Veeam v9.5 – Not just about the headline acts

 

I’m a little late with my Veeam Backup and Replication v9.5 post, as it was released on 16th November 2016, so diving straight in with some of the ‘headline’ acts :-

‘Headline Acts’

  • Full Integration with Microsoft 2016 data center technologies

    • Support for the new Hyper-V 2016 framework that is not reliant on volume snapshots by software or hardware VSS providers coordinated with guest VSS processing … As a Sys Admin with Hyper-V backups this makes me very. very happy. 
  • Direct Restore to Microsoft Azure

    • ..enables users to take on-premises workloads and restore or migrate them to Azure through an automated P2V or V2V conversion process and quickly restore Windows and Linux-based VMs, physical servers or endpoints to Azure to minimize business disruption. This could be a handy tool for customers looking to make the transition from on-premises to off-premises hosting.
  • Nimble Storage Snapshot Integration

    • Expanding on existing integrations with Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), NetApp and Dell EMC, Veeam extends its direct Storage Snapshot support to Nimble Storage users to help reduce the impact on production environments. This integration has always been a strong point for Veeam backups in the past, and it’s good to see them adding more storage vendors. I believe IBM storage integration has already been
      announced for Veeam 10
      .

‘Support Acts’

Now it’s time to look at the ‘support’ acts. Those little features, ‘under the hood’ as it were, that often go unrecognised.

The full ‘Whats New’ document contains 10 pages of items, so as in previous posts, I’m going to pick just 10 that I feel deserve a mention.

Engine

  • Parallel processing of per-VM backups. Health check and Compact operations will now process each backup file chain in parallel when per-VM backup file chains are used. Good to see continuing improvements with per-VM backups.
  • Backup Copy job performance enhancements. Backup Copy jobs should now initialize much faster and no longer cause load on virtual infrastructures due to obtaining the required information about processed VMs from the configuration database instead of the infrastructure. As a user of Backup Copy Jobs, the time to initialize was always an annoyance, should hopefully see an improvement.

vSphere

  • Thick disk type selection. Users can now choose thick disk type (lazy zeroed or eager zeroed) when performing a full VM restore or setting up a replication job. Choosing to preserve the source disk type will also distinguish between and preserve the correct thick disk type. Good to have more choice with restores.

Hyper-V

  • Performance enhancements. Jobs processing legacy Hyper-V host versions (2012 R2 and earlier) should now initialize up to 2x faster due to the accelerating Building VMs list, CSV enumeration and VM ownership retrieval operation. Speeding up Hyper-V job processing ..happy with that 🙂

Scale-out Backup Repository™ 

  • Temporary expansion. Enterprise edition users are now allowed to add a fourth extent, even though no more than three extents can be online at the same time, with the fourth remaining in maintenance mode. This will help with upgrading scale-out backup repository capacity by attaching a larger storage unit, followed by evacuation of backups from the smallest one. This is a nice touch, Veeam recognising that SOBR users with Enterprise licenses could end up in a sticky situation. 

Veeam Explorers

  • Lazy database load. All Veeam Explorers will now mount database files to restore from as needed, as opposed to automatically mounting all known databases at start up. Should help speed up the process.

Tape

  • Automatic tape driver cleaning. Yes, finally! The backup server will now monitor tape drive status events and automatically perform a cleaning as required, as long as the cleaning cartridge is available in the tape library. Tape admins of the world rejoice!! 🙂
  • Waiting for tape notification improvements. The email report and job Action log message now contain information about the tape device and media pool that lacks free media. No more guess work, that’s a good thing right?

User interface

  • Free space threshold for production datastores. You can now set the percent of free disk space on the production datastore, indicating when jobs should issue a warning or fail completely instead of creating a VM snapshot to prevent the datastore from overfilling with snapshot data. This is an addition to the existing BlockSnapshotThreshold registry value (default is 2GB), which continues to serve as the last line of defense when the above functionality is disabled, as is the case for upgrading users. The new settings can be found under Options > Notifications. Actually had to use this recently, and very welcome addition.
  • Color themes. For those of you who find Veeam Green to be too acidic, we now provide three additional color themes featuring neutral colors. The color theme is a per-user setting attaching to a specific backup server, allowing users to color-code backup servers to more easily distinguish between them during Alt-TAB. THIS IS HUGE!! By far the best feature released, why this isn’t a headline act ….

 

So there you go, just a quick run through some of the ‘headline’ and ‘support’ acts in the new Veeam Backup and Replication v9.5 release. I encourage you to read through the “Veeam Backup 9.5 What’s New” document and pick out your favourite new features.

 

Let me know what you find.

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