We’re often asked about best practices when moving to a virtualized environment with VMcom backup and recovery appliance. We’ve put together a three-part guide which boils everything down to make it easier.
For this blog series, we will assume you have one or more physical or virtual servers and would like to turn them into a fully-featured VMware vSphere platform. It is a three-stage process. In this second stage you’ll set up vCenter and make your first vSphere cluster.
Stage 3: Backup and Recovery
Estimated time to complete: 60 minutes
8. Downloading and Deploying VMcom Backup Appliance
The cluster is now up and running, but doesn’t really do anything. In order to be able to create backups of your virtual machines, you need to add one more appliance.
Download a recent version of VMcom Backup Appliance from https://vmcom.com/download. It is recommended to use the same email address you used for downloading ESXi Hypervisor and VCSA.
VMcom is distributed as an OVA file, which makes the deployment fairly straightforward. Open your VCSA web interface, right-click your host or cluster and click Deploy OVF Template…
In the Deploy OVF Templatepopup window, click Local fileand select the downloaded VMcom OVA file. Click next.
Select a name and location for your VMcom virtual machine. It is ok to leave the defaults, so simply click next.
On the Select storage tab, change the virtual disk format to Thin Provision. For testing purposes, it’s ok to place the backup appliance on the same datastore as your primary data. For production, having a separate datastore for backups is a must.
On the Select networktab, connect the backup appliance to the same network as ESXi hosts and VCSA. Once again, all of these components work together and it is neither necessary nor recommended to segregate these virtual machines with routers and firewalls.
Lastly, on the Customize template tab, set up networking and the timezone. Click nextand finish.
Wait for the deployment process to complete. In my case, it took a little over six minutes to finish.
9. Configuring VMcom Backup Appliance
VMcom Backup Appliance should now be deployed and VCSA is aware of it, but VMcom does not know about your VMware infrastructure yet.
First, right-click the newly created VMcom virtual machine in the left pane and selectEdit Settings… Expand the second hard disk from the default 1 GB to a value that roughly matches the amount of your data. Hard disk 2 serves as a default backup target in VMcom and you can also add more backup targets later on. While in the settings, make sure that Hard disk 2 Disk mode is set to Independent – Persistent. This setting will exclude the disk from backups in case you order VMcom to backup itself.
Power on the VMcom virtual machine and navigate your web browser to the VMcom IP address or hostname. Approve the EULA and then log in as adminwith the password pleasechangeme.
Upon successful login, you’ll see a Dashboard. Select VMware Infrastructurefrom the left menu and click Add vCenter Server. Enter your VCSA hostname (or IP) and credentials you created in chapter 6. In production, you may wish to create a separate vSphere user for backups, but for testing, it’s ok to use the [email protected]account.
Next, clickBackup Storagein the left menu and turn your virtual Hard Disk 2into a deduplicated backup storage.
Finally, click Backup Jobsand then Create vSphere Job. Give the job a name and a vSphere host to back up from. You should have just one at this point. For this example, I’m just going to back up everything in my new cluster, so I’ll call my job All my VMs.
Click Saveand you’ll see your new backup job in the list. Click the Openbutton and click the little plus sign under Selected objects. You can now browse your VMware infrastructure just like you would in your vSphere client and select objects you want to back up. I’m going to select my entire cluster.
Next, click the little plus sign under Target storageand choose your target storage. You now have just one and VMcom will preselect it for you. So, simply check the selection and click Save.
Lastly, you might want to set a schedule for this job so that it runs automatically every night and you don’t have to worry about it. With the job still open, click Edit scheduleand change the scheduler to run daily. Select a time that suits you, click save and you’re good to go.
And that concludes it. You now have a fully operational vSphere cluster with daily backups scheduled. It’s not highly available – that means that in a case of a server failure, other servers restart failed virtual machines in a matter of seconds. But you can save this for later as there are special storage requirements to be met.
It’s now time to create some virtual machines and test your workload in a virtualized environment. You can easily test for two weeks for free before the evaluation licenses expire. By then, you should know whether you love the features or not.
Where to Buy the Licenses
When you decide to buy the license, use VMware Partner Locator at https://partnerlocator.vmware.com to search for a Solution Provider in your country or region.
As for the backup solution, VMcom can be ordered online at https://vmcom.com/buy/.