Veeam and Huawei recently released new, integrated storage snapshot and orchestration capabilities for customers using Veeam and Huawei OceanStor storage. This new Veeam Plug-in is based on the Veeam Universal Storage API and allows Veeam solutions to deliver higher levels of backup and recovery efficiency when paired with the Huawei OceanStor storage infrastructure.
The constant flow and management of data is taxing today’s organizations to their limit. Data has become hyper-critical to business, but IT organizations struggle to cope with their data’s hyper-growth and hyper-sprawl while protecting against data loss threats, ransomware, service outages and human error — all of which result in loss of business, productivity and reputation.
To address these new business and technical requirements, Veeam partnered with Huawei and other leading storage providers to deliver integrated data protection and storage solutions. OceanStor customers can now leverage Veeam storage integration for VMware environments, bringing new levels of Intelligent Data Management to their data center for better RTPO (recovery time and point objectives).
Backup operations strain production storage environments, resulting in lower performance. New Veeam-Huawei integration brings agentless Veeam Backup from Storage Snapshots capabilities to OceanStor storage, increasing Veeam backup speed by 2x, and up to 10x faster compared to competing backup solutions.
Veeam’s usage of VMware Change Block Tracking while reading data from storage snapshots minimizes the performance impact on production VMs during backup. As a result, the VMware snapshot lifetime is lowered to minutes instead of hours — which is often the case when using VMware-based backups without storage snapshots.
During standard Veeam backup procedures, Veeam uses parallel disk backup to reduce the time window, but the VMware VM snapshot may be open for some time as would be expected. This leads to higher IO at the time of the VMware VM snapshot, and could cause a possible performance impact on the VM.
The new integration allows Veeam to create Huawei snapshots in the background directly after the VM snapshot creation. The result is nearly instantaneous. In the example below, the VMware VM snapshot is open only until the storage snapshot was created, lowering the time required for the VMware snapshot to be open.
While certain variables can come into play and affect performance, this level of performance will not be uncommon for Huawei OceanStor customers using Veeam Availability storage snapshot integration.
Veeam integration with OceanStor also includes orchestration capabilities that reduce backup management complexity and increase efficiency. The new Veeam Plug-in can orchestrate application-consistent storage snapshots without the need of any agent installed within the VMs.
In most IT organizations, backups are ideally scheduled during off hours, when they will not affect performance. However, the realities of today’s business demands on IT infrastructures make this approach obsolete. In today’s world, “off hours” don’t exist anymore. Constant use of available compute and infrastructure resources is key to better return on investment, so low usage windows are harder to find. More importantly, backups need to be taken more often to protect against data loss. Where one backup a night was acceptable in the past, the continuous creation of recovery points to meet higher recovery point objectives is now the common service level demand.
Veeam snapshot orchestration helps you address this need with a mix of frequent crash-consistent and application-consistent snapshots.
With Veeam Explorer for Storage Snapshots, you can use either Veeam orchestrated, or any other existing Huawei storage snapshot, to recover full VMs or single items from a snapshot, in many ways depending on what will be most efficient for the recovery situation.
Veeam integration brings new levels of flexibility for recovery with Huawei OceanStor storage. Full VM recovery is simple and quick, but more often than not, simple item recovery within a VM is the recovery use case.
Veeam Explorer for Storage Snapshots gives IT teams recovery of individual items without requiring the normal time and resource consuming process of re-provisioning a VM. This item-level recovery is supported for Microsoft Exchange, SQL, Active Directory and SharePoint objects through a simple Windows Explorer-like interface. Veeam allows data, files, emails and more to be pulled from backups and into the production environment with a few clicks. Recovering Oracle databases out of a storage snapshot is also supported.
The new Veeam Plug-in for Huawei also brings automation to one of the biggest pain points and inconsistencies most organizations struggle to address in their backup and recovery operations. That is the fact that most IT backup administrators can never really be sure they can recover from the restore points in a disaster or when data is lost.
With Veeam and Huawei integration, Veeam On-Demand Sandbox for Storage Snapshots automates the process of creating a completely isolated copy of your production environment, verifies the viability from the snapshot, reports that status, and then deprovisions the environment. Veeam builds the DataLab from recent storage snapshots created by Huawei or any other third-party software and runs through a complete routine to verify VM boot, network connections, and application function. When finished, Veeam then reports the test results via email or through enhanced reporting found in Veeam Availability Suite.
Creating what Veeam calls a DataLab, addresses two core needs in modern IT Infrastructures. First, it addresses the need for verified recoverability to meet regulatory and operational requirements, not to mention peace of mind for the IT team knowing they are prepared for disaster recovery when they are called.
Second, DataLabs are extremely valuable to address the needs of your development teams, or any others that constantly require a dedicated lab environment with real-world data for the purpose of new solution development, upgrade and deployment testing, as well as risk assessment and mitigation planning.
Huawei is the latest storage provider to partner with Veeam for more efficient data management, more efficient backup, and faster recovery. Regardless of whether you want to speed up your Veeam backups or if you want to use storage snapshots next to real backups to lower your RTPO, with the newly released Veeam Storage Plug-in for Huawei OceanStor, you are on the right track and ready for the future.