Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE network backups to Windows Server 2016 with Dedup, a promising combination

Posted by Paul Braren on Jun 29 2016 (updated on Jul 13 2016) in
  • Backup
  • Storage
  • HomeLab
  • HomeServer
  • HowTo
  • If you backup many family PCs, you'll want to start by reading this article:

    Server Storage at Microsoft

    The official blog of the Windows Server storage engineering teams:

    • Data Deduplication in Windows Server 2016
      Apr 01 2016 by Will Gries at blogs.technet.microsoft.com

      Since we introduced Data Deduplication (“Dedup” for short) in Windows Server 2012, the Dedup team has been hard at work improving this feature and our updates in Windows Server 2016 are no exception. When we started planning for Windows Server 2016, we heard very clearly from customers that performance and scale limitations prevented use in certain scenarios where the great space savings from Dedup would really be useful, so in Windows Server 2016, we focused our efforts on making sure that Dedup is highly performant and can run at scale. Here’s what’s new in 2016:

      Support for Volume Sizes Up to 64 TB
      In Windows Server 2012 R2, Dedup optimizes data using a single-threaded job and I/O queue for each volume. While this works well for a lot of scenarios, you have to consider the workload type and the volume size to ensure that the Dedup Processing Pipeline can keep up with the rate of data changes, or “churn”. Typically this means that Dedup doesn’t work well for volumes greater than 10 TB in size (or less for workloads with a high rate of data changes). In Windows Server 2016, we went back to the drawing board and fully redesigned the Dedup Processing Pipeline. We now run multiple threads in parallel using multiple I/O queues on a single volume, resulting in performance that was only possible before by dividing up data into multiple, smaller volumes:

    Next, check out yet another fantastic article by Vladan Seget:

    Finally, start thinking about the possibilities for when Windows Server 2016 is released in 3Q2016. I know I'm certainly looking forward to testing the multi-threaded deduplication that is said to be much improved over 2012 R2, as seen in the schematic above. Think about it, 2 vCPUs for that W2016 VM, using two of my Xeon D home lab's 8 cores for a very good cause, quietly deduping the extended family's daily VEB backups.

    New-Volume-Wizard-Full

    Oh, and don't forget those VMs, Hyper-V or VMware. This same Windows Server 2016 VM can also hold your Veeam Backup & Replication v9 Repository. Yes, VEB can backup to not just network shares, but to Veeam Repositories as well.

    Now you see why I'm thinking I'll be willing to give 2016 two vCPUs, given how important its role may become if this dedup role works out well for my home lab's backup needs. Of course, with important NTFS filesystems that I don't wish to possibly corrupt (no ReFS support for dedup yet), automated shutdown of my vSphere 6 home lab is required, for peace of mind during those summer thunderstorms and winter snowstorms.

    Is Microsoft Windows Home Server's famed Single-instance storage effectively back again, without the huge "rehydration" penalty?

    Most seductive for me is the potential for a combination of using this newly enhanced deduplication in conjunction with backup products like Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE 1.5 (VEB), where we should be able to see much of the old Windows Home Server benefit of compressed and deduplicated storage, but hopefully without the huge slowdown that was seen during "rehydration" of backups during bare-metal restores. It was frustrating, because the CPU and disk utilization would be low for the whole restore. This also meant that even restoring from SSDs was slow, since the disk wasn't the bottleneck.

    That proprietary PC backups database also tended to bog down on restores even more, once that database exceeded about 2TB in size. A typical single PC bare metal restore took more than 10x as long as a straight restores from products like native Windows backup, VEB, or Acronis would.

    Let's hope those days are behind us. Window Server 2016's expected 3Q2016 GA date is not far away, this should be interesting!


    WARNING - Running Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE with any Windows Server 2016 beta is NOT supported by Veeam

    I used Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 5 (beta) for this article, download details below.
    This entire article is really for informational purposes, I'm not recommending you actually use such beta code for any production purposes.


    By the way, VEB 1.5 compression and dedup within drive volumes its backing is pretty outstanding, with quick backing up of duplicate ISOs featured in the first of the 3 technical videos below.

    Video

    Fastest backup in the world! 10GbE / Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE / Samsung 950 PRO NVMe SSDs.
    I demonstrate how easy it is to add the Deduplication role to your Windows Server 2016, whether the disk is already formatted NTFS, or completely blank.
    Fantastic video by Charles Clarke of Veeam - Veeam Backup job to Windows 2012 De-Dupe volume.

    Jul 13 2016 Update

    Careful testing will be needed! See also these words of warning:

    You will also want to avoid deduplicating appliances for primary storage. Why? Well, these devices will constantly be de-duping your backups, which doesn’t work so well if Veeam needs them for things like reverse-incrementals or synthetic fulls. Deduplication is fantastic for secondary storage though as the data tends to be ‘colder’.


    See also at TinkerTry


    See also

    Download Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE 1.5

    Download Windows Server 2016

    Fee to download (registration required), this ISO is downloaded from Microsoft in the Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 5 - Evaluations section:
    14300.1000.160324-1723.RS1_RELEASE_SVC_SERVER_OEMRET_X64FRE_EN-US.ISO


    Veeam-Vanguard-Shirt-2016-TinkerTry.JPG

    Disclosure: Veeam has been an advertiser on many virtualization sites for years now, and Veeam is currently running a BuySellAds-purchased advertisement along the top of TinkerTry as well. All TinkerTry advertisement goes through third party BuySellAds. None of my articles are sponsored posts, and note that there are currently no affiliate links for Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE, or any of their other products. TinkerTry.com, LLC is not a Veeam Pro Partner. There are no commissions for any Veeam products folks buy after reading one of my articles.

    I reserve the right to freely write about topics that I choose, whenever I choose to, an essential part of what makes blogging about home virtualization labs, storage, and backup so much fun.