Category Archives: Veeam

Looking Beyond the Hyper-Scaler Clouds – Don’t Forget the Little Guys!

I’ve been on the road over the past couple of weeks presenting to Veeam’s VCSP partners and prospective partners here in Australia and New Zealand on Veeam’s Cloud Business. Apart from the great feedback in response to what Veeam is doing by way of our cloud story I’ve had good conversations around public cloud and infrastructure providers verses the likes of Azure or AWS. Coming from my background working for smaller, but very successful service providers I found it almost astonishing that smaller resellers and MSPs seem to be leveraging the hyper-scale clouds without giving the smaller providers a look in.

On the one hand, I understand why people would choose to look to Azure, AWS and alike to run their client services…while on the other hand I believe that the marketing power of the hyper-scalers has left the capabilities and reputation of smaller providers short changed. You only need to look at last week’s AWS outage and previous Azure outages to understand that no cloud is immune to outages and it’s misjudged to assume that the hyper-scalers offer any better reliability or uptime than the likes of providers in the vCloud Air Network or other IaaS providers out there.

That said, there is no doubt that the scale and brain power that sits behind the hyper-scalers ensures a level of service and reliability that some smaller providers will struggle to match, but as was the case last week…the bigger they are, the harder they fall. The other things that comes with scale is the ability to drive down prices and again, there seems to be a misconception that the hyper-scalers are cheaper than smaller service providers. In fact most of the conversations I had last week as to why Azure or AWS was chosen was down to pricing and kickbacks. Certainly in Azure’s case, Microsoft has thrown a lot into ensuring customers on EAs have enough free service credits to ensure uptake and there are apparently nice sign-up bonuses that they offer to partners.

During that conversation, I asked the reseller why they hadn’t looked at some of the local VCSP/vCAN providers as options for hosting their Veeam infrastructure for clients to backup workloads to. Their response was, that it was never a consideration due to Microsoft being…well…Microsoft. The marketing juggernaut was too strong…the kickbacks too attractive. After talking to him for a few minutes I convinced him to take a look at the local providers who offer, in my opinion more flexible and more diverse service offerings for the use case.

Not surprisingly, in most cases money is the number one factor in a lot of these decisions with service uptime and reliability coming in as an important afterthought…but an afterthought non-the less. I’ve already written about service uptime and reliability in regards to cloud outages before but the main point of this post is to highlight that resellers and MSP’s can make as much money…if not more, with smaller service providers. It’s common now for service providers to offer partner reseller or channel programs that ensure the partner gets decent recurring revenue streams from the services consumed and the more consumed the more you make by way of program level incentives.

I’m not going to do the sums, because there is so much variation in the different programs but those reading who have not considered using smaller providers over the likes of Azure or AWS I would encourage to look through the VCSP Service Provider directory and the vCloud Air Network directory and locate local providers. From there, enquire about their partner reseller or channel programs…there is money to be made. Veeam (and VMware with the vCAN) put a lot of trust and effort into our VCSPs and having worked for some of the best and know of a lot of other service provider offerings I can tell you that if you are not looking at them as a viable option for your cloud services then you are not doing yourself justice.

The cloud hyper-scalers are far from the panacea they claim to be…if anything, it’s worthwhile spreading your workloads across multiple clouds to ensure the best availability experience for your clients…however, don’t forget the little guys!

Veeam Vault #5: $200 Million Give Away, VCSP Roadshow Plus Vanguard Blog Updates

Welcome to the fifth edition of the Veeam Vault and the second of 2017. It’s been a busy four or so weeks for me since the last update preparing for a number of event’s and webinar’s happening over the next month all focusing on Veeam’s Cloud Business. In this Veeam Vault I am going to talk about an exceptional new promotion that Veeam is running to help drive increased adoption of Veeam Cloud Connect, talk briefly about the ANZ VCSP Roadshow and post a round up of all Veeam Vanguard blog posts since the last update.

Cloud Connect $200 Million Free Cloud Services:

On Valentines day we made public an amazing promotion that Veeam through it’s partners will be giving away $1000 in free cloud services to all existing veeam customers powered by the Veeam Cloud & Service Provider community.

 

This shows just how serious we are about ensuring our customers get the most out of our availability solutions by activating Cloud Connect Backup and Replication services that are included with all Veeam Backup & Replication licenses. A few weeks in and the program has been well received and I am looking forward to this rolling out across EMEA and ANZ over the next few months. For more information about the promotion and information on Cloud Connect Backup and Cloud Connect Replication have a read of my veeam.com Blog Post here.

ANZ VCSP Roadshow 2017:

Last week in Perth we kicked off the ANZ VCSP Roadshow for 2017…this has become an annual event hosted by Veeam ANZ and aims to encourage growth in the VCSP program by presenting to new or existing VCSP partners around Veeam’s Availability Platform that’s anchored by Cloud Connect technologies. If you are in Sydney, Melbourne, Auckland or Adelaide there is still time to register here.

VeeamOn 2017:

VeeamOn 2017 is fast approaching but Veeam is still giving away certification, tickets, flights and accomodation to this years event in May. Our latest competition is a based around our VMCE certification and if you click on the link below you will be taken to the landing page where you need to take a quiz to enter the competition.

Propel your personal career by joining us in New Orleans for a training experience with cutting edge Veeam instructors and complete your VMCE certification. If you are already a VMCE, attend the brand new VMCE-Advanced: Design & Optimization v1.

Take the quiz to win a fully paid trip by taking this quiz by March 20th.

You can register here or you can:

Veeam Vanguard Blog Post Roundup:

Veeam Vault #4: Product Updates, Agent for Windows Beta Plus Vanguard 2017

Welcome to the fourth edition of my Veeam Vault series and the first for 2017. It’s been a busy first month of 2017 with trips to Orlando where I attended my first Sales Kick Off where I also presented at our SE Training and then a trip to Russia to visit our R&D, Product and QA teams. Covering nearly 42,000KMs and going literally around the world, it was a long but worthwhile trip and has me extremely enthusiastic about the year ahead here at Veeam.

In this Veeam Vault I am going to talk about four new product builds that have been released since the last Veeam Vault and I’ll also talk a little about the Veeam Vanguard program…of which we announced the 2017 members overnight. As usual there will be the roundup of what the Veeam Vanguard’s have posted recently on their blogs but first i’ll talk about the new public BETA that we released on the 26th of January.

Veeam Agent for Windows BETA:

I’m very excited about this product…in fact I’m excited about all of our products that take advantage of Veeam Cloud Connect and VAW is no exception. With the ability to backup physical or virtual Windows endpoints to a Cloud Connect Backup repository the door opens up for a new stream of revenue for VCSPs and in combination with the yet to be released Veeam Availability Console offer a great solution for backing up previously untouchable workloads on physical servers as well as being able to do granular file level backups of any compatible Windows workstation and back them up locally, over a network share, over to a VBR repository or up to a Cloud Connect Repository.

The BETA is available via this registration page, so please download it and try it out and post any feedback in our forums.

Update 1 For VBR, One and Backup for Office 365:

A couple of weeks ago we released Update 1 for Backup & Replication, One and Backup for Office 365. As I wrote in this post focusing on how the latest release offers support for vSphere 6.5 it was more than just a standard update and offers over 300 enhancements and bug fixes that improve on the already strong reliability and scalability of the product. Veeam One also got a significant update and added support for vSphere 6.5 and also including new Hyper-V and reporting enhancements on top of a number of resolved issues. Backup for Office 365 gets a number of enhancements and bug fixes as well and, as with all the Update 1 releases are essential downloads to continue to improve on the already strong product sets.

Veeam Vanguards 2017:

As mentioned in the intro, Rick Vanover sent out new and renewed Vanguard’s their welcome emails overnight and this year we have 62 members at last count and as a former member of the Vanguard’s I can tell you that we, in the Technical Product Marketing team are looking forward to helping the 2017 crop get the most out of the program. I’ve blogged previously about the Vanguard program and now, with it entering it’s third year of operation I can truly say that it’s one of…if not the best vendor advocacy programs in our industry. The people involved on both sides are truly passionate about Veeam and the sense of community is something that I haven’t experienced in any other program. So well done to the 2017 class and hope to catchup with you all throughout the year are VeeamOn and any other event where we may cross paths.

Veeam Vanguard Blog Post Roundup:

VeeamOn 2017:

Lastly a final reminder that the Call for Presentations is still open to those looking to submit a session at the event. This is a great opportunity to share you insights and experiences that you have gained in and around Veeam software solutions and don’t forget that if selected, presenters will receive a complimentary VeeamOn registration pass along with travel and hotel accommodations. Head to the site below to submit an abstract before February 7, 2017.

https://www.veeam.com/veeamon/submit-your-abstract

VCSP Important Notice: 9.5 Update 1 Is Out…With vSphere 6.5 Support!

Last Friday, we at Veeam made available for download Update 1 for Backup & Replication (Build 9.5.0.823), Veeam One (Build 9.5.0.3254) as well as for Backup for Microsoft Office 365 (Build 1.0.0.912). What was slightly unusual about this release for our VCSP partners is that there was no RTM build before GA…this is because Update 1 for Backup & Replication is what we term a non breaking update, meaning that if a Cloud Connect client upgrades from the 9.5 GA (9.5.0.711) to Update 1 (9.5.0.823) this would not break any backup or replication functionality.

Update 1 is a fairly significant update and contains over 300 enhancements and bug fixes with a lot of those enhancements aimed at improving the scalability of the Backup & Replication platform that VCSPs can take advantage of. The biggest and most anticipated (and by far requested) update is for the support of vSphere 6.5…as you can see below there are a number of specific enhancements in this build aimed at 6.5 features:

  • Encrypted VMs Support
  • VMFS6 Support
  • Virtual Hardware Version 13 support
  • NBD Compression
  • New Guest Interaction API Support
  • New VM Tag API Support

Of most importance to me is to point out the fact the clients can now replicate in Virtual Machines with VM Hardware Version 13 meaning that you should get your production replication clusters up to ESXi 6.5 as soon as possible to avoid clients getting errors such as the one below:

This does pose an interesting problem for VCSPs offering Cloud Connect Replication as it represents a situation whereby holding back on vSphere upgrades could mean that clients (who are more likely to have less roadblocks to upgrade) can’t replicate newer VMs created on 6.5 into the VCSPs Replication Cluster. The workaround is to make clients aware that only specific Hardware Versions are supported for replication however it might be expected that providers offering these services are not bound by these limitations. This becomes an architectural/business discussion around separating IaaS vCenter’s from Replication vCenter’s …but that is a topic for another day.

For the moment, regardless of your underlying vSphere versions it’s worth planning the upgrade to Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 Update 1 as soon as possible as it contains a number of enhancements beyond the ones listed above and some minor fixes for Cloud Connect.

For a full list check out the release notes below and download the update here.

References:

https://www.veeam.com/kb2222

 

 

Top Posts 2016

2016 is pretty much done and dusted and it’s been an good year for Virtualization is Life! There was a more modest 70% increase in site visits this year compared to 2015 and a 2600% increase in visits since I began blogging in 2012. In 2016 I managed to produce 124 posts (including this one) which was slightly up on the 110 I produced in 2015 and in doing so passed 300 total blogs since I started here. I was fairly consistent in getting out at least eight blogs per month with June being my most prolific month with sixteen blog posts published.

Looking back through the statistics generate via JetPack, I’ve listed the Top 10 Blog Posts from the last 12 months. This year the opinion pieces seemed to be of interest to my readers and there is still vCloud Director and NSX representation in the top ten with my Veeam articles doing well. Again it was interesting to see that two of the most generic (older posts) and certainly basic posts took out two of the top three spots. It shows that bloggers should not be afraid of blogging around simple topics as there is an audience that will appreciate the content and get value out of the post.

  1. NSX Edge vs vShield Edge: Part 1 – Feature and Performance Matrix
  2. Quick Post: E1000 vs VMXNET3
  3. vSphere 6.0 vCenter Server Appliance: Upgrading from 5.x
  4. ESXi Bugs – VMware Can’t Keep Letting This Happen!
  5. Nutanix Buying PernixData: My Critical Analysis
  6. New NSX License Tier Thoughts and Transformers
  7. CBT Bugs – VMware Can’t Keep Letting This Happen!
  8. Veeam 9 Released: Top New Features
  9. Veeam’s Next Big Thing – Veeam has Arrived!
  10. vCloud Director 8: New Features And A New UI Addition…

I was honoured to have this blog voted #44 in the TopvBlog2016 and even with all the controversy around the voting I still hold that as a significant outcome of which I am very proud and I’d like to thank the readers and supporters of this blog for voting for me! And thanks must also go to my site sponsors who are all listed on the right hand side of this page.

With me moving across to vendor land it’s going to be interesting to see if I can keep up the variety of posts as I “narrow” down my core focus…however I fully intend to keep on pushing this blog by keeping it strong to it’s roots of vCloud Director and core VMware technologies like NSX and vSAN. I have the Home lab and the drive to continue to produce content around the things I am passionate about…and that includes all things hosting and cloud now with a touch of availability 🙂

Stay tuned for an even bigger 2017!

#LongLivevCD

Veeam Vault #3: Two New Product Releases Plus VeeamOn and Vanguard Updates

Welcome to the third edition of my Veeam Vault series. As most of you know I am now working at Veeam as a Technical Evangelist focusing on Veeam’s Service Provider products and working with VCSP’s to help enhance service offering around Veeam’s product portfolio. In this edition I am going to talk about a couple new products that where released since the last Veeam Vault and continue to talk little more around VeeamOn happenings. To finish off I’ll post a roundup of what the Veeam Vanguard team have posted recently on their blogs.

Veeam Agent for Linux:

When this was first announced at VeeamOn 2015 I thought it was an interesting addition to the Veeam product family and with it’s release just over twelve months later I know have a better understanding of the vision for the Veeam Agents and having the ability to backup physical and virtual Linux workloads in guest adds a greater amount of flexibility and options in making workloads on Linux system more available.

Agent for Linux comes in three editions and there will an always free version that has almost all the features of the Workstation and Server editions.

For VCSP’s Veeam Agent for Linux presents an opportunity for using the Veeam Backup & Replication console to now manage Linux backups for customers along with their other Veeam backups extending Veeam’s Backup as a Service capabilities for the entire environment!

For those interested, you can view the datasheet here and download the Free Edition Here:

Veeam Management Pack 8.0:

We also released Update 3 to the Veeam Management Pack for System Center v8. This is a product i’ve not used due to not too much exposure to System Center over the past eight years of my career however I’m told that its a valuable addition to System Center and is one of our most underestimated products…mainly due to it being outside of the core VBR focus. Of major interest to me is that this update adds support for vSphere 6.5 and also has some of the best vSAN health checks going around while also extends support for monitoring Scale out Backup Repositories.

Checkout the Release Notes here and you can download the Free Trial here.

VeeamOn 2016 News Update:

Super Early Bird pricing is still available until the 31st of December meaning that from the 1st of January the cost of a ticket goes from $549 to $699…which is still considered Early Bird pricing. There is also still four days left for you to win airfares and accomodation to attend VeeamOn in 2017 in our Holiday Giveaway…if you are still looking to secure your ticket to New Orleans, click here.

I am really looking forward to the event and Veeam have secured two quality keynote speakers in Mark Russinovich who is the CTO of Microsoft Azure and Sanjay Poonen who is now COO at VMware. Don’t forget if you are a Blogger you can Blog your way to VeeamOn…Once you have a blog written, submit the link here and from there wait to see if you are one of the five monthly winners being announced up to the 31st of March 2017.

Also a reminder that the Call for Presentations is still open to those looking to submit a session at the event. This is a great opportunity to share you insights and experiences that you have gained in and around Veeam software solutions and don’t forget that if selected, presenters will receive a complimentary VeeamOn registration pass along with travel and hotel accommodations. Head to the site below to submit an abstract before February 7, 2017.

https://www.veeam.com/veeamon/submit-your-abstract

Veeam Vanguard Blog Post Roundup:

Before the links to the posts, I want to wish all the existing Vanguards who renominated and those that nominated or where nominated for the 2017 Vanguard Program good luck…hopefully we will have some news towards the end of January on who has made the cut!

References:

https://www.veeam.com/pdf/datasheet/veeam_agent_linux_free_1_0_datasheet_en.pdf
https://www.veeam.com/pdf/datasheet/veeam_agent_linux_1_0_datasheet_en.pdf
https://www.veeam.com/pdf/release_notes/veeam_mp_8_0_release_notes_en.pdf

Veeam 9.5 – What’s in it for Service Providers

Since Backup and Replication 7 Veeam have continued to develop new features in enhancements to support their Cloud and Service Provider community. This started with vCloud Director support…continued with Cloud Connect Backup in v8 and more recently with Cloud Connect Replication in the v9 release. Veeam Backup and Replication 9.5 was released a couple of weeks ago and with it came a bunch of new features and enhancements that VCSPs can take advantage of.

In my initial v9.5 What’s New post I covered off core features and enhancements and without question some of those I talked about will help VCSPs gain enhanced scalability and efficiency in their current availability offerings based on Veeam, weather that be general IaaS and VM backups or if they are offering Cloud Connect Backup and/or Replication. From that first post, I have listed in short some of those features and enhancements that VCSPs will benefit from:

  • Advanced Data Fetcher and Infrastructure Cache
  • Database Optimizations
  • Improved Instance VM recovery
  • Parallel Processing of Full VM Restores
  • Advanced ReFS Support
  • Parallel Processing of Per VM Backups
  • Proxy Affinity
  • Scale Out Repository Temporary Expansion
  • PowerShell and RESTful API Enhancements

Moving on from the core enhancements, without question my favourite new Cloud and Service Provider feature in 9.5 is the introductions of the vCloud Director Self Service Tenant Portal. I’ve blogged about that in preview here, and without going into too much detail in this post, Veeam saw the need to increase efficiency for VCSPs by empowering their vCloud Director tenants with a self service backup and restore portal based on Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager.

vCloud Director Self Service Tenant Portal:

  • Native vCloud Authentication and Integrated Access: Allows tenants to continue to use their existing vCloud Director credentials for the self service portal and restricts them from being able to backup and restore only the VMs belonging to their respective organizations.
  • Enhanced Backup Control: Self service backup allows tenants to maintain better control over their backups by controlling existing jobs and creating new ones. Job setup is simplified so tenants only need to select VMs to perform backups of, as well as select essential parameters such as guest credentials, retention and notifications. Tenants are blocked from accessing advanced settings, such as repository or backup mode selection, which are managed by service providers through job templates
  • Enhanced Restore: Self service restore allows tenants to perform a wide variety of restore options for VMs that Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager currently provides including application items, guest files, full VM and full vApp restores. These restores can now be easily performed in just a few clicks by tenants themselves, improving RTOs and reducing costs for service providers

Just as a reminder this feature required Enterprise Plus to access the vCloud Director self service portal and I will be writing a more in depth blog post on this over the next few weeks. With regards to Cloud Connect, 9.5 has added improvements for both the Cloud Service Providers and their tenants with the biggest enhancement again adding to the scalability of the service by adding parallel processing for both Backup and Replication jobs. We have also extended support for key v9 features such as Per-VM backup chains, Scale Out Backup Repositories and ReFS.

Cloud Connect – Service Provider:

  • Per-VM backup file chains: Cloud repositories can now be backed by backup repositories with the per-VM backup file chains setting enabled to improve scalability and better support for deduplicating storage appliances.
  • Scale-out Backup Repository: Cloud repositories can now be backed by scale-out backup repositories to simplify backup storage management and save costs for service providers.
  • Advanced ReFS Integration: Cloud repositories backed by backup repositories meeting the requirements for Advanced ReFS Integration fully support the corresponding functionality.
  • Improved Diagnostic Logging: Multiple improvements were made to specific areas of tenant job logging where it was possible to do so without exposing a tenant’s confidential information

 Cloud Connect – Tenant:

  • Parallel Processing: Tenants can now backup or replicate multiple VMs and disks in parallel, based on the concurrent task limit set by the service provider, thus improving job performance on fast links. Please note that parallel processing applies to direct transport mode only meaning that WAN accelerators are not supported.
  • Replication From Backup In A Cloud Repository. Tenants can now perform replication from a backup residing in a cloud repository, enabling a new DR option without generating additional network traffic or impacting production VMs.
  • Security enhancements: Veeam Cloud Connect service will now attempt to use more secure TLS 1.2 and TLS 1.1 authentication algorithms when establishing a connection to the service provider. Failover to SSL 3.0 has been disabled for all Veeam Cloud Connect components.
  • Configuration Backup To Cloud Repository: Added support for performing configuration backups to a cloud repository, except for those backed by a scale out repository.

Overall another great update for the VCSPs and their tenants alike and again, if you have Veeam 9 running do yourself a favour and go through the required change controls to upgrade to v9.5…your backups will thank you! 🙂

References:

https://www.veeam.com/veeam_backup_9_5_whats_new_en_wn.pdf

Veeam Vault #1 – VeeamOn CFP and Vanguard Nominations

As most of you know I am now working at Veeam as a Technical Evangelist focusing on Veeam’s Service Provider products and working with VCSP’s to help enhance service offering around Veeam’s product portfolio. Part of that role is creating offical content for online materials and presentations however I still intend to keep this blog pumping and continue to write about all things hosting and cloud…especially when related to the vCloud Air Network.

Today I am writing the first of my Veeam Vault series which I intend to use as my working title for all Veeam related news around anything Veeam related. To kick things off I am going to talk about the VeeamOn Call for Presentations and the 2017 Vanguard nominations.

VeeamOn CFP:

VeeamOn is being held next year in New Orleans during May and the Call for Presentations is now open to those looking to submit a session at the event. This is a great opportunity to share you insights and experiences that you have gained in and around Veeam software solutions. Below are the content area’s for submission of which you must head to the CFP site and submit an abstract.

  • Veeam product usage
  • Availability
  • Virtualization
  • Cloud and storage
  • Enterprise and business topics related to the above areas

Abstract must be 200 to 250 words, complete with title and supporting bullet points. The huge news is that if selected, presenters will receive a complimentary VeeamOn registration pass along with travel and hotel accommodations. If that’s not a great reason to submit a session then I don’t know what is! Head to the site below to submit an abstract before February 7, 2017.

https://www.veeam.com/veeamon/submit-your-abstract

As an added extra, if you have a session you want to co-present with myself on anything Veeam Cloud Connect related, let me know and we can work on a joint submission.

Veeam Vanguard 2017 Nominations:

As a former Vanguard it’s exciting to now be on the other side of the nomination process and I would encourage anyone who has a passion for Veeam and has demonstrated that passion through community engagement and content creation to nominate for the 2017 intake. As I have mentioned before, this is one of the greatest advocacy programs in our industry and there is no doubting the positive impact being part of the Vanguard program brings to members of the group…both on a professional and personal level.

Vanguards receive a number of exclusive program benefits — honestly, too many to list — but among these extensive benefits are a private forum site, elevated access to Veeam Product Management, and private webinars and briefings. We’re continually adapting the program based on feedback from the Vanguards, as well as catering program benefits to innovate the program for this elite group. Additionally, we are planning a great experience for Vanguards at VeeamON 2017, so this will be a great year to participate.

Nominate yourself or someone you know for the Veeam Vanguard award here:

https://go.veeam.com/survey-vanguard-nomination.html

Please note that nominations will be accepted up until Friday the 9th of December 2016 so hurry and nominate yourself or someone you believe is worthy of joining the Vanguard program.

Veeam Vanguard nominations are now open for 2017!

 

Veeam Vault #2: VeeamOn Early Bird plus Blog Competition and Backup for Office 365 GA

As most of you know I am now working at Veeam as a Technical Evangelist focusing on Veeam’s Service Provider products and working with VCSP’s to help enhance service offering around Veeam’s product portfolio. This is the second of my Veeam Vault (renamed thanks to my colleague Michael Cade) series which I intend to use as my working title for all Veeam related news. Today I am going to talk a little more around VeeamOn happenings, our Backup for Office365 GA release and I’ll finish off with a roundup of what the Veeam Vanguard team have posted recently on their blogs.

VeeamOn 2017 Early Bird Discount and Certifications:

VeeamOn is still over six months away but preparations are in full swing within Veeam and during the month of December you have the chance to Register for the event with a Super Early Bird price of $549 that is $150 cheaper than the next Early Bird period in January, and $300 cheaper than the standard conference pass price of $849. In addition to that we are offering a deeply discounted rate of $1699 for the VCME course that will be talking place at the event.

The biggest advantage of attending the official VMCE course at VeeamON 2017 is that it comes at the lowest possible rate. You can purchase conference registration including VMCE training for only $1,699. This certification will fast track you to the necessary level of expertise to correctly deploy, configure and administer Veeam Availability Suite. Even experienced administrators and consultants will find there are many areas of the product that they can further explore and use in their daily operations.

If you know that you are likely to head to VeeamOn, you might as well lock it in early and save some money on registrations…in addition to that, if not already Veeam Certified, think about taking the VCME course at the event.

VeeamOn 2017 Blogger Pass:

If you are a Blogger you can Blog your way to VeeamOn by writing a post about the event that links back to veeamon.com. Once you have a blog written, submit the link here and from there wait to see if you are one of the five monthly winners being announced up to the 31st of March 2017. Submitted blog posts also automatically enters you in the race for the Most Valuable Blogger Award, which gets you a full pass and FREE accommodations at the event.

Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 Released:

This week we released Backup for Office 365, which offers customers the ability to backup Office 365 Exchange mail objects for added recoverability and empowers staff to take control of their email while reducing time and effort to restore email data and protect against possible failures within the Office 365 platform that do happen from time to time. It can also be used as a migration tool between Office 365 and on-premises Exchange systems.

It connects to your Office 365 subscription utilizing the Exchange Web Services (EWS) API. This allows you, as a tenant of Office 365, the ability to store your Exchange mailbox items to an offline repository that utilizes the Jet Blue database format. By utilizing Veeam Explorer for Microsoft Exchange, these backups are able to restore individual items — mailboxes, folders, messages, tasks and contacts — providing flexible recovery options for your end users.

For a deeper look at Veeam Backup for Office 365 head to the Veeam Blog and read Clint Wyckoff‘s post here.

Veeam Vanguard Blog Post Roundup:

Veeam 9.5 Released: Top New Features

Last week Veeam released to GA version 9.5 of our Backup & Replication product. Even though this is a point release it’s a significant release for Veeam and looks to build on the scalability and reliability that came with previous versions, on top of what was delivered in the v9 release. I’ve spent some time going through the What’s New document as well as the Release Notes and I’ve pulled out my top new features across all areas of the platform…Without question I believe that the features and enhancements listed should make existing Veeam customers upgrade at their first opportunity.

Scalability Enhancements:

In general there has been a doubling of I/O performance that can shorten backup windows by up to five times while reducing the load on core virtualisation platform components such as vCenter and storage arrays.

  • Advanced Data Fetcher: This improves backup performance for individual virtual disks while reducing the load on primary storage due to the reduced number of I/O operations required to complete a backup. This is a VMware feature and is used by Backup from Storage Snapshots, Hot Add and Direct NFS modes.
  • VMware vSphere Infrastructure Cache: This maintains an in RAM mirror of vSphere infrastructure hierarchy to accelerate the Building VM list operation when creating or modifying a job. This also removes load from vCenter. The cache is maintained up-to-date with real-time updates via a subscription to vCenter Server infrastructure change events.

Restore Acceleration Technologies:

Being able to recover from disaster quickly and efficiently is an important feature that shouldn’t be underestimated or understated and v9.5 has further improved this.

  • Instant VM Recovery: This has improved performance up to three times specifically around when recovering multiple VMs at once from per-VM backup file chains.
  • Full VM Parallel Processing: This restore restores multiple disks in parallel, similar to the way a backup is performed. This is automatically used for all disk based backup repositories except Data Domain deduplicating storage.

Engine Enhancements:

Version 9.5 includes a wide range of additional enhancements targeted at large environments to maintain efficiency when processing jobs containing thousands of VMs allowing for scalability improvements. Database optimisations have allowed queries to complete faster reducing back-end SQL Server load that improves user interface responsiveness and job performance.

Advanced Resilient File System:

ReFS is now the preferred disk data format for Windows Server 2016. This updated version provides many new capabilities including improvements data integrity, resiliency and availability as well as speed and efficiency.

Advanced ReFS integration coming in Veeam Availability Suite 9.5

  • Fast Clone Technology: This allows for the creation and transformation of synthetic full backup files to happen up to 20x faster for shorter backup windows and a significantly reduced backup storage load. Backup and restore performance can be further improved with automatic storage tiering provided by a Storage Spaces Direct-based backup repository with an SSD tier.
  • Reduced Backup Storage Consumption: Spaceless full backup technology prevents duplication from occurring resulting in raw disk space consumption by a GFS backup archive that rivals deduplicating appliances. By integrating software dedupe and encryption with ReFS capabilities these storage savings remain in play for encrypted backup files which is significant.
  • Backup Archive Integrity: This is addressing silent data corruption by monitoring and proactively reporting data corruption with ReFS data integrity streams, including automated and seamless healing of corrupted backup file data blocks inline during restore or during periodic scans of the ReFS data scrubber by leveraging Storage Spaces mirror and parity sets.

Instant Recovery From Any Backup: 

This is actually quiet huge and will leverage Veeam Agent technologies to extend on Instant VM Recovery by way of Instant Recovery for physical computers. Version 9.5 enables users to perform instant recovery of endpoints and physical servers into a Hyper-V VM and can:

  • Immediately spin up a failed physical server from a backup
  • Run lost devices directly from their last backup

Veeam Cloud Connect enabled VCSPs can manage the disaster recovery of remote offices and tenant locations beyond key servers and services by spinning up backups copied to the Veeam Cloud Connect repositories as Hyper-V VMs.

Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager

  • Scalability Enhancements: The Enterprise Manager engine was heavily optimised for large environments and tested against databases containing one million restore points. Reporting performance, Web UI responsiveness and new backup server registration times were significantly improved for large environments.
  • Improved Self-Service Capabilities: With the addition of a self-service backup and restore portal for vCloud Director the Enterprise Manager web UI was enhanced with new capabilities to perform Quick Backup operations on the VMs tab as well as delete backup jobs, backup files and erase individual VMs content from multi VM backup files.

Additional Enhancements In Brief

  • Proxy affinity: This new backup repository setting allows users to specify backup proxies which are allowed to perform backups to and restores from the chosen repository. (Enterprise Editions)
  • GFS retention enhancement: To reduce the requirements for archive repository disk space, the oldest GFS full backup will now be removed before a new GFS full backup file is sealed and a new synthetic full is created.
  • SOBR Temporary Expansion: You can add a fourth extent even though no more than three extents can be online at the same time with the fourth remaining in maintenance mode. This will help with upgrading SOBR capacity by attaching a larger storage unit, followed by evacuation of backups from the smallest one. (Enterprise Editions)
  • PowerShell: On going enhancements with new commands added to cover all new 9.5 functionality as well as multiple enhancements to existing commands based on user feedback. (http://helpcenter.veeam.com/docs/backup/powershell)

That’s a pretty significant list of the top enhancements as I see it! I haven’t gone into detail around the enhancements for Veeam Cloud Service Providers in this post but I will get a separate post out over the next few days going through the key enhancements for VCSPs.

If you have Veeam 9 running do yourself a favour and go through the required change controls to upgrade to v9.5…your backups will thank you! 🙂

References:

https://www.veeam.com/veeam_backup_9_5_whats_new_en_wn.pdf

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