VMWare Data Recovery Manager: Not quite ready for production

22 07 2009

Here is my quick take on data recovery manager for VMWare.

 

PROS:

1.  Deduplication and compression

2.  Runs in a vm, easy to deploy.

3.  Backup window easy to configure…pick a block of time and it runs the backups within the window.

 

CONS:

1.  No tape option or duplicate backup set option.  I realize this is difficult within a vm, but with no offsite option, backup scenarios are limited.

2.  There have been some bug fixes and they were some major glaring ones.  For instance, not deleting old snapshots with 1.00  I’m glad they fixed that issue, but what else is going to show up as more people use it?  It seems to need a few more revisions before I could trust it.

3.  Faulty backup sets…there were quite a few times when the recovery manager would deem a certain backup unfit to be restored from.  Why?  How do I fix it?

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RANT: VMWare Data Recovery Manager

1 06 2009

I just got VMWare Data Recovery Manager all configured. MAJOR GLARING PROBLEM. It only does block change tracking if you are backing up a vm that was created in vSphere 4.0. So for ALL your vms that were created in 3.5 (yeah, that would be all of them), it sends the entire snapshot every time the backup runs. For 4.0 created vms, it will send just the changes every backup. Sure, the data is deduped on the Data Recovery Manager, but ALL that data is still sent over the wire before it gets deduped. Dont they realize that we have other backup procedures in place that could be using network bandwidth during the “backup window”? I realize that this is very similar to using something like a Data Domain box as your backup target, but this is SO CLOSE to being an easy way for a set it and forget it, type vm backup. I dont want to worry about my network bandwidth getting totally hammered during the backup window, thank ya.

Maybe I am way off base here….If all your hosts can “see” the vmfs volume for the target of your backups, do they write directly to the store over their isci nics? Or do the snapshots have to flow “through” the data recovery manager vm? Im thinking its the latter…What part of my network is getting hammered when I hit GO?