Symantec Backup Exec 12.5 & VMWare ESX are a lot easier to use together now, however I’ve had a few questions on the subject of performing ESX backups with BE 12.5 so I thought I’d post up some info here. As always, any questions-feel free to leave a comment..
Backup Exec 12.5 Agent for VMware Virtual Infrastructure (AVVI) brings many of the advantages of VMWare Consolidated Backup (VCB) while removing some of the challenges a script-based approach can give. It integrates with key VMware APIs to ensure that VCB “scripting” or “integration modules” are not required & eliminates separate VCB backups for system-level vs. individual file-level recovery to recover a single file from within a .vmdk file.
Backup Exec 12.5 doesn’t require the installation of an agent onto the VMWare host server; the AVVI licence is activated via the Backup Exec (BE) Media Server and then automatically discovers the ESX infrastructure (through Virtual Center).
The entire guest VM and all it’s components are selected for backup automatically. This includes the .vmdk files, .vmx, log files and .nvram files. The Granular Recovery Technology (GRT) can recover individual files/folders from withing the .vmdk without having run a separate backup of the file/folder.
You can use the AVVI agent to restore files to their original location or alternate locations, including alternate datastores, host ESX Servers, different virtual machine names, and different virtual networks by leveraging VMWare Converter.
The following components are required to support Backup Exec 12.5 AVVI:
• VMware ESX 3.0.2, 3.0.3, 3.5, or later
• VMware Converter 3.0.3 or later
• VMware VCB 1.1, 1.5 or later
• VMware Tools (must be installed on guest virtual machines)
If performing Granular Recovery of a .vmdk from tape, this will require staging the entire file on disk, so make sure there is enough room on the temporary staging location specified in the restore job properties.
More info on the Virtual Agents can be found here.