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 the hardware resources and also offers the following benefits:
Hyper V Backup Solution 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 Hyper V backup tool 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.
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/OS||VM Versions Supported|
|Windows Server 2008||1.0|
|Windows Server 2008 SP1||2.0|
|Windows Server 2008 R2||3.0|
|Windows Server 2012||4.0|
|Windows Server 2012 R2||4.0|
Even greater speed, disk and time savings of our best Hyper V backup solution with Global Endpoint Deduplication
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 tool 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.
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” 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:
Restore Reliability of our best Hyper V backup solution
Bacula Enterprise Editions 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:
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.
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.
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 backup of Hyper V virtual machines: