Set up protection for virtual machines with SMB storage


Updated: May 13, 2016

Applies To: System Center 2012 SP1 - Data Protection Manager, System Center 2012 R2 Data Protection Manager

You can back up virtual machines that use Server Message Block (SMB) 3.0 storage. Windows Server 2012 supports the SMB 3.0 for remote storage that allows Hyper-V to store configuration files, virtual hard disks as VHD and VHDX files, and snapshots on remote SMB file shares. SMB support provides the following benefits for System Center 2012System Center 2012 – Data Protection Manager (DPM) backup:

  • More efficient express full backups

  • Continued protection after live migration of virtual machines and SMB storage

  • Backup support for a single SMB file server or for a cluster of file servers

Before you start

  • Turn on auto-mount on the server that is running Hyper-V to enable virtual machine protection.

  • Disable TCP Chimney Offload.

  • Ensure that all Hyper-V machine$ accounts have full permissions on the specific remote SMB file shares.

  • Ensure that the file path for all virtual machine components during recovery to alternate location is less than 260 characters. If not, recovery might succeed, but Hyper-V cannot mount the virtual machine.

  • The following scenarios are not supported:

    • Deployments where some components of the virtual machine are on local volumes and some components are on remote volumes.

    • An IPv4 or IPv6 address for storage location file server.

    • Recovery of a virtual machine to a computer that uses remote SMB shares.

Set up protection

  1. Deploy DPM—Verify that DPM is installed and deployed correctly. If you haven’t see:

  2. Set up storage—Check that you have storage set up. Read more about your options in:

    Use the following capacity sizing for virtual machine protection.

    Average virtual machine size 100 gigabytes (GB)
    Number of virtual machines per DPM server 800
    Total size of 800 virtual machines 80 terabytes (TB)
    Required space for backup storage 80 terabytes (TB)

    As an example, if your fully scaled Hyper-V cluster contains 1600 virtual machines, you’ll need two DPM servers, and double the provisioning that is summarized in the table. The total storage requirement for 1600 virtual machines is greater than 160 TB. Read about optimizing space in Optimize virtual machine protection.

  3. Set up the DPM protection agent—The agent needs to be installed on the Hyper-V server, or on each server in the Hyper-V cluster. On the remote SMB file server, if SMB is deployed in a cluster, install the DPM protection agent on all SMB file server cluster nodes.Read Plan for protection agent deployment, and then Set up the protection agent.

  4. Enable the File Server VSS Agent service on each SMB server—Add it in Add roles and features > Select server roles > File and Storage Services > File Services > File Service > File Server VSS Agent Service.

  5. Set up a protection group—In the Select Group Members page of the Create New Protection Group wizard you can select the Hyper-V host servers on which the virtual machines you want to back up are located. Keep virtual machines to which you want to apply the same protection policy in the same protection group. Use collocation while you create the protection groups to optimize the replica volume and to avoid reaching the maximum number of volumes that are supported in a Windows Server. Read about protection groups in:

  6. After you create the protection group initial replication of the data occurs. Backup then takes place in line with the protection group settings. If you need to recover backed up data see Recover backed up data [DPM2012_Web]. Note the following behavior for restoring virtual machines.

    Virtual machine recovery Details
    Recover to original location The original VHD is deleted. DPM will recover the VHD and other configuration files on the original location using Hyper-V VSS writer. At the end of the recovery process, virtual machines will still be highly available.

    The resource group must be present for recover. If it isn’t available recover to an alternate location and then make the virtual machine highly available.
    Recover to alternate location DPM supports alternate location recovery (ALR), which provides a seamless recovery of a protected Hyper-V virtual machine to a different Hyper-V host, independent of processor architecture. Hyper-V virtual machines that are recovered to a cluster node will not be highly available.
    Item-level recovery (ILR) DPM supports item-level recovery (ILR), which allows you to do item-level recovery of files, folders, volumes, and virtual hard disks (VHDs) from a host-level backup of Hyper-V virtual machines to a network share or a volume on a DPM protected server. The DPM protection agent doesn’t have to be installed inside the guest to perform item-level recovery.