Virtualization Technology News and Information
Backblaze and Tiger Bridge Partnership Allows Veeam Backup to B2 Cloud Storage
Veeam has quickly become very popular among companies that have the need to back up their VMs, servers, Office 365, and other hosts. However, the amount of on-prem storage that is required for Veeam's Backup & Replication engine is high and costly for many companies, and will only retain data based on a retention period defined by the company using Veeam. So in the instance of unavoidable updates in data management regulations, such as new compliance guidelines or document retention rules, that may require companies to hold more data from VMs than the on-prem storage can handle, companies struggle when they can only avoid a short retention period from Veeam. By tiering to the cloud, you can extend your backups further in time. This enables you to pull down subsets of files beyond the period of time your on-prem backups cover. 

But before today, companies' options weren't all that attractive. You could upgrade to a higher (and more expensive) license with Vee, and then pay the expensive storage costs of Amazon S3. Or, you could purchase and configure more on-prem hardware. But now you have a new, affordable, seamless option: the B2 Cloud Storage partnership with Tiger Bridge! The solution allows you to back up your VMs in the cloud and easily restore files as far back as you'd like to go, for ⅓ of the price of using S3. This all occurs on a single pane of glass with no interruptions to your workflow - all backup copy jobs and restores are controlled directly from your Veeam Backup and Replication Console.

Here's how it works:

Tiger Bridge is a software-only solution that expands Windows NTFS capabilities to include tiering to cloud, other storage, or tape. Once the files are tiered, they are replaced with zero-byte stub files in the NTFS. These stub files are placeholders that allow users and applications to work normally, as if the data exists in its original location. Simply opening or calling for the file triggers a restore. In this way, it is possible to have access to petabytes of data while using a modestly sized local volume.

As the most affordable and scalable public cloud storage platform available - with a robust REST API that is being consumed by 100s of integrations - Backblaze B2 is the perfect tiering solution for Tiger Bridge customers, allowing for infinite copies of their backups in the cloud.

The key benefit with this solution is that you do not have to change your backup job. Instead, you can make a copy of the job and have it executed once the existing backup completes. This is excellent news for anyone who needs for their backup process to be invisible to end-users or for teams that need to create separate retention policies that allow for VM backup storage for any period of time.

Deploying a proof of concept for this solution is simple and takes about 30 minutes:

  • Spin up a new VM and install Tiger Bridge, then configure it to use your B2 bucket.
  • Create a Tiger Bridge repository within Veeam and configure it as a backup location.
  • Create a backup copy job for each of your backup jobs.

After each backup job is completed, the backup copy job copies the backup to the Tiger Bridge repository. As soon as that happens, Tiger Bridge will upload these files to B2 and replace the files on disk with zero-byte stub files. When you need to restore a file, use the Veeam Backup and Replication console's restore feature. Tiger Bridge will automatically bring back the files you need in a transparent way. You won't even know the backups being restored are from B2 via Tiger Bridge!

While this solution will have your entire VM backed up in the cloud, you don't need to download your entire VM to find a file. Using Veeam and Tiger Bridge partial restore, you can search your backed up copies for the file you want and just download that file. If the VM is 100GB and the file you want is 10MB, you only pay to download the 10MB.
Published Wednesday, September 25, 2019 2:11 PM by David Marshall
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