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First look at Veeam 9.5 & Nimble Storage Integration – Part 2

This is a continuation piece regarding the integration of Nimble Storage to the Veeam Backup & Replication software in the upcoming release 9.5.

Part 1

  • So what does the integration give us?
  • The test environment
  • Adding the Nimble Storage Array into Veeam
    • Configuration
    • Nimble Audit Logs

Part 2

  • Now we’ve added the Nimble Storage Array
  • What can we do with Snapshots?
    • Controlling Nimble Storage  snapshots and restoring files from the Veeam console
    • Backing up a Virtual Machine from a Nimble Snapshot
    • Backing up a Virtual machine to a Nimble Snapshot (Snapshot-only Job)
    • Replicating a Virtual Machine from a Nimble Snapshot
  • SureBackup from Nimble Snapshots

Following on from part one of this first look two part blog series, where we added the Nimble Storage Arrays into the Veeam software, we continue to see how this integration piece works.

Now we have added the Nimble Storage Array

So before we get started, we can now see the datastores of the Nimble Storage Array, and the snapshots of each datastore. In the second screenshot, we can see the enumeration of VMware virtual machines and which host they are were attached to.

Adding Nimble Storage to Veeam - Storage Infrastructure - Nimble Array and SnapshotsAdding Nimble Storage to Veeam - Storage Infrastructure - Nimble Array and Snapshots 02

Controlling Nimble Storage  snapshots

Continue reading First look at Veeam 9.5 & Nimble Storage Integration – Part 2

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First look at Veeam 9.5 & Nimble Storage Integration – Part 1

As a part of the Veeam Vanguard program, I have been given access to the beta version of Veeam 9.5. And in this blog post I will cover some of the integration components between Nimble Storage and Veeam, announced by Veeam back in April. If you have been following the Veeam forums, then you’ll know that there is a very active post where the forum users are all pitching in which storage vendor they think should be next to get integration.

Note: This blog post content is created from a beta version of Veeam 9.5, any features, dialog boxes, names and such are subject to change before the final public release.

What I’ll be covering in these series of blog posts;

Part 1

  • So what does the integration give us?
  • The test environment
  • Adding the Nimble Storage Array into Veeam
    • Configuration
    • Nimble Audit Logs

Part 2

  • Now we’ve added the Nimble Storage array
  • What can we do with Snapshots?
    • Controlling Nimble Storage  snapshots and restoring files from the Veeam console
    • Backing up a Virtual Machine from a Nimble Snapshot
    • Backing up a Virtual machine to a Nimble Snapshot
    • Replicating a Virtual Machine from a Nimble Snapshot
  • SureBackup from Nimble Snapshots
So what does the integration give us?

I think the below extract from this article by Clint Wyckoff sums it up best.

Veeam's advanced integration with Nimble Storage provides additional protection and recovery options that are not available without direct integration and joint development efforts that provide the ability to:

    - Schedule the creation of Nimble storage snapshots containing application-consistent VM images, and storage snapshot replication orchestration.

    - Restore from Nimble storage snapshots or their Replicated Copies (entire VM, guest files and application items)

    - Backup from Nimble storage snapshots or their Replicated Copies.

The only other company to have this kind of integration is NetApp, showing this high regards Nimble Storage are held in from Veeam. But also showing that Nimble Storage has been a dedicated partner working with Veeam over the past few years, and its paying off with this integration offering.

Veeam and Nimble Storage Integration - Feature comparison table

The test environment

Luckily for me, Veeam have produced a reference architecture diagram which pretty much describes the test environment used in this preview blog post. In this environment there will be no Tape nor cloud connect components.

Veeam-Nimble-Storage-Integration-Topology

Adding the Nimble Storage Array into Veeam 9.5

Continue reading First look at Veeam 9.5 & Nimble Storage Integration – Part 1

Nimble Disk Failv2

What happens when a Nimble Storage disk drive fails?

I’ve worked with Nimble Storage devices for over 2 years now, they constantly amaze me, but one of the thing I’ve yet to see in the field is an actual failure. So the other morning at 3am, I received an email about a failed disk, so I thought I’d walk those through the process of what happens.

After all, if you going to buy a new storage device, you want to know exactly how it acts in a failure scenario, wouldn’t you?

Failure Alert – Infosight and Autosupport at its best

So three things happened almost instantaneously when the failure happened;

  • Email alert sent to the recipients configured on the Nimble Storage Array
  • Failure information sent to Nimble Storage’s Infosight website
  • A support case was automatically opened with all the necessary details

Below I’ve also included screenshots of the array status page, and the event logs on the Nimble Storage device as well, where you will see normal operations such as snapshots continued.

So all I had to do in the morning was confirm the address where the parts are to be sent, and if an engineer was needed.

Note: with the service offerings from Nimble, you can opt, in the times of hardware failure, to have the replacements sent out as soon as it hits Infosight, or to confirm the delivery of parts before they are sent. For this environment, we chose the latter.

Nimble Disk Fail - email alert

Nimble Disk Fail - Infosight

Nimble Disk Fail - Array Status (failed disk)

Nimble Disk Fail - Event Log (failed disk, raid degraded)

So how do you resolve the issue?

Continue reading What happens when a Nimble Storage disk drive fails?

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Powershell – Get-ADuser and output the homedrives to CSV file

I had a customer with around 27 file servers used as locations for AD home drives. We needed to do some analysis on which users used which server, as things like DFS or a strategy of where to place users were not in place. So PowerShell to the rescue.

A simple version of this script is;

get-aduser -Filter * -properties * | select DisplayName,Enabled,HomeDirectory,LastLogonDate,CanonicalName | Export-csv -path c:\scripts\userhomefolder.csv

I created this more complex script after the amount of unique objects exceeded the maximum filter within excel, so by splitting into a file per server fixed this.

First off, create an array with the multiple file servers, then used the “foreach” command to loop a PowerShell command with each file server name.

We look into all user’s in AD and output to a CSV file any users with file server X into a CSV file.

#Add the AD module into the Powershell session
Import-module ActiveDirectory

#Array containing each File Server, can be FQDN or short name
$fileservers = 'FS1','FS2','FS3'

#Loop to run a script for each object in the array against all AD users, outputs in CSV to C:\ folder
Foreach ($fileserver in $Fileservers)
{
get-aduser -Filter * -properties * | select DisplayName,Enabled,HomeDirectory,LastLogonDate,CanonicalName | Where {$_.HomeDirectory -like "*$fileserver*"} |Export-csv -path c:\scripts\userhomefolder2-$fileserver.csv
}

 

Regards

 

Dean

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How to produce good documentation – Part 5 – Diagraming your (Veeam) Backups

So it’s just been a little over a year since Part 4 of my how to document series was posted. I hoped to keep adding to the series, but at the same time, only do it when I felt I had relevant content to share. So this post is to show how I have documented some recent backup configurations. Note: I mainly work with Veeam, but hopefully this will give you idea’s of how to present the setup of your other backup software

Below are the previous posts;

The challenge

Note: The Visio file for these examples can be found at the end of the blog post.

Your backups evolve over time, as does your environment. Your backup schedules become more complex, and its hard to remember, what does what.

As past of my job, I setup backup solutions for customers, and then have the task of documenting how they are setup. I used to do this in a table format. It was quite simple

  • Backup/replication job name
    • Services backed up
    • Job settings
      • Storage/environment used

When you have a number of backup jobs, you have a lot of jobs and information to dig through. Its not user friendly.

Veeam backup job settings table 1 Veeam backup job settings table 2

So I re-visualised the way to present the data, I still have the detailed tables, however I also have three Visio diagrams

  • Backup Architecture setup
  • Backup and Replication jobs – Servers/services included
  • Backup and Replication job settings – high level

Continue reading How to produce good documentation – Part 5 – Diagraming your (Veeam) Backups