I have been running VMware Data Recovery (VDR) through its paces for quite a while now and while it works, I am not sold on it yet. I have had way too many problems related to the target datastore. Specifically, a continual failed integrity check. Everything ran fine for a while and then poof, a failure, and just when I needed it the most. It has been a very frustrating state of affairs. But I finally found a solution that is working for now. In the meantime I will be running Veeam Backup and Replication, Quest vRanger, PHD Virtual, and several other backup tools through their paces. My goal is just to run and forget until I need it. That to me implies the following:
- Automated backup during a predefined backup window
- Notification of ANY issues immediately
- Automated backup testing
So what was the problem with VDR? The integrity check continually failed and therefore the backups continually failed. Yet, it worked for a while! Which was the frustrating part. The solution was the following:
- Unmount the Destination (which is a Windows VM that talks to my DISC GmbH Bluray backup library for long term storage)
- Remount using the Share name, I previously created instead of the F$ mechanism available to windows
- Edit all my backup jobs to point to the new Destination
- Test by backing up critical components
I believe that VDR does not understand mount points ending in $, which could be given that it is a Linux VM and $ is a special character in nearly every shell and 4th generation language.
So now, I wait until I know for certain this will work, in the meantime I will be testing other tools. Backup failures are NOT something I like to see. Ever.
UPDATE: This was definitely the solution, been running strong for quite a while.
UPDATE 2: If there is an Integrity Check issue, first shutdown datarecovery service on the VDR VM. Then go to the backup store and remove all the *.lck directories and files. Once that is done, you can restart the datarecovery service. Go to the Destination aspect of the VDR configuration tab within the vSphere Client plugin and re-run an integrity check. Once that succeeds you will than have to perform one more action. Go to each of your backup definitions and reconfigure them, selecting the backup store once more. This last element is necessary as the recatalog that happens apparently destroys this information.
VMware VDR fails its integrity check quite often which makes this a repetitive task.
Edward L. Haletky, aka Texiwill, is an author, analyst, developer, technologist, and business owner. Edward owns AstroArch Consulting, Inc., providing virtualization, security, network consulting and development and TVP Strategy where he is also an Analyst. Edward is the Moderator and Host of the Virtualization Security Podcast as well as a guru and moderator for the VMware Communities Forums, providing answers to security and configuration questions. Edward is working on new books on Virtualization.