Hardened Repository

Veeam Backup & Replication allows you to make a hardened repository using a Linux server as a storage. A hardened repository protects your backup files from loss as a result of malware activity or unplanned actions with the help of the following features:

  • Single-use credentials: credentials that are used only once to deploy Veeam Data Mover while adding the Linux server to the backup infrastructure. These credentials are not stored in the backup infrastructure, so that backups files will be safe even if the Veeam Backup & Replication server is compromised.
  • Immutability: when you add a Linux repository, you can select the Make recent backups immutable for check box and specify the time period while backup files must be immutable. During this period, backup files stored in this repository cannot be modified or deleted.

You cannot delete immutable backup files manually from a hardened repository.

How Immutability Works

After you add a hardened repository with immutability:

  1. Veeam Backup & Replication creates a .veeam.N.lock file with the information about immutability time period of each backup file in the active chain. The .veeam.N.lock files are stored on a Linux host.
  2. Backup files become immutable for the configured time period (minimum 7 days, maximum — 9999). The immutability period is extended only for the active backup chain. If there are several chains in the backup, then Veeam Backup & Replication does not extend the immutability for old backups in the chain.
  3. After the time period expiration, Veeam Backup & Replication makes backup files non-immutable again so they can be deleted or modified.

The count of the immutability period indicated in the backup repository settings starts from the moment the last restore point in the active chain is created. For example:

  • The full backup file of the active backup chain was created on January 12. The first increment was created on January 13. The second and last increment was created on January 14.
  • The immutability period indicated at the backup repository settings is 10 days.
  • The full and incremental backups will be immutable until January 24: the date of the last restore point creation (January 14) + 10 days.

You can add a hardened repository to your scale-out backup repository as a performance extent. For more information, see Scale-Out Backup Repository and Add Performance Extents.

If you use the Capacity Tier with move option, keep in mind that having a hardened repository with immutability as a performance extent will affect the Capacity Tier behavior. You will not be able to move immutable backup files, because they cannot be deleted from the performance extent. Veeam Backup & Replication will copy such backup files to the Capacity Tier. When the immutability time period is over, Veeam Backup & Replication will delete these files from the performance extent. For more information on copy and move policies, see Copying Backups to Capacity Tier and Moving Backups to Capacity Tier.

If you evacuate your backups from an immutable performance extent, Veeam Backup & Replication will copy them instead of moving. If the target extent is also immutable, then the immutability of the target extent will apply to copied backup files. For more information on evacuating backups, see Evacuating Backups from Performance Extents.

When you evacuate backups to the immutable hardened Linux extent, the immutability period of the full chain equals the time of creation of the last restore point in the chain plus the immutability period determined for the target extent.

Retention Scenarios

  • An immutability retention overrides a job retention: if the job retention period is shorter than the immutability period, Veeam Backup & Replication does not delete backup files when the retention period is over, but only when the immutability period expires.
  • If a hardened repository with immutability is a part of a scale-out backup repository with the capacity tier added, the immutability time period for full backup files with GFS retention policy is set according to the following:
  • [For capacity tier with disabled move policy] Veeam Backup & Replication compares the immutability period of the backup repository and the GFS backup file lifetime, and sets an immutability period for full backup files with GFS retention policy as equal to the longest of these periods.

For example: the backup repository immutability period is 10 days; the GFS backup file lifetime is 3 years; the backup file will be immutable for 3 years; the increments from this full backup file will be immutable for 10 days from the moment of the last increment creation.

  • [For capacity tier with enabled move policy] Veeam Backup & Replication ignores the GFS retention policy. The immutability time period for full backup files equals the period specified in the setting of a hardened repository.
  • If a hardened repository with immutability is a part of a scale-out backup repository (with the capacity tier added and enabled move policy) and is used as a target for VeeamZIP jobs — the immutability time period for backup files equals the period specified in the setting of a hardened repository.
  • The immutability feature is supported for image-level backups only. You can use a hardened repository to store NAS backups, transaction backups, RMAN, SAP HANA, SAP on Oracle backups, but you cannot use the immutability feature to protect these backups.
  • The immutability time period for backup files produced with VeeamZIP or Export Backup jobs is set according to the following:
  • [With enabled retention period] Veeam Backup & Replication compares the immutability period of the backup repository and the retention period lifetime, and sets an immutability period for backup files with retention period as equal to the longest of these periods.

For example: the backup repository immutability period is 1 month; the VeeamZIP or Export Backup backup file lifetime is 7 years; the backup file will be immutable for 7 years.

  • [With disabled retention period] Veeam Backup & Replication ignores the VeeamZIP or Export Backup retention period. The immutability time period for backup files equals the period specified in the setting of a hardened repository.

Supported Job Types

The hardened repository supports backups created with the following types of jobs:

  • VMware, Hyper-V VM backup jobs and backup copy jobs created by Veeam Backup & Replication
  • Backup copy jobs for backups created by Veeam Backup for Azure, Veeam Backup for AWS and Veeam Backup for Google Cloud Platform
  • Physical machines backup jobs created by Veeam Agents (Windows, Linux, Mac, AIX, Solaris) and backup copy jobs created by Veeam Backup & Replication
  • vCD VM backup jobs
  • VeeamZIP backup jobs
  • Nutanix AHV VM backup jobs and backup copy jobs created by Veeam Backup for Nutanix AHV
  • RHV VM backup jobs and backup copy jobs created by Veeam Backup for Red Hat Virtualization

Important

You can store backup files and backup copy files of NAS backup jobs, transaction log backup jobs, RMAN, SAP HANA, SAP on Oracle backups jobs in the hardened repository with immutability, but these files will not be immutable.

Hardened Repository Availability

Veeam Backup & Replication does not store singe-use credentials in the configuration database. Thus, if you backup Veeam Backup & Replication configuration database and restore settings of Veeam Backup & Replication, a hardened repository becomes unavailable in the Veeam Backup & Replication console. To make a repository available again, do the following after restore:

  1. In the Veeam Backup & Replication console, open the Backup Infrastructure view.
  2. In the navigation pane, select Managed Servers.
  3. In the working area, right-click the Linux server used as a hardened repository and select Properties.
  4. At the Step 3. Specify Credentials and SSH Settings of the Edit Backup Server wizard, use single-use credentials and click Finish to update settings.

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