Installing vSphere Data Protection is just a couple of steps. I downloaded the vSphere Replication virtual appliance. Note there are three different versions available and depending on how large your environment is you will need to select a version. I selected the 0.5TB version as I have a limited amount of virtual machines. This is how you import it and configure it, but before you begin I recommend ensuring DNS records are created before deploying the appliance!
- Open the Web Client
- Go to your cluster under “vCenter” —> “Hosts and Clusters”.
- Right click the cluster object and click “All vCenter Actions” —> “Deploy OVF Template”
- As a source I select the ova file I downloaded, now click “Next”
- Validate the details and click “Next”
- If you agree “Accept” the EULA and click “Next”
- Enter the “Name” of the virtual machine and select the “Folder” this virtual machine will needs to be placed in and click “Next”
- Select the “Datastore” it needs to be provisioned to and click “Next”
- Select the “Network” it needs to be connected to and click “Next”
- Provide the “Networking properties” and click “Next”
- Review the selected settings and click “Finish” (I ticked “Power on after deployment”)
- Now it is a matter of minutes before the appliance is deployed, you can track the progress in the upper right pane called “recent tasks”
When the VDP appliance has been deployed we can continue with configuring it.
- Open a browser window and point it at “https://<ip address or name of VDP>:8543/vdp-configure”
- Your browser will now inform you that you are connecting to a secure site by that the identification of it cannot be confirmed. Confirm this.
- Enter the password, which is “changeme” (yes that is a hint!) and click “Next” on the welcome screen.
- Next the network settings that you entered during the deployment of the virtual appliance will be presented, you can still make changes if you need. I added a hostname and domain name
- Make sure that the hostname is resolvable through DNS, as other wise you will get a nice error as shown in the screenshot below
- Select the correct time-zone and click “Next”
- Create a new password, note the complexity requirements for it. I used “VMwar3VDP”
- Next enter the vCenter Server and SSO Server details and test the connection
- If the test is successful click “Next” and then “Finish”
- Configuration is now completed and you can reboot the appliance so that it can initialize properly.
- I rebooted it by right clicking the appliance in the Web Client and clicking “Restart Guest OS”
Reinitializing the appliance is going to take a couple of minutes (in my case almost 30), so be patient…
Now that we have installed and configured it we can start using vSphere Data Protection (VDP). I had to logout of the Web Client before I could see the new shiny VDP icon in my menu.
Let’s get started:
- Click the “vSphere Data Protection” option in the left pane of your Web Client.
- If you see the “Not Connected” status, click “Connect”.
- Click on “Configuration”.
- At the bottom you will see the “Backup Window”, make sure this aligns with your agreed backup hours.
- I turned the backup duration down from 12 to “10 Hours” so that at 06:00 in the morning the backup windows ends. Make sure to hit “Save”.
Now that we have defined our backup windows. Lets start with creating a backup job.
- Click on the “Backup” tab and then “New”.
- I am going to backup all my virtual machines in my cluster so I select my “Cluster” object. I did de-select my vSphere Replication and the vSphere Data Protection appliance as I don’t need it to be backed up. Now click “Next”.
- I select “Daily” as I want to do a regular backup of all my virtual machines.
- I have selected “60 Days” as the “Retention Period” but you should change this based on your requirements. Click “Next”.
- Provide the a “Name” to the backup job, I’ve named it “daily-all-vms” and click “Next”
- Review your selected options and click “Finish”.
Now you have configured a backup window and created backup job. You can immediately kick off the backup process if you want by hitting the “Backup Now” button.
Make sure to check the “Reports” screen for more details around which virtual machines were successfully backed up, which virtual machines were not and why…
How about restoring?
Now that we have backed stuff up, I am guessing you also want to know how to restore it. Restoring is just as simple as backing up.
- Go to “vCenter” —> “Hosts and Clusters”
- Right click the virtual machine you want to restore
- Go to “All VDP Actions” and select “Restore from Last Backup”
- Now you will have the option to select the “Restore Point”, I will select the most recent one
- Next you can “Restore” to the original location, I don’t want to interfere with my running virtual machine so decide to restore it to a different volume. Make sure to provide a different name and datastore
- Review your selections and proceed
- You will now see some new tasks in the upper right pane called “Recent Tasks” and the restore is on its way
- When the virtual machine is restored, make sure to hit “Refresh”
Now you can power-on the virtual machine. Note that although the virtual machine has a different name it is still very much the same virtual machine. If you power it on while the original is also still running you will end up with an IP conflict, so make sure to disconnect the network card if you want to keep the original up and running.
One thing I want to point out is that you can also do a restore from within the “vSphere Data Protection” tab itself.