I'm backing up my virtual machines in Azure using Backup Jobs in Recovery Service Fault.

When creating a backup job, you're prompted to specify retention policy - and nothing else. My question is what exactly is included in the backup. I know that it uses the Azure vm agent to make consistent backups, but which drives are included in the backup?

I assume that the OS disk is included, but what about any potential data disk which have been added to the VM. Will these be included as well?

I can of course deduct some of this by actually making a restore and inspect, but I'll like to understand why/what is happening.


Everything is included. It's similar to the process of creating an image of your Virtual Machine. See below:

How to capture a VM image from a generalized Azure VM

OS disk and Data disks are backed up in the process. The restore will not only restore the original OS but also include all attached disks. Bear in mind that the restore process will not replace the original Virtual Machine, instead, it will create an exact copy of it from that point in time.

If you want more details about the backup process, you can find it here:

Plan your VM backup infrastructure in Azure - Performance and Resource Utilization

| improve this answer | |
  • As you mention, the link covers the process of creating a VM image (and that process includes OS disk and data disks). Is there a link where it explicit states that backup using Recovery Service vaults does the same? – JanC Dec 1 '16 at 7:58
  • the second link as I mentioned, but you can also trust me since I use it on a daily basis. – Bruno Faria Dec 1 '16 at 11:28

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