Tag Archives: Veeam

Office 365 Backups and the Opportunity that Exists for Service Providers

In recent weeks i’ve become reacquainted with an old friend…There was a time where eighty to ninety percent of my day job was working in and around Exchange Server. If I had started this blog in 2005 it would have been dominated with posts around the Hosting of Exchange Server and probably be named Exchange is Life!. I take pride in my Hosted Exchange Org and User creation scripts that I created before Hosting Control Panels where even a thing.

Over the last five or six years my interest in Exchange diminished due to moving roles and also due to some lingering ill feelings about the way in which Microsoft treated their initial Hosting partners as they started what would become, Office 365 back in the late 2000’s. That said I have remained aware of the Exchange landscape and while there is still a lot of on-premises Exchange instances and still a number of decent Hosted Exchange providers out there, there is no stopping Office 365’s growth.

I even jumped on the bandwagon by moving my personal SliemaLabs domain over to an Office 365 Exchange subscription late last year. That domain initially lived on an Exchange Server I ran from home, and then on a Hosted Exchange platform I built and now it’s completed it’s own journey to Office 365.

Having spent a bit of time recently looking at the 1.5 version of our Backup for Microsoft Office 365 product…more specifically the new self service feature that came in Backup & Replication 9.5 Update 3. I’ve had a renewed sense of purpose around the Exchange ecosystem…and that purpose is to ensure that all service providers understand the opportunity that exists around creating offerings for the backing up and availability of Office365 services.

This post follows a post that was released on the Veeam.com blog by Paul Mattes (VP of Global Cloud Group at Veeam) talking about the success of our Backup for Microsoft Office 365 product.

In 2017, more than 25,000 organizations installed our Office 365 backup solution, representing 2.3 million Microsoft Office mailboxes. We saw a staggering 327% quarter-over-quarter growth in Q4 of last year.

And the reasons why all Office 365 users should consider an external backup solution for their data hosted in Microsoft’s SaaS cloud platform.

It’s important to remember that SaaS platform providers, like Microsoft Office 365, take on the responsibility of application uptime and the underlying infrastructure. But it is the customer’s responsibility to manage and protect their vital business data.

This is public cloud in a nutshell…Ultimately the customer has the responsibility to ensure all data is backed up correctly. I won’t go into the technical aspects as to why Office 365 requires additional backups solutions. There a plenty of good online resources, a Gartner report is available here Microsoft’s has an offical page on High Availability and Business Continuity guide. Doing research into the nature of SaaS you understand the need for third party backup solutions.

The Office 365 Opportunity:

From a service provider point of view there is an opportunity to tap into the 85 million user Exchange Online market and offer availability services for organisations using Office 365. This is a multi-billion dollar market that exists today and services based around backup and management of that data are central to tapping into that opportunity. Just breaking down the ANZ market alone, there are approximately 4.25 million Office 365 users of which if only 5% was captured would represent a combined 3.5 to 5 million dollar market.

For those VCSPs who have already deployed Cloud Connect and offering Backup services, the ground work has been laid with regards to having the infrastructure in place to extend that service to offer Veeam Backup for Office 365 aaS.

The billable components of this service are licenses and then storage costs. Managed Service Providers can also build in management fees that offer an end to end solution for their clients. Where it should be seen to be extremely attractive for VCPSs is in the potential for the storage revenue to be significant early and then continue to grow as tenant’s backup and retain more and more mailboxes in addition to new tenants coming on board.

We have given our VCSPs the tools to be able to build a strong service around Office 365 backups with the 1.5 release of Backup for Office 365 focused on scalability and automation. Add to that the self service feature that came in Update 3 for Backup & Replication and there is no excuse to not start thinking about offering this as a service.

Looking beyond Exchange Online, version 2 of Backup for Office 365 will include the ability to backup SharePoint and OneDrive as well…have a think about what that represents in terms of revenue opportunities just on the potential for storage consumption alone.

Again, I want to emphasis that this market is huge and what’s on offer in terms of potential revenue can’t be ignored. I’m excited about the next 12-18 months in being able to see our VCSPs grab this opportunity…don’t let it slip!

References:

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/exchange-online-high-availability-and-business-continuity.aspx

The Limitations of Microsoft Office 365 Backup

 

 

9.5 Update 3 Officially Compatible with VMware Cloud on AWS

At VMworld 2017 Veeam was announced as one of only two foundation Data Protection partners for VMware Cloud on AWS. This functionality was dependant on the release of Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 Update 3 that contained the enhancements for it to interoperate with VMware Cloud on AWS locked down vCenter.

This week 9.5 Update has been listed on the VMware Compatibility Guide (VCG) for Data Protection.

In terms of what you now get in Update 3, there is little noticeable difference in the process to configure and run backup or replication jobs from within Veeam Backup & Replication. The VMware Cloud on AWS resources are treated as just another cluster so most actions and features of the core platform work as if the cloud based cluster was local or otherwise.

There were a few limitations that VMware have placed on the solution which means that our NFS based features such as Instant VM Recovery, Virtual Labs or Surebackups won’t work at this stage. HotAdd mode is the only supported backup transport mode (which isn’t a bad thing as it’s my preferred transport mode) which talks to a new VDDK library that is part of the VMC platform.

With that the following features work out of the box:

  • Backup with In Guest Processing
  • Restores to original or new locations
  • Backup Copy Jobs
  • Replication
  • Cloud Connect Backup
  • Windows File Level Recovery
  • Veeam Explorers

I’m really excited where VMware takes VMware Cloud on AWS and I see a lot of opportunities for the platform to be used as an availability resource. Over the next couple of months I’m hoping to be able to dive a little more into how Veeam can offer both backup and replication solutions for VMware Cloud on AWS.

Resources:

https://www.vmware.com/resources/compatibility/search.php?deviceCategory=vsanps&details=1&partner=594&releases=282&page=1&display_interval=10&sortColumn=Partner&sortOrder=Asc

A Year of Travel – A Few Interesting Stats

This year was my first full year working for Veeam and my role being global, requires me to travel to locations and events where my team presents content and engages with technical and social communities. We also travel to various Veeam related training and enablement events throughout the year as well as customer and partner meetings where and when required. I had set expectations about what a travel year might look like and in truth I found 2017 to be just right in terms of time away working verses being at home working and also being with the family.

Without doubt the highlight of the year was VeeamON in New Orleans where I was able to participate in an industry event working for the vendor holding the show. Other highlights include presenting at VMworld, attending and presenting at a number of VeeamON and VMware Forums, Tours and user groups around APJ, attending EMEA SE Training in Warsaw and my first visit to Russia to meet with our R&D teams. I started the year with Sales Kick off in Orlando and finished with a team meeting in Boston, Thanksgiving in Phoenix and finally AWS re:Invent in Las Vegas.

So…what does all that travel look like?

Being homed in Perth, Western Australia I’m pretty much in the most isolated capital city in the world, meaning any flight is going to be significant. Even just flying to Sydney takes four to five hours…the same time it takes me to fly to Singapore. I love looking at stats and there are a number of tools out there that manage flight info. I use Tripit to keep track of all my tips, and there are now a number of sites that let you import your flight data to analyis.

With that my raw stats for 2017 are shown below:

Trips 17
Days 104
Distance 262,769 km
Cities 24
Countries 9

Upon reflection I probably didn’t travel as much as I thought I would with my away from home percentage being a relatively modest 28.4% of which I know isn’t high compared with others in my team, others at Veeam and certainly others in the industry. Where I did come out on top was in the distance travelled. Almost 263 thousand kilometers…a byproduct of living in Perth.

Of those 104 days away apparently I spent nearly 15 days in the air which is amazing when you think about it. When I travel to the USA I do take some of the longest routes in the world however my longest flight was not SYD-DFW but LAX-MEL.

I took 67 total flights across 21 airports and 6 airlines.

Interestingly I made it 70% to the moon in terms of distance, flew mostly on a Saturday which surprised me and my average flight time to 5:12 hours.

In terms of delays I think I got off pretty lightly with only 6 hours of departure delays and 4 hours of arrival delays…though I did have an interesting experience on my way back from VeeamON that technically delayed me a whole day…the less talked about that the better 🙂

Those that know me know that I am a bit of a plane snob and though I don’t have the plane nerd knowledge of Rick Vanover, I do like my planes big, new, shiny and modern. I still can’t go past the A380 and A330 but of late, the more I travel to Singapore the more I appreciate the more modern 737s.

So that’s a quick round up of what my year looked like living the life of a Global Evangelist/Technologist at Veeam. In one years time i’ll be very interested to see how 2018 shaped up compared to 2017!

References:

https://www.jetitup.com/MyStats/See/?name=Anthony~Spiteri

All stats were generated by Jet It Up and flight info was imported from Tripit.

Quick Look: Installing Veeam Powered Network Direct from a Linux Repo

Last week, Veeam Powered Network (Veeam PN) was released to GA. As a quick reminder Veeam PN allows administrators to create, configure and connect site-to-site or point-to-site VPN tunnels easily through an intuitive and simple UI all within a couple of clicks. Previously during the RC period there where two options for deployment…The appliance was available through the Azure Marketplace or downloadable from the veeam.com website and deployable on-premises from an OVA.

With the release of the GA a third option is available which is installation direct from the Veeam Linux Repositories. This gives users the option to deploy their own Ubuntu Linux server and install the packages required through the Advanced Package Tool (APT). This is also the mechanism that works in the background to update Veeam PN through the UI via the Check for Updates button under Settings.

The requirements for installation are as follows:

  • Ubuntu 16.04 and above
  • 1 vCPU (Minimum)
  • 1 GB vRAM (Minimum)
  • 16 GB of Hard Drive space
  • External Network Connectivity

The Azure Marketplace Image and the OVA Appliance have been updated to GA build 1.0.0.380.

Installation Steps:

To install Veeam PN and it’s supporting modules you need to first add the Veeam Linux Repository to you system and configure APT to be on the lookout for the Veeam PN packages. To do this you need to download and add the Veeam Software Repository Key, add Veeam PN to the list of sources in APT and run an APT update.

Once done you need to install two packages via the apt-get install command. As shown below there is the Server and UI component installed. This will pick up a significant list of dependancies that need to be installed as well.

There is a lot that is deployed and configured as it goes through the package installs and you may be prompted along the way to ask to overwrite the existing iptables rules if any existing on the system prior to install. Once completed you should be able to go to the Veeam PN web portal and perform the initial configuration.

The username to use at login will be the root user of your system.

So that’s it…an extremely easy and quick way to deploy Veeam Power Network without having to download the OVA or deploy through the Azure Marketplace.

As a reminder, i’ve blogged about the three different use cases for Veeam PN:

Clink on the links to visit the blog posts that go through each scenario and download or deploy the GA from the Veeam.com website or Azure Marketplace and now directly from the Veeam Linux Repos and give it a try. Again, it’s free, simple, powerful and a great way to connect or extend networks securely with minimal fuss.

Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 Update 3 – Top New Features

Earlier today we at Veeam released Update 3 for Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 (Build 9.5.0.1536) and with it comes a couple of very anticipated new features. Back in May at VeeamOn we announced a number of new features that where scheduled to be released as part of the next version of Backup & Replication (v10), however things have worked out such that we have brought some of those features forward into Update 3 for v9.5. It’s a credit to the Product Managers, QA and R&D that we have been able to deliver these ground breaking features into a Update release.

Together with Update 3 we have also released:

Focusing back on Backup & Replication…Update 3 is a fairly significant update and contains a number of enhancements and fixes with a lot of those enhancements aimed at improving the scalability of our flagship Backup & Replication platform. The biggest and most anticipated feature is the built in Agent Management meaning Backup & Replication can now manage virtual, physical and cloud-based workloads from a single console. Further to that we have added offical support for VMware Cloud on AWS and vCloud Director 9.0.

Below are the major features included in Update 3.

  • Built-in agent management
  • Insider protection for Veeam Cloud Connect
  • Data location tagging
  • IBM Spectrum Virtualize Integration
  • Universal Storage Integration API

Other notable enhancements and feature updates include supportability for 4TB virtual disks when using Direct Restore to Azure and support for SQL Server 2017 with that also now a possible database target for the platform. There is extended support for the latest Windows 10, Server and Hyper-V releases. In terms of storage apart from the addition of IBM support and the Universal Storage Integration API we added enhancements to Cisco HyperFlex, Data Domain and HPE 3PAR StoreServ as well as support for Direct NFS to be more efficient with HCI platforms like Nutanix.

For the agents you can now do backup mapping for seeding and restore from backup copies. For VMware there is a significant fix for a condition which reset CBT data for all disks belonging to a VM rather than just the resized disk and there is support again for non encrypted NDB transport.

There is also a lot of new features and enhancements for VCPS and i’ll put together a couple of seperate posts over the next few days outlining those feature…though I did touch on a few of them in the Update 3 RTM post here.

A quick note also for VCSPs that you can upgrade from the RTM to the GA build without issue.

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

References:

https://www.veeam.com/kb2353

 

VCSP Important Notice: 9.5 Update 3 RTM Is Out…With Insider Protection and more!

Earlier this week, Veeam made available to our VCSP partners the RTM of Update 3 for Backup & Replication 9.5 (Build 9.5.0.1335). Update 3 is what we term a breaking update, meaning that if a Cloud Connect tenant upgrades from any previous 9.5 version before VCSPs this will break backup or replication functionality. With that in mind the RTM has been made available for our VCSP partners to ensure it is installed and tested before being pushed out to production before the GA release. Veeam Backup & Replication releases from 8.0 (build 8.0.0.2084) can write backups to a cloud repository on 9.5 Update 3, and any release from 9.0 (build 9.0.0.902) can write replicas to a cloud host on 9.5 Update 3.

Update 3 is a very significant update and contains a number of enhancements and known issue fixes with a lot of those enhancements aimed at improving the scalability of the Backup & Replication platform that VCSPs can take advantage of. One important note is around new licensing for Cloud Connect Backup that all VCSPs should be aware of. There is a detailed post in the VCSP Forums and there will be emails sent to explains the changes.

We have also pushed out a number new features for our VCSPs with two of them highlighted below. One of which is the new Insider Protection feature or Recycle Bin for Cloud Connect Backups and the other is the a long awaited ask from our providers in the Maintenance Mode for Cloud Connect.

  • Insider protection: Option to hold backups deleted from a tenant’s cloud repository in a “recycle bin” folder for a designated period of time. For more information, see this post in the VCSP forum.

    • Maintenance Mode: Allows you to temporarily stop tenant backup and backup copy tasks from writing to cloud repositories. Already running tenant tasks are allowed to finish, but new tenant tasks fail with an error message indicating that the service provider infrastructure is undergoing maintenance. This is supported at the tenant end in 9.5 Update 3 GA, Agent for Windows 2.1 and Agent for Linux 2.0.

There has also been a lot of work to improve and enhance scalability in the Backup & Replication Cloud Connect functionality to accomodate the increasing usage of Veeam Agent for Windows of which there is a new version (2.1) coming in early December and prepare for the release of Veeam Agent for Linux (2.0) that will include support for backups to be sent to Cloud Connect repositories. For the recently released Veeam Availability Console, Update 3 is 100% compatible with the 2.0 GA (Build 2.0.1.1319) released last week and is good from Update 2 or later.

Conclusion:

Once again, Update 3 for Veeam Backup & Replication is an important update to apply for VCSPs running Cloud Connect services in preparation for the GA release which will happen in about two weeks. Once released I’ll link to the VeeamKB for a detailed look at the fixes but for the moment, if you have the ability to download the update do so and have it applied to your instances. For more info in the RTM, head to the VCSP Forum post here.

Veeam Availability Console – What’s in it for Service Providers

Today, the Veeam Availability Console was made GA meaning that after a long wait our new multi-tenant service provider management and reporting platform is available for download. VAC is an significant evolution of the Managed Backup Portal that was released in 2016 and acts as a central portal for Veeam Cloud and Service Providers to remotely manage and monitor customer instances of Backup & Replication including the ability to monitor Cloud Connect Backup and Replication jobs and failover plans. It also is the central mechanism to deploy and manage (Windows) agents which includes the ability to install agents onto on-premises machines and apply policies to those agents once deployed.

Veeam® Availability Console is a cloud-enabled platform built specifically for Veeam Cloud & Service Provider (VCSP) partners and resellers looking to launch a managed services business. Through its ability to remotely provision, manage and monitor virtual, physical and cloud-based Veeam environments without any special connectivity requirements, Veeam Availability Console enables you to increase revenue and add value to all your customers.

  • Simplified Setup – now allowing on-premises installs
  • Remote backup agent management and monitoring
  • Remote discovery and deployment with enhanced support for Veeam Cloud Connect
  • Web-based multi-tenant portal
  • Native billing and RESTful APIs
Cloud Connect Requirement:

The Cloud Connect Gateway is central to how the Veeam Availability Console operates and all management traffic is tunneled through the Cloud Connect Gateways. If you are a current VCSP offering Cloud Connect services then you already have the infrastructure in place to facilitate VAC, however if you are not a Cloud Connect partner you can apply for a special key that will enable you to deploy a Gateway without the need for specific Cloud Connect backup or Replication licenses.

For a deeper look at VAC architecture for Service Providers, head to Luca Dell’Oca’s VAC series here.

Designed for Service Providers First:

The Veeam Availability Console was designed from the ground up for Service Providers (there is an Enterprise version available) and contains a rich set of APIs that can be consumed for automation and provisioning purposes. There is also a three tier multi-tenancy design allowing VCSPs the ability to create restricted accounts for their partners or resellers from which in turn, another level of accounts can be created for their customers or tenants.

The multi-tenancy aspect means that partners/resellers and customers can control their own backups centrally from the console. Reporting on backup jobs can be viewed and a mechanism to control those jobs is available allowing retry/stop/start tasks against those jobs. If that’s not enough control or more troubleshooting on failed jobs needs to be done the Remote Console feature introduced in Veeam Backup & Replication Update 2 has been integrated into the console.

VAC also includes built in reporting and billing functionality which enables VCSPs who don’t have the capability for automated reporting and billing to offer that to their customers. The reporting can be accessed via the API meaning that if an existing billing engine is being used there is the possibility to have that interface with VAC to pull out key data points.

The Service Provider Opportunity:

Over the past year I’ve talked a lot about the opportunity that exists for Veeam’s Cloud and Service Providers to take advantage of the opportunity that exists with Veeam’s Agents to capture backups for workloads that previously were out of reach. VAC is central to this and opens up the ability to backup instances that live on-premises (physical or virtual) or in any public cloud hyper-scaler or otherwise.

If you are a reseller looking to cash in on the growing data availability market then you should be looking at how VAC can help you get started by leveraging the features mentioned above . Secondly, if you a reseller and not running Cloud Connect Backup or Replication then the time is right to start looking at getting Cloud Connect deployed and start generating revenue around backup and replication services.

For those existing VCSPs that are offering Cloud Connect services, adding VAC into the mix will allow you to take advantage of the agent opportunity that exists as shown above while also adding value to your existing Managed Backup and Cloud Connect services.

References and Product Guides:

https://www.veeam.com/vac_2_0_release_notes_rn.pdf

https://helpcenter.veeam.com/docs/vac/deployment/about.html?ver=20

https://www.veeam.com/availability-console-service-providers-faq.html

https://www.veeam.com/vac_2_0_whats_new_wn.pdf

Awarded vExpert Cloud – A New vExpert Sub Program

Last week Corey Romero announced the inaugural members of the vExpert Cloud sub-program. This is the third vExpert sub-program following the vSAN and NSX programs announced last year. There are 135 initial vExpert Cloud members who have been awarded the title. As it so happens I am now a member of all three which reflects on the focus I’ve had and still have around VMware’s cloud, storage and networking products leading up to and after my move to Veeam last year.

Even with my move, that hasn’t stopped me working around these VMware vertices as Veeam works closely with VMware to offer supportability and integration with vCloud Director as well as being certified with vSAN for data protection. And more recently as it pertains specifically to the vExpert Cloud program, we are going to be supporting vCloud
Director in v10 of Backup & Replication for Cloud Connect Replication and also at VMworld 2017 we where announced as a launch partner for data protection for VMware Cloud on AWS.

For those wondering what does it take to be a part of the vExpert Cloud program:

We are looking for vExperts who are evangelizing VMware Cloud and delivering on the principles of the multi-cloud world being the new normal. Specificity we are looking for community activities which follow the same format as the vExpert program (blogs, books, videos, public speaking, VMUG Leadership, conference sessions speaking and so on).

And in terms of the focus of the vExpert Cloud program:

The program is focused on VMware Cloud influencer activities, VMware, AWS and other cloud environments and use of the products and services in way that delivers the VMware Cloud reality of consistency across multi-cloud environments.

Again, thank you to Corey and team for the award and I look forward to continuing to spread the community messaging around Cloud, NSX and vSAN.

Veeam Powered Network: Quick Video Walkthrough

Earlier this year at VeeamON we announced Veeam PN as part of the Restore to Microsoft Azure product. While Veeam PN is still in RC, I’ve written a series of posts around how Veeam PN can be used for a number of different use cases (See list below) and at VMworld 2017 I delivered a vBrownBag TechTalk on Veeam Powered Network which goes through an overview of what it is, how it works and an example of how easy it is to setup.

As mentioned, i’ve blogged about the three different use cases talked about in the presentation:

Clink on the links to visit the blog posts that go through each scenario and watch out for news around the GA of Veeam Powered Network happening shortly. Until then, download or deploy the RC from the Veeam.com website or Azure Marketplace and give it a try. Again, it’s free, simple, powerful and a great way to connect or extend networks securely with minimal fuss.

VMworld 2017 Veeam Recap – Breakouts, TechTalks and Final Thoughts.

Both VMworld US and Europe have come and gone in quick time this year and while I only attended VMworld US my team and other Veeam staff featured at Europe and both event’s where extremely successful for Veeam. I felt VMware had a good couple of shows, the gap between the two was too short I felt and meant that the Europe event was at best, a continuation of the US event in terms of vision and announcements. That said, VMware have made VMworld great again and there was an unmistakable buzz around the conference that I have not felt since at least the 2014 event.

I’d encourage everyone to check out the Top 40 Session YouTube playlist here and make sure you have caught up with all the VMworld announcements. For those interested in what Veeam had going on, i’ve listed the Breakout Sessions and vBrownBag TechTalks below.

Breakout Session Replays:

Across both VMworld’s we had four breakout sessions which where all well received and had great attendance. If you have a MyVMworld account, you can view the session replays below by clicking following the link and clicking on the session playback icon which will take you to a protected YouTube video.

Note: The European session replays haven’t been posted yet, but should be put up this week.

vBrownBag TechTalks:

Veeam was a main sponsor for of the vBrownBag TechTalks across both VMworld’s and the feedback to the format this year was brilliant. For the first time, the talks where listed in the content catalog meaning there was a lot more exposure and attendance was up significantly on previous years. Below are the Veeam related TechTalks covering both events featuring Michael Cade, Clint Wyckoff, Michael White from Veeam, some of our Vangaurd’s and also David Hill from VMware.

Full list here:

Final Thoughts and Wrap Up:

Both VMworld’s from a Veeam point of view where extremely successful with great sessions attendance and more importantly lots of traffic being driving through our booths. There was great energy in the US and I have been told that that continued in Europe. Both parties went off and a great time was had by all that attended.

The team at Veeam is looking forward to building on the momentum gained at VMworld as we look to release v10 of Backup & Replication, Veeam Availability Console and Orchestrator, updated Windows and Linux Agents, Availability for AWS and Veeam Powered Network.

VMworld Top Session YouTube Playlist:

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