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Re: Virtual Machines: Newbie / novice questions

On 05/18/2017 09:35 AM, Mark Fletcher wrote:
This is the most unbelievable overkill. Windows VMs work just fine in
VirtualBox. When it comes to backup, I have my backup scripts check the
machines are down and if they are, include the virtual disks in the main
system backup, and if not, skip them for that night. There is no
Windows-level backup, it's all done at the host level.

My backups are done in the host too. Thing is, I want to back up the settings (ie. shared directory settings, machine settings, etc.) as well. I can't remember all the settings to the VMs I use. Exporting will back up everything in one neat package.

For this to work it has to be OK to down the Windows machines in order
to back them up,otherwise you risk Windows deciding to do a pointless
disk write in the middle of your backup and invalidate it. That isn't a
problem for me; if it were, I would either schedule a maintenance window
and back them up then, or look into Windows-level backup solutions
(which _still_ have no need for the nuclear-warhead-to-slice-a-banana
approach described above).

I shut down virtual machines so they aren't running during the export process.

Restore is smooth, and no license issues -- the Windows machine never
knows anything happened.

However, the virtual hard disk is a pretty large size. My method compresses it further so that the size of the backup is much smaller.

This has been the easiest and most effective way I have found so far. However, I might take a closer look at backing up only the virtual machine's hard drive along with a text file describing the machine's settings, then try to re-create the machine and see if it will lose the licensing or not.

Right now I have a lot on my plate so what I'm doing is still going to have to be the process until I find time to dig deeper into this.

Thank you for your reply and info.

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