A lot of my content this year has been associated to Microsoft Azure and Office 365, and with speaking to customers I quickly found out there is so much that we actually do with Microsoft that we know about maybe within Veeam but the list is so long maybe not everyone does have that information. This post might turn out to be long, but I fully intend to just link back to material already out there in the wild to make things more condensed.

Azure Marketplace

For those familiar and using the Microsoft Azure Marketplace, it is a good place to start when looking for any type of solution, many vendors have released appliance type models that can be quickly deployed from the marketplace and 2020 has been a very busy year for us doing the same. A lot of the items you see below in the image is what we will cover later on in the post.

Veeam PN for Microsoft Azure

As you can see from the image above product number one is Veeam PN, now most of you may not have heard of this or know what it brings, firstly it is a free tool and it allows you to create a VPN connection between remote sites and or over the public network. A lot of the marketing has been focused in conjunction with our direct restore to the public cloud functionality that we have for both Microsoft Azure and AWS, but in reality this can be used to provide you with your own VPN connectivity to other locations. I use my own Veeam PN configuration when I am travelling to ensure security but also access to my own region media and content.

Anthony Spiteri has done a solid walkthrough on how simple and effective this free tool can be

Veeam Cloud Connect

Next on the list is Veeam Cloud Connect in two different versions, one is aimed at Service Providers and the other Enterprise, There is lots of content out there about Veeam Cloud Connect for Service Providers as this is more common for our channel partners to adopt and offer Backup as a Service and DR as a Service out to their own customers to provide a secondary site / location for the customer offsite requirements.

Veeam Cloud Connect for the Enterprise is well the same in terms of the offering, but it allows those larger enterprises to manage multi distributed environments in a similar fashion to a Service Provider.

I feel that this will become more and more of an IT team requirement as we hear more and more about Edge Computing and we have more and more remote sites to protect data in, you can find out more about this here.

Microsoft Azure Blob Storage

Storing and sending your backups to the cloud has absolutely taken off in 2020 and even before this crazy year, the ability to send long term retention backups into object storage and reduce those costs for storing what would have traditionally stayed on premises.

Capacity Tier

The capacity tier functionality within Veeam Backup & Replication enables tiering of your backups between an on premises fast recovery media (Performance Tier) and the capacity tier where one of the options is to leverage Microsoft Azure Blob Storage.

This YouTube walkthrough demo explains about the scale out backup repository and the specific functionality that we have with Microsoft Azure.

Archive Tier

Coming with v11 we have spoken about the ability to go one step further for that long term retention, the tier of write once and hopefully never have to read again but just in case we have a copy of our data in the deepest storage available. More to come on this one later.

NAS Backup

The NAS backup also within Veeam Backup & Replication allows for us to tier older file versions off to object storage including Microsoft Azure Blob Storage.

Our NAS backup this year has been a massive feature since arriving in v10 at the start of 2020, I have put together a few video demos and walkthroughs to understand the whole NAS backup picture here.

Direct Restore to Microsoft Azure

Whilst we are on the topic of Veeam Backup & Replication which traditionally would sit in your DC as a virtual or physical box and this would be your brains to your backup and data management within your environment, another feature to mention is Direct Restore to Microsoft Azure. A really simple and nice wizard driven approach to converting machines into Azure IaaS systems, lots of use cases here, test and development, recovery scenarios but likely the most common at least from what I have seen this year is migration.

Another walkthrough demo video can be found on my YouTube channel walking through the steps and also some considerations on where and when you would use and how the performance can vary.

Veeam Backup & Replication

I mentioned above that traditionally this would live in your DC or potentially on each of your remote sites and manage the backups. But there is also a requirement that this may be running as a Windows machine in the public cloud, this also brings some benefits to when recovering or migrating data from Azure Blob Storage to Azure.

This video demo talks about that disaster recovery to the cloud scenario and how you might need that Veeam Backup & Replication server in Microsoft Azure to start restoring your on-premises systems to the public cloud.

It is also worth mentioning as this has been something close to the heart for a few years now on how to quickly provision these systems, sure the marketplace is not a lengthy process at all but it would be if you had the requirement to spin up multiple Veeam Backup & Replication servers across multiple regions for your recovery efforts. Well super easy, automate your DR Veeam deployment.

Veeam Backup for Microsoft Azure

Now we have spoken about storing data in Azure Blob Storage and we have spoken about converting on premises machines to Microsoft Azure VMs and even a little about failure scenarios and how this method could be used to bring your business back online after a failure occurs. But what about after the migration or net new Azure IaaS machines are there and functioning for the business? How do you protect those instances?

This demo shows how you can do that using Veeam Backup for Microsoft Azure

External Repository

Another thing to mention here is about the external repository that is covered in the video above but the power of this enables the ability to perform so many tasks around further backup requirements, such as sending to a service provider or off to tape. But also the recovery options, you can take backups from this Azure blob storage repository and you can recover those instantly streamed from Azure Blob Storage to a VMware vSphere environment on premises or convert them into AWS EC2 instances.

Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365

Finally, it must be mentioned the efforts that have been made to make sure that your data is protected within Microsoft Office 365 with Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365. This year v5 was released which broadened the capabilities even further.

I again have created a YouTube playlist that covers the v5 release

For those not familiar with the versions pre v5 though I also did a Cloud Field Day session where I covered the whole premise of what we are doing including v5.

That pretty much wraps us up, although there is always so much more going on around operating system support and application support, Microsoft is a huge engine overall and data and workloads need to be protected, the other services or platforms we should call out though would be the Azure VMware Service, this is supported and you can find out here some of the considerations and limitations.

Another to mention would be the Azure Kubernetes Service and this comes into the new member of the Veeam family for 2020, Kasten. Kasten have some great resources across the board covering what they do and in some technical detail you can find the specific information here around Backup and Recovery for Microsoft Azure Kubernetes Service with Kasten K10.

Please let me know if you would like to see more demo videos and on what specific topics, I am thinking that there is a requirement to run through some of the Kasten stuff to help with familiarisation with the product and how it looks and works. But anything above if we haven’t covered it let me know and we will get it covered.

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