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Backup HP P2000G3 over SAS

Created: 13 Mar 2013 | 5 comments

I am struggling to figure out if this is possible:

  • I have a VMware Virtual Machine running as a Windows 2008R2 File server with a Raw Device Mapping to a 9TB HP P2000G3 connected over SAS.
  • I have a dedicated Windows 2008R2 backup server with BE2012 (backup to disk to tape) with enough disk capacity for the backup and an HP MSL2024 attached to it, also over SAS.
  • I have a dual port SAS HBA in the backup server of which one port is free (the tape drive claiming the other port).

The question is: can I connect the free SAS port in my backup server to a controller port on the MSA and backup the data on the MSA (one or more large NTFS volumes) without going over the LAN?

Take into account that these volumes will be in use (read/write) almost 24x7 because of nightly jobs.

Thanks in advance for any assistance that you can offer.

Operating Systems:

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Colin Weaver's picture

Physical RDM or Virtual RDM (answer might make a difference although TBH I am not sure we can do SAN Transport backup of RDM anyway which would stop you uiosng the direct SAS connection)

MartijnL's picture

It is not configured yet so open for change if necessary but by default it would be a physical RDM. There are no specific requirements in the rest of the environment to make it a virtual RDM.

Thanks for checking this.

Colin Weaver's picture

Ok the RDM might be the sticking point as there are VMware API limitations as to what can and can't be done with an RDM - and SAN Transport might be one of them - Why RDM, why not put a VMFS datastore on it?

EDIT You can't use physical RDM as we use VADP snapshots that are not supported with Physcial RDM

Not sure what limiations you might run into the virtual mode RDM.

MartijnL's picture

Hmm. Seems I completely forgot that VMFS5 has a much bigger volume size. Was thinking about the original VMFS3 limitations of 2TB.

But in that case creating a lan-free virtual machine backup over SAS will probably require the Agent for VMware (no problem, I just need to know what to order).

Thing is: the rest of the virtual environment is backed up with VEEAM. This particular VM is backed up separately (I will not bother you with the details why :) ) through BE2012. Am I assuming correctly that these two solutions (while both using the VMware API) will not start competing with each other?

Colin Weaver's picture

OK I found the other RDM limitations (at least for BE 2010 R2 that I don't think have chanegd throguh 2010 R3 or 2012):

Virtual compatibility mode RDM disks can be backed up but cannot be directly restored by Backup Exec to an ESX server or existing Guest virtual machine. Virtual compatibility mode RDM disks are included in the backup of the selected virtual machine automatically and will include ALL data located on the mapped LUN.

Neither physical nor virtual compatibility mode disks can be used with the Incremental or Differential backup capabilities. A Guest virtual machine configured with RDM disks will result in the entire virtual machine being unable to use Incremental or Differential backup settings.

To protect Virtual compatibility-mode or Physical independent-mode RDM disks, Symantec recommends that you install a Backup Exec Agent for Windows Systems or Agent for Linux inside of the Guest virtual machine and protect them as if they were physical systems.


the above info comes from