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VMware FAQs

Unlocking insights: Protecting VMware virtual machines - your questions answered

Updated over a week ago

Getting started FAQs

What does Druva back up from VMware?

Druva performs an Image-level backup for the complete VM that includes GuestOS and Data on the VM. Druva performs agent-less backup with the help of a backup appliance known as backup proxy.

  • You can protect:

    • VMs on Standalone VMware ESXi (ESXi) host.

    • VMs on VMware ESXi hosts that are managed through VMware vCenter Server (vCenter Server).

    • VMware on premise and VMware on Cloud (VMC).
      View the supported versions of VMware ESXi and VMware vCenter Server supported by Druva.

  • You can perform the following backups:

  • You can instantly restore virtual machines that are mapped to Linux CloudCache.

  • You can exclude a virtual disk - VMDK from VMware backups.

What VCenter/ESXi versions are supported by Druva?

Review the supported versions of VMware ESXi and VMware vCenter Server supported by Druva.

What are the key features provided by Druva for protecting VMware virtual machines?

Druva provides you the capability to back up and restore virtual machine images, files and folders, and application data. The following are the key features that Druva provides:

  • Agentless data protection of files, disks, or VMs in the cloud, from on-premises, or from the cloud.

  • Automated storage management with built-in cloud archiving with global deduplication

  • On-demand scale

  • vSAN certified

  • Intuitive and quick deployment

  • Backup proxy load-balancing

  • Auto discover virtual machines for backup configuration

  • App aware backups (Druva supports MS SQL Server aware backups only at the moment)

  • Instantly restore virtual machines mapped to Linux CloudCache

  • Backup & DR with ransomware protection

  • Orchestrate recovery within customer sandbox

What are the prerequisites to back up VMware virtual machines?

What are the recommended resource requirements for proxy deployment?

Review the recommended resource requirements for the backup proxy, including CPU, memory, and available free space on the VMware datastore.

What are the prerequisites to confirm if the environment is ready for Druva deployment?

  • You need to ensure the required ports are open.

  • Ensure * URL is whitelisted and verify connectivity between the backup proxy and Cloud.

  • Check the Druva executables are excluded from Antivirus.

  • Set the Firewall rules and ensure * URL is whitelisted to allow connectivity.

What user privileges are supported to back up and restore virtual machines on vCenter and ESXi?

To perform VM backups and restores, you must set the required privileges. The user permissions can be viewed on the VMware vSphere Web Client. For more information, see vSphere Permissions and User Management Tasks and Managing Permissions for vCenter Components.

What ports are used for communication between Druva and other VMware components?

Review the list of ports required for communication between Druva and various VMware components.

What Druva agent applications, configuration paths, and URLs should be allowed?

VMware Proxy Deployer FAQs

Can I use the Druva Proxy Deployer utility for registering both on-premise and VMC setups?

Yes. The same Druva Proxy Deployer utility is used for both on-premise and VMC.
For more information, see Deploy the first backup proxy and register the VMware setup.

Are there any specific requirements to run the Druva Proxy Deployer utility from the local system?

For more information, see Prerequisites to install the backup proxy.

I am not able to perform the registration with the Druva Proxy Deployer, is there a manual way?

Yes, you can download the OVA, and install the backup proxy manually. For more information, see Manually deploy the OVA template to install the backup proxy.

Can I use the utility to deploy additional backup proxies?

Technically, you can, but the best way is to deploy additional backup proxies from the Management Console. You can deploy multiple backup proxies in a single workflow.
For more information, see Deploy additional backup proxies.

Check the port connection on 902 for ESXi connection and 443 for vCenter server/appliance?

Ensure the required ports are open. For more port-related information, see link.

How to ensure the proxy is able to connect to Druva storage nodes?

Add * URL to the allowlist and follow the link to verify connectivity.

What is the best practice to implement the backup proxy on VMware Virtual Environment?

It is always advised to deploy the proxy on the same or shared data center and same geographical location as the VM to be backed up. It helps to achieve better performance during jobs. See the link for reference.

VMware backup FAQS

What backup options are available for configuring backups for my VMware virtual machines?

You can schedule automatic and manual backups from the console. As an administrator, you can configure virtual machines for:

  • Full backup

  • Application-aware backup. Currently, Druva supports SQL Server application-aware backups.

  • Instant Restore

The type of backup needs to be specified in the backup policy. The default backup policy is configured for non-application-aware backup.

How do I configure backup policy and retention period for virtual machines?

Backup policy defines the rules to back up content with automated backup schedules, and retention period to back up virtual machines. To create and manage backup policy, see Manage backup policy.

How does Druva back up my VMware virtual machines?

To understand the workflow at the time of backup, see VMware virtual machine backup workflow.

At the time of configuring virtual machines for backup, how do I select the virtual disks I want to exclude?

To exclude virtual disks, you can either:

  • Provide the entire path to the virtual disk. For example [datastore] virtual_machine_name/folder/virtual_disk.vmdk

  • Use a wildcard character

    πŸ“ Note
    ​To exclude a virtual disk, Druva recommends that you copy the virtual disk name or path from the vSphere Web client. We recommend you to copy the path to the Notepad to remove any formatting or special characters and ensure that there is no space at the beginning and at the end. Space is important between [Datastore] and the name.

The following examples describe how you can use a wildcard character to exclude virtual disks that contain a string:

  • To exclude a virtual disk that contains the string test at the end of the path to its location, enter *test

  • To exclude a virtual disk that contains test at the beginning of its path to its location, enter test*

  • To exclude a virtual disk that contains test in the middle of the path to its location, enter *test*

  • To exclude virtual machines in a folder whose name contains the string test at the end, provide the path of the folder and then use the wildcard character. For example, [datastore] virtual_machine_name/folder/*test

To get the virtual disk name or path:

  1. Connect to the vCenter using the flash-based (flex) vSphere web client.

  2. On the web client, select VMs and Templates.

  3. From the left pane, select and right-click on the virtual machine and then click Edit Settings. The virtual disks are listed under the Virtual Hardware tab.

  4. Click on a virtual disk to see its details.

  5. Copy the path to the virtual disk from the Disk File field.

πŸ“ Note
​Flash-based vSphere web client may not be available for certain vCenter versions. It is possible that the path to the virtual disk you get from the vSphere web client is different from the path that the Druva backup proxy gets from the hypervisor. In such a case, the virtual disk is not excluded from backup.

How do I backup my VMware vCenter Server Appliance?

Druva backs up the VMware vCenter Server Appliance as a normal virtual machine. However, it is recommended to set up a backup schedule for the appliance when no other virtual machine backups are running.

What happens to the recovery points created by Druva for an unsuccessful or canceled backup job?

From backup proxy version 4.6.9-27918 and later, the recovery points created by Druva for a canceled or unsuccessful job will be deleted during the subsequent Backup Now or schedule backup job.

How to back up a powered-off virtual machine?

If you have configured an application-aware backup of the virtual machine, the backup completes successfully with errors, and the virtual machine is successfully backed up. However, Druva skips the database-level backup. See article.

If the powered-off virtual machine is configured without enabling the application-aware processing setting in the backup policy, Druva performs a successful backup.

Application-aware processing FAQs

Does Druva support Always On Availability Groups (AAG) with application-aware processing?

No. Druva only supports standalone databases right now. We are looking for more validation on whether customers deploy AAG in their virtualized environment. Based on our research, customers prefer to deploy standalone instances and choose VMware HA & DRS. Please reach out to Support for more details.

Does Druva support SQL Failover Clustering/Failover Clustered Instances (FCI) with application-aware processing?

No. Druva only supports standalone databases right now. We are looking for more validation on whether customers deploy FCI in their virtualized environment. Based on our research, customers prefer to deploy standalone instances and choose VMware HA & DRS. Please reach out to Support for more details.

Can I restore one/multiple databases out of the VMware backup?

Customers can restore one or more databases without restoring the entire VM back to their VMware infrastructure.

Can I use the Druva Hybrid Workloads agent for the Microsoft SQL Server to backup the databases inside the VM?

Yes. The customers have to disable App-Aware processing in their VMware policy. The goal of the functionality to allow agentless backups without the need to deploy & install the agent. However, the customers can still continue to use the Hybrid Workloads agent for MS-SQL server if they don't wish to protect the entire VM. If the customers are looking to protect the entire VM, we would certainly advise them to use the app-aware processing capabilities to save on administration and get a single view of the virtual machine and the Microsoft SQL Server application inside it.

πŸ“ ​Note

MS SQL backups and VMware backups of the same virtual machine must start at different times to avoid backup errors. Ensure that the backups windows do not overlap.

Does Druva support SQL Authentication with app-aware processing?

Druva supports Windows Authentication. We are looking for customer feedback on whether they would prefer using native SQL Authentication as well and we can certainly add the capability.

What are the prerequisites to enable app-aware processing?

To learn more about the prerequisites for app-aware processing, see System requirements for agentless application-aware processing on VMware virtual machines.

Can I create a service account for Druva for app-aware processing of Microsoft SQL Server inside the VM's?

Yes. We have also released a credential store along with app-aware processing. See the documentation on how to configure VMware virtual machines for backup and the credential store documentation that provides information on how to use it. Administrators can now create a service account and provide those details in the credential store in Druva. Administrators can use these credentials and assign them to virtual machines. Druva will use these credentials and discover the applications running inside the VMs (Microsoft SQL Server for now).

Can I recover my Microsoft SQL Server databases to a point in time copy using app-aware processing?

Yes. Administrators can define the frequency of the backup of the transaction logs while enabling the app-aware processing feature. The Transaction logs are backed up to a temporary location in the guest OS inside the VM and then uploaded to the Druva Cloud via the Druva Backup Proxy. Druva will start streaming the transaction logs, removing the need to copy it to a temporary location in the upcoming releases. This will remove the need for any temporary space provisioning requirements. Administrators can then choose to restore the databases to a point in time copy.

Does the SQL VM need connectivity to the Druva Cloud?

No. There is no need for the SQL VM to connect to the Druva Cloud. Druva will orchestrate the backup/restore process.

Does Druva install anything on the SQL VM?

No. We offer pure agentless backups with our App-Aware processing feature even while backing up the transaction logs. We inject a process and a plugin and remove it once the necessary operations are performed. For more information, see the application-aware backup workflow documentation.

Why for restoring MS SQL database from application aware backups, Windows server virtual machines must be used for staging location and not client virtual machine?

When the disk is attached to Windows client virtual the VSS recovery points might get deleted in some cases. Hence it is not advisable to use Windows Client virtual machine for staging location.

Does VMware application-aware MS SQL restores support system database recovery?

System databases ( master, model, msdb, tempdb, Resource, distribution, reportserver, reportservertempdb ) are not protected as part of VMware application-aware MS SQL backups. Use the Druva MS SQL Server agent to protect MS SQL system databases.

What are the different status of the VMWARE App-aware T-Log backups?

For the App aware backups, the following will be the design of the TLog backups and same will be reflected under the Jobs page:

  • TLog backups will continue to run in loop until it fails or gets cancelled under the same job id.

  • You can scroll down the job progress logs to see the details.

  • Three status for TLog backups are displayed on the jobs page: Failed, Cancelled,or Waitingfor the next schedul e.

  • By design, Successful status for TLog backups is not displayed on the Jobs page.

  • This design was introduced so that the VMware jobs page becomes more legible and it is not unnecessarily flooded all the time with TLog backup jobs.

  • Further TLog backups can be cancelled under the following two scenarios:

    • If a scheduled full backup job starts, then it can cancel the TLog backup job.

    • If an admin cancels the TLog backup job.

      πŸ“ Note

      ​If TLog backup jobs fails then automatically Full backup job of the SQL server is triggered and then again TLog backup kicks in as per the schedule.

VMware auto-configuration FAQs

What are the permissions required for VMware SQL App-Aware backups?

You can follow the steps mentioned in this article to apply credentials on SQL VMs to protect the SQL DB. However, the admin permission required to protect SQL DB inside the SQL VM would require the permission mentioned in this article.

What happens if I reconfigure a virtual machine which was previously auto-configured using a rule?

If you reconfigure an individual virtual machine created in a vCenter folder that already has a configuration rule applied to it, it is added to the exclusion list of the rule.

What happens if the tag for a virtual machine changes after it is configured?

The VM will be reconfigured if the new tag has a rule applied to it and the storage region is the same.

What if a virtual machines has disks in multiple datastores and I have applied auto configuration rule at the datastore level?

The VMs which have VMX configuration files in that specific datastore are eligible for auto configuration.

What happens if the object on which rule is applied no longer exists or is moved/deleted?

If the object is moved or deleted, the auto configuration rule is considered invalid.

How do the exclusion patterns work?

Exclusion patterns let you provide strings that can be a part of the name of the virtual machine. The rule does not auto configure a virtual machine with a name matching that pattern. Patterns that you can provide to exclude virtual machines from getting auto-configuration rule applied:

  • If you enter Test_VM, Druva excludes the virtual machine that has the string Test_VM as its name.

  • If you enter Test*, Druva excludes all virtual machines that have names beginning with the string Test.

  • If you enter *Test*, Druva excludes all virtual machines that have names with the string Test in the beginning, middle, or end.

  • If you enter *Test, Druva excludes all virtual machines that have names ending with the string Test.

Druva is not case sensitive for the string you enter for exclusions. For example, you enter test_vm as the exclusion string. In such a case, Druva excludes VMs with names such as Test_VM, test_vm, test_VM, and TEST_vm.

What happens if I update a rule and apply it to a different folder?

All the virtual machines created under the folder with a rule applied are listed under the Configured VMs section.


If you select a new folder when you update your rule,

  • All the virtual machines created under the previous folder and the current folder are listed under ConfiguredVMs section.

  • Consider a scenario where you create a rule (rule1) and apply it to a folder (folder1) under the vCenter hierarchy. Folder1 contains VM1, VM2, and VM3. After some time, you edit rule1 and select folder2 that contains virtual machines VM-A, VM-B, and VM-C. When you select the rule, under Configured VMs you can see VM1, VM2, VM3, VM-A, VM-B, and VM-C.

    If you create a new rule, for example, rule2, and apply it to folder1:

    • If the Exclude already configured VMs setting is disabled for rule2, virtual machines VM1, VM2, and VM3 are reconfigured based on rule 2 provided their storage region is same.

    • If the Exclude already configured VMs setting is enabled, VMs VM1, VM2, and VM3 remain configured through rule1.

What happens if I remove all the backup proxies from a backup proxy pool, and a rule uses the backup proxy pool?

Druva does not alert or mark your rule as invalid if all backup proxies from one pool are moved to another, and your rule uses the empty backup proxy pool. When your rule, that uses an empty backup proxy pool, tries to automatically configure a virtual machine for backup, it is configured. However, when Druva tries to back up your virtual machine, the backup job fails because there is no proxy to back it up.

My folder in vCenter datastore contains virtual machines and folders under it. The folders under it contain more virtual machines. What happens if I apply a rule to the parent folder in the datastore?

In step 7 of the Create an auto-configuration rule procedure, you can see a folder hierarchy. If you apply rule1 to VM_Folder1, and you do not create and apply any rule to VM_Folder1-A, rule1 auto-configures VMs under VM_Folder1 and VM_Folder1-A. If you create a rule2 later and apply it to VM_Folder1-A:

  • If the Exclude already configured VMs setting is enabled for rule2, rule2 does not auto configure VMs under VM_Folder1-A since the VMs are already configured from rule1.

  • If the Exclude already configured VMs setting is disabled for rule2, rule2 auto-configures VMs under VM_Folder1-A.

My folder in vCenter datastore contains virtual machines and folders under it. The folders under it contain more virtual machines. What happens if I create two rules, and apply the first rule to the parent folder, and the second rule to a child folder?

In step 7 of the Create an auto-configuration rule procedure, you can see a folder hierarchy. If you apply rule1 to VM_Folder1 and rule2 to VM_Folder1-A:

  • rule2 auto-configures eligible VMs under VM_Folder1-A

  • rule1 auto-configures eligible VMs under VM_Folder1

  • rule2 gets a priority over rule1. Druva does not let rule1 auto configure rule2 eligible VMs under VM_Folder1-A

  • If VM_Folder1-A contains a virtual machine (for example VM1), and a virtual machine that is powered off (for example VM2):

If rule2 is created to exclude VMs that are powered off (Powered Off setting is checked) and contains the exclusion pattern VM1, rule2 does not auto configure virtual machines VM1 and VM2.

  • If rule1 is created without any exclusion patterns and can include powered off virtual machines (Powered Off setting is unchecked), rule1 auto-configures VM1 and VM2.

I want to reconfigure virtual machines using rules, but the rule uses a different storage than the storage which the virtual machines are already using. What happens if I create and use this rule?

If you try to reconfigure your virtual machines using rules, reconfiguration fails if the storage specified in the rule is different. For example, you add virtual machines VM1 and VM2 under folder VMFD1 in a vCenter setup. You attach VM1 and VM2 to the storage US-West. Later, you create an auto-configuration rule R1 for folder VMFD1 in which you specify storage as US-East. In the rule R1, you disable Exclude already configured VMs ensuring auto-configuration of all virtual machines in the folder when the rule is applied.
When the rule R1 to folder VMFD1 is applied:

  • VM1 and VM2 remain attached to the US-West storage since the reconfiguration fails due to the different storage.

  • You do not see an error message as in manual reconfiguration.

VMware restore FAQs

VMware Instant Restore FAQs

Can we restore virtual machines from a Windows CloudCache?

No. You can restore a virtual machine instantly only from a Linux CloudCache.

What happens if we change the storage to Windows CloudCaches after enabling instant restore for a virtual machine?

If you switch to a Windows storage after enabling Instant Restore, the Instant Restore is disabled for the selected VMs.

What happens if I dissociate a VM from CloudCache after enabling Instant Restore for that VM?

If you dissociate a VM from CloudCache, all the subsequent backups of the VM will be stored directly on the Druva Cloud, and instant restoration of the VM is not possible.

What is the cost for VMware Instant Restore?

There is no charge for this feature. However, customers must have Enterprise Workloads's Enterprise or Elite licenses to deploy CloudCache. For more information, see Druva Plans & Pricing.

If we already have CloudCache, how do we enable VMware Instant Restore?

You must be on the Linux CloudCache to use the VMWare Instant Restore capability. If you are already on Linux CloudCache, you must upgrade your CloudCache instance(s) and backup proxies to the latest version.
If you are using CloudCache on Windows, you can easily deploy a Linux CloudCache instance as a VM, after discussing sizing guidelines with Druva support. For more information, see Enable or disable Instant restore.

VMware jobs FAQs

How can I identify the transport mode used during the backup workflow?

You can verify this information by referring to the Progress Logs tab of that backup job. The progress logs displays the transport mode used.

How to identify if the VM is in the invalid state and the job is unable to find the VM during backup?

The job displays an appropriate error message for such events. Refer the article for more details.

What time zone is followed for the triggered jobs - proxy pool time zone or the proxy time zone?

The jobs are triggered as per the proxy pool time zone.

Other FAQs

Does VMware Tools be installed and updated?

Yes, latest VMware Tools should be installed on the virtual machine.

How to verify whether the ESX/vSphere host is licensed for vStorage APIs?

Follow the link to check the required ESX or VMware license see, link.

How can you handle the VM Disk consolidation warning on VMware?

Check for the documentation for best practices see, link.

What is the potential cause if Druva have access rights on one or more vmdk files of the VM?

If you notice any issue related to access issue on VMDK files then follow the steps mentioned in the given link.

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