Veeam has just released a significant update for its flagship solution Veeam Availability Suite — Veeam Availability Suite 9.5 Update 3 — which brings several of the most requested capabilities. We invited Veeam Vanguards, our influencers and VeeamON Tour Virtual speakers, to share their vision and expertise on how customers can leverage and gain the most out of new Veeam Availability Suite features, Veeam Agents and recently released Veeam Availability Console.
Veeam Vanguard & VMCE
Jorge de la Cruz
vExpert, Veeam Vanguard
vExpert, Swiss-German VMUG Leader, Veeam Vanguard
Veeam has recently extended its Availability beyond virtual to physical and the cloud by adding new Veeam Agents to its product portfolio. What are your impressions and future expectations after using these new solutions?
CG: Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows and Veeam Agent for Linux are tools that back up physical systems such as a workstations, servers or machines in the public cloud. These tools create image-based backups that are stored in .VBK format, the same as in Veeam Backup & Replication. One very interesting thing about Veeam Agents is the ability to monitor the agents via your centralized Veeam Backup & Replication console. You need to upgrade your Veeam Backup Server to Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 Update 2 (version 22.214.171.1248). You will then be able to track your jobs from Veeam Backup & Replication console. But until the last version, you could only monitor the job from Veeam Backup & Replication console, with no option to install agents remotely or execute a job from the console. The NEW Veeam Backup and Replication 9.5 Update 3 release allows you to deploy, manage and monitor your Veeam Agents from a single interface! It’s working with managed agents deployed in a silent mode.
JC: Veeam Agents are a “before and after” for Veeam-protected workloads, since Veeam announced that Veeam Agents plan to protect certain applications that continue to run, its physics have improved significantly. Not only this, but Veeam Agents have made it easy to protect certain workloads that we have in the public cloud, but where we don’t have access to the hypervisor. In my case, Veeam Agent for Linux has been a revolution for clients using Zimbra, a Linux-based corporate mail solution that can now protect the entire server, certain partitions or certain folders.
The future of Veeam Agents lies in being able to manage all of them, while simplifying deployment from Veeam Backup & Replication or Veeam Availability Console.
KW: These new Veeam Agents will help me simplify my backup solutions. Now I’m using Veeam Backup & Replication for my virtual environment and have to use another software to back up my physical servers. With Veeam Agents, everything is backed up through Veeam, all managed throughout a single console. Now, not only my physical servers are managed by Veeam, but I can also reach out to my cloud workloads, install a Veeam Agent there and back up my data from the cloud to my on-premises datacenter. Just in case there is an outage, I’m able to failover from cloud to on-premises, and failback if everything is back up and running again in the cloud, or if there is anything to restore I can do that now.
Built-in agent management is the #1 requested feature added in the latest Veeam Availability Suite 9.5 Update 3. From your experience, how can companies benefit from this functionality, and which of the ongoing challenges can they now address with it?
CG: Companies can benefit from this functionality for their last standalone and physical servers located in a datacenter, or for physical servers located remotely (ROBOs). Then, companies can use Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows to back up their workstations! The feature is very scalable and powerful, and administrators will manage Veeam Agents from a single console. Finally, depending on the context, administrators can use Veeam Agent to back up specific systems, such as isolated systems (remote sites, etc.), or, for example, VMs based on other hypervisors. As a bonus, you can realize off-site backup of branch offices to another site by using the WAN acceleration feature!
JC: Veeam’s built-in agent management is a great functionality that will delight all system administrators, not only because it allows them to manage those physical workloads that remain in all companies from the same Veeam Backup & Replication console, but also because it allows you to go a step further and protect the corporate environment of workstations, mobile laptops, etc.
Being able to launch the agent installation using corporate tools such as Active Directory, CSV or IP allows a granular control when it comes to protecting computers — a good thing to be able to manage everything now from a centralized point.
KW: Most of companies using virtualization are still using physical servers for some services or workloads. Probably, they struggle with having different backup solutions for virtual and physical environments. They are, perhaps, also facing problems with different software renewals or some SLA with the other manufacturer. With the integration of agent management, these companies are now able to consolidate their backup solutions to one: Veeam. It’s one manufacturer and, thus, one support contact for their whole backup solution that they can rely on.
As many companies are now adding cloud to their Availability strategy, they are turning to service-provider offerings, including Veeam-powered IaaS, BaaS and DRaaS. What are the key enhancements that new Veeam Availability Console brings to both service providers and their tenants?
CG: Veeam Availability Console offers all-in-one management and visibility for virtual, physical and cloud-based workloads. For Veeam Cloud Service Providers, Veeam Availability Console streamlines the delivery of Veeam-powered backup and replication services to customers. For a distributed enterprise, it allows you to easily and efficiently manage a distributed environment. You can predefine and customize backup policies, set up granular job configuration and use self-job management. Service providers can manage tenants and sub-tenants.
JC: With Veeam Availability Console, service providers offering services based on Veeam get a modern HTML tool from which they can manage all resources, users and delegated administrators. It also helps with the billing and reporting of resources consumed in a controlled and effective way. Veeam Availability Console incorporates the same corporate tools to deploy agents as Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 Update 3 using Active Directory, CSV or IP range, and it extends it by supporting automation tools such as Chef, Puppet, etc.
For customers who use Veeam Availability Console that a provider offers, you will find a web console that’s very easy to manage, from which to manage your copy jobs, or Cloud Connect, where you can get detailed reports of consumption and reports of their consumption transformed into monthly costs.
All parties win with new Veeam Availability Console. It also incorporates a RestAPI that allows service providers to go much further and extend reports, or monitoring of their customers, thanks to the new and modern API.
KW: It’s all about reducing cost and time spent with managing IT and Availability. Veeam Availability Console provides complete visibility of monitoring and reporting. It’s all managed through a web-based portal and provides you easy ways to deploy the Veeam backup agents to your infrastructure.
How would you estimate the importance of centralized real-time monitoring and reporting for enabling Availability across your entire infrastructure? Which specific management use cases are you addressing with the new features of Veeam ONE 9.5 Update 3?
CG: Veeam Availability Console enables visibility for virtual, physical and cloud-based workloads for service providers and distributed enterprise environments. You can configure predefined alarms, real-time monitoring, predefined backup reports, billing and chargeback reports, and then connect these to your own tool with RESTful APIs. Veeam ONE includes reports to assist with agent management and help identify protected agents and agent backup status, and to identify agents with no backup copy!
Basically, all the above metrics help you to be proactive and to anticipate your needs and potential problems.
Check out my specific use case for a distributed enterprise with a ROBO environment using Veeam Backup & Replication, Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows and WAN Accelerator.
JC: Getting management of my entire environment — virtual, physical and jobs — is fundamental in these days when the digital transformation is advancing at a giant pace.
Veeam can solve this lack of management for all environments by using a web console that allows service providers or customers to see if the copy jobs of their virtual servers have been performed. It also allows them to see or if a new workstation has been added to the Active Directory and the Agent has been automatically deployed and assigned a policy, which starts to protect the machine from the minute one it is added.
Veeam Availability Console with Veeam Backup & Replication and Veeam Cloud Connect is the ultimate architecture to absolutely protect all workloads, no matter what format they are in.
Veeam is the only company on the market that protects all environments in this simple way, allowing for the granular recovery of each protected element.
KW: Monitoring and reporting is very important. I don’t have the time to check each server and storage system by myself every day, just to make sure that everything is running fine and there is enough storage capacity for the next VMs I must deploy. With Veeam ONE, I’m able to get reports whenever I want and whenever I need them. I can see trends, for example, in how many days or weeks I’m running out of space if the growth of data and VMs are going on like this, I can see if the backup from last night had any issue and I can drill that down. I also get alerts when there is an issue. Veeam tells me if my production storage will run out of space in four weeks, so I have enough time to solve this problem before it has an impact on my systems. It predicts possible issues before they become real issues that can impact my business.
Be sure you’re on top of the latest Veeam technologies by watching the recorded sessions presented by today’s speakers — Christopher Glemot, Jorge de la Cruz and Karl Widmer — during VeeamON Tour Virtual, the biggest online Availability event in EMEA.