Articles

How to back up SQL Server running in Azure VMs with Azure Backup


Hello everyone! In this video, we’ll learn
how to back up SQL Servers running in Azure VMs using Azure Backup. Azure
Backup is the modern way to backup in the cloud. Built-into Azure, it is a zero-infrastructure solution that eliminates
the need to deploy any backup infrastructure, unlike traditional backup
software that need you to manage backup servers, agents and provision storage. It protects both standalone SQL Server instances and Alwayson
Availability Group in Azure VMs and provide the key capability to manage
them centrally, so you don’t have to log into each server or node in isolation.
Along with a bunch of other features like 15-minute RPO and point in time
Restores, it provides a very simple experience to configure backups; just log
in to the portal ->discover the databases and apply the backup policy to them.
Let’s see the demo now. Log into the Azure portal and go to the desired Recovery Services vault dashboard. A vault is a storage-cum-management entity to which all the resources are backed up. To configure backup on a new database click on ‘+Backup’ and specify our intent to backup SQL Server in Azure VM. This
will launch a two-step process. In the first step, select the SQL VMs and
discover databases in them. This typically takes a few minutes and will
register the selected virtual machines to the vault. In the second step, click on
‘Configure Backup’ to see the list of all the SQL server virtual machines that
are registered to this vault. This list shows both standalone SQL server
instances and SQL Alwayson Availability Groups. Expand the chevron
on the left to see all the unprotected databases in that instance. You can
either select the few databases that you want to protect or select the entire
instance or better still enable ‘auto-protection’. The auto-protection feature
ensures that the solution automatically detects and protects any new databases
that will get added to this instance in the future. This is especially beneficial when you are working in a dynamic environment
where databases get added day-in day-out. Next, specify the backup policy. Choose
from the list of the existing policies or create a new one. You can specify the
backup frequency and retention for each of the three backup types: Full, Differential and Logs. For example: I can choose to have weekly or daily ‘Fulls’ and
retain them for as many days, weeks months and even years to meet long term
retention needs. I can specify the backup frequency to as low as 15 minutes for my
log backups, to meet lower RPO requirements. You can also enable native
SQL compression for your backups. Click ‘OK’ and then click ‘Enable backup’.
This will trigger multiple configure- protection jobs corresponding to each of
the databases that you protected. These jobs can be monitored in the ‘Backup jobs’ blade of the vault dashboard. Once these jobs get completed, you will see the
backup items corresponding to the databases that you protected in the ‘Back
up items’ blade. To restore a database, right click on the corresponding backup
item and click on the action ‘Restore DB’. Next, choose the restore destination – you
can either restore the database to the same server and override the existing
one or to another SQL Server registered to this vault. Next, specify
the recovery point you want to restore – you can either restore from discrete
recovery points created using full and differential backups or you can recover
from continuous log backups represented in the form of a graph. For example, if I
want to restore the database to its state at 6:05 a.m., I’ll simply choose
that time in the graph. The solution automatically locates the right
combination of full and differential backups and applies the logs based on
the selected time. So you get the database exactly how it was at point in
time. So that’s it, just click on ‘Restore’ and you are done! You can track the
corresponding restore job under the ‘Backup jobs’ blade. Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *