Backup Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines using Azure Backup Services


In my conversations with enterprises I’ve received a lot of requests to back up Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines (VMs) with no downtime from within Azure. Typically, backing up an Azure VM was done by running a script or backing up just the data. I have some exciting news, Azure Virtual Machines are now able to be backed up without downtime using Azure backup services.

Azure Virtual Machine Backup Features

Application-consistent backup of virtual machines Backup with no impact to production workloads

  • No shut down of VM required
  • Application level consistency for Windows OSes
  • File system level consistency for Linux OSes

Fabric level backup unlimited scalability, with no customer resources required for backup

  • Agentless backup of multiple VMs at the same time
  • Single, central management interface through the Azure portal
  • Detailed Jobs view for tracking progress and success/failure

Policy-driven backup and retention Configuration of scheduled backup

  • On-demand backup
  • Automatic management of recovery points within Azure Backup vault
  • Retain backup data in Azure Backup vault even if the original VM is deleted

Source:

http://azure.microsoft.com/blog/2015/03/26/azure-backup-announcing-support-for-backup-of-azure-iaas-vms

Let’s take a look at how the process works…

Walk-Through

Navigate to http://manage.windowsazure.com and log in. If you don’t have an Azure subscription you may register for a trial here: http://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/pricing/free-trial/

Create a new backup vault in the region where your VMs reside by selecting NEW --> DATA SERVICES --> RECOVERY SERVICES --> BACKUP VAULT --> QUICK CREATE:

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When registering a backup vault you’ll need to select a storage replication option.

Note: Once virtual machines are protected the replication settings cannot be changed.

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Registering Virtual Machines

Now you’ll want to register VMs to be backed up:

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Select from the list of VMs to register and select the check box on the bottom right of the page:

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A few minutes later they all show as registered:

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Select PROTECT at the bottom of the page:

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Select one or more VMs to protect:

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Create a backup policy or add to an existing policy:

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Viewing Protected Items

Select PROTECTED ITEMS at the top of the page:

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Search for Azure Virtual Machine

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If you don’t want to wait for the scheduled backup at the bottom of the page you can select BACKUP NOW to create an immediate backup job:

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On the BACKUP DETAILS page you’ll see information regarding the last backup:

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On the BACK POLICY page you’ll see details about the backup policy previously configured:

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Conclusion

Backing up Azure Virtual Machines is simple, fast, and agentless. Begin protecting your Azure VMs today by using Azure Backup Services.


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