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Optimizing virtual machine protection

Updated: November 1, 2013

Applies To: System Center 2012 R2 Data Protection Manager

You can perform a number of actions to optimize the performance of System Center 2012 - Data Protection Manager (DPM) backups for Hyper-V virtual machines. The actions include:

  1. Enable caching—When you protect over 200 virtual machines that use Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV), it can take more than 15 minutes to populate the Inquiry page in the Create New Protection Group Wizard. You can avoid this time latency if you enable caching on the primary DPM server. After you enable caching, when you expand the data source on the Inquiry page, DPM refreshes the resource groups under that node, but the virtual machines under each resource group are populated from the cache. The default time-out for the cache is 48 hours.

  2. Exclude page file churns—To improve the performance of your Hyper-V backups, you can decide not to back up the entire churn in your page file. This exclusion gives you the benefit of reduced storage requirement and improvement in backup performance. When the page file is excluded, DPM does not affect replica creation and consistency checking. The only change is that when the page file is excluded, DPM does not perform incremental backups on the page file.

  3. Automatically add new virtual machines to a protection group—After you deploy the DPM protection agent on a server that is running Hyper-V, you must add the server that is running Hyper-V manually to the required protection groups. You can automate the process by running a script.

Enable caching

Enable caching as follows:

Create a new registry key, called CacheInquiryResults at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Microsoft Data Protection Manager\Configuration. Under this key, create the DWORD InquiryResultsTimeoutInterval.

After you create the registry key, on the Inquiry page of the Create New Protection Group Wizard, click Clear Cache when you want to force DPM to refresh the list of virtual machines.

noteNote
When you click Clear Cache, DPM refreshes the entire cache, and not just the cache of the selected resource group.

Exclude page file churns

Exclude page files as follows:

  1. Move the page file for a virtual machine to a different virtual hard disk (VHD).

  2. Exclude page files by using the Set-DPMGlobalProperty cmdlet. For more information about how to use this cmdlet, see Set-DPMGlobalProperty.

Automatically add new virtual machines to a protection group

Automate the process to add new virtual machines to a protection group as follows:

Automatically add stand-alone virtual machines

The AddNewStandAloneVM.ps1 script does the following:

  • Takes the fully qualified domain name (FQDN) of the protected server and the name of the protection group as input.

  • Searches for the protected server and the protection group.

  • Runs an inquiry on the server that is running Hyper-V and obtains the list of unprotected virtual machines.

  • Adds this list of virtual machines to the protection group.

  • Saves the changes to the protection group and exits the procedure.

The script takes the following two parameters.

 

Parameter Description Example

Server name

FQDN of the server that is running Hyper-V

hyperv01.contoso.com

Protection group

Name of the existing protection group to which you add the new virtual machines

Protection Group 3

Automatically add virtual machines to a cluster deployment

The AddNewClusteredVM.ps1 script does the following:

  • Takes the FQDN of the protected cluster and the name of the protection group as input.

  • Searches for the protected cluster and the protection group.

  • Runs an inquiry on the cluster to get the list of resource groups.

  • Runs a parallel inquiry for each resource group and obtains the list of unprotected virtual machines under them.

  • Adds the unprotected virtual machines to the protection group.

  • Saves the changes to the protection group and exits the procedure.

The script takes the following two parameters.

 

Parameter Description Example

Server name

FQDN of the server that is running Hyper-V

hyperv01.contoso.com

Protection group

Name of the existing protection group to which you add the new virtual machines

Protection Group 3

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For additional resources, see Information and Support for System Center 2012.

Tip: Use this query to find online documentation in the TechNet Library for System Center 2012. For instructions and examples, see Search the System Center 2012 Documentation Library.
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