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Restore of single VMDK file when using the "Exclude Disk" feature

Created: 28 Nov 2012 • Updated: 29 Nov 2012 | 3 comments
ddm2's picture




VSphere 5


I have a Windows VM with 2 disks. I made a backup of the system disk only and I want to restore it. Actually the backup seems smaller.

When I start the restore, in the BAR I see both disks. After the restore, I see both disks again in the properties of the VM from the VSphere client.

Is this normal? I expect to see just one VMDK.

Thanks and regards.

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Stuart Green's picture

You are saying the VM with Guest OS Windows has Hard Disk 1 and Hard Disk 2 in its virtual hardware. And you only backed up the system disk I presume which was on Hard Disk 1 by using Vmware policy Advanced Options - exclude data disks?

Read this post and the extract from the VMware Guide

Tip: Get overview/document your NBU environment. Run 'nbsu' and review the output.

• If this provides help, please vote or mark appropriate solution.

ddm2's picture

Thanks for your answer.

Yes, I made a backup of system disk using the Advanced Option "Exclude Data Disk".

I've already read the post.

With the DISKPART Windows command I checked both disks: they are not dynamic or GPT. Both VMDKs are not Independent.

When I do a restore, the BAR says "Warning: the image is not complete, data disk won't be restored" or something similar. It is right, because I excluded data disk in the policy.

After that, it seems that NetBackup anyway restore both VMDKs, but the data disk is empty. Then I have to delete the "fake" data disk manually using the VMware client.

Is my assumpion correct?

RLeon's picture

After that, it seems that NetBackup anyway restore both VMDKs, but the data disk is empty.

I would say it is behaving correctly.
The restored .vmx would still contain references to the data disk's VMDK, therefore it is not surprising that something somewhere insists that this VMDK be recreated along with the rest of the restore.
Inside the VMDK however, since Netbackup did not really back up its data, it is recreated empty.