Wednesday, May 3, 2023

Veeam Cloud Integrated Agent

Veeam Backup and Replication v12 brings a cloud integrated agent as part of its optimizations for hybrid cloud architectures. The agent enables application aware immutable backups for cloud workloads hosted in AWS and Microsoft Azure. It is deployed and managed through native cloud API without direct network connection to the protected workloads and it stores the backups directly on object storage. 

Having the agent deployed inside the protected cloud workloads, Veeam enables the same application aware backup technology that it uses for on-premises workloads. This in turn unlocks granular recovery using Veeam Explorers.

Let's see the agent at work. We have an Ubuntu VM in Azure. The VM has only private connectivity (no public IP). There is also a PostgreSQL instance running on the VM that we want to protect it using application aware processing. 

Veeam Cloud Message Service installed on the backup server communicates with Veeam Cloud Message Service installed on the protected cloud machines via a message queue. The message service on the cloud machines will in turn communicate with other local Veeam components - Transport Service, Veeam Agent. The backups are sent directly to a compatible object storage repository. 

To start configuration, we need to create a protection group. In VBR console, from  Inventory > Physical Infrastructure > Create Protection Group

Select "Cloud machines"

Add Azure credentials, subscription and region

Select the workloads to protect - statically choosing the VMs or dynamically using tags

Select to exclude objects (if required)

Select Protection group settings - similar to the ones for a standard agent 

Finalize the protection group. 

Once the protection group is created, discovery of protected workloads starts. During the process Veeam components are pushed on the protected machine. Keep in there is no direct connectivity between Veeam Backup server (VBR) and the cloud machine. More, the cloud machine has only private IP address. All actions are done using Azure APIs and Azure native services.

First Veeam installs Veeam Cloud Message service on the protected instance. Then it installs Veeam Transport Service and Veeam Agent for for Linux. VBR server uses Cloud Message service and Azure Queue Storage to communicate with service on the protected instance. 

The cloud machine is configured. It's time to create a backup job. Go to Home > Jobs > Backup > Linux computer

We need to use managed by backup server. 

Select the protection group

Select the backup mode

Destination repository needs to be object storage

We'll enable application aware processing to protect the PostgreSQL instance running on the cloud machine. All the options for a standard Veeam Agent for Linux are available. We could run application aware backups for Oracle, MySQL, pre and post job scripts, pre and post snapshot scripts. We could also enable guest file system indexing.

The PostgreSQL instance has been configured to allow users with authentication. Add the user credentials to the agent.

Select the backup schedule and run the job

After the backup is completed we look at restore options. We can now restore our cloud machine on premises using Instant recovery. We can also restore it to another cloud. 

We have access to Veeam Explorer for PostgreSQL and we can restore the instance to another server, we can publish the instance to another server or restore the latest state to the protected VM. 

To implement 3-2-1 we can create a backup copy job and get a copy of the backups to another repository on premises or in another cloud service provider. 

In this post we have looked at the new Veeam cloud integrated agents, what are their advantages and we have learned how easy it is to configure them. 

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