According to the 3-2-1 backup rule, you must adhere to the following requirements when building your backup plan:
- You must have at least three copies of data in different locations: production data, backup and its copy.
- You must use two different types of media to store your data, for example, disk storage and tape.
- You must keep at least one copy of your data offsite, for example, in the cloud or in the remote site.
With the backup copying capability in Veeam Backup & Replication, you can create several instances of the same backup file and copy them to secondary backup repositories that perform the role of the long-term storage. Secondary backup repositories can be located in the same site as the source one or can be created offsite. The backup copy file has the same format as the primary backup so you can restore necessary data directly from it in case a disaster strikes.
During the backup copying process, Veeam Backup & Replication does not simply copy a backup file from one backup repository to another. Instead, Veeam Backup & Replication retrieves data blocks necessary to create a restore point as of the latest point in time and copies this data to the target backup repository. The backup chain produced on the target backup repository is forever forward incremental: the first restore point in the chain is a full backup and all subsequent restore points are incremental backups.
The backup copy process is job-driven. When you create a backup copy job, you define what backup file you want to copy, the target repository for storing the copy, retention policy and other settings for the copying process. The backup copy job supports the GFS retention scheme, allowing you to design a long-term archiving plan.
Unlike the backup job that typically runs on a specific schedule, the backup copy job runs continuously, in cycles. By default, a new backup copy cycle begins every day; however, you can specify any time interval needed. At the beginning of every backup copy interval, Veeam Backup & Replication checks the source backup repository: if a new restore point has been added to the primary backup chain, Veeam Backup & Replication automatically copies it to the target backup repository. After that, the backup copy job is put on hold until a new backup copy interval begins and a new point appears on the source backup repository.
In this exercise, you will create a copy of the backup file that has been created in the Performing Backup exercise with the evaluation backup job. The backup file will be copied from the source backup repository and written to the target backup repository (default backup repository).
- The source and target backup repositories that will take part in the backup copy process must be added to the Veeam Backup & Replication console.
- You must have a backup that has been successfully run at least once. Open the Home view, select the Backups node in the inventory pane. Then expand the backup job and check if there exist VM backups that you can copy.
To create a copy of the backup file:
- Open the Home view.
- On the Home tab, click the Backup Copy button and select VMware vSphere backup to launch the New Backup Copy Job wizard.
- At the Job step of the wizard, specify a name for the created backup copy job.
- In the Copy every field, specify a synchronization time interval, or the length for the backup copy cycle.
At the beginning of every synchronization interval, Veeam Backup & Replication checks the source backup repository. If a new restore point has appeared, Veeam Backup & Replication copies this restore point to the target backup repository.
- At the Virtual Machines step of the wizard, click Add and select From jobs.
In the list of jobs, select the backup job that is used to create the backup you want to copy. Veeam Backup & Replication will monitor the source backup repository on which the backup job stores the resulting backup file. If Veeam Backup & Replication detects a new restore point on the source backup repository at the beginning of a new synchronization interval, Veeam Backup & Replication will automatically trigger a new backup copy cycle and copy a new restore point to the target backup repository.
- At the Target step of the wizard, select the target backup repository from the Backup repository list.
- In the Restore points to keep field, specify the number of restore points you want to retain. By default, Veeam Backup & Replication keeps 7 restore points on the target backup repository.
- During the backup copying process, backup data can be transferred directly, from the source backup repository to the target backup repository, or through a pair of WAN accelerators. The latter scenario is recommended for copying backups offsite or over slow network connections. To learn more about WAN acceleration, see Veeam Backup & Replication User Guide.
In this exercise, both backup repositories are located onsite: for this reason, you will use the direct data transfer path. Leave the Direct option selected.
- At the Schedule step of the wizard, define the period of time when the backup copy job is allowed to transport data over the network. The backup copy window can be helpful if you do not want the backup copy job to produce unwanted overhead for the production environment or do not want the job to overlap the production hours.
- Click Apply.
- At the last step of the wizard, select the Enable the job when I click Finish check box and click Finish. The job will start running in the continuous mode.
- To monitor the job performance, click the Backup Copy node under Jobs in the inventory pane. Double-click the created backup copy job in the working area: now you can monitor the job performance in the real-time mode.
- Open the Files view.
- Expand the file tree of the target backup repository.
- Find a subfolder with the backup copy job name and make sure a full backup file is available in it.