Tuesday, 22 November 2016

What's New - Nakivo Backup and Replication 6.2

We have already dedicated couple of articles related to Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1 wherein we have seen the architectural components and also talked about new features available in Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1 here is a link for your quick reference Demystifying Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1

In our last post related to Nakivo Backup and Replication Series we also discussed about 

Backup/Recover Active Directory Objects with Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1 in case you missed it here is the link for your quick reference 
Backup/Recover Active Directory Objects with Nakivo


Apart from testing the backup and recovery related functionalities using Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1 we also had a detailed discussion on Replicating Virtual Machines here is the link for your reference Replicate VM's with Nakivo Backup & Replication

In our last blog post related to Nakivo Series we also talked about working with Nakivo Backup and replication appliance 

Dedicated this article to understand what's new with Nakivo Backup and replication 6.2 which was announced by NAKIVO on october 13th 2016 which help us by providing backup, replication, and recovery of paid EC2 instances sold through AWS Marketplace.




When Selecting Nakivo backup and replication Free edition from AWS Market place the only fee we are suppose to pay is for our EC2 instance running in AWS which may vary depending on the EC2 Instance type we selected during the launch process. 

Didn't want to get overcharged for the instance being deployed for testing purpose so thought of going with t2 Micro running with 1Gib Memory and 1 Virtual Core. Good for testing :-)


Well as the name suggests here BYOL (Bring your Own License) is available for those customers who already have purchased the licenses.


As the cost estimator says we have to think about the cost of already purchased license and the cost of the AWS based on the instances we have selected.



When Selecting the option for Nakivo Backup and replication Pro for 10 instances we have to pay $49 Per month + AWS infrastructure charges for EC2 instances.



Selected the same t2 micro EC2 instance with 1 Gib Memory and 1 Virtual Core to see the difference in cost estimator as this time we have selected the option for 25 instances hence a $ 99 Per month would be the subscription fee for backup of AWS EC2 instances apart from the AWS Infrastructure charges.

** Prices Mentioned above may change kindly refer the AWS market place for the latest pricing information.

Keynote: By Selecting one of the above options from AWS market place we can create and maintain the identical copies of our EC2 instances.

When it comes to backup of AWS EC2 instances using Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.2 we can select the same AWS region or a different AWS region or it could be done directly to on premises locations.

Sunday, 6 November 2016

Back to Basics - Part 12 Distributed Resource Scheduler

In our couple of blog post related to Back to Basics Series we discussed about Virtual Machine Files (Part1), Standard Switches (Part2), vCenter Server (Part 3),Templates (Part4) vApp (Part 5), Migration (Part 6),Cloning (Part 7), Host Profiles (Part 8), Virtual Volumes AKA VVOL's (Part 9) Fault Tolerance (Part10) and Distributed Switches (Part 11) and we also discussed about the various tasks related to building Home Lab Part1Part 2Part 3,Part 4 Part 5.

It's been so long i have updated any article related to back to basics series so thought of dedicating this article to understand functionalities of Distributed Resource Scheduler a.k.a DRS.

But before we begin and talk about DRS let's think about life without DRS for a minute

Well thinking from an administrator perspective how difficult it would be to keep an eye on resource consumption of our ESXi hosts running in our HA Cluster.

Or in another words how difficult it would be to ensure that all my Virtual Machines running in HA cluster are balanced across the available number of ESXi.


Certainly life without DRS is hard to imagine as it would require a lot of manual intervention in terms of balancing the Virtual Machines in cluster.

Role of VMware vSphere High Availability is only to restart our Virtual Machines but not to load balanced them ! Load balancing requests would be taken care by DRS so let's find out how DRS plays an important role in our VMware vSphere environment.

10 Things You Need to Know about Distributed Resource Scheduler.
  • vSphere DRS can be created or can be enabled on our existing vSphere HA and VSAN Clusters.
  • vSphere DRS Works best when our Virtual Machines meets the requirements of VMware vSphere vMotion including shared storage, and vMotion Network.
  • While creating the vSphere DRS cluster we can select the automation level which helps us in understanding whether the vSphere DRS should generate migration recommendations or automatically place the Virtual Machines on the host.
  • Automation levels includes Manual - When we power on the Virtual Machine vSphere DRS lists recommendations where to place the Virtual Machine.However when we select Partial Automated - The Minute Virtual Machine is powered on vSphere DRS will place it on best suited host and if in case the cluster becomes imbalance vSphere DRS will help us with the recommendations so as we can manually migrate the Virtual Machine. Fully Automated - As the name suggests will place the Virtual Machine on best suited host at the time of Power On and will migrate the Virtual Machine if in case the cluster is imbalanced.
  • Automation levels for individual Virtual Machines can be selected if in case we wish to override the automation level set on the entire DRS cluster.
  • Another important option available in DRS settings is migration threshold provided with various levels (Level 1 Conservative, Level 2 (Applying Priority 1 and Priority 2 Recommendations), Level 3 Default (Applying P1,P2 and P3 Recommendations) , Level 4 - (Applying P1,P2,P3 andP4 Recommendations) and Level 5 Aggressive (Applying all the recommendations) ).
  • In vSphere DRS cluster we can make use of Affinity (Keep Virtual Machines Together) and Anti Affinity rules (Keep Virtual Machines Separate).
  • We can also make use of DRS Groups which could be a group of virtual machines or group of hosts assisting us in defining Virtual Machine to Hosts affinity rules.
  • Virtual Machines to host affinity rules majorly includes three important components (Virtual Machine DRS Group, Host DRS Group, and specification including whether the rule is a preferential should or is a required rule must ).
  • Distributed Power Management is another feature provided by vSphere DRS which uses Wake-on-LAN, IPMI, or iLO to power on hosts and is either off (Wherein vCenter Server will not provide any power management recommendations) or works in Manual mode (Where vCenter Server will recommend evacuating the host virtual machine) and Automatic mode ( Where vCenter Server will automatically execute any power management related recommendations).

Saturday, 5 November 2016

Working with Nakivo Backup and Replication Appliance

We have already dedicated couple of articles related to Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1 wherein we have seen the architectural components and also talked about new features available in Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1 here is a link for your quick reference Demystifying Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1

In our last post related to Nakivo Backup and Replication Series we also discussed about 

Backup/Recover Active Directory Objects with Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1 in case you missed it here is the link for your quick reference 
Backup/Recover Active Directory Objects with Nakivo


Apart from testing the backup and recovery related functionalities using 
Nakivo Backup and Replication v6.1 we also had a detailed discussion on Replicating Virtual Machines here is the link for your reference Replicate VM's with Nakivo Backup & Replication
Dedicated this article to understand the deployment of Nakivo Backup and Replication appliance which is available as-

Full Solution

This Virtual Appliance contains all components of NAKIVO Backup & Replication including Director, Transporter, and Backup Repository. Download this Virtual Appliance if you want to do a new installation of the product and keep all (or some) of your backups on the Virtual Appliance.

Full Solution without Backup Repository

This Virtual Appliance contains the key components of NAKIVO Backup & Replication: Director and Transporter, but does not include the Backup Repository (a new one can be created later). Download this Virtual Appliance if you want to do a new installation of the product and do not want to keep backups on the Virtual Appliance.


Transporter

This Virtual Appliance contains only the Transporter component of NAKIVO Backup & Replication. Download this Virtual Appliance if you have already installed the Director and want to install an additional Transporter to distribute workload or run jobs across WAN.


This Virtual Appliance contains the Transporter and Backup Repository components of NAKIVO Backup & Replication. Download this Virtual Appliance if you have already installed the Director and want to install an additional Transporter and keep backups on it.


This Virtual Appliance contains only the Director component, which is deployed in the multi-tenant mode. Download this Virtual Appliance if you want to provide BaaS, RaaS, or DRaaS.

I have been using the windows based installer solution for entire testing in my Home lab so thought of deploying the Virtual Appliance Full Solution and integrate the same with my vSphere environment.



Downloaded the full version and then using web client deployed the OVA on one of my ESXi host.

It's time to proceed further and configure the settings of the recently installed appliance by opening the console.


When working with the appliance we can configure network settings which talks about providing the Hostname IP address assignment Static or DHCP.

Backup Storage settings provides us the options for attaching a new disk, refresh the list of available disks on the current page, select the new not used disk to be used for backup storage.




Time and Time Zone settings helps us to change time and time zone for our Nakivo backup and replication appliance.

System Performance gives us the overall performance in terms of CPU and Memory Utilization and another important feature provided in system performance is to make use of TOP command which will help us in providing the list of tasks running.



Next settings/option in our list is Software updates which helps us in updating the current software by uploading the updates in the update directory /opt/nakivo/updates.

Nakivo Command Console where we can use Nakivo commands either locally or remotely via SSH. Below i have provided an example of running a command and it's output.


Once all the required settings are completed from command line we can proceed further and connect Nakivo backup and replication appliance by providing https://Ip address of appliance Virtual Machine:4443 in our browser.