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How to Create VSS Freeze Exclusion for vCenter Database on Microsoft SQL 

KB ID: 1051
Product: Veeam Backup & Replication | 5.0 | 6.1 | 6.5 | 7.0 | 8.0 | 9.0 | 9.5 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 12.1
Published: 2011-07-19
Last Modified: 2023-12-15
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Article Applicability

This article is only relevant to environments still using a Windows-based vCenter (vSphere 6.7 and older) with the vCenter database host on a Microsoft SQL Instance.

Per VMware's Blog: Reminder: vSphere 6.5/6.7 End of General Support

  • The End of General Support for vSphere 6.5 and vSphere 6.7 is October 15, 2022. 
  • The End of General Support for vSphere 6.5 and vSphere 6.7 also means the End of General Support for Windows based vCenter Server instances
Protecting VCSA in vSphere 7.0 and newer
Starting with vSphere 6.7, the vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) has a built-in file-based configuration backup option, which VMware recommends for protecting the VCSA. That built-in backup method is the recommended way to protect VCSA servers as it creates a seamless native method of both protecting and restoring the VCSA.

Challenge

When operating a Windows-based vCenter, if the VM running Microsoft SQL that is hosting that vCenter's database (VCDB) is processed by a backup job with Application-Aware Processing enabled, the VSS freeze operation that occurs during Application-Aware Processing will freeze the vCenter database. This database freeze will cause Application-Aware Processing to fail as the vCenter's frozen database cannot process the ESXi host's snapshot creation response.

Solution

By default Veeam Backup & Replication will attempt to identify and automatically exclude the VCDB (default name of the vCenter Database) from the VSS freeze operation, however the database detection automatic exclusion may not work correctly when the VCDB is hosted on a separate machine from the vCenter VM.

To resolve this enabled the Database Exclusion menu option and configure a database exclusion.

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