VMware tools quiescence.
        • Choose whether to use Change block tracking and whether to enable CBT on existing VMs.
      • Integration Settings
        • Chose whether to enable backup from storage snapshots and whether to limit processed VM count per storage snapshot to a certain number.  You can also chose to failover to a standard backup if Veeam fails to create the storage snapshot.  If using NetApp you will also have the option to failover to primary storage snapshots.
      • Script Settings
        • Job Scripts
          • Chose to run a script before and/or after the job and specify a path to the script.
          • Chose when to run them – every X backup sessions or on selected days only.
  • Guest Processing handles the following options
    • Application Aware Processing
      • Enable/Disable application aware processing.
      • Clicking Applications gives you the following options on a per-VM basis.
        • General
          • Chose whether to require successful VSS application processing, try application processing but ignore failures or disable application processing
          • Chose how to handle transaction logs if this is a SQL server, Oracle, or Exchange VM, either process the logs (additional settings will be required on the SQL tab) or perform a copy only of the logs (logs will just be copied in backup as a normal backup would copy files)
        • SQL – additional settings for logs if you chose process from last step.
          • How to handle transaction logs, either truncate, don’t truncate, or backup logs periodically
          • If last option is chosen we need to specify the interval to backup transaction logs (in minutes) and a retention policy, either in days or until the corresponding image level backup that the logs are attached to is deleted.
          • We can also specify which server to use as a log shipping server, the server that transports the logs.  We can let Veeam automatically figure this out or specify a specific set of Log Shipping servers.  Log shipping servers are just any Windows servers added to our Backup Infrastructure.
        • Oracle
          • Oracle Account – specify a user account that has SYSDBA rights on the database.  If you chose to use guest credentials, Veeam will use the account setup within the guest processing section to connect.
          • Log Action – here we chose what to do with our logs, we can set it to not truncate logs at all, truncate logs older than X number of hours, or truncate logs over X number of GB.
          • Log Backup inteval – set the transaction log backup interval in minutes – default is 15.
          • Retention  – specify how long to keep the logs, either last X number of days or until the corresponding image level backup is deleted.
          • Log shipping server – just as with SQL we can either let Veeam automatically pick a log shippiong server or set this to a specific set.
        • File Exclusions – we are able to exclude certain files, folders or filetypes on a per VM basis.
          • First select to either disable file level exclusions, Exclude certain files and folders, or include only certain files and folders.
            • If excluding or including we can click add to add certain files or folders.  We have the option here to use environment variables, such as %windir% or file masks like * and ?
        • Scripts – we can use this section if we plan to back VMs up that do not support VSS in order to run scripts to obtain application consistent backups.
          • Script Processing Mode – select wehter to require successful script execution, ignore script execution failuer or disable script execution
          • Windows Scripts – path to windows scripts
          • Linux Scripts – path to Linux scripts
    • VM Guest OS file indexing – can select from the following options on a per-VM basis; Disable Indexing, Index everything, Index everything ecept and specify files/folders.
      • If indexing Linux OS, several components need to be installed on the VM.  mlocate, gzip, and tar.  Veeam will prompt to install these if they are not found.
    • Guest OS Credentials
      • Select default credentials to use to deploy runtime processes.  Any VMs that don’t have credentials explicitly assigned to them will use these credentials.
    • Guest Interaction Proxy
      • Specify a Guest Interaction Proxy to use or let Veeam Automatically choose one.
  • Schedule
    • Run job automatically
      • Daily – runs job daily at a selected time on selected days
      • Monthly – runs job monthly at a selected time on selected days
      • Periodically every – runs job periodically ever X number of hours/minutes or continuosly to continuosly run job
      • After this job – Allows you to chain this job to the ending of another.  This will only be ran if the first job is started by a schedule – manually running the first job will not run this job.
    • Automatic Retry
      • Select to retry VM X number of times with X number of minutes in between each try upon job failure
    • Backup Window
      • Can set the job to terminate if it exceeds a specified backup window
  • Summary – review settings and save job.  You do have the option to immediately execute the job here as well.

VMCE v9 Study Guide – Module 4 – Configuration Backup and Global Notification Settings

VMCE LogoFinishing off Module 4 of the Veeam VMCE v9 Study Guide we will take a look at configuration backups, along with what can be set in terms of global notifications within Veeam Backup & Replication version 9.

Configuration Backup and Restore

A configuration backup essentially takes our Veeam Backup & Replication database and saves it to a backup file on the repository.  The database data is then written to a set of xml files and archived into a (.bco) format. If for any reason our backup server experiences a failure we can simply reinstall a new backup server and quickly restore the old configuration.  We could also use this backup to deploy another Veeam Backup server in the same environment.  If you plan on migrating configuration data to another server be sure to stop and disable all running jobs before creating the backup or sessions may fail after restoring.

A configuration backup contains the following information

  • Backup Infrastructure Components and objects – all hosts, servers, proxies, repositories, Wan accelerators, jobs, global configuration settings, etc..
  • Backups – Backups, replicas and backup copies (information regarding the backups, not the backups themselves)
  • Sessions – historical session information
  • Tapes – libraries connected to the server

By default Veeam will create a configuration backup daily and store it in the default backup repository.  That said, it’s best to redirect this to a different repository that doesn’t reside on the backup server itself.  When you create a new repo, Veeam will offer to store the config backup on it, clicking yes will redirect NEW configuration backups to this repository.  Old configuration backups REMAIN on the default repository.

If you have created a password within the password manager on the backup server Veeam will enforce that you encrypt the configuration backup.  If you do not encrypt the configuration backup and there is a password present, Veeam will disable the configuration backup job.  Also, without encryption the credentials will not be backed up with passwords within the configuration backup – you would need to enter all of the passwords again upon restore.

There are a couple of options when it comes to restoring

  • Data Restore
    • useful if the database gets corrupted, the SQL server hosting the database becomes corrupt or you deploy the database on a new SQL server, rolling back to a point in time or restoring data to a new database on the same SQL server.
  • Data Migration
    • used when you want to move the backup server and the configuration database to another location.
  • If you forget your encryption password need for the restore you have the following option
    • If the backup server is connected to Enterprise Manager you will be presented with a I forgot the password link.
    • need to have enterprise or enterprise plus, and enterprise manager connected to the backup server
    • Veeam will launch the encryption key restore wizard, at the request step a key will be generated, this can be copied or emailed.
    • Within Enterprise Manager go to Configuration-> Key Management and click Password Recovery, and paste the key that was generated.
    • Once the response is generated, copy or email that key.
    • Back in the Encryption key restore wizard enter the copied response, upon completion VBR will apply them to the encrypted backup file and unlock all content within it.
  • Backup and replica catalogs along with session history are optional when restoring a configuration backup
  • Veeam can automatically setup your powershell policy for you during restore
  • Veeam can back up existing databases before restoring over top of them.
  • You can specify new passwords for the backed up credentials if they have changed between the backup and restore times.
  • After a restore has completed a components upgrade will be checked and ran.
  • After a restore has completed VBR can perform a sync operation for backup/replicas created on the server and tape libraries connected to it.  This is ran if
    • you restored a database from a backup created on 7.0 in restore mode
    • you restored a database created with 8.0 in restore mode and selected to restore data from the backup and replica catalog.

You should also follow the below pre-reqs before restoring a configuration backup

  • Stop all running jobs
  • Check version of backup server.  For instance v9 can restore configuration backups from 7 update 4, 8, and 9

 

Global Notification Settings

Veeam Backup & Replication can be setup to send out some alerts and notifications globally – some of which can be overridden on a per job status, but this section will just focus on global notifications.

Setting up notifications settings within Veeam is done through the Options option of the main menu on the email tab.  From here we can specify things such as the smtp server to use, it’s port and authentication methods.  We can also customize what our notification settings in terms of jobs look like for instance

  • to – who the email goes to, anyone setup in this global area will receive notifications about every job ran on the system.  Can be left empty if you wish as we can define additional emails to get notifications on a per job basis
  • Subject – contains the following variables for use %time% (completion time), %jobName%, %jobResult%, %VMCount% and %issues% (number of VMs with warning or failed status).
  • We can choose whether to notify on success, warning, and/or failure.
  • Suppress notifications till the last retry

Aside from job messages we can also setup other notifications from VBR on the notifications tab such as

  • Low Disk Space – Veeam will check disk space on datastore and target repository and include a warning message if it is below a certain threshold (warning is in the job session details).  The threshold is in terms of percent on the backup storage, and in terms of GB on the datastore details.
  • Support Expiration – By default, Veeam will warn  all email recipients about the support expiration  up to 14 days before it expires.  This is included in every email notification sent from Veeam.  This can be disabled here.
  • Update Notifications – When enabled Veeam will automatically check for new product version and patches from the Veeam website.

SNMP

Veeam can also send SNMP traps with the status of the jobs performed on the backup server.  SNMP traps can be sent to 5 different destinations.  From the SNMP tab input your receiver and community information and setting up your service properties with the Windows SNMP service are requirements to make this happen.  Then, from within your job you simply check the Send SNMP notifications for this job check box within the Notification tab of the Job Options.

VMCE v9 Study Guide – Module 4 – WAN Accelerators and Managing Network Traffic

VMCE LogoI didn’t really see WAN Acceleration mentioned anywhere within the course description of the VMCE class, so I decided this might be the best place to fit it in since we will be talking about managing network traffic in Module 4.  That said, I’m sure the topic will be brought up again in later modules, however let’s go over what we can here!

 

Wan Acceleration

WAN Acceleration is Veeam’s answer to help optimize VM traffic that will be going over the WAN.  It does this by deploying at least 2 WAN Accelerators on 64 bit Windows Servers, one located at the source, and one located at the target.  If you remember back to Module 3 we spoke a bit about WAN Acceleration so some of this may be a repeat, however its good to know for the exam.

Configuring WAN Accelerations happens in the following way

  • Configure Source side WAN Accelerator, then the target.
    • Launch the New WAN Accelerator wizard from the Backup Infrastructure view
    • From the Server step
      • specify the Windows Server you wish to use for the accelerator
      • provide a description
      • Traffic Port – Specify network port used for source to target communication – defaults to 6165
      • Streams – Number of connections that must be used to transmit data (defaults to 5).  Keep in mind as this number increases so will the bandwidth and accelerators resources it requires.  Applies only to the source WAN Accelerator.
    • Cache – location of service files and global cache
      • Folder – Path o location where service files (for source and target) or Global Cache (target only) must be stored.  Defaults to c:\VeeamWAN.  It’s also best not to nest these deep in the file system as service file names can be very long, no use in making them longer.
      • Size – Specify a size for the target WAN Accelerator according to the sizing best practices – we will go over this below
    • Review
      • Review components to be installed (data mover service, WAN Accelerator service) and click ‘Next’ to finish.

Clearing/Populating Global Cache

These process can all be accomplished by right clicking on the WAN Accelerator within the Wan Accelerators node in the Backup Infrastructure view and selecting the desired operation (process explained below)

WAN Accelerator Sizing

As mentioned above there are some best practices we need to take when correctly sizing how much space we need for WAN Accelerators, both source and target.

Source WAN Accelerator

  • Veeam analyzes data blocks that will go to target and digests them, these are stored in our source accelerator.
  • Size of cache on source accelerator depends on the capacity of all our source VM disks.
    • Every 1TB of data requires 20GB of cache space.  IE if you have 4TB of VM disks you are backing up, you should provide 80GB of cache on the source accelerator.
    • There is no global cache on the source, only the digest metadata is stored here.  Global is just for target accelerators.

Target WAN Accelerator

  • This is where our global cache is stored.
    • Global Cache is basically a library that holds data blocks that go from source to target.
    • Populated fully on the first cycle of a job.
    • If a new data block is constantly sent across the WAN, it will be added to the global cache.
    • If an already cached block is not sent over the WAN after a period of time, it will be removed from the global cache.
    • If a periodic check deems a block in the global cache is corrupt, it will remove it.
    • Global cache can copy blocks stored from one source accelerator folder to another source accelerator folder if they are the same, meaning if we have two locations each replicating a Windows 2012 server, we can simply copy blocks from the first cache to the second cache without having to send them across the WAN.
    • The Global Cache can be pre-populated without actually running the job.
      • Useful on the first run of a job so all data blocks don’t need to be copied
      • Useful if the cache becomes corrupt to prevent all data blocks to be copied again.  This requires you to clean the cache first
      • Encrypted backups are not used for population
      • You cannot start any jobs using the accelerator while the cache is being populated.
      • Veeam uses data blocks stored in specified repositories to populate the cache – only OS blocks are copied.
        • That said if there is other accelerator cache already located in the target, it will match OSs from the source repository and copy these blocks directly from the already existing cache folders if they exist.
      • Copied to a default cache folder, when a remote job starts Veeam renames this to the source accelerator used in the job.
  • Recommended to provide 10GB of cache per every type of OS utilized. (defaults to 100GB, so 10 OSes).  IE – say we backup 10 VMs (1xWin7, 6xWin2008, 3xWin2010) we should provide at least 30GB (3 OS types x 10GB).
  • If the Digests data on the source accelerator is missing or for some reason cannot be used, the target accelerator will have to re-calculate this, therefore, will require space to do so.  Therefore the same rule of source sizing applies also to target, in addition to the OS type cache allocated.  IE those 10 VMs also occupy 4TB of space we will need to add 80GB (20GB/TB * 4)  more cache space in addition to our OS cache.  So 80GB for digest calculation and 30GB per OS caching = 110GB total.
  • All this said, Global Cache is calculated per source accelerator.  Within Veeam we have the ability to apply a many to one situation, meaning many source accelerators running through 1 target accelerator.  This changes our cache size exponentially depending on the number of source accelerators.  The formula is as follows
    • Total Cache Size = (number of source accelerators) * ( Size of target WAN accelerators properties [10gb/OS]) + 20GB/TB of source data.
    • Let’s say we add a second source accelerator to our example we have been using.  The second accelerator has 1TB of source data spread across 2 OS types (Linux, Server 2003).  We would end up with the following for a global cache size
      • Total Cache size = 2(we have two source accelerators) * 50GB (5 OS types [Linux, server 2003, server 2008, server 2012, win7) at 10GB per) + 100GB ( 5TB of source data spread across the 2 source locations)
      • 2 * 50GB + 100GB = Total Cache Size of 200GB
  • With all of this, if you have the space it’s best to add as much as you can in order to obtain more efficient acceleration as it would be able to hold more repeating data blocks.

Data Block Verification

Veeam calculates checksums on blocks being transferred between source and target to help ensure that no corrupt blocks are stored in the global cache.  This works in the following way

  • Before sending, Veeam calculates a checksum on the block
  • When the target receives the block it re-calculates this checksum (before it is even written to cache).
  • The checksums are compared, if there is a difference, the target sends a request for the source to resend, upon receiving the block again, it is written to the global cache.

WAN Acceleration works in the following way

  • If using a backup copy job, Veeam uncompressed backup file to analyze content
  • Source accelerators analyzes data blocks and creates file with digest for blocks.
  • Veeam compresses data and sends it to the target
  • Target populates global cache with blocks from the copied file
  • On the next job cycle, source analyzes data blocks in the file that need transferred and creates digests just for these blocks
  • Source compares new digests with old – if duplicate blocks are found the file is not copied over the WAN.  Instead, the target will pull this file from the global cache
  • Also, restore points already existing on the target side are analyzed – if there is a duplicate located in them, the target will take them directly from the restore points.

Managing Network Traffic

Before we get into some of the ways we can throttle and manage our network manually, let’s have a look at a couple different ways Veeam manages network disconnects automatically.

Data Transport on WAN Disconnect

This type of reconnection attempt exists only on jobs who utilize WAN accelerators.  Basically if a connection drops while we are transferring VM data between accelerators VBR will pick up and resume the job from the point where the connection was lost when services are restored, rather than starting all over again.  When the connection is restored, VBR will initiate a new transfer process, this time writing data to a new working snapshot.  If the connection drops multiple times, veeam will only keep 2 working snapshots on the VM by merging previous ones together.  Once all data has made its way to the target, all snapshots are merged and a new restore point is created.

Resume on Disconnect

This process handles network disconnects not applying to accelerators, and handles disconnects between backup server, proxies, and repositories (storing replica metadata).  VBR will attempt to reestablish the connection every 15 seconds for 30 minutes, picking up right where it left off.

Network Traffic Throttling Rules

Network throttling rules are setup and enforced globally on the backup server.  They essentially limit the maximum throughput of traffic going from source to target.  They are set with a pair of IP addresses, source ip, and target ip.  If a component within the backup infrastructure fall into the specified source and target IP range, the rule is applied to them.  The steps to set them up are as follows…

  • Select Network Traffic from the Main Menu and click ‘Add ‘ in the Global Network Traffic Rules section.
  • In the source ip range, specify a range of IPs representing the source components
  • In the target IP range, specify a range of IPs representing the target components.
  • Select the box to Throttle Network traffic
    • Specify the maximum speed that must be used to transfer VM data to in the Throttle to field
  • In the Apply throttling we can set up a schedule in which this rule will apply, or have it apply all the time.
    • If a rule has overlapping schedules, the rule with the lowest maximum speed will apply
  • Network Data Encryption is also setup in this same manner with the Encrypt network traffic checkbox.  More on network encryption below

Managing Data Transfer Connections

By default Veeam uses 5 TCP/IP connections to transfer data from source to target.  This may cause network traffic to be heavy if multiple jobs run at the same time.  This can also be changed in the Global Network Traffic Rules settings using the ‘Use multiple upload streams per job’ selection box.

Enabling Network Encryption

By default Veeam encrypts data with 256-AES flowing to/from public IPs, however you may want to have encryption between your local/remote source and targets.  Again this is done in the Global Network Traffic Rules window by clicking add.  It’s the same process as setting up throttling rules (above), however checking the ‘Use Network Encryption’ box.

Specifying priority networks for transfer

VBR gives you the ability to specify what networks you want to send your VM data on.  This is useful if you have some sort of backup network or non-production network that is utilized for backup data.  Again from the Global Network Traffic Rules section we set this up

  • Click on Networks
  • Select to ‘Prefer the following networks for backup and replication traffic’ and click ‘Add’
  • Specify a network in a CIDR notation or mask
  • VBR will failover to the production network if for some reason the preferred networks are unavailable.

VMCE v9 Study Guide – Module 4 – Adding Backup Repositories

VMCE LogoIf you can recall in Module 3 we discussed the three types of backup repositories in VBR; Simple, Scale-Out and those backed by rotated drives.  Now let’s go over how to add and configure each type as we continue on with Module 4 of the VMCE v9 Study Guide!

 

Adding Simple Backup Repositories

If we can remember back to Module 3 we actually have 4 sub types of simple backup repositories; Microsoft Windows, Linux, Shared CIFS, or Deduplicated Storage Appliances.

There are a number of prerequisites we must meet depending on the type of repository we are adding, listed below

  • Linux repositories
    • Requires SSH daemon installed and configured as well as SCP utility available on the Linux server hosting the repository
  • EMC Data Domain – note without meeting these requirements you can still add DD as a CIFS share, however you will not be able to leverage any DD Boost technology.
    • Must be running DD OS 5.4 or later
    • DD Boost license must be installed and DD Boost enabled and configured
    • Must have a gateway server added to the VBR environment
  • ExaGrid
    • Must be firmware 4.7 or later
    • Must follow ExaGrid best practices to set up
  • HPE StoreOnce – without meeting these requirements you can still add HPE StoreOnce as a shared folder, however in this case VBR will perform the deduplication.
    • Must be running firmware 3.13.1 or later
    • Must have StoreOnce Catalyst license
    • Must use Catalyst as a backup target  and configured to work with Low Bandwidth mode (primary and secondary transfer policy)
    • Must have a gateway server added to the VBR Environment
    • Client account used to connect must have access permission on the Catalyst store where backup data resides

Different options will appear in the wizard depending on the type of repository we are adding, however the process of adding it is somewhat the same.

  • From the Backup Infrastructure View right-click the Backup Repositories node and select Add Backup Repository
  • Name – specify the FQDN or IP address, as well as a description for the backup repository.
  • Type – select the type of repository you want to add.
    • Microsoft Windows server
      • Server – Select the Windows server you would like to use from the drop down.  If the server hasn’t already been added you can do so by clicking Add New.  Clicking Populate will populate a list of disk storage connected to the server.
    • Linux Server
      • Server – Select the Linux server you would like to use from the drop down.  If the server hasn’t already been added you can do so by clicking Add New.  Clicking Populate will populate a list of disk storage connected to the server.
    • Shared Folder
      • In the shared folder field, specify the UNC path to the folder you want to use.
      • If the share requires credentials, select the ‘This share requires access credentials’ and provide credentials.
      • If you have a fast connection between the source and backup repository we can leave the gateway server at automatic selection.  This will automatically chose a gateway server randomly per job session.  If the connection is slower or over a WAN we can explicitly specify which gateway server to use.
    • Deduplicated Storage Appliance
      • Deduplicated Storage – Select either EMC, ExaGrid, or HP StoreOnce
        • Data Domain
          • Specify the connection settings to the data domain.  If connecting over FC select ‘User Fibre Channel’ and enter a Data Domain Fibre Channel server in the domain server name field.
          • Specify credentials supporting DD Boost
          • Select whether to use in flight encryption.
          • Specify a Gateway server or leave set to automatic if connection is fast.  If the DataDomain is connected over FC you must explicitly define gateway server and said server must have access to the Data Domain appliance over FC.
        • ExaGrid
          • From the Repository server drop down select the ExaGrid appliance you wish to use.  If it isn’t added you must add it with the ‘Add New’ button.
        • StoreOnce
          • Specify your connection settings to the StoreOnce appliance, and selecting ‘Use FC’ if connecting over Fibre Channel.
          • Specify credentials having access to the Catalyst store where you wish to store the backups
          • Select whether to automatically chose a gateway server or explicitly define one.  Again, if using FC you must explicitly define a GW server and it must have access to the FC StoreOnce appliance.
  • Repository – this is where we specify where on the selected repository we wish to store our backups, as well as load control settings.  Again this may be different depending on what type of repository we are adding
    • Location – specify a path to the folder to store backups in.  For DataDomain click Browse and select a location – for StoreOnce, select a Catalyst store from the list.  For Windows/Linux, specify a path.
    • Load Control – limits the number of concurrent tasks and data ingestion rate.  The limiting of read and write data rates applies to the combined rate of both.
      • Advanced presents a number of additional settings to place on the repository.
        • Align backup file data blocks – Veeam will align VM data saved to a backup file at a 4kb block boundary.  Provides better dedup but can result in wasted space depending on storage level of fragmentation.
        • Decompress backup data blocks before storing – This will decompress data before storing it, even if compression is enabled.  A setting that is useful for utilizing compression on a job with deduplication appliances as a target
        • This Repository is Backed by rotated hard drives. – if you plan on using rotated drives.
        • User per-VM backup files – recommended if you use a dedup storage appliance or a repository supporting multiple streams.  Will write data with several streams, one VM per backup file per stream.
        • Deduplicating storage appliances supported by Veeam have the following recommendations
          • Data Domain
            • Align backup file blocks – disabled
            • Decompress Backup data blocks – enabled
            • backed by rotated drives – disabled
            • User Per-VM Backup Files – enabled
          • ExaGrid
            • Align backup file blocks – disabled
            • Decompress Backup data blocks – disabled
            • Backed by Rotated Drives – Disabled
            • Use Per-VM Backup Files – Enabled
            • Limit max concurrent tasks – 1
          • StoreOnce
            • Align backup file blocks – disabled
            • Decompress Backup data blocks – enabled
            • backed by rotated drives – disabled
            • User Per-VM Backup Files – enabled
  • Specify Mount Server settings.
    • From the server list select a mount server to use with the backup repository.  If the desired one is not there we can add it at this point by selecting ‘Add New’
    • Enable vPower NFS server – enforces repository accessible by Veeam vPower NFS, for SureBackup Jobs, virtual labs etc.
      • Folder – specify a folder to be used as the vPower NFS root folder
    • Mount server will not be deployed until after the repository has been fully configured.
    • Ports – allows us to customize the network ports used by the vPower NFS service.  By default these are…
      • RPC port: 6161
      • Mount Port: 1058
      • vPower NFS port: 2049
  • Review settings
    • Here you can review your settings and complete.  There is a couple other options.  If the repository already contains backup files we can select to Import these automatically.  If so, they will display under our Imported Backups.  If there is also guest index files located on the repository we can chose to import these indexes as well.
  • Apply settings and watch as VBR updates the status on all the subtasks it performs

Adding a Scale-Out Backup Repository

Before we get into the process of adding a Scale-Out Backup Repository it’s best to have a little review of some of the requirements and limitations associated with them.  We went over this in Module 3, but for memory purposes let’s list a few of them below…

  • Only Available in Enterprise and Enterprise Plus – Enterprise is limited to 1 SOBR with 3 extents only.
  • If license is downgraded to standard with a SOBR present you will not be able to back up to it, but will be able to perform restores.
  • Cannot use SOBR as a target for Config Backups, Replication jobs, VM Copy Jobs or Endpoint jobs.  If repository contains data from any of these unsupported jobs you will need to retarget the jobs at another repository AND REMOVE DATA from the repository

To add a SOBR right-click on the ‘Scale-out Backup Repositories’ node on the Backup Infrastructure view and select ‘Add Scale-out Backup Repository’ and follow the following configuration steps.

  • Name – Add a name and description for the SOBR
  • Extents – Click ‘Add’ to select the backup repositories that you wish to add as an extent to this SOBR.
    • Advanced Options on this screen include whether to Use Per-VM backup files, and whether or not to perform a full backup when a required extent is offline.  This basically means that if an extent that contains previous files from a backup chain is offline, Veeam will create a full backup file instead of a scheduled incremental.
  • Extents – If we have selected a repository that is already used by jobs of a supported type (backup jobs) or already has supported backup files on it such as VeeamZIP backups you will be prompted to update the jobs/backup to point to the new repository.  Need to click yes here to continue with the creation.
  • Policy – this is where we specify our backup placement policy.  If you can remember back to Module 3 we have two
    • Data locality – stores backup files that belong to the same chain together – full/incremental on the same extent.  Any new backup chains associated, for example a new full and incremental chain could be on the same extent or another extent, so long as the individual full/incremental are together.
    • Performance – stores full and incremental on different extents allowing read/write streams to be optimized to different underlying disks.
      • Performance allows you to restrict which types of backups can be stored on a specific extent in the Advanced settings.  We could place full backups on extent1, and incremental on extent2.  By default, Veeam stores both on the same extents, so long as they are from different chains.
  • Summary – review details and click finish

Extending a SOBR is just a matter of going back into the SOBR properties and adding more extents during the extents step.

Removing extents from a SOBR requires a bit more work as they may contain backup files already. To remove an extent we must follow the following steps

  • Put extent in maintenance mode
    • Click on your SOBR name in the Backup Infrastructure view
    • From the extent list, right-click the desired extent and select ‘Maintenance Mode’
  • evacuate backups from the extent
    • Click on your SOBR name in the Backup Infrastructure View
    • Right click the desired extent and select ‘Evacuate Backups’
  • remove extent from SOBR
    • From within the properties screen of your SOBR select the desired extent and click ‘Remove’
      • Note, if you skipped the ‘Evacuate Backups’ step you will be prompted to do so here.  If you chose not to, you may end up breaking the chain of some restore points.

Adding Backup Repositories with Rotated Drives

Before adding a rotated drive backup repository first attach your external drive to the windows or Linux server you wish to add as a repository and launch the ‘Add New Backup Repository’ wizard, following the below configuration and instructions…

  • Give the repository a name and description
  • Select which server to use as the repository
  • On the server section, click ‘Advanced’ and select ‘This Repository is backed up by rotated hard drives’ and select the volume of your external drive.
  • Follow all other instructions to complete the Simple Backup Repository addition.

VMCE v9 Study Guide Module 4 – Initial Configuration Adding Windows/Linux servers and Backup Proxies

VMCE LogoFinally we are moving on to Module 4 of the Veeam VMCE v9 Study Guide.  In Module 3 we took a look at all of the core components that are required in order to make Veeam Backup & Replication work – in this module we will go one step further and discuss some of the options and features we have when we go through the process of adding these into our Veeam Backup Server

Adding Microsoft Windows Servers

Windows Servers are used for a variety of different roles within VBR.  Before we can assign these roles to the servers however we need to add them into our VBR configuration.  Adding Windows Servers is done through the Backup Infrastructure View on the Microsoft Servers Node (under Managed Servers).  When adding a Microsoft Windows server you need to ensure first that file and printer sharing is enabled on the server – if it isn’t, VBR will be unable to deploy the Veeam Installer service or the Veeam Data Mover service to the server.  To add a Windows server, right-click the ‘Windows Servers’ node and select ‘Add Server’ and follow the following steps and configurations…

  • If prompted, meaning if you used an ‘Add Server’ from anywhere else, select ‘Microsoft Windows’ as your desired server type.
  • Server Name – Specify the servers fqdn or an ip address.  You can also add a description here for future reference.  The default description simply states who added the server and when.
  • Credentials – If you have already stored credentials in VBR and they are valid for this server go ahead and select them.  If not, you are able to click ‘Add’ at this point to add a new set of credentials.  These credentials will be used to deploy both the installer service and the data mover service on the Windows server.
  • Ports – We can also customize any network ports if we would like with this button.  By default the services that may get deployed on a Windows server use the following ports.
    • Veeam Installer Service – 6160
    • Veeam Data Mover Service – 6162
    • Veeam vPower NFS Service – 6161
    • Veeam WAN Accelerator Service – 6164
    • Veeam Mount Server – 6170
  • Ports – Still within this screen we have some Data Transfer options.  The range of ports displayed (default 2500-5000) are used for transmission channels between the source and target servers, with each task utilizing one port.  If you have a small environment, or don’t expect a lot of data traffic you can scale this down to a smaller range of ports.  Just remember that one port = one concurrent task.
  • Ports – Preferred TCP – Also within this screen we can see the ‘Preferred TCP connection role’ section.   This is used if this Windows server is being deployed outside of a NATed environment.  If it was, this server would not be able to initiate a connection to another server on the other side of the NAT.  If this is the case, select the ‘Run server on this side’ checkbox to reverse the direction of the connection.
  • Review – simply shows the status of the options selected.
  • Apply – At this step we can review and monitor the steps that VBR has taken to successfully add the Windows Server.

Adding a Linux Server

Before we can add a Linux Backup Repository we must first add a Linux server into our VBR environment.  Just as with Windows, this is done on the Backup Infrastructure view by right clicking the Linux Server node and selecting Add Server.  The following steps and configurations apply to the addition of Linux servers.

  • Name – provide the FQDN or IP address of the Linux Server – an optional Description can also be specified at this point.
  • SSH Connection – Veeam will deploy the required components to a Linux server through an ssh connection.  At this step we need to provide some credentials that can connect to our desired Linux Server.  If you already have credentials setup we can simply select them from the drop down, or click ‘Add’ to create a new set of credentials.  Note, both username/password and Identity/Pubkey authentication is supported for the ssh credentials.
  • SSH Connection – The advanced section on this screen allows us to further configure how we would like components deployed.  We can specify an ssh timeout value if we please.  By default this is 20000 ms, meaning if a task targeted at this server is inactive after 20000ms, VBR will automatically terminate said task.  Just as with Windows we have the ability to adjust our Data Transfer Options as well, either scaling up or down the port range and in turn scaling up/down our maximum concurrent tasks.  Also, like Windows, we see the ability to select ‘Run server on this side’ if we are deploying outside of a NATed environment.
  • When we move to the next screen we may be prompted to trust the SSH key fingerprint. When we do this, the fingerprint is saved to the Veeam configuration database.  The fingerprint is then used during every communication task between Veeam components and this Linux server to help prevent man in the middle attacks.  If this key gets updated on the Linux server, you will need to return to this servers settings within Veeam and run through the wizard again in order to trust the new fingerprint.
  • After clicking ‘Finish’ we are done.

Adding a VMware Backup Proxy

We already know that our Backup Proxy is used to process and deliver traffic to either another proxy or backup repository.  By building out multiple proxies we are able to split the load across them and in the same time take the data mover load off of our Veeam Backup Server.   Adding a VMware backup proxy is performed through the Backup Infrastructure view on the Backup Proxies node from within the VBR Console with the following steps and configuration options

  • Right-click the Backup Proxies node and select ‘Add VMware Backup Proxy’
  • Server – Chose Server – Select the Windows server you wish to assign the proxy role to – if you haven’t already added your server to the backup infrastructure you are able to select ‘Add New’ at this point to go through the process of Adding a new Windows Server (See above).
  • Server – Description – We also have the option of creating a description here as well, by default this just states who and when added the backup proxy.
  • Server – Transport mode – Select your desired transport mode, meaning how you would like the proxy to read/write the data.    By default , VBR will scan the proxy configuration and it’s connection to datastores in order to determine an optimal transport mode for it, which will be selected automatically upon reaching this screen.  If we need to override this we can by clicking ‘Chose’.   Our options here are Direct Storage Access, Virtual Appliance, or Network.  See Module 3 for more information about how each of these transport mode works.  From within the Options section of our Transport Mode selection we can specify additional options for whichever mode we have selected.
    • For Direct Storage Access and Virtual Appliance modes we can choose to either failover to network mode (default) or not.
    • For Network Mode we can choose to transfer VM data over an encrypted SSL connection by selecting ‘Enable host to proxy traffic encryption in Network mode’.
  • Server – Connected Datastores – Allows us to specify which datastores this proxy has a direct SAN or NFS connection to.  By default Veeam will detect all datastores that the proxy has access to, however if you wanted to limit certain proxies to certain datastores you can do so here.
  • Server – Max Concurrent Tasks – We can specify here the number of tasks that the backup proxy will be able to run conccurrently.  At any time if this number is exceeeded no new tasks will start until one has completed.  Keep in mind that Veeam requires 1 CPU core for 1 task, as well as increasing concurrent tasks has the potential to flood network traffic throughput as well.
  • Traffic Rules – The traffic rules section allows us to utilize throttling rules in order to limit the OUTBOUND traffic rate for the proxy.  These help to manage bandwidth and minimize impact on the network.  These rules are created globally within VBR and will only display here if the proxy ip happens to fall within the range the rule applies to. To view the globally set traffic rules we can click on the ‘Manage network traffic rules’ link below the table displayed or click ‘View’ to view a single rule.  We will go over the traffic rules in a bit more details when we cover off global settings of VBR.
  • Summary – After reviewing the summary select ‘Finish’

At anytime you can come back to the Backup Proxies node and right-click a Backup Proxy to edit it.  We can also Disable Backup Proxies on an individual basis.  When disabled a backup proxy will not be used in any backup jobs that can select it.  If you want to remove a backup proxy that is possible as well.  That said, if the Backup Proxy is explicitly selected in a job, meaning the job does not automatically select proxies, then you will first need to delete the reference to this proxy in the job before the proxy can be removed.  Removing a backup proxy only removes it from the Backup Proxies node, the server will remain in the Windows Servers node.

Adding a Hyper-V Off host proxy

By default, MS Hyper-V hosts perform the role of a proxy – this is called on-host mode.  That said they take up resources that may be needed to run your actual production environment so its best to add Off Host proxies.  We discussed these a bit in Module 3, and if you remember they have the following prerequisites.

  • Windows Server 2008 R2 or higher with Hyper-V role of 2008 R2 or higher installed
  • Must be connected to the shared storage
  • Hardware VSS providers must be installed on host (supplied by vendor)
  • If using CSV, the Hyper-V off host proxy must not be a part of the cluster it is backing up.
  • If backing up SMB3, the local system account on off host proxy must have full access permissions to the file share and must be in the same domain, or in a trusted domain.

To add a Hyper-V off host proxy you need to add the backup proxy role to a Microsoft Windows server within the backup infrastructure utilizing the ‘New Hyper-V Off-Host Backup Proxy’ wizard and the following configuration…

  • Server – select a Windows server to assign the role to, if not listed you can add new at this point.  You can also add a description.  By default, Veeam will automatically detect the connected volumes however if you would like to specify which volumes you want this host to work with you can do so using the ‘Connected Volumes Choose…’ button.  We can also specify the Maximum Concurrent Tasks for this proxy, keeping in mind each proxy requires 1 CPU.
  • In the Traffic Rules selection we can select any rules that will apply to our off host proxy to limit its OUTBOUND traffic rate.  These rules are not created here, they are created globally and only those rules that are applicable to the IP of our proxy are listed.  You can move into the global rules by clicking ‘Manage Network Traffic Rules’ link.
  • Review the summary of task and click ‘Next’ to finish deploying the proxy.

VMCE v9 Study Guide Module 3 – Veeam ONE Components, Prerequisites, and Deployment Scenarios

VMCE LogoAs we continue along the Veeam v9 VMCE Study Guide its time to finish off Module 3 and have a look at Veeam ONE.  For me I don’t have a lot of experience with Veeam ONE so this will be a session I try to focus on throughout this guide!  Just an update, I’ve written and passed my VMCE at this point, so there’s that!  Yay!  Either way I’m going to try to complete any unfinished portions I have in efforts of completeness!  So with that, let’s get going… Veeam ONE relies heavily on a client-server architecture to work.  The architecture of Veeam ONE contains the following components.

Veeam ONE Server

  • The Veeam ONE Server is responsible for gathering all of the data from our virtual environment, vCloud Director and Veeam Backup & Replication servers.  It takes this data and stores it into its SQL database.  Veeam ONE server has a couple of sub components that are broken out as well
    • Monitoring Server
      • Handles the collection of data to present to the Monitor client or web ui.
      • Pulls data from both VMware and Hyper-V as well as Veeam Backup & Replication.
    • Reporting Server
      • Provides a set of dashboards and predefined reports.
      • Verifies configuration issues
      • Track implemented changes in the environment
      • Adhere to best practices and optimize your environment
      • Capacity Management

Veeam ONE Monitor Client

  • The Monitor client connects to the monitoring server and basically monitors your virtual environment.  This allows us to choose our connections to our virtual servers, our backup infrastructure, and manage alarms and data that is being monitored.

Veeam ONE Business View

  • Allows grouping of infrastructure objects into categories that better align to the business
  • Groupings/categories are applied to functionality within Monitor and Reporter
  • Can be synchronized with vSphere tags.

Interesting tidbits in regards to Veeam ONE

  • Can be licensed either per socket or per-VM being monitored

Deployment Models

Veeam ONE provides us with a couple different deployment models

Typical Deployment

Just as VBR gives us the opportunity to consolidate all of the components and services on to one server Veeam ONE does as well.  The typical deployment takes Veeam ONE server, Web UI, and Monitor client and installs them all together on the same machine, be it physical or virtual.  The SQL instance can also be installed on this machine as well – by default, Veeam ONE packages with SQL 2012 Express.  This is a good way to manage a small environment, or to evaluate what Veeam ONE can do for you.  If you need to enable multi-user access to the real-time performance it is possible to install the Veeam ONE monitor client on separate machines.

Your typical installation requires at least 4 cores, 64 bit and 8GB of RAM, although 16 is recommended.  Must be installed on Windows 7 sp1 or above, and supports SQL, both full and express, from 2005 and up.

Advanced Deployment

The advanced deployment starts to break out some of the individual components to different servers.  The Veeam ONE Server, and the WEB UI components are installed on separate machines.  Also, Veeam ONE Monitor client can also be installed on multiple separate machines.  This deployment can still use the express installation of SQL, however since you are most likely breaking out the components in order to decrease load, you will probably want to install a remote instance of SQL server for this type of setup.

The Veeam ONE server requires at least 4 cores, 64 bit, and 8 GB of RAM, although 16 is recommended.  Again, Windows 7 sp1 or above and SQL 2005 and up.

The Web UI server requires minimum 2 cores and only 64 bit OS’s (Win 7 SP1 and up).  2 GB minimum RAM

The Monitor Client requires either 32 or 64 bit OSs (7 SP1 and up) and only 1 socket, along with 1 GB of memory.

Interesting tidbits around Veeam ONE deployments

  • Supports vSphere 4.1 and above
  • Supports Hyper-V 2008 R2 sp1 and above
  • Supports vCloud Director 5.1 and above
  • Integrates with Veeam B&R 7.0 update 4 and above (standard and above)