Introduction

In this How-To guide, we will walk through the process of configuring Amazon S3 storage as a backup repository deployed in your on-premise Vembu BDR Backup Server. As your business grows you may not know how much storage capacity could be required for your growing data. Also, to meet your DR requirement, you may have to store your backup data securely in an offsite storage. Using AWS S3 Storage as a backup repository for Vembu BDR Backup Server helps you scale your storage with growing data and to make sure your backup data is secure for disaster recovery.

Prerequisites

  1. On-premise Vembu BDR Backup Server running on Windows
  2. An AWS paid account
  3. Storage capacity estimation for your backup data to be stored on Amazon S3 storage
  4. A running VMware vCenter or ESXi server

Description

This How-to guide contains four major steps to be done one by one as given

  1. Installing and configuring Vembu BDR Backup Server on your network
  2. Setting up storage Gateway on your AWS account
  3. Creating storage volume on AWS for Vembu BDR backup repository
  4. Configuring AWS storage gateway volume to Vembu BDR Backup Server’s backup repository

Step 1 : Installing and configuring Vembu BDR Backup Server on your network

The first step is downloading and installing the Vembu BDR Backup Server on your network.

Click here to download the Vembu BDR Backup Server.

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Check System Requirements to make sure you have met the minimum system requirements before installing the Vembu BDR Backup Server in your environment.

The Installation Guide will help you set up Vembu BDR Backup Server in your dedicated backup server machine.

Step 2 : Setting up AWS Storage Gateway on your AWS account

This step involves three stages.

    A. Prerequisites done on the AWS console
    B. Appliance deployment and configuration on the vCenter / ESXi Server
    C. Activating AWS Storage Gateway on AWS console

A. Prerequisites done on the AWS console

In this section we are creating AWS StorageGateway by deploying a virtual machine on your on-premise hypervisor. Here we are using VMware ESXi hypervisor and hence downloading the appropriate VMware ESXi image.

  1. To begin, login to your AWS account with your credentials, and choose the region where you want to deploy your AWS StorageGateway.
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  3. On the console main page under Storage services, select StorageGateway and select Create Gateway.
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  5. This is the most important step. Please note that we are using AWS S3 storage as the primary backup storage target for Vembu BDR Backup Server. So while creating Storage Gateway, we choose Volume Gateway as gateway type and opt Cached volume for low latency access.
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  7. As said, we are using VMware hypervisor on our on-premise network, we can choose VMware Hypervisor as host platform on the next step.
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  9. Choose Download image next to VMware ESXi radio button, will download a .zip file that contains the .ova file for your virtualization platform.

B. Appliance deployment and configuration on the vCenter / ESXi Server

  1. Unzip the downloaded file and you will get a .ova file. You can directly deploy this OVA file into your VMware vCenter server environment. Select any one of the desired ESXi servers and choose Deploy a virtual machine from an OVF or OVA file on the ESXi server console page.
  2. Deploying Vembu BDR Backup Server on-premise

  3. Name your virtual machine and provide the path of the ovf file downloaded in your computer and click Next
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  5. Select datastore and Click Next
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  7. Select required network, choose Thick provisioned format and choose Next.

    Note: Make sure “Power on automatically” is unchecked

  8. Deploying Vembu BDR Backup Server on-premise

  9. If required, review your appliance configuration at once, and then click Finish to deploy the appliance on your ESXi server.

Once the deployment is over, we need to add two disks to the appliance for upload and cache buffers. Accordingly, choose your higher capacity datastore to hold these disks.

Right click the appliance and choose Edit settings. Add two hard disks of required size in Thick provisioned format and click Ok. The size of the upload and cache buffers depends on the volume of your backup data to be sent across the wire to the s3 storage. We are providing 150Gb for Upload buffer and 200Gb for Cache, this is detailed in the pages below.

  1. Power on the appliance and login to the appliance using default username- sguser and default password – sgpassword.
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  3. On the AWS Storage Gateway Configuration menu, type Option 2 to configure a static IP address.
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  5. On the AWS Storage Gateway Network Configuration menu, type Option 3 to set a static IP address.
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  7. Type the name of the adapter you want to configure. Default : eth0
  8. Type StaticIP, SubnetMask, default gateway, Primary and Secondary DNS as per your company network design and Enter.
  9. Type Y to save the configuration.
  10. Here we are given all IPs as per our local network design

    Deploying Vembu BDR Backup Server on-premise

  11. After applying the configuration, press X to exit.

C. Activating your Gateway on your AWS account console

Now we need to associate the created Storage Gateway into your AWS account.

  1. If the Connect to gateway page isn’t already open, open the console and navigate to the page

    https://console.aws.amazon.com/storagegateway/

  2. Type the IP address of your gateway VM, and then click Connect gateway.
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  4. On the final step provide Gateway Timezone and Gateway Name. Then click Activate gateway.
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  6. On successful activation, the AWS Storage Gateway console displays the Configure local disks which we previously provisioned at the appliance. On the Configure local disks page, identify the disks we allocated and choose each disk to use for Upload buffer and Cache storage allocation
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  8. Click Save and continue to save the Allocation changes done

Step 3 : Creating storage volume on AWS for Vembu BDR storage repository

On this step, we are creating storage volumes on AWS S3 to be used as primary backup repositories for storing the backup data in the Vembu BDR Backup Server. Estimate the total storage capacity to accommodate current backup data along with the growing data in the future. Based on your requirements, you can create more volumes. Here is one such example with a new storage volume of 1 TiB size.

  1. So, open your AWS account with your credentials and navigate to the below storage gateway home page

    https://console.aws.amazon.com/storagegateway/home

  2. Once you log in, you will find the StorageGateway details, there you have the option to create volumes. Choose Create Volumes on Volumes tab as in the picture below
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  4. In the Create volume dialog box, choose a gateway for Gateway, type the required capacity in Capacity, For Volume content : Create a new empty volume, Type a name for iSCSI target name.

    Here, we provided VembuTestGW as the name of the Gateway, Capacity 1TiB & selected ’New empty volume’ in Volume content section. Provided ‘vembuawsiscsi’ as ‘ISCSI target name’.

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  6. Once all details are provided, click Create volume

Note : No need to set up CHAP as its optional, you can start creating your volume.

Step 4 : Configuring AWS Storage Gateway Volume to Vembu BDR Backup Server’s Backup Repository

In this blog, we are using the Vembu BDR Backup Server running on Windows OS. We are using Windows native iSCSI initiator to connect the AWS iSCSI target that we created in our earlier step.

For configuring iSCSI initiator, login to your Windows server where Vembu BDR Backup Server is running, and follow the below steps

  1. Start iscsicpl.exe from run command
  2. In the iSCSI Initiator Properties dialog box, choose the Target tab
  3. Type the Static IP address of your Virtual Machine, in which AWS StorageGateway appliance is hosted and running, and then choose Connect
  4. In the Targets tab, make sure that the target status has the value Connected, indicating the target is connected, and then choose OK.

Once done, your created volume(s), could be attached to the Windows Server similar to your local disk drive.

So our next step is Initializing and Formatting AWS StorageGateway. This is detailed in below three steps.

  1. Start diskmgmt.msc to open the Disk Management console.
  2. In the Initialize Disk dialog box, initialize the volume as an MBR (Master Boot Record) partition. Note: If your gateway’s storage volume is 2 TiB or greater in size, choose GPT as partition type.
  3. Create a simple volume to use that as a backup storage volume in Vembu BDR Backup Server.

Configuring AWS StorageGateway volume as Backup Repository to Vembu BDR Backup Server:

Now our storage volume is ready, and we are going to add this storage volume to the Vembu BDR Backup Server’s backup repository

  1. Open Vembu BDR Backup Server console page and navigate to Management tab and select Storage Pool.
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  3. In the Storage pool page click add. Now add Storage pool will appear, here you can select the volume and name the volume to use to store the backup data as in the picture below

Deploying Vembu BDR Backup Server on-premise

Now you can configure a new backup to use the connected drive as a backup storage.

This is very useful for any system administrator or a backup administrator to manage his on demand storage requirements wisely. Even one can expand his backup repository without disturbing the running backups as also his Windows server.

Learn more about Vembu BDR Suite here. Download the full-featured 30-day free trial of the latest Vembu BDR Suite v4.1 and experience modern data protection for your business.

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