When you store data on standard machines, the task of backup is clearly defined and understandable. Admittedly, backups are still scary because they can be unreliable, and there’s always the nagging worry that you’ve omitted to back up something vital; that your backup is faulty; or that open files such as mail stores and databases won’t be included because of locking problems.
Add virtual machines to the mix and life gets even more complicated. It can be difficult keeping track of just what virtual machines you have in your organisation, and what data is associated with them. Will your backup software identify virtual machines that aren’t mounted, and will it find any related data devices? Can you be sure all the data is being backed up? Here we look at how a number of popular solutions cope with such problems.