Objective 6.2 – Configure and Administer vCenter Data Protection

Continuing Section 6 we have, Objective 6.2 – Configure and Administer vCenter Data Protection.

As always this article is linked to from the main VCP6.5-DCV Blueprint.

Happy Revision

Simon

 

Objective 6.2 – Configure and Administer vCenter Data Protection

 

Deploy VDP Application Agents

VDP supports granular guest-level backup and recovery support for Microsoft Exchange Servers, SQL Servers, and SharePoint Servers. To support guest-level backups, a VDP client is installed on the Exchange Servers, SharePoint Servers, and SQL Servers.

Installing VDP for SQL Server Client

To support guest-level backups, the VDP for SQL Server Client must be installed on each SQL Server for backup and restore support.

To install the VDP for SQL Server Client in a cluster, install the VDP for SQL Server Client on each node, register each node, and then configure the VDP cluster client. To install the VDP for SQL Server Client in a cluster, perform the following steps:

  • Install the VDP for SQL Server Client in the same folder on each node in the cluster.

The installation process installs the software, and then registers and activates each node in the cluster with the VDP appliance.

  • Use the VMware VDP Windows Cluster Configuration Wizard to configure the VDP appliance.

 

  • On each SQL Server client, access the vSphere web client:
    • https://:9443/vsphere-client/
  • In the Credentials page, enter an administrative vCenter username and password and click Login.
  • In the vSphere web client, select VDP.
  • In the Welcome to VDP page, select the VDP appliance and click Connect.
  • Click the Configuration tab.
  • In Client Downloads, click Microsoft SQL Server 32-bit or Microsoft SQL Server 64-bit (based on the version of the SQL Server client).
  • Depending on your browser, you can save .msi file or you can run it. When you run the .msi file, the VMware VDP for SQL Server Setup wizard starts. Click Next.
  • On the End-User License Agreement page, read the license and if acceptable, click I accept the terms in the License Agreement, and click Next.
  • On the appliance Registration Information page, type the name of the VDP appliance that will back up the SQL Server, and click Next.
  • On the Ready to install VMware VDP for SQL Server page, click Install.
  • On the Completed the VMware VDP for SQL Server Setup Wizard page, click Finish.

Repeat this procedure for additional SQL Servers.

Installing VDP for Exchange Server Client

To support guest-level backups, the VMware vSphere Data Protection (VDP) for Exchange Server Client must be installed on each Exchange Server for backup and restore support.

  • On each Exchange Server client, access the vSphere web client:

https://<vCenter>:9443/vsphere-client/

  • In the Credentials page, enter an administrative vCenter username and password, and then click Login.
  • On the vSphere web client, select VDP.
  • In the Welcome to VDP page, select the VDP appliance and click Connect.
  • Click the Configuration tab.
  • In Client Downloads, click Microsoft Exchange Server 64-bit.
  • Depending on your browser, you can save the .msi file or run it. When you run the .msi file, the VMware VDP for Exchange Server Setup wizard starts. Click Next.
  • On the End-User License Agreement page, read the license and if acceptable, click I accept the terms in the License Agreement and click Next.
  • On the Appliance Registration Information page, type in the IP address or fully qualified domain name of the VDP appliance that will back up the Exchange Server and click Next.
  • Select the option to install the Exchange Server GLR plug-in if you plan to use the server for granular level recovery.

NOTE You must reboot the Microsoft Exchange Server if you select the Exchange Server GLR option.

  • On the Ready to install VMware VDP for Exchange Server page, click Install.
  • On the Completed the VMware VDP for Exchange Server Setup Wizard page, click Finish

Installing VDP for SharePoint Server Client

Install the VDP client plug-in on each SharePoint Server in the farm. A SharePoint farm is a collection of SharePoint Servers that work together to provide a set of basic SharePoint Server services that support a single site.

  • On each SharePoint Server client, access the vSphere web client:

https://:9443/vsphere-client/

  • On the Credentials page, enter an administrative vCenter username and password and click Login.
  • On the vSphere web client, select VDP.
  • On the Welcome to VDP page, select the VDP appliance and click Connect.
  • Click the Configuration tab.
  • Under Client Downloads, click Microsoft SharePoint Server 64 bit. Depending on your browser, you can save the .msi file or run it.

The VMware VDP for SharePoint Server Setup wizard starts.

  • Click Next.
  • On the End-User License Agreement page, read the license and if acceptable, click I accept the terms in the License Agreement and click Next.
  • On the appliance Registration Information page, type in the IP address or the name of the VDP appliance that will back up the SharePoint Server. Click Next.
  • On the Ready to install VMware VDP for SharePoint Server page, click Install.
  • During installation, select whether the server on which you are installing will be the primary back up server (front end) or another member server of the SharePoint Server farm (back end).

NOTE The front-end server can only be installed on one farm server, and it must be a Web front end or an application server.

  • On the Completed the VMware VDP for SharePoint Server Setup Wizard page, click Finish.

Differentiate VMware Data Protection capabilities

Image Level Backup and Restore

vSphere Data Protection creates image level backups, which are integrated with the vStorage API for Data Protection, a feature set within vSphere to offload the backup processing overhead from the virtual machine to the VDP appliance. The VDP appliance communicates with the vCenter server to make a snapshot of a virtual machine’s .vmdk files. Deduplication takes place within the appliance by using a patented variable-length deduplication technology.

To support the large scale and continually expanding size of many VMware environments, each VDP appliance can simultaneously back up to 8 virtual machines if the internal proxy is used, or back up to 24 virtual machines if the maximum number of 8 external proxies are deployed with the VDP appliance.

To increase the efficiency of image level backups, VDP utilizes the Changed Block Tracking (CBT) feature, which greatly reduces the backup time of a given virtual machine image and provides the ability to process a large number of virtual machines within a particular backup window.

By leveraging CBT during restores, VDP offers fast and efficient recoveries of virtual machines to their original location. During a restore process, VDP uses CBT to determine which blocks have changed since the last backup. The use of CBT reduces data transfer within the vSphere environment during a recovery operation and more importantly reduces the recovery time.

Additionally, VDP automatically evaluates the workload between both restore methods (full image restore or a recovery leveraging CBT) and performs the method resulting in the fastest restore time. This is useful in scenarios where the change rate since the last backup in a virtual machine being restored is very high and the overhead of a CBT analysis operation would be more costly than a direct full-image recovery. VDP determines which method results in the fastest image recovery times for virtual machines in the environment.

vCenter Server Backup and Restore

VDP supports backups of a vCenter Server by using an embedded Platform Service Controller and an external Platform Service Controller. VDP can perform file system quiescing during backups.

You must create a separate backup job that contains only vCenter Server. Schedule this backup job in the VDP backup window when the vCenter Server’s nd VDP’s workloads are the least to ensure that you can generate a file system-consistent snapshot during the backup. If the vCenter Server’s workload is heavy, the backup can fail because of failure to quiesce the VM. vCenter Server is also reasonably resilient to crash-consistent restore. However, VMware supports backup and restore of vCenter Server by using VDP on the best-effort basis, and does not guarantee a successful restore.

Single VMDK Backup and Restore

A full image backup job includes all disks in the entire virtual machine (VM) in a single image backup. Individual disk backup jobs allow you to select only the disks you need. An image level backup of a VM with unsupported disk types does not include the unsupported disk types because of snapshot limitations.

When you restore a VM, the VDP appliance restores the VM configuration file (.vmx), which results in the creation of all VMDKs from the original VM. If any of the original VMDKs were not backed up, the restore process creates them as provisional VMDKs. The VM may not be fully functional in this case. The protected VMDKs, however, can be accessed from the restore.

Guest-level Backup and Restore

VDP supports guest-level backups for Microsoft SQL Servers, Exchange Servers, and Share Point Servers. With guest-level backups, client agents (VMware VDP for SQL Server Client, VMware VDP for Exchange Server Client, or VMware VDP for SharePoint Server Client) are installed on the SQL Server, Exchange Server, or SharePoint Server in the same manner that backup agents are typically installed on physical servers.

The advantages of VMware guest-level backups are:

  • Provides additional application support for Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Exchange Server, or SharePoint Server inside the virtual machines
  • Support for backing up and restoring entire Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Exchange Server, or SharePoint Servers or selected databases
  • Identical backup methods for physical and virtual machines

Replication

Replication enables you to avoid data loss if the source VDP appliance fails because copies of the backups are available on the destination target.

Replication jobs determine which backups are replicated, and when and to where the backups are replicated. With scheduled or ad hoc replication jobs for clients that have no restore points, only the client is replicated on the destination server. Backups created with VDP 6.0 or later can be replicated to another VDP appliance, to an EMC Avamar server, or to a Data Domain system. If the target VDP appliance is 5.8 or earlier, then the target must be VDP Advanced or Replication Target Identity.

File Level Recovery

File Level Recovery (FLR) allows local administrators of protected virtual machines to browse and mount backups for the local machine. From these mounted backups, the administrator can then restore individual files. FLR is accomplished by using the VDP Restore Client.

Explain VMware Data Protection sizing guidelines

vSphere Data Protection sizing helps determine the VDP appliance size and number of appliances required based on:

  • Number of and type of VMs (does the VM contain file system or database data?)
  • Amount of data
  • Retention periods (daily, weekly, monthly, yearly)
  • Typical change rate

Create/Delete/Consolidate virtual machine snapshots

You can take one or more snapshots of a virtual machine to capture the settings state, disk state, and memory state at different specific times. When you take a snapshot, you can also quiesce the virtual machine files and exclude the virtual machine disks from snapshots.

When you take a snapshot, other activity that is occurring in the virtual machine might affect the snapshot process when you revert to that snapshot. The best time to take a snapshot from a storage perspective, is when you are not incurring a large I/O load. The best time to take a snapshot from a service perspective is when no applications in the virtual machine are communicating with other computers. The potential for problems is greatest if the virtual machine is communicating with another computer, especially in a production environment. For example, if you take a snapshot while the virtual machine is downloading a file from a server on the network, the virtual machine continues downloading the file and communicating its progress to the server. If you revert to the snapshot, communications between the virtual machine and the server are confused and the file transfer fails. Depending on the task that you are performing, you can create a memory snapshot or you can quiesce the file system in the virtual machine.

Memory Snapshots

The default selection for taking snapshots. When you capture the virtual machine’s memory state, the snapshot retains the live state of the virtual machine. Memory snapshots create a snapshot at a precise time, for example, to upgrade software that is still working. If you take a memory snapshot and the upgrade does not complete as expected, or the software does not meet your expectations, you can revert the virtual machine to its previous state.

When you capture the memory state, the virtual machine’s files do not require quiescing. If you do not capture the memory state, the snapshot does not save the live state of the virtual machine and the disks are crash consistent unless you quiesce them.

Quiesced Snapshots

When you quiesce a virtual machine, VMware Tools quiesces the file system of the virtual machine. A quiesce operation ensures that a snapshot disk represents a consistent state of the guest file systems. Quiesced snapshots are appropriate for automated or periodic backups. For example, if you are unaware of the virtual machine’s activity, but want several recent backups to revert to, you can quiesce the files.

If the virtual machine is powered off or VMware Tools is not available, the Quiesce parameter is not available. You cannot quiesce virtual machines that have large capacity disks.

Deleting a snapshot removes the snapshot from the Snapshot Manager. The snapshot files are consolidated and written to the parent snapshot disk and merge with the virtual machine base disk.

Deleting a snapshot does not change the virtual machine or other snapshots. Deleting a snapshot consolidates the changes between snapshots and previous disk states and writes all the data from the delta disk that contains the information about the deleted snapshot to the parent disk. When you delete the base parent snapshot, all changes merge with the base virtual machine disk.

To delete a snapshot, a large amount of information needs to be read and written to a disk. This process can reduce virtual machine performance until consolidation is complete. Consolidating snapshots removes redundant disks, which improves virtual machine performance and saves storage space. The time it takes to delete snapshots and consolidate the snapshot files depends on the amount of data that the guest operating system writes to the virtual disks after you take the last snapshot. The required time is proportional to the amount of data the virtual machine is writing during consolidation if the virtual machine is powered on.

Failure of disk consolidation can reduce the performance of virtual machines. You can check whether any virtual machines require separate consolidation operations by viewing a list. For information about locating and viewing the consolidation state of multiple virtual machines and running a separate consolidation operation, see vSphere Virtual Machine Administration.

Delete

Use the Delete option to remove a single parent or child snapshot from the snapshot tree. Delete writes disk changes that occur between the state of the snapshot and the previous disk state to the parent snapshot.

You can also use the Delete option to remove a corrupt snapshot and its files from an abandoned branch of the snapshot tree without merging them with the parent snapshot.

Delete All

Use the Delete All option to delete all snapshots from the Snapshot Manager. Delete all consolidates and writes the changes that occur between snapshots and the previous delta disk states to the base parent disk and merges them with the base virtual machine disk.

To prevent snapshot files from merging with the parent snapshot if, for example, an update or installation fails, first use the Restore command to restore to a previous snapshot. This action invalidates the snapshot delta disks and deletes the memory file. You can then use the Delete option to remove the snapshot and any associated files.

The presence of redundant delta disks can adversely affect virtual machine performance. You can combine such disks without violating a data dependency. After consolidation, redundant disks are removed, which improves virtual machine performance and saves storage space.

Snapshot consolidation is useful when snapshot disks fail to compress after a Delete or Delete all operation. This might happen, for example, if you delete a snapshot but its associated disk does not commit back to the base disk.

The Needs Consolidation column in the vSphere Web Client shows the virtual machines to consolidate.

  • Show the Needs Consolidation column.

Select a vCenter Server instance, a host, or a cluster and click the VMs tab and click Virtual Machines.

Right-click the menu bar for any virtual machine column and select Show/Hide Columns > Needs Consolidation.

A Yes status indicates that the snapshot files for the virtual machine should be consolidated, and that the virtual machine’s Tasks and Events tab shows a configuration problem. A No status indicates that the files are OK.

  • To consolidate the files, right-click the virtual machine and select Snapshots > Consolidate.
  • Check the Needs Consolidation column to verify that the task succeeded.

If the task succeeded, a Not Required value appears in the Needs Consolidation column.

  • If the task failed, check the event log for failed conditions, such as running out of disk space.
  • Correct the error, and retry the consolidation task.

The configuration problem is resolved, and the Needs Consolidation value is Not Required.

Install and Configure VMware Data Protection

The following section lists the system requirements for VDP.

VDP System Requirements VDP is available in the following configurations:

  • 5 TB
  • 1 TB
  • 2 TB
  • 4 TB
  • 6 TB
  • 8 TB
  • After VDP is deployed the size can be increased.

DNS Configuration

The DNS server must support both forward and reverse lookup on the VDP and the vCenter.

Before you deploy VDP, you must add an entry to the DNS server for the VDP appliance’s IP address and Fully Qualified Domain Names (FQDN). In addition, communication to DNS is required by VMware proxy nodes (port 53) over both TCP and UDP protocols. Failure to set up DNS properly can cause many runtime or configuration issues.

To confirm that DNS is configured properly, run the following commands from the command prompt on the vCenter server:

  • nslookup <FQDN_of_VDP> – The nslookup command returns the FQDN of the VDP appliance.
  • nslookup <FQDN_of_vCenter> – The nslookup command returns the FQDN of the vCenter server.

If the nslookup commands return the proper information, close the command prompt. If the nslookup commands do not return the information you seek, you can manually add the VDP name and address to the /etc/hosts file in the vCenter.

NTP Configuration

VDP leverages VMware Tools to synchronize time through NTP. All vSphere hosts and the vCenter server must have NTP configured properly. The VDP appliance gets the correct time through vSphere and must not be configured with NTP.

Configuring NTP directly on the VDP appliance causes time synchronization errors

vCenter Hosts and Clusters View

The VDP appliance can work with folders and resource views that are created under the Hosts and Clusters view. The Hosts and Clusters view in the vSphere web client enables you to perform the following tasks:

  • Configure user accounts n Create a snapshot
  • Mount the ISO image n Remove a snapshot
  • Revert back to a snapshot n Expand disks
  • Configure the VDP appliance system settings.
  • Remove the VDP appliance from the vCenter inventory.

User Account Configuration

Before the vCenter user account can be used with VDP, or before the SSO admin user can be used with VDP, you must add these users as administrator on the vCenter root node. Users who inherit permissions from group roles are not valid.

General Best Practices

  • Deploy the VDP appliance on shared VMFS5 or later to avoid block size limitations.
  • Make sure that all virtual machines are running hardware version 7 or later to support Change Block Tracking (CBT).
  • Install VMware Tools on each virtual machine that VDP will back up. VMware Tools add additional backup capability that quiesces certain processes on the guest OS before the backup. VMware Tools are also required for some features used in File Level Restore.
  • When configuring the network for the VDP appliance and the vCenter, do not modify network address information by using NAT or other configuration methods (firewall, IDS, or TSNR). When these unsupported methods are deployed as part of the virtual network, some VDP functionality may not work as designed.

Deployment Best Practices

The following should always be considered a best practice when deploying a VDP appliance:

  • Create a DNS record for the VDP appliance before deploying the appliance. Ensure both forward and reverse lookup are enabled in DNS.
  • One of the last steps when deploying VDP is the option to run a storage performance analysis. Run this analysis to verify the storage on which VDP is running meets or exceeds performance requirements. The analysis could take from 30 minutes to a few hours to complete.
  • Place the VDP appliance on a separate datastore than where the protected VMs will reside.
  • When scheduling backup jobs, consider staggering the start times.
  • When applications such as, a database or an Exchange Server with high change rates are backed up, interleave (optimize) them with the image level backups of a different VM that has the unstructured data.
    • The databases belong to the structured data and the image level backups belong to the unstructured data. The databases generate more unique data that results in lower deduplication ratio, but the image level backups have higher deduplication ratio. Interleaving the image level backups in between two application backups puts less load on the deduplication engine that results in a better performance of backups.
  • Consider other processes that may be running. Try not to schedule replication or automatic backup verification when backup jobs are running. If possible, schedule these jobs to run after the backup jobs have completed, before the maintenance window opens.
  • An internal proxy must be activated, and is automatically activated, when an emergency restore operation is performed.

HotAdd Best Practices

The HotAdd transport mechanism is recommended for faster backups and restores and less exposure to network routing, firewall and SSL certificate issues. If you use the network block device (NBD) transport mechanism instead of HotAdd, backup performance will be degraded.

The following mandatory requirements must be met for a disk to be mounted with HotAdd:

  • If you are using vSphere Host version 5.0, the host must be licensed for HotAdd. vSphere Host version 5.1 and later include this feature by default.
  • The VDP appliance is deployed on a vSphere host that has a path to the storage that contains the virtual disks being backed up.
  • HotAdd is not used on IDE-configured virtual disks. I/O over the network negatively impacts performance. Use SCSI virtual disks instead.
  • The total capacity of the VMFS volume, on which VDP resides, is equal to the size of the largest virtual disk being backed up (free space can be less than this size).
  • The block size of the VMFS volume where VDP resides is the same or larger than the size of the largest virtual disk being backed up.
  • The virtual machine being backed up must not have any independent virtual hard disk.
  • The virtual machine being backed up is in the same datacenter (vCenter server container object) as the VDP appliance. HotAdd transport cannot cross the datacenter boundary.
  • The virtual machines and VMDKs in the vCenter server have the same name as those associated with the virtual machine being backed up.
  • HotAdd does not work with virtual machines that use vSphere Flash Read Cache (vFlash)

Storage Capacity for Initial VDP Deployment

When a new vSphere Data Protection (VDP) appliance is deployed, the appliance typically fills rapidly for the first few weeks. This is because nearly every client that is backed up contains unique data. VDP deduplication is most effective when other similar clients have been backed up, or the same clients have been backed up at least once.

After the initial backup, the appliance backs up less unique data during subsequent backups. When initial backups are complete and the maximum retention periods are exceeded, it is possible to consider and measure the ability of the system to store about as much new data as it frees each day. This is referred to as achieving steady state capacity utilization. Ideal steady state capacity should be 80%.

Monitoring VDP Capacity

You should proactively monitor VDP capacity. You can view VDP capacity through the VDP Reports tab, Used Capacity (which is used to determine steady state).

Deploying the OVF Template

Prerequisites:

  • vSphere host 5.1 or later.
  • vCenter server 5.5 or later.
  • Log in to the vCenter server from a vSphere web client to deploy the OVF template. If you are unable to connect to the vSphere web client, confirm that the vSphere web client service is started.
  • The VDP appliance connects to a vSphere host using port 902. If there is a firewall between the VDP appliance and the vSphere Host, port 902 must be open.
  • The VMware Client Integration Plug-in must be installed on your browser. If it is not already installed, it can be installed during the following procedure.

 

  • From a web browser, access the vSphere web client.
  • Log in with administrative privileges.
  • Select vCenter > Datacenters.
  • On the Objects tab, click Actions > Deploy OVF Template.
  • If prompted, allow and install the VMware Client Integration Plug-in.
  • Select the source where the VDP appliance is located. By default the File name dialog is set to OVF Packages (*.ovf). From the drop-down box to the right of File name, select OVA Packages (*.ova).
  • Navigate to the location of the VDP appliance .ova file. Confirm that you select the appropriate file for the datastore. Click Open.
  • After the VDP appliance .ova file is selected, click Next.
  • Review the template details and click Next.
  • On the Accept EULAs screen, read the license agreement, click Accept, and then click Next.
  • On the Select name and folder screen, type the name for the VDP appliance. When typing the name, use the fully qualified domain name (FQDN), which the VDP configuration uses to find the VDP appliance in the vCenter inventory. Do not change the VDP appliance name after installation.
  • Click the folder or datacenter where you want to deploy the VDP appliance, and then click Next.
  • On the Select a resource screen, select the host for the VDP appliance and click Next.
  • On the Select Storage screen, select the virtual disk format and select the location of the storage for the VDP appliance. Click Next.
  • On the Setup networks screen, select the Destination Network for the VDP appliance and click Next.
  • In the Customize template screen, specify the Default Gateway, DNS, Network 1 IP Address, and Network 1 Netmask. Confirm that the IP addresses are correct and match the entry in the DNS server. Setting incorrect IP addresses in this dialog box will require the .ova to be redeployed. Click Next.

The VDP appliance does not support DHCP. A static IP address is required.

  • On the Ready to complete screen, confirm that all of the deployment options are correct. Check Power on after deployment and click Finish

Initial Configuration

  • From a web browser, access the vSphere web client.
  • Log in with administrative privileges.
  • Select vCenter Home > vCenter > VMs and Templates. Expand the vCenter tree and select the VDP appliance.
  • Open a console session into the VDP appliance by right-clicking the VDP appliance and selecting Open Console.
  • After the installation files load, the Welcome page for the VDP menu appears. Open a web browser and type: https://:8543/vdp-configure/ The VDP Login page appears.
  • Type root in the User field and changeme in the Password field, and then click Login. The VDP Welcome page appears.
  • Click Next. The Network Settings dialog box appears by default.
  • Either confirm or specify the following network and server information for your VDP appliance. Ensure that the values are correctly populated. Otherwise, the installation fails.
  • Click Next. The Time Zone dialog box appears.
  • Select the appropriate time zone for your VDP appliance, and click Next. The VDP Credentials dialog box appears.
  • In the Password field, type in the VDP appliance password by using the following criteria, and then verify the password by retyping it in the Verify password field. This password is the universal configuration password.
  • Click Next. The vCenter Registration page appears.
  • Type in the following fields:
    • vCenter username If the user belongs to a domain account, enter the name by using the “SYSTEM-DOMAIN\admin” format.
  • Click Next to advance to the Create Storage page, which guides you through the storage type selection.

Create a backup job with VMware Data Protection

Backup Jobs

Backup jobs consist of a set of one or more virtual machines that are associated with a backup schedule and specific retention policies. Backup jobs are created and edited on the Backup tab using the Create a new backup job wizard.

Choosing the Virtual Machines

You can specify collections of virtual machines, such as all virtual machines in a datacenter or select individual virtual machines. If an entire resource pool, host, datacenter, or folder is selected, any new virtual machines added to that container are included in subsequent backups. If a single virtual machine is selected, any disk subsequently added to the virtual machine is included in the backup. If a virtual machine is moved from the selected container to another container that was not originally selected, it is no longer part of the backup.

You can manually select a virtual machine to be backed up, which ensures that virtual machine is backed up, even if it is moved.

Specifying the Backup Schedule

On the Schedule page of the Create new backup job wizard (Step 7) of the procedure below, you can specify the time intervals to back up the virtual machines in your backup job. Backups occur as near to the startup of the backup window as possible. The available time intervals are daily, weekly, or monthly.

Setting the Retention Policy

Retention policies for the VDP appliance are set individually per backup job. As each restore point is created from a backup job, it retains the retention policy at the time it was created. If a backup job’s retention policy is modified, the new policy only affects newly-created restore points. Previously-created restore points retain the previous retention policy.

Three options, Forever, for, and until, apply to all the backups of all the virtual machines in the group equally. The fourth option, this Schedule or Custom Retention Schedule, applies only to backups that are internally assigned special Daily, Weekly, Monthly, or Yearly tags.

The Schedule default is 60 days. The Custom Retention default is Never.

The first backup of the day receives a Daily tag. If this backup is also the first backup of the week, the month, and the year, the backup also receives the Weekly, Monthly, and Yearly tags.The time intervals specified by the this Schedule or Custom Retention Schedule options only apply to backups with the internal tags.

Forever

Sets backup job to never expire. All backups for the virtual machines in this backup job are never deleted.

for

Sets a specific number of days, weeks, months, or years for the backup job. All backups for the virtual machines in this backup job are stored until the specified time interval has elapsed from their creation date. For example, if you set a retention policy to 30 days for a backup job, each job that runs has an expiration date of 30 days in the future.

until

Sets a specific expiration date. All backups for the virtual machines in this backup jobare deleted on the date specified in the until field.

this Schedule or Custom Retention Schedule

Sets the retention time intervals for backups that are assigned internal tags of Daily, Weekly, Monthly, or Yearly. Backups can have more than one of these internal tags. The tag with the longest time interval has precedence. For example, if you set backups with a Weekly tag to be retained for 8 weeks, and backups with the Monthly tag to be retained for 1 month, then backups with both the Weekly and Monthly tags would be retained for 8 weeks.

Backup/Restore a virtual machine with VMware Data Protection

Running Existing Backup Jobs Immediately

You can run backup jobs immediately by using one of the following methods:

  • Choosing to backup up a protected virtual machine
  • Choosing to run an existing backup job

Immediately Backing Up a Protected Virtual Machine

  • Select the protected virtual machine you want to immediately back up by using one of the following options:
    • Right-click the virtual machine in an inventory tree and select All VDP Actions > Backup Now. The virtual machine must belong to a backup job for this selection to appear.
    • Click the virtual machine in an inventory tree, and then click the Actions button. Select All VDP Actions > Backup Now. The virtual machine must belong to a backup job for this selection to appear.
  • Click the virtual machine (on the Reports tab), click the Actions icon, and then select Backup Now. The Backup Now dialog appears.
  • Select the VDP appliance and the backup job, and then click OK. An information dialog appears telling you the backup job has been initiated.
  • Click OK.

VDP starts the backup job.

Immediately Running a Backup Job

  • From the Backup tab in the VDP user interface, click the job you want to run immediately.

Multiple selections are allowed on the Backup tab by using Ctrl- or Shift-click. Hold down the Ctrl key and click multiple, specific backup jobs. Hold down the Shift key and click a range of backup jobs.

  • Click Backup Now. A drop-down selection appears with the following options:
    • Backup all Sources: Backs up all the virtual machines in the backup job.
    • Backup only out of date sources: Backs up only the virtual machines that did not back up successfully the last time the backup job ran.
  • Click the sources you want to back up immediately.
  • Click OK when you see the message that the backup has been requested.

VDP starts the backup job.

The Backup Now option immediately initiates backup jobs if VDP is in the backup window or the maintenance window

Restore Operations

After you back up virtual machines, you can restore the backups to either the original location or an alternate location.

Restore operations are performed on the Restore tab. The Restore tab displays a list of virtual machines that have been backed up by the VDP appliance. By navigating through the list of backups, you can select and restore specific backups. The list shows specific icons for crash-consistent and application-consistent backups.

For icon related information, see the legend at the bottom left of the page. Before you select a backup to restore, note the crash-consistent backups and the expiration date of the backup.

Detection of the application-consistent backups applies only to the Windows clients. The application-consistent backups on the Linux clients appear with the Consistency level not applicable icon.

The information displayed on the Restore tab eventually becomes out-of-date. To see the most up-to-date information about the backups that are available for restore, click Refresh.