Posted 25 May 2016 by Shawn Wilkin
Veeam released version 9 of their Availability Suite in January this year and with it came a lot of great new features. Reliability is often a concern with new products - though we’re pleased to report that in spite of thorough testing, we’ve found v9 to be highly stable since its initial release. That hasn’t stopped Veeam from developing the product at a pace however, with the recently release update 1 incorporating over 300 enhancements and bug fixes.
We look at some of the best of new functionalities in Backup and Replication below.
Scale-out Backup Repository
Managing storage for the backup repository requires administrative overhead, constant monitoring and can be costly when capacity is reached, largely due to the rate of data growth. Standard repositories have a fixed size and once consumed require replacing or extending. These fixed size repositories also make it difficult to plan for future scalability. Veeam’s new Scale-out Backup Repository resolves this issue by allowing administrators to use underutilised storage from across the infrastructure, and can also improve backup performance.
Backup, backup copy jobs and VeeamZIP tasks can all use the Scale-out repository as a target. Improved backup performance is achieved by using the Scale-out policies; Veeam Backup and Replication writes the incremental backup files to a different backup extent from the full backup file. This improves the transform speed as the I/O is distributed across the repositories.
BitLocker is an advanced data-reduction technology designed to further reduce backup file size and replication bandwidth usage by 20% or more when using NTFS. Bitlocker accomplishes this by not copying “dirty” data blocks (blocks that are marked as deleted by the guest VM) to the target repository, as well as excluding swap and hibernation files. Version 9 also introduces the ability to exclude files and folders when using Application Aware Processing. This will allow you to exclude large directories that are not critical to data recovery, such as software repositories - further helping to reduce the backup size and data processing time.
Veeam Explorers make the recovery of individual items a breeze. With version 9, Veeam have improved the existing Explorers as well as adding support for Oracle (Versions 11 and 12). There is an improved Explorer for Active Directory which adds recovery of Group Policy Objects (GPOs), AD integrated DNS records, and individual configuration partition records. Veeam Explorer for Exchange adds support for Exchange 2016 and eDiscovery enhancements, which is useful for complying with legal or government investigations. Explorer for Microsoft SQL Server enables better granularity when recovering SQL Server databases with the following new capabilities:
- Table-level recovery of database tables with no external dependencies.
- Database object-level recovery allows SQL developers to easily restore individual stored procedures, functions, views and other system objects back to the production database.
- Remote staging SQL Server support for transaction-level recoveries, eliminating the need to license a copy of SQL Server installed on the Veeam Backup and Replication server with the highest edition of SQL Server used in your environment.
Veeam Explorer for Microsoft SharePoint delivers additional functionality that was highly requested, making SharePoint recoveries easier and more efficient than ever. New features include full site restores to dramatically reduce recovery times for large-scale SharePoint disasters, and list and item permissions restore when restoring SharePoint content back to the original or a different SharePoint server.
Veeam are great at listening to customer feedback and as such have made even more improvements to the tape functionality. Media pools have been enhanced to allow for more efficient management of tape media by enabling them to span multiple tape libraries. The tape pools can be configured to make jobs automatically failover between libraries on certain events; for example, when there are no free tapes, when all tape drives are occupied, or when a tape library is offline.
Parallel backup processing no longer requires the creation of multiple media pools. Backup to Tape and File to Tape jobs can now process separate files in parallel, even when pointed to the same media pool. It is also now possible to configure Backup to Tape jobs to always pick the latest backup chain only, starting from the youngest full backup file. Veeam have also improved the performance when using tape, especially for large files.
Per-VM Backup Files
This new feature enables a new type of backup file chain to gain up to 10x faster backup performance when using parallel VM processing. This process uses separate write streams for each virtual machine in the backup job. It also stores the VM’s backup files separately, and as a result the backups are individual and smaller, allowing better file portability. The multiple I/O streams allow you to get the most out of your storage by using the repository resources to their fullest.
So there you have it… some of our favourite features from v9 although far from an exhaustive list of new functionality. For more information on how Veeam v9 can benefit your business, please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 0845 034 7605.