vSphere Data Protection-Part 4: Configure a Backup Verification job

In last post of this series, we had a look on how to take backup and restore of VM’s using VDP and how to clone/edit existing backup jobs.

In this post we will discuss about how to configure a backup verification job to ensure integrity of backups taken by VDP. 

If you accidently landed on this post and have missed earlier post of this series, you can read them from below links:

1: Introduction to vSphere Data Protection

2: Installing & Configuring vSphere Data Protection

3: Backup And Restore VM’s using VDP

Automatic Backup Verification (ABV)
Automatic Backup Verification (ABV) is a scheduled or on-demand mechanism for verification of backups that ensures the integrity of restore points. ABV has the following characteristics:

  • Backups are restored to a temporary virtual machine with the following naming convention: VDP_VERIFICATION_<vm-name> -<unique number>
  • Backups are restored with no network conflicts, because the NIC is always disabled during the ABV operation. Because the NIC is disabled, you cannot perform a ping test.
  • After the backup verification job completes, temporary virtual machines, also referred to as validating VMs, are removed and deleted from the inventory.
  • Only the last successful full image backup for any VM is verified. The Recent Tasks pane and Event log report which backup has been verified.

Limitations of ABV

Backup verification is not supported for the following configurations:

  • Single VMDK backups.
  • Image backups of RDM disks (physical mode). RDM virtual dependent disks are supported.
  • Application database backups of Microsoft applications (Exchange Servers, SharePoint Servers, and SQL Servers) are not supported.
  • Replicated backups.
  • Backups from imported disks.
  • The verification fails if the path to the destination host is changed. If the host is moved to a new location, you must edit the verification job and select the destination host again.
  • If the datastore name is changed, you must edit the verification job to reselect the same or different datastore before you can successfully run the job again.

Creating a New Backup Verification Job

To create a new backup verification job, login to vSphere web client and navigate to vSphere Data protection>> Backup >> Backup Verification Job >> Backup Verification Job Actions >> New

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The Create a new backup verification job wizard opens to the Virtual Machines page.On the Virtual Machines page, select a virtual machine for which you want to create a verification job, and then click Next.

Note: You can select only one virtual machine per verification. Multiple selections are not supported. Also virtual machine must be a part of a full image backup job.

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On the Verification Options page, there are 2 options available:

Heartbeat Verification: This is the default option for verification of a backup, regardless of whether you select script verification. The heartbeat verification checks whether the VMware Tools heartbeat has been received within a specific time frame after the VM has powered on. If the VMware Tools heartbeat is received, the guest OS has booted successfully and is in a healthy state.

Script Verification: This is the advanced verification option. Use script verification if you want to verify the virtual machine for the health status of applications and services that run on the guest OS. The script must be predefined and must pre-exist on the guest OS. The verification script must not be dependent on connecting to other virtual machines in the network.

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Chose Esxi host/Datastore where the dummy VM will be created for testing the backup. The destination host must be compatible with the validating virtual machine and must have sufficient resources to restore the validating virtual machine.

Note: Resource pools and vApps are not supported as valid destinations. 

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Select schedule for when this backup verification job should run.

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Provide a name for the backup job and hit next to continue.

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On Ready to complete page, review your settings and hit finish.

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Once verification job has been created, you can run it immidiately by clicking on “Verify Now

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If you click on verify now, system will notify you for regarding task initiation. 

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In vSphere client, you can see a series of tasks triggered when verification job is running.

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Also you can verify presence of a new VM in the vSphere inventory. 

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Once verification job is completed, the dummy VM will be deleted. 

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You can monitor status of all verification job within backup tab. 

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And thats it for this post. In next post of this series we will see how to create a Replication Job.

I hope you find this post informational. Feel free to share this on social media if it is worth sharing. Be sociable 🙂