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#1 2021-02-07 10:04:07

Corbeau
Member
Registered: 2021-02-07
Posts: 10

network overview use XSIBackup

I have been reading the manuals etc on the site. I am putting together a solution as outlined below and in diagram:
https://docs.google.com/drawings/d/1nGA … sp=sharing

Have I correctly understood the role XSIBackup-pro / DC will play in this solution? Is Pro same as DC but with 1 license, if so I think I require Pro, otherwise DC.

A company that has a limited budget need to implement a new IT infrastructure.
Due to budget constrains I am trying to keep licensing costs minimumal.
So they will run just Windows Essentials Server 2016, which covers CALs for users and remote desktop gateway.
One remote office with about 40Mbps connection, main office has faster connection.
Remote office workers RDC to systems in main office. Covid / home workers use remote desktop gateway to access pc's in main office.

Given the single windows server there is a requirement for fast recovery in case of it's failure.

Suggested solution. WSE 2016 runs as VM with second VM host on premises.
Second host holds copies of VM that can be spun up if main server fails.
Second host also runs VM that contains backups mainly used for file recovery.
Remote office used for off site backups. Linux box. XSIBackup to handle all these backups.

Head office has main server running ESXi free
HPe ML350 Gen 10, SSD's + SAS for storage.
XSIBackup (pro/dc?) installed
Single VM running WSE 2016 doing all Windows network: AD, DHCP, File sharing, Remote Desktop Gateway

Head office backup server.
Hpe Microserver Gen10, SATA disks RAID5
ESXi installed.
Single VM running a NAS or Linux.
Recpicas on DC01

Choosing ESXi 7 as support covered until 2027.
Would I be better with eariler version or ESXi like 6.5 given issues with 7?

Are there any known issues using XSIBackup to backup and restore Windows Essentials Server 2016, especially given it's role as domain controller?


XSIBackup will:

Create replicas on ESX02
    A number of replicas kept in case of ESX01 failure of DC01 crypto - can be spun up immediately.

Create backups to NAS01
    Historical backups on NAS01 can be mount for file recovery.
    Possibly used in extreme cases to restore DC01

Create Backups on LB01
    Office site histroical backups of DC01
    Used for file recovery and recovering DC01 in case of loss of head office
    SSH tunnel via internet not VPN to increase realitive speed.

For file level recovery, backups mounted via ssh and Winscp'd to DC01.

Does this seem like a sane what of doing things? Am I missing anything.

Many thanks.

Last edited by Corbeau (2021-05-01 07:55:09)

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#2 2021-02-07 10:44:28

admin
Administrator
Registered: 2017-04-21
Posts: 1,778

Re: network overview use XSIBackup

Well, it's an almost complete description, you have omitted the most critical information though: CPU & RAM on each of the servers.
Update: more than enough as per the information your just posted.

We presume the HPe ML350 Gen 10 will have a fairly powerful CPU plus a decent amount of RAM, as even in its minimum configuration it exceeds what XSIBackup might need to do its work at maximum speed.

It's not that clear in case of the latter (HPE Microserver Gen10), it could mount a toy CPU, still as per today's standards that could very well be enough to handle the server part. You should not rely on too cheap CPUs though, specially since a double core pentium is about the same price and will handle receiving the data just fine. It's not that clear that in the event the Microserver had to handle the work load of the primary server it could do that well.

What hardware is the remote Linux box?. We recommend that you use CentOS, we have tested it thoroughly throughout years. Debian will work as well, you may have to handle some configuration issues on your part, while in the case of using a CentOS 7 distro, you will just nail it.

Yes, as of today Pro is just the same as DC but with just one license.key instead of two.

We always like to point the fact that using some last version of anything is like being the Caesar's food tester or the first to cross a frozen river. ESXi 7.0 is stable enough by now. The only drawback is that in this version VMWare is trying to make ESXi even more propietary and has read blocked all files in a VM, even in the case of running on top of snapshots. Our software will still work, you wont be able to backup VMs containing snapshots though, which can be a good way to increase backup density and restore points at no extra cost.

Use snapshots to increase restore point density

We would use ESXi 6.7 unless you do need ESXi 7.0 for some reason.

XSIBackup just doesn't care what type of OS it is backing up, just as long as the OS can be snapshotted. Windows OSs are pickier to quiesce in case you have some active DB server at the time to take the snapshot. They also tend to get fragmented from the VMFS perspective much more than Linux and are in general harder to virtualize in any virtualization system, at the same time that less efficient in terms of I/O

As per your recent post, everything is OK in terms of hardware. Just take one thing into account. Deduplication will offer you 98% compression ration as soon as you accumulate some 20-30 restore points, thus, you don't need so much extra space. On the other hand, SSDs, in special M.2 disks will boost you replica and backup speed in a local LAN context. Thus, it's worth putting the economic effort in installing faster disks than in making sure you have a lot of empty space that you may never use. You can alays add a bigger disk later on in case you need it.

That i5 should do just fine for the offsite backup server.

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#3 2021-02-07 11:05:02

Corbeau
Member
Registered: 2021-02-07
Posts: 10

Re: network overview use XSIBackup

Thanks for getting back.

Yes, I guess I kind of overlooked the CPU and RAM requirements, just assuming that any modern setup would be more than enough.

Probably specs:
ESX01 Xeon Silver 4210 32gb
ESX02 Xeon E-2224 16Gb   (in MicroSvr or ML30 - both HPe cert to ESXi 7.0U1)
LB01 - probably something like an old i5 3rd Gen Optiplex 3010 fitted with new drives. Actually probably no raid or linux software raid. If I get my hands on an old server so much the better.

Will use CentOS, not used it in years/decades. Always went to debian over Red Hat.
No reflection NAS01 will be a CentOS VM. Will allow for easy mounting of backups.

Will use ESXi 6.7. With the above hardware I'll have an upgrade route just in case it's needed a few years down the line.

Point taked re ssd's. Will look into that.

I was a bit confused trying to work out how to check integrity of replicas & backups. Can this be carried out via a cron job every week or so?
In other words is the a hands off way of monitoring the health the replicas and backups ?

Last edited by Corbeau (2021-02-07 11:22:37)

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#4 2021-02-07 12:06:31

admin
Administrator
Registered: 2017-04-21
Posts: 1,778

Re: network overview use XSIBackup

Yes, you can run a --check argument against a full repo or any of its subfolders, be it a full timestamped backup containing VMs or a single VM

Checks will be much faster with SSDs, as seek times are many orders of magnitude faster in SSDs than in HDs

Also: please note that although XSIBackup will not keep you from performing a --check action from the ESXi host (in case of NFS datastores), you'd be adding the network latency to each block check, which can become some significant time when checking millions of blocks, specially if your network equipment is not fast. Thus, checks should be performed on the backup server file system on NVME disks for best performance.

Let us pose some real life example:

In our lab, we have an old Synology box with regular Seagate HDs over gigabit LAN. One of the disks is mounted as an NFS3 volume. As you may imagine, the Synology CPU is quite outdated and extremely slow as per today's standards.

We have a Microtik switch in between the ESXi host and the old Synology box and the ESXi host is equipped with cheap Intel NICs

We check some 50 GB Windows 7 VM there from the Synology DSM command line and from the ESXi command line:

From ESXi:

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     7/13                                    W702-flat.vmdk.map    53.00 GB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     8/13                                      W702.vmx.tmp.map     3.30 KB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     9/13                                         W702.vmsd.map    45.00 B    |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    10/13                                          W702.vmx.map     3.30 KB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    11/13                                         W702.vmdk.map   601.00 B    |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    12/13                                        vmware.log.map   256.09 KB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    13/13                                 W702.vmdk.extents.map     5.54 KB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Removed host <tmp> dir        OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Removed prog <tmp> dir        OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
real    3m 42.44s
user    0m 4.61s
sys     0m 0.00s

Now from the Synology command line:

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     7/13                                    W702-flat.vmdk.map    53.00 GB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     8/13                                      W702.vmx.tmp.map     3.30 KB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     9/13                                         W702.vmsd.map    45.00 B    |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    10/13                                          W702.vmx.map     3.30 KB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    11/13                                         W702.vmdk.map   601.00 B    |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    12/13                                        vmware.log.map   256.09 KB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    13/13                                 W702.vmdk.extents.map     5.54 KB   |  100.00%   100.00%        0   OK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

real    0m51.451s
user    0m2.310s
sys     0m4.707s

The CPU capacity is not that important here when compared to the network latency added to the job. Even a crappy twelve year old CPU outperforms a fairly modern i5.

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