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Druva Documentation

VMware virtual machine backup workflow

Phoenix Editions: File:/tick.png Business File:/cross.png Enterprise File:/tick.png Elite

Overview

Phoenix performs backup on virtual machines based on the schedule defined in the backup policy, that virtual machine is a part of or an on-demand backup triggered from Phoenix Management Console. This involves the interaction of Phoenix components and VMware components.

The following diagram depicts the data flow at the time of backing up virtual machines.

backup_workflow.png

Virtual machine backup workflow

Step Operation

Step 1

Virtual machine backup request is initiated based on,

  • Schedule defined in the backup policy.
  • Manual backup

Phoenix forwards the backup request to the backup proxy pool.

  • Based on the load balancing algorithm, Phoenix automatically identifies the backup proxy that will run the backup request.
  • If the identified backup proxy is busy, the backup request is queued and initiated when the backup proxy becomes free.

Step 2

  • In an environment where virtual machines are deployed on ESXi hosts managed by vCenter server, backup proxy contacts vCenter Server to locate the virtual machine and obtains its configuration.
  • In an environment where virtual machines are deployed on standalone ESXi hosts, backup proxy contacts ESXi host to obtain the virtual machine configuration.

Step 3

In case of application-aware backup: 

  1. Phoenix injects a temporary binary inside the VM to perform SQL app-aware backup
  2. The binary is responsible for querying the SQL data and taking a VSS snapshot of the SQL data.

The backup proxy queries the ESXi hypervisor or the vCenter server to create VM snapshots that contain VMDK files and the VMX files of the virtual machines.  Ensure that enough storage is available on the local datastore for the VM snapshot.

The backup proxy uses:

Step 4

Backup proxy establishes a VDDK connection to the VM snapshot using a transport mode to read the VM data. 

Step 5

Backup proxy starts reading the virtual machine snapshot. 

Step 6

The backup proxy reads the virtual machine snapshot and prepares to send the backup data to Phoenix CloudCache (if configured) or Phoenix Cloud.

Step 7

Backup proxy transfers the deduplicated backup data to the Phoenix Cloud.

After the transfer completes, the backup proxy deletes the virtual machine snapshot.
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