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Veeam Backup and Replication v11 CDP Configuration Step-by-Step

Veeam Backup and Replication v11 CDP Configuration Step-by-Step. A look at continuous data protection in Veeam v11 and configuring CDP replica

Highlights

  • So, to begin with, in line with the requirements listed above, the first thing I am doing here is running the Manage I/O filters action by right-clicking on the vCenter Server in the Backup Infrastructure section of the console.
  • Replication v11 environmentInstalling the I/O filters on both the source and destination VMware vSphere ESXi clustersDeploy a Veeam CDP ProxyCreating a CDP Policy to define parameters of the CDP jobAllow replication initial synchronization to complete .
  • If you are like me after installing the I/O components, I immediately went to setup the CDP policy to create the CDP policy for protecting the test virtual machine.

One of the new features contained in the Veeam Backup & Replication v11 release is what is defined as Continuous Data Protection (CDP). With CDP, you can protect a workload with ultra-low RPOs that start at seconds rather than minutes. For tier one workloads, this can drastically reduce the amount of data loss that happens and many possibilities for protecting business-critical data. I have started playing around with Veeam Backup & Replication v11 in the lab environment and Continous Data Protection (CDP) is a very exciting feature I wanted to get my hands on. This post will cover Veeam Backup and Replication v11 CDP configuration step-by-step and see how you can easily get this up and running for the desired workloads.

Benefits of Veeam v11 Continuous Data Protection (CDP)

There are many benefits to using the new Continuous Data Protection (CDP) in Veeam v11. These include the following:

  • No VM Snapshots – I/O filter certified by VMware
  • No workload or hardware dependency – replicate any to any
  • No distance limits and reduced bandwidth requirements
  • No babysitting with policy-based protection
  • No need for a worker appliance on each host in the cluster
  • No deployment guesswork with the built-in assistant

Veeam Backup & Replication v11 CDP prerequisites

I will detail the requirements as I found in labbing out creating the Veeam Backup & Replication v11 Continuous Data Protection (CDP) configuration. These include the following:

  1. Adding both source and target VMware vCenter Servers to your Veeam Backup & Replication v11 environment
  2. Installing the I/O filters on both the source and destination VMware vSphere ESXi clusters
  3. Deploy a Veeam CDP Proxy
  4. Creating a CDP Policy to define parameters of the CDP job
  5. Allow replication initial synchronization to complete

Veeam Backup and Replication v11 CDP Configuration Step-by-Step

So, to begin with, in line with the requirements listed above, the first thing I am doing here is running the Manage I/O filters action by right-clicking on the vCenter Server in the Backup Infrastructure section of the console.

Managing cdp io filters for a vmware vsphere cluster in veeam backup and replication v11
Managing cdp io filters for a vmware vsphere cluster in veeam backup and replication v11

Select the vSphere cluster where the I/O components are to be installed.

Select the cluster for io filter management in veeam backup and replication v11
Select the cluster for io filter management in veeam backup and replication v11

Confirm the installation of the I/O filters.

Verify the installation of the io filter on the vsphere cluster
Verify the installation of the io filter on the vsphere cluster

The I/O filter components are installed successfully. Keep in mind you will need to add both the source and destination vCenter environments and clusters to Veeam v11 so the I/O filter can be installed in both environments.

The filter is enabled and showing up to date for the vsphere cluster
The filter is enabled and showing up to date for the vsphere cluster

Deploying the CDP Proxy

If you start to deploy the CDP Policy from the Veeam Backup & Replication console, you will be prompted for the next step needed, install the CDP Proxy.

If you are like me after installing the I/O components, I immediately went to setup the CDP policy to create the CDP policy for protecting the test virtual machine.

Creating the cdp policy option in the console
Creating the cdp policy option in the console

If you haven’t already deployed the CDP proxy, you will see the message below stating you need to deploy the CDP proxy first.

Prompted to deploy the cdp proxy next
Prompted to deploy the cdp proxy next

This kicks off the new VMware CDP Proxy wizard.

Starting the new vmware cdp proxy wizard in veeam backup and replication v11
Starting the new vmware cdp proxy wizard in veeam backup and replication v11

Select storage for the cache configuration for the CDP proxy.

Select the cache location for the cdp proxy
Select the cache location for the cdp proxy

Configure any traffic rules needed.

Configure traffic rules as needed
Configure traffic rules as needed

Review the configuration for the new VMware CDP proxy.

Review the settings to apply
Review the settings to apply

Apply and install the CDP Proxy.

Applying and installing the required components for the cdp proxy
Applying and installing the required components for the cdp proxy

The Summary screen shows the details fo the installation.

Summarizing the cdp proxy deployment in veeam v11
Summarizing the cdp proxy deployment in veeam v11

Creating a new CDP Policy

Now that you have the CDP Proxy in place, the next step is creating a new CDP Policy. The policy is the piece that defines the virtual machines protected by CDP and other configuration.

Starting the configuration of the new cdp policy in veeam v11
Starting the configuration of the new cdp policy in veeam v11

Select your virtual machine(s) for adding to the CDP Policy.

Select the virtual machine contained in the cdp policy
Select the virtual machine contained in the cdp policy

Next, select the destination environment. Again, as a note, you will need to ensure the destination environment has the CDP components (IO filter components) installed on the cluster.

Select the destination for the cdp replication policy in veeam v11
Select the destination for the cdp replication policy in veeam v11

Next, the policy settings. Choose how VM data should be transferred to the target environment as well as the naming convention of the VM replica.

Determine the policy settings for the cdp replication and naming convention
Determine the policy settings for the cdp replication and naming convention

On the schedule screen, this is where you see the exciting settings of CDP. By default the Recovery point objective (RPO) is configured at 15 seconds. You also see the short-term retention and long-term retention configuration.

Set the rpo and retention settings
Set the rpo and retention settings

Just for kicks, I wanted to see how far down the RPO would go and it will go down to a minimum of 2 seconds for CDP.

You can set the rpo down to 2 seconds
You can set the rpo down to 2 seconds

Select your guest processing settings.

Guest processing settings in the cdp policy in veeam v11
Guest processing settings in the cdp policy in veeam v11

Finalize the new CDP policy configuration.

Finish out the new cdp policy in veeam backup and replication v11
Finish out the new cdp policy in veeam backup and replication v11

After you finalize the CDP Policy, you will see the initial replication job for CDP synchronization begin.

The initial synchronization of the cdp protected virtual machine begins
The initial synchronization of the cdp protected virtual machine begins

As a note, your virtual machine must be powered on to be protected with CDP. Below, I had the test VM powered off from another operation and the initial synchronization failed with the error about the power state.

The virtual machine must be powered on for cdp policy to synchronize data
The virtual machine must be powered on for cdp policy to synchronize data

In the target environment, you will see the replica VM created.

Replica is created in the destination cdp environment
Replica is created in the destination cdp environment

As a test, as I saw the similar demo performed in the Go Live event, I began copying an Ubuntu ISO to the protected machine.

Copying a file over to the source of the cdp policy
Copying a file over to the source of the cdp policy

Even though the ISO had not finished copying to the machine, you will see the bump in replication traffic after a few seconds once the RPO value is hit.

You can within a few seconds see the uptick in cdp replication traffic
You can within a few seconds see the uptick in cdp replication traffic

Restoring a point in time from a Veeam v11 CDP replica

With the CDP replica in place, we now have a much more granular set of RPOs where we can essentially slide the “play” button to where you want the restore to take place.

Very granular restore to replica points in time
Very granular restore to replica points in time

Wrapping Up

This is a feature that many have been waiting on in Veeam Backup & Replication for quite some time. It was believed to be in version 10, but did not make that release. However, Veeam v11 has delivered. As shown in the walkthrough Veeam Backup and Replication v11 CDP Configuration Step-by-Step is easily accomplished in the normal easy Veeam style from the VBR console.

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Brandon Lee

Brandon Lee is the Senior Writer, Engineer and owner at Virtualizationhowto.com and has over two decades of experience in Information Technology. Having worked for numerous Fortune 500 companies as well as in various industries, Brandon has extensive experience in various IT segments and is a strong advocate for open source technologies. Brandon holds many industry certifications, loves the outdoors and spending time with family.

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