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SureBackup for VM With VBS Enabled Fails With “Invalid change tracker error code”

KB ID: 4003
Product: Veeam Backup & Replication | 9.5 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 12.1
Published: 2020-08-17
Last Modified: 2023-10-05
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Challenge

A SureBackup job testing a VMware VM that has Virtualization-Based Security (VBS) enabled fails with the error:

An error occurred while taking a snapshot: Invalid change tracker error code. (An error occurred while taking a snapshot: Invalid change tracker error code.)

Cause

This error occurs because, by default, SureBackup modifies the VMX of all VMs being tested to set the entry 'vhv.enable' to false. By setting 'vhv.enable' to false, Virtual Hardware-Assisted Virtualization (VHV) is disabled. However, because VHV is a requirement of Virtualization-Based Security (VBS), the VM is then considered to have an "invalid configuration."

To confirm this detail, check the Task & Events within the vSphere Client for the error:

Invalid virtual machine configuration. Nested Hardware-Assisted Virtualization should be enabled when enabling VBS (Virtualization-Based Security).

The listed "Reconfigure virtual machine" task is related to the SureBackup job attempting to disable CTK on the VM, which fails due to the invalid config (indicated by the VimApi.InvalidVmConfig error). The failure to disable CTK then causes the subsequent "Create virtual machine snapshot" tasks to fail, which are displayed by the SureBackup job.

As shown below, the SureBackup Job log contains the same error as is shown in the vSphere Client:

Info         [VimApi] ReconfigVM, type "VirtualMachine", ref "vm-8675309"
Error        [SVmWareCtkHelper] Failed to disable CTK on VM, Ref: VmRef [vm-8675309]
Error        SetVmChangeTracking failed, vmRef 'vm-8675309', changeTrackingEnabled 'False' (System.Exception)
Error           at Veeam.Backup.ViSoap.CSoapConnection.SetVmChangeTracking(String vmRef, Boolean changeTrackingEnabled)
Error           at Veeam.Backup.Core.SVmWareCtkHelper.DisableCtkSafe(CSoapConnection soapConn, CVmRef vmRef)
Error        Invalid virtual machine configuration. (Nested Hardware-Assisted Virtualization should be enabled when enabling VBS (Virtualization-Based Security)) (Veeam.Backup.ViSoap.ViServiceFaultException)
Error        VimApi.InvalidVmConfig

 

In summary, VMs using VBS require VHV, but SureBackup disables VHV for VMs being tested, which breaks VBS, causing the SureBackup test for the VM to fail.

Solution

To resolve this issue, create the following registry value on the Veeam Backup Server.

This registry value, when set to '0', will force SureBackup to stop setting 'vhv.enable' to false within the VMX of VMs it tests.

Key Location: HKLM\SOFTWARE\Veeam\Veeam Backup and Replication\SureBackup
Value Name: UseVhvEnable
Value Type: DWORD (32-Bit) Value
Value Data: 0

Note: The key SureBackup does not exist by default, it must be created and then the value created within it.

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