One of the things I love is how fast we can add storage integrations with the Veeam Universal Storage API. This framework was introduced with Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 Update 3 and has allowed Veeam and our alliance partners to rapidly add new supported storage systems. Fujitsu Storage ETERNUS DX and AF are the newest systems to be supported with a Veeam plug-in.
This plug-in actually exposes many outstanding capabilities, much more than just the Backup from Storage Snapshots that seems to get all of the attention. This particular plug-in offers the following capabilities:
- Veeam Explorer for Storage Snapshots
- Veeam Backup from Storage Snapshots
- On-Demand Sandbox for Storage Snapshots
- Primary Storage Snapshot Orchestration
Let’s review these benefits for this storage plug-in.
Veeam Explorer for Storage Snapshots
This is my favorite capability and it has a powerful set of options in our free Community Edition - and even more in the Enterprise and higher editions. This allows existing storage snapshots to be used for Veeam restores, such as a file-level recovery, a whole VM restore to a new location Application Object Exports (Enterprise and higher editions can restore Applications and Databases to original location) or even an application item. This will read the storage snapshots on the Fujitsu ETERNUS and present them to Veeam for launching the restores, all seamlessly without impacting the operation of primary storage resources. The diagram below shows how you can launch the 7 restore scenarios from a snapshot on the Fujitsu ETERNUS array:
Veeam Backup from Storage Snapshots
This capability that comes from the plug-in will really unleash the power of the storage integration when it comes to performing the backup. The backup from storage snapshots engine will allow the data mover (a Veeam VMware Backup Proxy) to do the heavy-lifting of a backup job from the storage snapshot versus from a conventional VMware vSphere snapshot. I like to say that this integration will allow organizations to take backups or replicas at any time of the day. All of the goodness you would expect is maintained, such as VMware Changed Block Tracking (CBT) and application consistency. This is all transparent with this integration. The diagram below shows the time sequence in relation to the I/O associated with the backup job:
On-Demand Sandbox for Storage Snapshots
Veeam has pioneered the “DataLabs” use case, and when using an integrated storage system like Fujitsu ETERNUS, you are truly unlocking endless opportunities. The On-Demand Sandbox for Storage Snapshots will take a storage snapshot and expose the VMs on it to an isolated virtual lab. This can be used for testing changes to critical applications, testing scripts, testing upgrades, verification of a result from an application and more.
One practical way the On-demand Sandbox for Storage Snapshots can help organizations is by helping avoid changes that don’t go as expected for one of many reasons. Firing up an application in an on-demand sandbox, powered by the Fujitsu ETERNUS DX/AF array, will give you a good sense of the changes. You can answer questions like “How long will it take?” and “What will happen?” But most importantly “Will it work?” This can save time by avoiding cancelled change requests due to not knowing exactly what to expect with some changes.
Primary Storage Snapshot Orchestration
The plug-in for Fujitsu ETERNUS DX/AF storage will also allow you make Veeam jobs that just create snapshots. These jobs will not produce a backup but will produce a storage snapshot that can be used for Veeam Explorer for Storage Snapshots.