We are currently setting up a Server 2008 R2 which will be off-site over a leased line with VPN. At the main site is 2 x Hyper-V hosts in a failover cluster with PowerVault M3000i iSCSI SAN.

We are using BackupAssist for local backups and each host backups up itself and it's guests nightly creating a 500GB backup each which is copied to a 2TB rotated NAS drive. Files and SQL DB's are also backed up / log shipped etc.

Looking for the best way to backup the Hyper-V VM's and copy them off-site so that the OS's are only a month old and the data is a day old. The main backups are too large to transfer between backups so options discussed so far are:

Take rotating individual backups of the VM's each day and copy over, Day 1 SQL VM, Day 2 Exchange VM etc, would require more storage.

Look in to Hyper-V snapshots, however don't believe these are supported in clustering.

3rd party replication tools


DPM both local and remote. DPM local in the data center backs up the cluster, local DPM acts as external storage location (the new version has support for that). Requires a separate server (not an expensive one, though) and gives you very efficient permanent backups.

  • Thanks, it sounds a great fit. We've spent a bit of money on new server / BackupAssist & WAN, if this was out of budget, do you have a plan b or is it simply worth the money for the resilience?
    – PMC
    May 17 '11 at 11:54
  • Really depends on needs. Otherwise use anything with a small local atom server in the data center using DFR-R to sync down backups over the WAN. The good thing with DPM is that it allows restores, can make backups OFTEN (incremental), integrated with the MS stack (exchange, hyper-v etc.) AND has build in facilities for replication to another server. The pain somewhere else (money) has to get quite big to offset this ;)
    – TomTom
    May 17 '11 at 12:05

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