Demystifying Veeam’s Backup Copy Feature – Part II, Short-Term Retention


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If you missed the first part of this 3-part series, you can read it here.

 

In this post, I’ll be discussing the Backup Copy Job Short-Term Retention Policy. The main purpose of Short-Term Retention is to create additional copies of your Backups, whether on- or off-site, meeting at least the “3” part of the “3-2-1 Rule”.


In previous Veeam versions, the Short-Term Retention Policy was referred to as the Simple Retention Policy. As with previous Veeam versions, the Short-Term Policy will retain using the Forever Forward Incremental method to copy the data to target, as long as Long-Term Retention (GFS) Policy is not enabled. What this means is this: during the initial run of the Copy job, a Full backup restore point (.vbk ) will be created, either 1 file or multiple files. For per-VM, a Full file will be created of every VM copied. If not enabled, one Full is created containing all VM data in a single file. Subsequent Copy Job runs will consist of Incremental restore point files ( .vib ) containing only the changes since the previous job run, again...either 1 .vib or multiple. This will continue until the configured Retention is met.

So for example, if you configure a Copy Job with a Retention of 7 Restore Points (no GFS):

 

  • The first run = Full ( .vbk )
  • The next 6 runs = Increments ( .vib )
     
  • On the 8th day, an Increment is created and after it is copied, the earliest Increment will be merged into the Full and the Full will be “moved up” one day; in this example from Sun > Mon
     

 


Each next job run will continue the process noted in the 2nd screenshot above – the Copy Job will create a new Increment, and the earliest Increment will be merged into the Full and the Full will “move forward” one day, retaining the configured Retention of 7 Restore Points.

And that pretty much covers Simple Retention Policy. Pretty simple (so far), isn’t it? And you may be asking why this series of posts? Well, the answer is Long-Term Retention (GFS) Policy. The Copy Job behavior when enabling GFS Retention is, in my opinion and experience, very confusing. There are a lot of things to be aware of when enabling GFS, some of which I covered in Part I, and some of which I’ll cover in Part III…so stay tuned!

 

As mentioned in my previous post, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to leave comments below.

 

Cheers!


12 comments

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Another great read.  Looking forward to Part 3 next. :sunglasses:

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Thanks Chris….I’m not looking forwad to writing Part III.  :joy:  hahaha

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Ah it can’t be that bad can it? :joy:

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Not too bad anymore, now that I have it (mostly) figured out. But, putting it into comprehensible, easy-to-understand words?...that’s another thing. ;)

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Yeah that always tends to be a thing.  If you need a review or anything just let me know.

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For sure!..thanks Chris!

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Great post again @coolsport00  and as @Chris.Childerhose already mentioned, I’m already looking forward to part 3, the most fun part ;-). As you already mentioned, before V11 very confusing, now I think it’s more clear but you have to know it’s working differently ;-) (the same way as a …. job ??? :-) :-) :-)

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Thank you @Nico Losschaert ! Probably won’t get Pt III posted until over the weekend, or even Monday. I wanna make sure I have it all down accurately. And, depending on the length, I might even have to break that one up into a couple “sub-posts”. But, that is tbd. :)

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@coolsport00 : Great, Thanks !

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Yes sir..you bet! :)

Userlevel 7
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I was asking myself a lot of questions lately about GFS and copy job, thank you so much @coolsport00 . Love the community exchange to share kwowledge and save time ! Waiting to read the next article studiously/

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Thank you @BertrandFR Happy to provide for the community! Part III is up! :)

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