Netapp Virtual Storage Console – Virtual Machine Backups

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In this tutorial I will guide you through creating Virtual Machine Backups using Netapp Virtual Storage Console for VMware vCenter. Virtual Storage Console has integrated “Backup and Recovery” of what used to be called Snap Manager for Virtual Infrastructure or SMVI. To use Backup and Recovery you must have a snap restore license along with a flex clone license. In this tutorial I’am using Virtual Storage Console 2.0.1. If you need help installing Virtual Storage Console please click here – Installing Netapp Virtual Storage Console. If you implement this procedure in your production environment please keep in mind you must have enough free space in the volume for snapshots, or be using a snap reserve. I run dedup or ASIS twice a day in 12 hour blocks to keep the growth to a minimum. This method of backing up your Virtual Machines is just so fast compared to conventional methods. For example to backup full consistent images of multiple Virtual Machines takes me no more than 15 seconds.


1. Open vCenter and click on Solutions and Applications – Netapp, this will bring you into the Virtual Storage Console.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

2. Click on Backup, under Backup and Recovery, then click Add at the top right hand corner. This will start the backup wizard. Enter a Name and optional description for the Backup job. You can also initiate a SnapMirror update (of which SnapMirror must be enabled and running for the current volume), Perform VMware consistence snapshots and lastly include datastore with independent disk. Click Next.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

3. Under the Entities Drop down menu you can select a Datacenter object or Datastore. In this guide I have selected a Fiber Channel Datastore called Templates. Within the Templates Datastore I have two Virtual Machines listed under Available Entities. In this backup job I wish to backup both of these, to do so I’ll select both virtual machines and click on the arrow pointing to the right.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

4. As you can see my selected virtual machines are now listed under Selected Entities. Click Next.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

5. If you have created some scripts they will be listed here. Once again just select the scripts you wish to include and click the right arrow to include them. As I don’t have any scripts i’ll just click Next.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

6. Select a schedule of when you want your backups to run. Click Next.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

7. Either use the default vCenter Credentials or type in an alternate username and password to run the backup job. Click Next.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

8. Enter your retention period and type in your source and destination email address(s) along with your SMTP host. Select when you would like the Virtual Storage Console to notify you and optionally click on Send Test email. Click Next.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

9. The job is now complete. A summary screen will be displayed with your settings. If you’re happy with the summary click Finish and your backup job will be scheduled. You can also optionally click Run Job Now.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

10. My backup job is now listed under All Backup Jobs, along with the schedule.

Virtual Storage Console Backups

11. Each time the backup runs a new snapshot is taken on the volume. As your retention period is reached, for example in this tutorial after 5 backups, the oldest snapshot will be deleted. To see a list of snapshots that exist for the volume type “snap list ” within the CLI.

If you have any technical questions about this tutorial or any other tutorials on this site, please open a new thread in the forums and the community will be able to help you out.

Disclaimer:
All the tutorials included on this site are performed in a lab environment to simulate a real world production scenario. As everything is done to provide the most accurate steps to date, we take no responsibility if you implement any of these steps in a production environment.

  • RCranston

    Where exactly is the backup located?  Also, if I backed up a virtual machine, am I able to restore a single windows file from it like I would do with veeam backup?

    • The backups are stored in netapp snapshots. Yes you can restore a single file using Single File Restore or SFR

  • Giacomo Milazzo

    what’s about the SMVI license? I knew that it was needed one SMVI license for each vCenter. Not somebody told me I need one SMVI for each ESX/ESXi host.

  • Whats dose Perform VMware consistence snapshots actually do and is it needed?

    • Hi Paul, it ensures that your virtual machine is in a consistent state. If you do not select this option you will only have a crash consistent backup, meaning it’s the same as just powering off the server and starting it again.