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Best Practices for Veeam Backup & Replication 7.0 for VMware

Veeam Management Pack Help Center  > Best Practices for Deployment & Configuration >  Backup Job Setup > Choosing Backup Method

Choosing Backup Method

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The best backup method will vary per-job and per-repository. The following are some general recommendations to use as guidelines for setting up your backup jobs:



Reverse incremental mode generally provides the best balance of performance and space savings.

Since each changed block requires 3 I/Os (1x read, 2x write), the performance of the target storage has a significant impact on the performance of this mode. This can be especially noticeable for VMs with a high random change rate, or when running multiple simultaneous jobs, and is more noticeable on low-end storage or de-deduplication appliances.

Forward incremental with synthetic full provides the fastest backups with the least production impact.

Consider the cost of moderate target storage I/O: the synthetic full process requires 3 I/Os for every block (2x read, 1x write), so processing a week of incremental backups can take hours or even days, based on the amount of data and performance of the target storage.

This method requires much more storage than reverse incremental, especially for long term retention — but this is significantly offset when using hardware based deduplication (although many hardware deduplication appliance perform poorly for synthetic fulls).

Forward incremental with synthetic full with transform provides the fastest backups with the least production impact.

Consider the cost of heavy target storage I/O: the synthetic full with transform process requires 4 I/Os for every block (2x read, 2x write). This can really stress target storage if run once a week.

Forward incremental with active full provides fast incremental backups, requiring the least I/O load from the target storage.

Requires an occasional “active” full backup, impacting the source storage. This method is generally considered the best for dedupe targets; however, it requires more storage if compared to reverse incremental.

Environments making extensive use of virtual labs should generally use forward incremental.

While a virtual lab is active, the backup file is locked — this means that reverse incremental backups cannot be run.

Veeam will automatically tear down the virtual lab environment to perform a backup, and this can cause issues if you are utilizing the virtual lab extensively.

This limitation does not apply to forward incremental backups, though.

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