I recently took a closer look at Veeam to do some replication work. I’ve used Veeam to do VMware backups, but never really considered it to do any replication work. Most of the time VMware Site Recovery Manager is my tool of choice to do replication if my storage array can’t do it. But Veeam makes a great alternative for doing replication.
The current version of Veeam can re-ip, run on a schedule, do bandwidth throttling, as well as remapping networks.
This brief post just shows how you can setup replication between two sites and seed the destination site via sneaker net. This should make things go much faster during your first time replicating the virtual machine to the secondary site.
First thing’s first, create a backup using Veeam. When you’re done, you need to copy the backup files and transport them to the remote site. Put them in your datastore that will house your replicas from the primary site. Once this is done, lets create a new replication job.
Create a Replication Job
Click on Replication Job and give it a name. The important thing, on this first screen is to select the Low Bandwidth setting. It will later allow you to choose a replica repository which is housing your Veeam Backup you’ve taken to the secondary site.
On the next screen you will select your virtual machine that should be replicated.
The next window will let you add more virtual machines as well as exclude VMs. Exclusions can be very handy if you select an entire cluster to replicate.
The following screen is where you’ll select your destinations.
Setup the Replication Job Settings. Here you’re allowed to select source and destination proxy servers. These servers handle the transfers of data between sites. This is processor intensive so it’s a good idea to have several of these and balance your transfers. You’ll also be selecting the destination for where the replicas will be stored.
Find the backup files that were moved to the secondary site. Choose the backup repository that holds the backup files. After this click detect to make sure that the VM can be matched up with the backup replica.
As one would expect, you are able to set a replication schedule for your job as well as setting time frames where the backup is allowed to run.
Once you’ve reviewed all of your settings and completed setting up the job, run it. You’ll see the VM show up in the inventory at the destination.
Veeam Replication doesn’t do some things that VMware SRM does very nicely, like allowing you to push a button and spin up your DR Site, but this is a very nice tool if you don’t see the need to get the SRM licenses. With a little PowerCLI knowledge you could very easily power on you DR Site with a [double] click of a script.
Veeam does have an advantage though, that you could replicate a single VM to multiple datacenters which is something that SRM has issues with.
I’ll be using Veeam much more, now that I’ve seen what it can really do. There are alot of circumstances when I could see the Veeam Backup and Replication software be very useful.