Traditional data backup and data recovery solutions are expensive, slow and complex. They write data to tape, which is difficult and time-consuming to restore. In contrast, VMware vSphere® Data Protection™ (VDP) provides fast backup to disk with dependable recovery.
Furthermore, VMware vSphere® Data Protection™ Advanced extends the backup capabilities of your VMware vSphere® platform with greater scalability and application-level integration for your mission-critical apps.
Efficient Backup and Recovery
Sophisticated vSphere Data Protection capabilities ensure that your backups complete on schedule, keeping costs down despite exponential data growth:
- Variable-length de-duplication - Breaks files into sub-segments to determine which are unique, minimizing backup storage requirements. Achieves the industry’s highest average rates of de-duplication: 99 percent for file systems and 96 percent for databases.
- Global de-duplication - Reduces required backup storage further by de-duplicating data across all virtual machines pointed to the same appliance.
- Changed Block Tracking backup (CBT) - Works with variable-length de-duplication to reduce virtual network impact during backups, sending only daily unique changes to the virtual appliance.
- Changed Block Tracking restore - Unlike other solutions, vSphere Data Protection also uses CBT during restores for dramatic reductions in data recovery times.
Simple Configuration and Management
Traditional backup solutions were designed for physical environments, creating unnecessary complexity in virtual infrastructures. vSphere Data Protection is specifically engineered for the virtualization and administration capabilities of the vSphere platform:
- Full vSphere integration – Native management through the vSphere web client lets administrators run backup and recovery from a “single pane of glass.”
- Easy to deploy and use – vSphere Data Protection deploys as a virtual machine appliance for easy setup and minimal post-deployment configuration. Policies are defined according to specified retentions and timetables, making backup schedules simple to create.
- One-step recovery – The intuitive web-based user interface permits simple recovery of full virtual machines or individual files. In addition, the “end-user self-service restore” option allows restore requests to be offloaded from IT.
vSphere Data Protection is deployed as a virtual appliance with four processors (vCPUs) and four GB of RAM. Three configurations of backup storage capacity are available: 0.5 TB, 1 TB and 2 TB, which consume 850 GB, 1,300 GB and 3,100 GB of storage capacity, respectively. Careful planning is recommended to ensure proper sizing, as additional capacity cannot be added once the appliance is deployed. Base your storage requirements on the number of virtual machines to be backed up, the data quantities involved, retention periods and typical data change rates, all of which can vary considerably.
To create and edit a backup job, use the Backup tab of the vSphere Data Protection interface in the vSphere web client. Perform image-level backup at the individual virtual machine level. Containers such as data centers, clusters and resource pools can also be selected for backup. With containers, all virtual machines inside at the time the job runs are backed up. Virtual machines that are subsequently added to the container are included in the next job run. Likewise, those removed from the container are no longer included in backup jobs, which can be scheduled daily, weekly or monthly.
vSphere Data Protection uses CBT during image-level backups. CBT also comes into play during virtual machine image-level restores to improve speed and efficiency. During the restore process, vSphere Data Protection leverages the vSphere API for Data Protection (VADP) to determine which blocks have changed since the selected restore point. vSphere Data Protection automatically evaluates the workload between both restore methods—restoring all blocks or calculating and restoring only the changed blocks—and uses the most efficient method.
Virtual machines can be restored to a different location and/or renamed as part of the restore process. You also have the option to power-on a virtual machine after restore and disconnect it from the network, making it easy to conduct "restore rehearsals" to verify that virtual machines are protected and data can be restored if needed. (Note that CBT is not used when restoring a virtual machine to an alternate location.)