Last updated on Monday 28th of February 2022 08:52:48 PM

©XSIBackup Upgrade Procedure.

 Please note that this post is relative to old deprecated software ©XSIBackup-Classic. Some facts herein contained may still be applicable to more recent versions though.

For new instalations please use new ©XSIBackup which is far more advanced than ©XSIBackup-Classic.

 You may need to reboot the ©ESXi host upon upgrade. Do so if you experience any awkward behaviour from part of XSIBackup, a simple reboot fixes this issues. This is very rare though.

This post applies to ©XSIBackup-Free & ©XSIBackup-Pro version upgrades and/or upgrading from FREE to PRO edition upgrade.

©XSIBackup doesn't make any modification to ©ESXi when you install it. Installation from scratch consists basically in copying ©XSIBackup files and directories: xsibackup file, bin, src, conf directories and the EULA & license files. Upon copying these files, you will need to apply permissions as stated in the README.txt file:

esxiserver# cd /vmfs/volumes/datastore1/xsi-dir
esxiserver# chmod -R 0700 xsibackup EULA bin conf

One of the first things you do with ©XSIBackup is to install the cronfile. This operation adds one line to the /etc/rc.local.d/, so that every time the host restarts the cron file is reinstalled again. This is due to the root's crontab not being persistent across ©ESXi reboots. This is indeed the only modification ©XSIBackup does to ©ESXi system files and can be easily reverted by just running the command again. One command's run installs the cron, writing the cron setup to /etc/rc.local.d/ and the following removes that line, easy!.

Once the cron system is installed, you just edit your xsibackup-cron file to schedule your backups. Each one of these backup jobs complies with the commands allowed in a given version of ©XSIBackup. Most of the main commands remain unchanged since the first versions, thus, it is very likely that your sysntax will still work upon update of the main xsibackup file, even if you forget to remove some obsolete command, it is probable that your jobs are run, as ©XSIBackup will simply ignore what cannot interpret. Nevertheless, read the documentation of your specific version, as more complicated backup jobs may require you to tweak some argument.

On the other hand, if you want to communicate transparently with other ©ESXi boxes to launch remote backups or to just copy some VMs from one host to another, you use the --link-srv argument. This operation simply creates an RSA key pair (if it does not exist yet) and copies the public key to the authorized_hosts file of the counterpart system. You can copy one host's key to as many servers as you want.

So :what is the best procedure to upgrade ©XSIBackup?. Well, that will greatly depend on how big is the gap between your older version and the one you are upgrading to, but most of the times overwritting the xsibackup file, the src and bin directories, the EULA file and accepting the EULA again will suffice. Depending on many obscure factors, like: previous interrupted executions, the state of the memory, etc..., upgrading to a new version might cause subsequent executions of ©XSIBackup to fail with a number of different errors, like: "arithmetic syntax error". If that should happen after an upgrade, you should just reboot the ©ESXi management services or the whole ©ESXi host to get ©XSIBackup to run properly again.

If you are still stuck with some errors and you believe to have mixed incompatible components, just remove everything and start from scratch; using the online installer or installing manually, as explained above, installing in a clean host is really simple.

Removing all of ©XSIBackup from your host is easy. Just don't forget to set your installation path in the first line.

rm -rf /vmfs/volumes/datastore1/xsi-dir;
chmod 0700 /var/spool/cron/crontabs/root;
sed -i '/-dir\/jobs/d' /var/spool/cron/crontabs/root;
sed -i '/cron-init/d' /etc/rc.local.d/

In regards to the upgrade of the backup job's syntax, you'll need to determine by reading the current ManPage at if you need to modify any of the arguments parsed to ©XSIBackup.

Just as long as you don't delete your RSA key pair (always backup your install dir out of ©ESXi when upgrading) it will remain in the ©XSIBackup directory and will be used to connect to the hosts that know about the public key in their authorized_hosts file. Thus, any trust relationship that you may have built so far will still be there and won't be affected by an upgrade.

If you lost your keys, do not panic, you'll just need to generate a new key pair and re-link to the other hosts.

Daniel J. García Fidalgo