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How to Back Up a VMware Virtual Machine in MSP360 Managed Backup Service

In this guide, we will explain how to perform a backup of your VMware virtual machine with MSP360 Managed Backup Service. Later, you can recover it as a virtual disk, virtual machine in the cloud, or a working VMware virtual machine.

Check out the video version of this guide: How to Back Up VMware Virtual Machine in MSP360 Managed Backup

How to Back Up a VMware Virtual Machine in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

Please note: you’ll need vSphere 6.0 or higher.

To create a backup plan for your VMware virtual machine, open the MSP360 Managed Backup Web console. Proceed to the Remote Management section. Find a computer with Virtual Machine Edition installed, click the gear icon near it, and then Show Plans.

Plans List in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

In the Backup section, click the plus button and select VMware.

Choosing a VMware Backup in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

Now we’ll configure all the plan options step by step. Enter the name of your plan. By default, its configuration will be saved in the backup storage.

Naming a Plan in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

Choose where to back up your machine.

Choosing a Backup Destination in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

Specify your host’s credentials with administrator privileges. Click Connect. If the connection is successful, in the next step you will see a list of all virtual machines that are located at this host.

Connecting to a Host in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

Choose which machines to back up. Bear in mind that their total size might be large, which will be costly, so it is recommended that you choose only those machines that you need to store. The option Use Changed Block Tracking allows you to increase the speed of your incremental backups by switching on the corresponding VMware feature. While performing the backup, this tool tracks disk sectors that have been changed since the last backup and transmits only those blocks with changes.

Choosing What to Back Up in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

In the next step, enable compression and/or encryption.

Setting Up Compression/Encryption in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

Determine the retention policy by defining how many versions you need to keep and for how long. A version here is a restore point – a full or incremental backup. Click Specify custom retention policy for backup plan, if needed. Define how old a version should be to be deleted, the number of versions to keep, and the purge delay. The delay is a period of time between the deletion of data from your virtual machine and the deletion of the same data from your backup storage.

Setting Up Retention Policy in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

A schedule is an important option that allows you to set up the full and incremental backup frequency. If you want to run the plan just once, select No schedule or enter a specific date.

Schedule Options in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

To back up your VMware machines regularly, scroll down to the incremental backup and switch on the Recurring option. Set the incremental backup frequency.

Incremental Backup Schedule Options in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

Now go back and do the same with the Recurring option at the very beginning of the Schedule Options section. This relates to a full backup, so the frequency should be lower.

Full Backup Schedule Options in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

In the Pre- / Post-Actions section, you can command the console to execute a script before or after your backup plan or launch another backup plan after the current one completes.

Pre-/Post-Actions in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

Specify options for notification and click Save to complete the plan creation.

Notifications in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Console

How to Back Up a VMware Virtual Machine in MSP360 Managed Backup Service Agent

Launch the agent and click VMware on the Home panel.

Launching Backup Wizard in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

Choose the storage type.

Choosing Storage in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

Now select the storage. You can always add a new account if needed.

Selecting Storage in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

Name your plan.

Naming a Plan in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

To connect to your server, specify the hostname and credentials with administrator privileges. Select the Remember password checkbox if you don’t want to type it every time it’s required.

Connecting to a Server in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

After a moment, the MSP360 Backup agent will connect to your virtual environment and you’ll see a list of all your virtual machines. Select which of them to back up (all, running, or some specific machines). As we said before, the Use Changed Block Tracking tool tracks disk sectors that have been changed since the last backup and transmits only those blocks with changes. Click Learn more to go to the VMware website and read about this technology.

Another option – Quiesce guest file system – is used when the machine is running. Quiescing a file system is a process of bringing the on-disk data of a physical or virtual computer into a state that is suitable for backup.

Choosing VMs in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

Select the virtual disks that you need to back up.

Selecting Disks in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

Enable compression and/or encryption if you wish to.

Compression/Encryption in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

Now, the retention policy. You can check the default settings by clicking the retention link. If they don’t match the requirements, click Specify custom retention policy for backup plan and change the options.

Setting Up Retention Policy in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

The next step is specifying the schedule. If you want the plan to be run once, you can run it manually or set the starting time. If you don’t want your plans to run for too long, specify the Stop the plan if it runs for options.

Schedule Options in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

If the backup needs to be run regularly, choose Recurring (predefined templates) or Recurring (advanced schedule). If you select a recurring backup, the Run missed plan immediately when computer starts up option becomes available.

Now for schedule templates. The predefined templates offer a simple schedule.

Simple Schedule in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

The advanced schedule is much more customizable.

Advanced Schedule in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

Add a pre- or post-backup action if it is required. This is a script that should be launched before the plan runs or after it finishes. You can also schedule another backup to start after the current one finishes.

Pre-/Post-Actions in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

Customize the notifications.

Notifications in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

Check the plan summary.

Plan Summary in MSP360 Managed Backup Web Agent

If everything is good, click Next and then Finish. Your plan is ready to be launched.

With MSP360 Managed Backup Service, your VMware virtual machines are safe. Even if something goes wrong, you will be able to restore the machines to a working state and quickly get back to what you were doing. If you have any questions, please contact our pre-sales team.

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