To replicate virtual machines, you should create a replication job by means of the New Replication Job wizard. You can perform the created job immediately, schedule, or save it.
Before You Begin
• Prior to creating a replication job, make sure you have set up all necessary replication infrastructure components for the job –source and target hosts are available under the Servers node in the management tree, backup proxies and repositories are available under the Backup Infrastructure node and properly configured. You will not be able to add replication infrastructure components or change their configuration settings once the New Replication Job wizard is launched.
To estimate what infrastructure components you need for a replication job and learn more about possible replication scenarios, refer to the Replication Architecture section.
• During every job run, Veeam Backup & Replication checks disk space on the destination storage. If the disk space is below a specific threshold value, a warning will be displayed. To specify the disk space threshold, select Tools > Options from the main menu. On the Notifications tab, specify the amount of free disk space required in percent.
To create a replication job for VMware virtual machines, follow the next steps.
Step 1. Launch the New Replication Job Wizard
To run the New Replication Job wizard, do one of the following:
• Click the Replication button on the toolbar and select VMware from the menu
• Select Backup > Replication > VMware from the main menu.
• Right-click Jobs under the Backup and Replication node in the management tree, and select Replication >
Step 2. Specify Job Name and Description
At the first step of the wizard, enter a name and description for the created job. By default, the following description is initially provided for the created job: time when the job was created and name of the user who created the job.
If you plan to replicate to a DR site, you can use a number of advanced configuration settings for the job:
• Select the Low connection bandwidth check box to enable the Seeding step in the wizard. Replica seeding can be used if you plan to replicate to a remote site and want to reduce the amount of traffic sent over the network during the first run of the replication job. To learn more about seeding possibilities, please consult the Replica Seeding chapter of the User Guide.
• Select the Separate virtual networks check box to enable the Network step in the wizard. If the network in a DR site does not mirror the production network, you can resolve this mismatch by making up a network mapping table.
• Select the Different IP addressing scheme check box to enable the Re-IP step in the wizard. Re-IP possibilities can be used to automate reconfiguration of replica IP addresses for Windows-based VMs in case IP schemes in the DR and production sites do not match.
Step 3. Select Virtual Machines to Replicate
At this step, you should select an individual VM, multiple VMs or VM containers you want to replicate. Jobs with VM containers are dynamic in their nature: if a new VM is added to the container after a replication job is created, the job will be automatically updated to include the added VM.
Click Add to browse to VMs and VM containers that should be replicated. In the displayed VI tree, select a necessary object and click Add.
To facilitate objects selection, you can:
• Switch between VI views: click the Hosts and Clusters, VMs and Templates or Datastores and VMs buttons at the top of the tree.
• Use the search field at the bottom of the window: click the button on the left of the field to select a necessary type of object that should be searched for (Everything, Folder, Cluster, Host, Resource pool, VirtualApp or Virtual machine), enter an object’s name or a part of it and click Start search on the right.
To remove an object from the list, select it and click Remove on the right.
The initial size of VMs and VM containers added to a replication job is displayed in the Size column in the list. The total size of objects is displayed in the Total size field. Use the Recalculate button to refresh the total size value after you add a new object to the job.
Step 4. Exclude Objects from Replication Job
After you have added VMs and VM containers to the list, you can specify which objects should be excluded from the replication job. Veeam Backup & Replication allows excluding the following types of objects: VMs from VM containers, as well as specific VM disks. To select which objects should be excluded, click Exclusions on the right.
• To exclude VMs from a VM container (for example, if you need to replicate the whole ESX server excluding several VMs running on this server), click the VMs tab. Click Add on the right and select VMs that should be excluded. To display all hosts added to Veeam Backup & Replication, select the Show full hierarchy check box. To facilitate objects selection, you can switch between the Hosts and Clusters, VMs and Templates and Datastores and VMs views, and use the search field just as when you add VMs to be replicated.
• To select what VM disks you want to replicate, click the Disks tab, select a necessary VM in the list and click Edit. If you want to exclude disks of a VM added as part of a container, use the Add button to include the VM in the list as a standalone instance.
You can choose to process all disks, 0:0 disks (typically, the system disks) or select custom disks. If you select the Remove excluded disks from VM configuration check box, Veeam Backup & Replication will modify the VMX file to remove disks you want to skip from the VM configuration. If this option is used, you will be able to restore, replicate or copy the VM to a location where excluded disks are not accessible with the original paths. If you do not use this option, you will have to manually edit VM configuration file to be able to power on the VM.
Step 5. Define VM Replication Order
If you want to replicate specific VMs first, you can define the order in which the replication job must process VMs. The VM replication order can be helpful if you want to ensure that replication of a VM does not overlap with other scheduled activities, or that replication is completed before a certain time.
To set the VM replication order, select the necessary VMs and move them up or down the list using the Up and Down buttons on the right. In the same manner, you can set the replication order for containers in the list. Note, however, that if you choose to replicate a container, VMs inside a container will be processed at random. To ensure that VMs are processed in the defined order, you should add them as standalone VMs, not as part of a container.
Step 6. Specify Replica Destination
At this step of the wizard, you should select destination for created replicas – host or cluster, resource pool, VM folder and datastore.
Host or cluster
Click Choose and select a host or cluster where replicas will be registered. Assigning a cluster as a target ensures a more sustainable replication process – the replication job will be performed until there remains at least one available host in the cluster. To facilitate selection, use the search field at the bottom of the window: click the button on the left of the field to select a necessary type of object that should be searched for (Cluster or Host), enter an object’s name or a part of it and click Start search on the right.
Specify a resource pool in which replicas will be included. If all or a majority of replicas should belong to the same pool, click Choose and select the destination resource pool. To facilitate selection, use the search field at the bottom of the window: enter a pool name or a part of it and click Start search on the right.
If you want to map replicas to different resource pools, click the Pick resource pool for selected replicas link. In the Choose resource pool section, click Add VM on the right and select the necessary VMs. To map an added VM to a resource pool, select it in the Replica VM resource pool list and click Resource Pool at the bottom of the window. From the list of available resource pools, choose the necessary one.
Specify a folder to which replicas will be placed. If all or a majority of replicas should be stored the same folder, click Choose and select the necessary folder. To facilitate selection, use the search field at the bottom of the window: enter a folder name or a part of it and click Start search on the right.
If you want to map replicas to different VM folders, click the Pick VM folder for selected replicas link. In the Choose folder section, click Add VM on the right and select the necessary VMs. To map an added VM to a VM folder, select it in the Replica VM folder list and click VM Folder at the bottom of the window. From the list of available folders, select the necessary one.
Specify a datastore where VM replica files will be stored. If all or a majority of replicas will be stored on the same datastore, click Choose and select the necessary datastore. Note that Veeam Backup & Replication will display only those datastores that are accessible by the selected replication target. If you have chosen to replicate VMs to a cluster, Veeam Backup & Replication will display only shared datastores.
To facilitate selection, use the search field at the bottom of the window: enter a datastore name or a part of it and click start search on the right.
If you want to place replicas to different datastores, click the Pick datastore for selected virtual disks link. In the Choose VM Files Location section, click Add VM on the right and select VMs that should be mapped to datastores. To map an added VM to a datastore, select it in the Files location list and click Datastore at the bottom of the window. From the list of available datastores, select the necessary one.
Additionally, you can choose to store replica configuration files and disk files to different locations. To do so, add a VM to the Files location list, expand it and select the required type of files. Click Datastore at the bottom of the window and choose the destination for the selected type of files.
By default, Veeam Backup & Replication preserves the format of replicated VM disks. If necessary, you can configure the job to change the disk format. For example, if an original VM uses thick disks, you can change the format of replica disks to thin provisioned, and thus, save on disk space required to store replica data. To change replica disk format, add a VM to the Files location list, select it and click Disk type at the bottom of the window. In the Disk Type Settings section, choose the format that will be used to restore replica disk files – same as the source disk, thin or thick. Please note that disk format change is available only for VMs using virtual hardware version 7 or later.
Step 7. Specify Replication Job Settings
At this step of the wizard, you should assign replication infrastructure components for the job and define replication job settings.
In the Data transfer section, select backup proxies that will be used to transfer VM data from source to target, and a repository to store replica metadata.
If you plan to replicate within one site, the same server can act as the source proxy and target proxy. For offsite replication, you must deploy at least one proxy server in each site to establish a stable connection across the sites for data transfer. Click Choose next to the Source proxy and Target proxy fields to select backup proxies for the job. In the Backup Proxy section, you can choose automatic proxy selection or assign proxies explicitly.
• If you choose Automatic selection, Veeam Backup & Replication will detect backup proxies that are connected to the source and target datastore and will automatically assign optimal proxy resources for processing VM data.
VMs included in the replication job are processed one by one. Before processing a new VM in the VM list, Veeam Backup & Replication checks available backup proxies. If more than one proxy is available, Veeam Backup & Replication analyzes transport modes that the proxies can use to retrieve and write data, the current workload on the proxies to select the most appropriate resource for VM processing.
• If you choose Use the backup proxy servers specified below, you can explicitly select proxies that the job can use. It is recommended that you select at least two proxies to ensure that the backup job will be performed should one of job proxies fail or lose its connectivity to the source datastore.
From the Repository for replica metadata list, select a repository that is located in the source site. The repository will store metadata (checksums of read data blocks) required to streamline incremental passes of the job.
In the Replica name suffix field, enter a suffix that will be appended to a name of the virtual machine you are replicating. This name, with the suffix added, will be used to register the replicated virtual machine on the target server. Files of a replicated VM will be placed to the selected datastore to the VMname(vm-ID) folder.
In the Restore points to keep field, specify the number of restore points that should be maintained by the replication job. When this number is exceeded, the earliest restore point will be deleted.
Step 8. Enable Application-Aware Image Processing
If you want to create a transactionally consistent replica ensuring successful recovery of VM applications without any data loss, select the Enable application-aware image processing check box.
To coordinate proper VSS activities, Veeam Backup & Replication installs a small agent inside a VM. The agent is installed only during VSS quiescence procedure and removed immediately after the processing is finished (depending on the selected option, during the replication job or after it is finished), thus producing low impact on VM performance and stability.
In the Guest OS credentials section, specify an account with administrative privileges for deploying the agent. Please note that the user name must be supplied in the DOMAIN\USERNAME format. The guest OS credentials you provide will be used for all VMs included into the replication job.
If you want to define custom settings for a VM added as part of a container, include the VM in the list as a standalone instance. To do so, click Add VM and choose a VM whose settings you want to customize. Next, select the VM in the list and define the necessary custom settings. To discard custom settings of a VM, select the VM in the list and click Remove.
To provide granular quiescing and indexing options for a VM, select it in the list and click Edit.
In the Applications section on the Applications tab, specify the VSS behavior scenario:
• Select Require successful application processing if you want Veeam Backup & Replication to stop replicating a VM if any VSS errors occur.
• Select Ignore application processing failures if you want to continue replicating a VM even if VSS errors occur. This option is recommended to guarantee completion of the job. The created replica will be not transactionally consistent, but crash consistent.
• Select Disable application processing if you do not want enable quiescing for a VM.
Step 9. Define Job Schedule
The Schedule step of the wizard allows you to specify scheduling settings for the job. You can select to manually run the created job or schedule performing the replication job for a specific period of time – for example, the least busy hours to reduce impact on the VI environment.
To specify the job schedule, select the Run the job automatically check box. If this check box is not selected, the job is supposed to be run manually.
You can choose to perform the job at a specific time on defined week days, monthly and with specific periodicity.
You can also select to replicate a VM continuously from the "Periodically every:" option. In this case, the next run of a replication job will be started once the previous one is complete, maintaining your replica always in the most recent state.
In the Automatic retry section, select to repeat an attempt to run a replication job in case it fails for some reason. A repeatedly run job will include failed VMs only. Enter the number of attempts to run the job and define time intervals between them. If you select continuous replication, Veeam Backup & Replication will retry the job for the defined number of times without any time intervals between the job runs.
In the Backup window section, determine a time interval within which the replication job must be completed. The backup window prevents the job from overlapping with production hours and ensures it does not provide unwanted overhead on your virtual environment. To set up a backup window for the job, select the Terminate job if it exceeds allowed backup window check box and click Window button. In the Time Periods section, define the allowed window and prohibited hours for replication. If the job exceeds the allowed window, it will be terminated.
Step 10. Finish Working with Wizard
After you have specified schedule settings, click Create. Select the Run the job when I click Finish check box if you want to start the created job right after you complete working with the wizard; then click Finish.