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I know how to backup the VMs in the datastore, but what about the ESXi config?

In case of a disaster recovery (like fire and such) which directories should I backup off-site to be able to restore an ESXi configuration?

I know about these:

/bootbank
/altbootbank

Are there others?

Edit:

Note I'd like to move Microsoft Windows out of the equation (especially since VMware is doing the same with the vSphere Client, i.e. not being able to do certain operations on ESXi 5.5 with it any more).

My aim was to do it from a *nix machine (ESXi is very limited in what it can do, and I'd like to keep it that way, i.e. not install many things on it to keep it as stable as possible).

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How are you performing a backup of the ESXi system? What method are you using? –  ewwhite Mar 26 at 11:57
    
Preferably rsync or ssh based as I'm from the *nix background. –  Jeroen Wiert Pluimers Mar 26 at 11:59
1  
    
@MikeNaylor that's the thing: I did search before asking and the first usable link that Google showed me for that was this one, requiring Windows: professionalvmware.com/2010/05/… –  Jeroen Wiert Pluimers Mar 26 at 15:29
    
The problem is the PowerCLI functionality isn't supported in linux. Backing up the configurations and restoring them is best done as recommended using the PowerCLI. The other option is a direct shell connection as mentioned in the KB. –  Mike Naylor Mar 26 at 15:55

1 Answer 1

up vote 4 down vote accepted

You may want to look at purpose-built VMware backup tools. You will be very disappointed if you treat an ESXi host like a Linux/Unix server.

Use the VMware backup commands from a separate station, and you'll be left with a nice configuration tarball. I would find another approach for the actual VM backups.

Edit: Host-based example

vim-cmd hostsvc/firmware/sync_config
vim-cmd hostsvc/firmware/backup_config

This stores the config in /scratch/downloads:

# vim-cmd hostsvc/firmware/backup_config
Bundle can be downloaded at : http://ip.of.esxi.host/downloads/52fd67ba-2fdf-9876-6651-46c3da638f1a/configBundle-centaur.ewwhite.net.tgz

Also see: http://www.virtuallyghetto.com/2013/02/how-to-backup-restore-free-esxi-host.html

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I'll edit my question, as I'd like to move Microsoft Windows out of the equation (especially since VMware is doing the same with the vSphere Client, i.e. not being able to do certain operations on ESXi 5.5 with it any more). But if that's the best way to go... –  Jeroen Wiert Pluimers Mar 26 at 15:24
1  
Oh, you can use the CLI to do the same thing. Windows is not required. –  ewwhite Mar 26 at 15:25
    
Thanks. Please add a reference like that to your answer and I'll +1 and accept it. Something like wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Installing_VMWare_vCLI –  Jeroen Wiert Pluimers Mar 26 at 15:28
    
+; accepted. Thanks a lot! –  Jeroen Wiert Pluimers Mar 26 at 15:37

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