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Hyper V backup software solutions

Backup Hyper М virtual machines in seconds.

Hyper-V is a Microsoft program for virtualization of servers and operating systems based on a hypervisor for 64-bit systems on computers with AMD-based processors or with Intel virtualization technologies.

Its use allows you to make the most of your hardware resources. Bacula's module for Hyper-V supports Cluster Shared Volumes,  and also offers the following benefits:

Rational use of the computing resources of the physical servers
Centralized administration of servers and virtual machines
Easy administration and efficient management of resources
Tools to prepare and configure new operation environments in production seamlessly
Facilities to allocate resources to virtual machines without affecting services, which allows adjusting the infrastructure to changes in the requirements of organizations
Savings of the operating costs

Hyper V Backup Solutions from Bacula Systems

Because the services that are offered by the Hyper V virtualization platforms are critical for the operation processes, having a reliable Hyper V backup policy is essential to guarantee the availability of the service. Professional IT environments using Hyper V virtual machines need to have the Hyper V backup software being able to manage Hyper V-based data in complete convenience and reliability. Bacula’s Hyper V backup solution delivers Full level Hyper V VM backups using the VSS API. Our plugin is highly scalable, flexible and made for the most demanding enterprise environments. When used with Bacula Enterprise Editions’ Global Endpoint Deduplication technology and the “bothsides” FileSet option, the amount of data transfer and storage use is minimized, often to a great extent. Bacula Enterprise Edition also makes incremental backup of the host computer.

Bacula's Hyper V Backup Software Key Benefits
Full image level Hyper V VM backup
Restores complete Hyper V virtual machine image
Restores disk images
VSS-based snapshots for quiescing VSS-based applications
Hyper V backup includes the server data
Rapid Hyper V virtual machine restores
Compression of the backups of Hyper V virtual machines using Delta
Encryption of backup Hyper V at the storage level, in process of data transmission and during the execution of operations

Supported Versions of Hyper V / OS:

Bacula Enterprise works with the most frequent hypervisor/OS versions. Our Hyper V backup solution works with 2012 R2 and 2008 R2.

Hyper-V Version/OSVM Versions Supported
Windows Server 20081.0
Windows Server 2008 SP12.0
Windows Server 2008 R23.0
Windows Server 20124.0
Windows Server 2012 R24.0
Hyper V Backup Software Functionality
Administration of Hyper V VM backups and restores from a centralized administration console, either through CLI or GUI interface or web interface
Backup of the Hyper V VM without affecting their service and operation
Ease of replication and remote Hyper V backup through the WAN or through the Internet to the cloud
Advanced levels of security and protection while Hyper V backup using EFS

Even greater speed, disk and time savings in our best Hyper V backup solution 

Great gains and savings are nearly always possible using Global Endpoint Deduplication and a variety of additional specialist features including data compression, network bandwidth management and others. Global Endpoint Deduplication is an especially advanced deduplication engine that assesses data at the block level, then writes only new blocks and references Bacula volumes to blocks recorded in Bacula’s Deduplication engine which makes your Hyper V backup software run faster. As well as saving storage extremely effectively, network bandwidth usage benefits greatly, achieved by only sending unknown blocks to the Storage Daemon from the File Daemon while backing up Hyper V VMs.

Hyper V Backup Mechanics

If your Hyper V backup job is properly configured, it should include the Hyper-V server data. At the same time, administrators should double-check the proper creation of all of the VSS snapshots by including at least one directory or even a single file per drive that needs to have its data handled by the plugin.

There’s two main mechanisms when it comes to creating Hyper V VM backups:

  • “Offline”, or “Saved State” (it’s also the default backup process);
  • “Online”, or “Child VM Snapshot”.

“Offline” mechanism is pretty simple – during the PrepareForSnapshot event the target VM is put into a saved state, then all of the relevant volumes have snapshots of them taken, and the last part is the PostSnapshot event that ensures that target VMs are restored to their exact pre-backup state.

“Online” mechanism is a bit more complicated. The main principle behind it is that the child VM is participating in the backup process, as the name suggests. There’s also a few conditions that must be met beforehand:

  • The target child VM should be up and running;
  • There’s no dynamic disks in child VM, only basic ones;
  • Backup Integration Service is present and running within the child VM (it’s called “Hyper-V Volume Shadow Copy Requestor”);
  • The VM’s Snapshot File Location should be the exact same volume that has VM’s VHD files;
  • All of the disks in child VM should be in a format that supports snapshots (NTFS or similar).

Restore Reliability of our Hyper V backup solution

Bacula Enterprise architecture brings maximum reliability to the entire process of restoring Hyper V machines and their data. For example, restoring the VMs is done entirely by the host operating system; the VSS writers in the child VMs are not involved.

A bit more about the restoration process specifics:

  • Files are restored only after all of the VSS writers have gone through the PreRestore event.
  • Each of the restored VHDs has its target location checked, and updated, if it doesn’t match with the one that was specified beforehand.
  • Hyper-V VSS writer is linking every restored VM with the Hyper-V management service. If the restoration location isn’t the default one – a link is created, connecting the intended VM location with the actual one.

At restore, the network configuration is also updated. If the virtual switches that the VM was connected to when it was backed up still exist, new ports are created and connected to the VM. With Bacula Enterprise Edition, it is also possible to restore VSS files directly on disk without using the VSS restore framework. This is done by configuring the Plugin Options in the restore menu.

Single File Restore for Hyper V

If your objective is to restore a number of files from a Hyper-V backup without restoring the entire VM’s contents, you can restore VHD files in a specific directory through the without_vss restore plugin option. Next you’ll be able to mount those files in the system with the Mount-VHD command in Powershell (an example is shown below). You’ll be able to access that VHD image just like any other physical disk after properly mounting it that way.

hyper v backup solutions


To avoid all sorts of operational problems it is advised to restore VHD files on an entirely different system in the first place. It is also worth noting that the original VM would get deleted by Hyper-V during the restore process if the without_vss option wasn’t set properly beforehand.

Further help on Hyper V backup software: