I am a Veeam Vanguard 2016

I am a Veeam Vanguard 2016

I have the distinct pleasure to share with you that I am a Veeam Vanguard 2016

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I received this news earlier in my mailbox. This means I can add a token to my inaugural member trophy soon.

Personally I have always enjoyed working with the Veeam products, Veeam as a company and the employees. Why? Quality. The fact they truly support their products and they acknowledge they exist because they help customers deal with their needs is what makes it work. When a product works and helps us get the job done I’m not shy about sharing my experiences and opinions to help out others.

That doesn’t mean I, as a customer, am the emperor at Veeam but it does mean I’m valued and they listen to the feedback I have. Be honest, don’t hold back, but never be “vicious” and a good company will welcome what you have to say. The have high standards when it comes to supporting their customers without failing their support engineers. It’s a balance you need to find, and they have found it. It only augmented my opinion of them. They are very professional and I enjoy the interactions I’ve had with their managers, strategists, evangelists and developers.

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Those are the discussions and interactions that are both very educational, interesting and fun to do. So I’m looking for more of that now that I have been renewed as a Veeam Vanguard for 2016!

BitLooker In Veeam Backup and Replication v9

When your backup size is bigger than the amount of disk space used in the virtual machine you might wonder why that is. Well it’s deleted data who’s blocks have not been released for reuse by the OS yet. BitLooker in Veeam Backup and Replication v9 as announced at VeeamOn 2015 offers a solution for this situation. BitLooker analyses the NFTS MFT to identify deleted data. It uses this information to reduce the size of an imaged based backup file and helps reduce bandwidth needed for replication. It just makes sense!

I really like these additions that help out to optimize the consumption of backup storage. Now I immediately wondered f this would make any difference on the recent versions of Hyper-V that support UNMAP. Well, probably not. My take on this is that the Hyper-V virtual Machine is aware of the deleted blocks via UNMAP this way so they will not get backed up. This is one of the examples of the excellent storage optimization capabilities of Hyper-V.

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It’s a great new addition to Veeam Backup & Replication v9. Especially when you’re running legacy hypervisors like like Windows 2 or older, or VMware. When you’ve been rocking Windows Server 212 R2 for the last three years Hyper-V already had your back with truly excellent UNMAP support in the virtual layer.

Updating Hyper-V Integration Services: An error has occurred: One of the update processes returned error code 1603

So you migrate over 200 VMs from a previous version of Hyper-V to Windows Server 2012 R2 fully patched and life looks great, full of possibilities etc. However one thing get’s back to your e-mail inbox consistently: a couple of Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 (x64) and Windows XP SP3 (x86) virtual machines. The VEEAM backups consistently fail. Digging into that the cause is pretty obvious … it tells you where to problem lies.

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Ah they forgot the upgrade the IS components you might conclude. Let’s see if we try an upgrade. Yes they are offered and you run them … looks to be going well too. But then you’re greeted by "An error has occurred: One of the update processes returned error code 1603”.

Darn! Now you can go and do all kinds of stuff to find out what part of the integrations services are messed up as most day to day operations work fine (registry, explore, versions, security settings …) or be smart a leverage the power of PowerShell. It’s easy to find out what is not right via a simple commandlet  Get-VMIntegrationService

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We’ll that’s obvious. So how to fix this. I uninstalled the IS components, rebooted the VM, reinstalled the IS components  … which requires another reboot. While the VM is rebooting you can take a peak at the integration services status with Get-VMIntegrationService

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That’s it, all is well again and backups run just fine. Lessons learned here are that SCOM was completely happy with the bad situation … that isn’t good Smile.

So there’s the solution for you but it’s kind of “omen” like that it happened to three Windows 2003 virtual machines (both x64 and x86). You really need to get off these obsolete operating systems. Staying will never improve things but I guarantee you they will get worse.

See you at a next blog Winking smile

Free VEEAM Endpoint Backup Goes RTM – First Upgrade Experiences!

VEEAM Endpoint backup has gone RTM and that’s great news. I’ve been using it since the beta version with great results. I moved to the release candidate when that became available and now I’m running RTM. The version number of the RTM bits is 1.0.0.1954.

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You can download it here and put it into action straight away!

Quick Tips & Findings

There is no supported upgrade path form the beta release. As a matter of fact the RTM version cannot read the backup files. When trying to upgrade from beta to RTM you’ll be greeted with this message:

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Now that’s OK. You should have been on the RC already and there things are better Smile. Mind you, there’s no way to do an in place upgrade either but it can read the backups made by the RC version!

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With a clean install (green field or after uninstalling the beta or RC version) the installation will kick off.

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Now in the case of or RC backups we tested 2 things:

  • Can we restore the existing backups? Yes we can!

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  • How are the backs made by the RTM version handled in regards to the already present ones. We just reconfigured the backups to the same repository and kicked of a backup. A new backup job folder was created and the backup was made there. So our DBA’s great self service SQL Server backup offloading repository made with the RC candidate is still available for restores while RTM backups to it’s own new folder.

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Well there you go, VEEAM Endpoint Backup just got launched in production. We still have to wait for the production ready update for integration with VEEAM Backup & Replication v8 but that will arrive soon enough. The future looks bright.