Bare-metal recovery from Agent Windows/Linux compatibility


Userlevel 7
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I didn’t see anywhere a discussion about this, so I say to myself: ok, let’s try.


I tried a bare-metal recovery on a laptop I use for testing purposes, an HP 250 last gen laptop. On that I installed a Ubuntu 22.04 and then a copy of Veeam Agent (last version, of course).

Did a backup (not encrypted) on USB drive and then I created a recovery-USB from a patched ISO linux ver with drivers.

After that, I installed Windows 10 21H2 on that notebook, with drivers and Veeam Agent 5.0.3.

This time I didn’t create a backup, but just a USB for bare-metal recovery.

Lastly, I remove every partition on that laptop.

 

What I wanted to test was the possibility of running a bare-metal recovery using a USB created from a different OS than backups.

I expected process to go smoothly, but that’s not the case.

What I got was this error.

 

 

 

Ok, two USB recovery media are different, but Veeam backup isn’t compatible between versions?

(screens are for example, not taken from my test enviroiment)

 

After that, I tried to open .vbk file inside Windows, where Agent’s installed, and got same error.

 

Backup’s files shouldn’t be OS related to be accessed, right?

Why there’s no compatibility between them?

 

I don’t have yet an answer so… Let’s talk!

 

For more info about bare-metal, super interesting links:

https://www.veeam.com/blog/bare-metal-recovery-endpoint.html

https://helpcenter.veeam.com/docs/agentforwindows/userguide/howto_baremetal_recovery.html?ver=50


7 comments

Userlevel 4
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@ddomask just for testing purposes / knowledge.

Yeah, what you say is right, but in a case of disaster recovery with what I use to start a piece of hardware shouldn’t matter. If we think about a backup file, it should be not related to OS.

VBR confirm it works.

I even found this thread on forum 

https://forums.veeam.com/veeam-agent-for-windows-f33/restore-from-encrypted-backup-unsupported-vbm-format-t73026.html

Hey, it’s not a criticism to Veeam, I absolutely love it, but I don’t get why this limitation exists.

But it does matter :) As you see. Backup data isn’t just “dumb” data, there’s a lot of OS specific metadata to tell us how to restore the blocks. That Thread doesn’t really tell me it works tbh, it’s just about the same error message.

 

Instant Recovery works because we process the backup metadata and depending on the OS (and it’s configuration), we do a lot of black magic to make it work ;)

Not taking any of it as a criticism, just trying to get you in the right direction :) So yes, two restore media, because both are doing different things and Windows vs Linux restore have different actions that need to be taken that the recovery environments cannot get.

A unified Recovery Media isn’t a bad idea for sure, but also can introduce a lot of complexity.

Userlevel 7
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So first thoughts:

Ubuntu 22.04 isn’t supported in Veeam Agent for Linux 5.0.2

As for opening the VBK, you mean you tried to access via VBR to perform an instant recovery? Or via Veeam Agent for Windows?


Via Windows Agent doesn’t work.
Via VBR yes :)​​​​​​​

This doesn’t surprise me, as the Veeam Agent for Windows download is currently only 338MB vs a nearly 10GB VBR ISO. Feels like Veeam would’ve gauged how frequently this scenario would be required and decided against it, since the recovery medias are so different, why include the Linux one within Veeam Agent for Windows and vice versa? Plus everything else to support it. When realistically if you’re dealing with some interop between mixed OS’, you’ve probably got a VBR involved protecting & managing it.

 

I also just dug out a tweet from Anton @Gostev from last year, announcing they’d managed to reduce the Veeam Agent for Windows 64-bit MSI down to a tiny 65MB: https://twitter.com/gostev/status/1493625044395769860?s=20&t=s9d5_iXH0D76BzUTdMN6fg

 

 

Userlevel 7
Badge +6

Ubuntu 22.04 isn’t supported in Veeam Agent for Linux 5.0.2

Yes, not supported but works (file restore, bare-metal recovery).

Userlevel 7
Badge +6

So first thoughts:

Ubuntu 22.04 isn’t supported in Veeam Agent for Linux 5.0.2

As for opening the VBK, you mean you tried to access via VBR to perform an instant recovery? Or via Veeam Agent for Windows?


Via Windows Agent doesn’t work.
Via VBR yes :)​​​​​​​

Userlevel 7
Badge +6

@ddomask just for testing purposes / knowledge.

Yeah, what you say is right, but in a case of disaster recovery with what I use to start a piece of hardware shouldn’t matter. If we think about a backup file, it should be not related to OS.

VBR confirm it works.

I even found this thread on forum 

https://forums.veeam.com/veeam-agent-for-windows-f33/restore-from-encrypted-backup-unsupported-vbm-format-t73026.html

Hey, it’s not a criticism to Veeam, I absolutely love it, but I don’t get why this limitation exists.

Userlevel 7
Badge +8

So first thoughts:

 

Ubuntu 22.04 isn’t supported in Veeam Agent for Linux 5.0.2

 

As for opening the VBK, you mean you tried to access via VBR to perform an instant recovery? Or via Veeam Agent for Windows?

Userlevel 4
Badge +2

Hi @marcofabbri ,

 

Do I get it right you made a Windows based Recovery Media and are trying to use it to recovery a Linux backup?

This won’t work; the Windows Recovery Media (WRM) is based on the Windows Recovery Environment, and as is such it doesn’t know what to do with Linux as it’s basically Windows PRE (Pre-recovery environment).

Similarly, Linux backups use a specific linux boot appliance (probably wrong word but close enough) and it expects to have Linux.

As far as I know it’s not a cross-recovery boot loader, so you should just from the Veeam Server make a linux recovery media and you’ll be good to go.

Is the goal just to reduce the number of Recovery Media to maintain?

 

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