Veeam Quick Migration enables you to promptly migrate one or more VMs between ESX(i) hosts and datastores. Veeam Backup & Replication allows migration of VMs in any state with minimum disruption to business operations and end user access to services. You can use Quick Migration as a self-contained capability, solely for VM migration, or combine it with Instant VM Recovery.
Veeam Backup & Replication analyzes your virtual environment, its configuration, the state of VMs and selects the most appropriate relocation method. Whenever possible, Veeam Backup & Replication coordinates its operations with vCenter Server and uses native VMware vCenter migration mechanisms: vMotion and Storage vMotion. When VMware vCenter migration methods cannot be used (for example, if your VMware vSphere license does not provide support for vMotion and Storage vMotion, or you need to migrate VMs from one standalone ESX(i) host to another), Veeam Backup & Replication uses its proprietary SmartSwitch technology to relocate VMs.
Veeam Quick Migration provides means for fast background migration of VMs ensuring continuous uptime of your virtual environment. Quick Migration supports hot VM migration (with SmartSwitch) and cold VM migration (with cold switch). Both methods provide for no data loss during migration.
Migration of a VM is performed in several stages:
- Veeam Backup & Replication copies VM configuration (.vmx) to the target host and registers the VM.
- Veeam Backup & Replication triggers a VM snapshot and copies VM disk content to the new destination.
- VM state and changes made after snapshot creation are moved to a new location. Veeam Backup & Replication uses different approaches to move the VM state between hosts with compatible and non-compatible CPUs.
- If you move a VM between two hosts with compatible CPUs, Veeam Backup & Replication uses SmartSwitch. Veeam Backup & Replication suspends the VM to move its state file and changes made after snapshot creation. The VM is then resumed on the new host. This method ensures minimum possible VM downtime during migration.
- If you move a VM between two hosts with non-compatible CPUs, Veeam Backup & Replication stops the VM, moves changes made after snapshot creation, and then starts the VM on the new host.
Limitations for Quick Migration
Veeam Backup & Replication does not keep encryption settings if a VM is migrated with VMware vMotion. After the migration process is finished, you will need to enable encryption for the migrated VM manually.
Integration with Instant VM Recovery
When you restore a VM using Instant VM Recovery, Veeam Backup & Replication starts the VM directly from a compressed and deduplicated backup file. To finalize recovery of a VM, you still need to move it to a new location. Moving the VM with VMware Storage vMotion or hot replication may require a lot of time and resources, or it may cause loss of valuable data.
Veeam Quick Migration was designed to complement Instant VM Recovery. Instead of pulling data from vPower NFS datastore, Quick Migration registers the VM on the target host, restores the VM contents from the backup file located on the backup repository and synchronizes the VM restored from backup with the running VM.
For more information, see Instant VM Recovery.
MoRefs for Migrated VMs
Mind the following:
- If you use VMware vSphere vMotion for VM migration, the VM MoRef is preserved. After the VM is migrated, all jobs to which the VM is added will process the migrated VM as an existing VM.
- If you start the Quick Migration wizard from the Virtual Machines view and use native Veeam mechanisms for VM migration (SmartSwitch and cold migration), the migrated VM gets a new MoRef. If you enable the Delete source VM files upon successful migration option, Veeam Backup & Replication will automatically update the MoRef of the VM in all jobs to which the VM is added, and the jobs will process the migrated VM as a new VM (the next job session for the VM will be full, not incremental).
- If you start the Quick Migration wizard for an instantly recovered VM, the migrated VM gets a new MoRef. If you enable the Delete source VM files upon successful migration option, Veeam Backup & Replication will update the MoRef of the VM in all jobs to which the VM is added, and the jobs will process the migrated VM as a new VM (the next job session for the VM will be full, not incremental).