SureBackup with physical workloads - and some more gems


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@vNote42 already teased earlier, that we will probably see something alike in V12:

https://community.veeam.com/blogs-and-podcasts-57/what-else-is-new-in-v12-vii-universal-surebackup-job-3073

With V11 already having brought us cross convertibility between agent backups and VM backups for Instant-Recovery, it was quite logical to have this next.

V12 ist in production now, so I couldn’t wait to test this functionality! 😎

 

How to set up?

It’s very easy and straightforward to setup. The only difference here is, that you have to pick your VM from an agent job into the application group for your SureBackup job:

 

I used a small physical Veeam server of my demo environment as en example here.

Pay special attention to the reduction of your memory here. For VM->VM SureBackups this is often overlooked. But physical machines tend to have a lot more RAM that you might not want to allow them to be chopped off from your hypervisor during the testing.

While creating the application group, I noticed two more additions to the SureBackup process that might help a lot in certain situations:

One is, that Veeam Backup for O365 is now a role to be defined. So you might easily test your VBM server if necessary:

 

Another gem is, that we’re now able to disable the Windows firewall of the system to be tested. As the system is being brought up in an isolated environment, Windows tends to put it into another network zone. This would prevent all test from being successful of course.

A tiny new checkbox does the magic here:

 

The rest of the SureBackup job for our agent backup is quite boring during its run: It just works.

Two special details we should take note of though:

  1. The agent backup has to be converted to VM. Something we already know from recovering agent backups as VMs.
  2. The heartbeat fails. I should have disabled the heartbeat check in my application group. The reason is quite obvious: we do not have VMware Tools inside our physical workload and this is exactly what the heartbeat test needs to be successful.

 

Summary

This new feature opens up all physical workload backups - and those VMs that are backup up as agent backups for specific reasons, such as failover clusters - to a SureBackup verification.

Something I was asked for quite often during consulting and training tasks as well.


11 comments

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Thanks for sharing this!

 

I was actually talking on the UK VUG about SureBackup, interestingly I could add an Agent (Managed by VBR) backup job into SureBackup however.

 

I appreciate you calling out the heartbeat test failing, as I was encouraging people that whether for SureBackup, or for DR purposes, if you’re relying on P2V somewhere, get VMware Tools deployed and part of your patching schedules before you need it!

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Awesome info….thanks for sharing!

Userlevel 7
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SureBackup one of the many great features of Veeam!  Thanks for sharing this.

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Thank you for the article :)

 

One is, that Veeam Backup for O365 is now a role to be defined. So you might easily test your VBM server if necessary:

 

You could do that already in v10 and v11. 

 

Best,

Fabian

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Nice post! Thanks for that.

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That's probably a feature many were waiting for. Finally you don't need any workarounds anymore to get agent backups tested. Thanks for sharing @Michael Melter!

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Hi @Michael Melter, not to detract from your awesome article, but hopefully to compliment it. Whereas in the beta stage there were talks that agent backups might’ve needed to be application groups, this isn’t the case in GA v12. This is a SureBackup job that has no application group, just one agent backup, we see here it converts the VM for VMware vSphere (the platform it’s running on).

 

Interestingly, this was a VM running on VMware Workstation so you’d suspect that conversion wouldn’t be necessary, but I believe if it’s an agent the conversion process will run regardless.

 

 

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Hi @MicoolPaul. Thanks for your comments. 

This is a SureBackup job that has no application group, just one agent backup, we see here it converts the VM for VMware vSphere (the platform it’s running on).

 

I actually did not test that. But good to know. I guess it would be just like for a VM based SureBackup job, where you can also link a job and end up testing all VMs in the job. Difference is: workloads go independently and one after the other here. If we have dependencies, we should put them into an application group still.

Interestingly, this was a VM running on VMware Workstation so you’d suspect that conversion wouldn’t be necessary, but I believe if it’s an agent the conversion process will run regardless.

I would have expected a conversion for a workstation VM. Doesn’t  the VMDK format differ a bit (“COW” format with metadata in the VMDK)? Also the virtual hardware. 

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Thank you for the article :)

 

One is, that Veeam Backup for O365 is now a role to be defined. So you might easily test your VBM server if necessary:

 

You could do that already in v10 and v11. 

 

Best,

Fabian

Thanks @Mildur. I must have missed that piece before… V12 made me read dialogs more thoroughly now! 😉

Userlevel 7
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Hi @MicoolPaul. Thanks for your comments. 

This is a SureBackup job that has no application group, just one agent backup, we see here it converts the VM for VMware vSphere (the platform it’s running on).

 

I actually did not test that. But good to know. I guess it would be just like for a VM based SureBackup job, where you can also link a job and end up testing all VMs in the job. Difference is: workloads go independently and one after the other here. If we have dependencies, we should put them into an application group still.

Interestingly, this was a VM running on VMware Workstation so you’d suspect that conversion wouldn’t be necessary, but I believe if it’s an agent the conversion process will run regardless.

I would have expected a conversion for a workstation VM. Doesn’t  the VMDK format differ a bit (“COW” format with metadata in the VMDK)? Also the virtual hardware. 

In this case I set the compatibility in VMware Workstation to a level that aligned with ESXi also, but haven’t dived into how precise the compatibility is. It’s good that Veeam seem to make no assumptions and get it converted anyway to play safe.

 

And 100% agree where we’ve got dependencies they need to be in application group

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Awesome article @Michael Melter , thanks for sharing this. I had forgotten this feature in V12, it gave me some ideas for my infra.

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