One of the cooler features to come out as part of the Veeam Service Provider Console (Console or VSPC) v5 is the ability to remotely patch Veeam Backup & Replication severs under management. While remote patching applications are fairly common for Managed Service Providers, the R&D and Product Management teams behind Console decided to build upon the remote license management feature of v4 and take it a step further. Essentially, with this functionally any VBR server under management can be patched or have a hot-fix applied through the Remote Patch mechanism. Applying patches on individual backup servers on remote client infrastructure can take a lot of time and effort. To streamline this process, you can apply patches to one, or a group of Veeam Backup & Replication servers managed through Console.
As with everything we do in communicate with remote sites with Console, we leverage Veeam Cloud Connect as the underlying transport channel. This allows bi-directional communication between the remote sites and the Console that is being hosted in the Service Provider clouds. When you obtain Veeam Software patches aimed to fix known issues in the Veeam Backup & Replication software this is a way to manage the deployment of those patches. A patch is a hot-fix or bugfix that does not change product major or minor version.
The procedure of applying patches to Veeam Backup & Replication servers is performed with the help of a master agent. The master agent obtains a patch file provided by the Administrator Portal user, uploads this file to client computers within the patching scope, and initiates the patching process on these computers. For security reasons, only files obtained from Veeam Customer Technical Support or downloaded from Veeam website can be used for patching.
There isn’t much involved to take advantage of this feature and it is very simple to use. From the Discovery Menu, head to the Discovered Backup Servers tab. here you will see a list relative to your current permissions, roles or views. From the Server Actions drop down, select Patch Backup Server.
The next step is to select the patch or hot-fix files. In this example below, I am actually patching a remote v11 GA VBR server to the latest Cumulative Patch release. This is a pretty good use case for this feature alone.
Once the Upload button is pressed, Console will upload the patch file, through Cloud Connect and to a staging area on the remote VBR servers. Once done, it will execute a remote, silent install of the patch. Once complete it will ask you to reboot the remote computer to complete the patch install. This functionality has been in Console for a while now, and can be done from the same Server Action dropdown.
As mentioned, the example above is a brilliant application of this new feature in Console v5. Just imagine having hundreds of VBR servers under management. This allows the flexibility to deploy the CU from a central location in a controlled way. For hot-fixes, this also allows for the rapid deployment of the hot-fix to ensure any VBR is patched and bug free in quick time.