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After nearly one year of System Center 2019 release, Microsoft just announced the Update Rollup 1 for System Center 2019 and with it comes SCDPM 2019 Update Rollup 1 as well. This is the first update rollup that Microsoft released for System Center 2019. This is unusual since the update rollup cadence was normally scheduled to be released every 6 months.
System Center 2019 Data Protection Manager (SCDPM) is the latest release by Microsoft and with it comes a lot of improvements and new features. You can read more about what’s new in System Center 2019 Data Protection Manager here.
DPM is well recognized in the industry for the protection of Microsoft workloads and environments. With SCDPM 2019, you can protect application workloads such as Hyper-V VMs, Microsoft SQL Server, SharePoint Server, Microsoft Exchange, VMware VMs, Windows Server, and Windows clients to:
- Disk (D2D) giving the high Recovery Time Objectives (RTOs) for tier 1 workloads, short-term protection on-premises.
- Tape (D2D2T) for long-term online and off-site protection (Physical/Virtual Tape).
- Azure (D2D2C) for long-term online and off-site protection.
For more information on how to install System Center 2019 Data Protection Manager on Windows Server 2019 and SQL Server 2017, please check the following step-by-step guide.
In this article, I will share with you what’s new in System Center 2019 Data Protection Manager Update Rollup 1 and what are the bug fixes that have been addressed by Microsoft in this release.
What’s new in SCDPM 2019 UR1
The main new features that were included in this release are the following:
- Support for protection workloads running on Resilient File System (ReFS) volumes.
- Support for Windows Server Core. You can install DPM 2019 UR1 on Windows Server Core 2019 and 2016 but with one caveat. You cannot install the MARS agent on Windows Server Core. In other words, DPM cannot be connected to Azure Recovery Services Vault when it’s installed on Server Core. A hybrid backup is not possible in this scenario.
- Support for an additional layer of authentication and security when deleting Online/Azure backup.
An additional layer of security
Starting with SCDPM 2019 UR1, when you try to Stop protection of member with Delete protected data | Delete storage online, you will be prompted to enter a security PIN as shown in the screenshot below. You need to generate the security PIN from the Azure Portal under the Recovery Services Vault which is available for 5 minutes only. So even if your DPM server gets compromised, the attacker won’t be able to wipe your online data in Azure, better safe than sorry!
Please note that you should upgrade to the latest Microsoft Azure Recovery Services (MARS) agent (version 2.0.9173.0 or above) on your DPM server. If the latest agent is not installed, online backups might fail, and no Data Protection Manager to Microsoft Azure operation will work.
ReFS workloads protection with SCDPM 2019 UR1
ReFS is a new file system that was introduced back in Windows Server 2012 and was designed to overcome issues that had become significant over the years since NTFS was conceived. Starting with Windows Server 2016 and later, Microsoft enhanced ReFS and it is now the preferred file system deployment for Storage Spaces Direct, Hyper-V, SQL Server, and SharePoint Server. This updated version offers many new capabilities for private cloud workloads such as “Data Integrity”, “Resiliency to corruption and Availability” and “Speed and Efficiency”.
Since the release of System Center 2016 Data Protection Manager, Microsoft added Hyper-V workloads protection support with ReFS based on a new technology called Resilient Change Tracking (RCT). With RCT, backup products including DPM does not need to go through Consistency-Check (CC) in case of sudden power loss or VM storage migration, because when you move a VM between different storage, DPM can keep tracking of these changes by using RCT technology.
Now with SCDPM 2019 UR1, the DPM team added ReFS support for the remainder of the following workloads.
- Windows Server 2012 R2, 2016 and 2019.
- Exchange Server 2016, 2017 and 2019.
- SQL Server 2016, 2017 and 2019.
- SharePoint Server 2016 and 2019.
To configure protection of workloads hosted on ReFS volumes you don’t need any specific configuration. You can simply create the protection group like any other workload and configure the backup for the ReFS workloads that you have deployed.
SCDPM 2019 UR1 bug fixes
Here is the list of bugs that are fixed for SCDPM 2019 in the Update Rollup 1:
- During the attach agent wizard when you select a Computer on a trusted domain and add it, the selected Computer does not list under selected computers.
- When you select short term backup to tape and change the backup mode to full, the wizard shows incorrect backup schedule option and DPM console may crash on selection.
- You delete the protection group with retaining the recovery point for a VMware VM which is no more available on the ESX server. If you recreate the new VM with the same name on the same ESX instance and protect again using DPM, the recovery pane creates multiple entries for this VM.
- Recovery of Hyper-V RCT VM as files created directly on tape (D-T) fails.
- When you try to restore a backup directly from tape using the Management pane in the DPM console, the DPM service crashes.
- The DPM Console becomes unresponsive while loading Recoverable Items for a data source.
- DPM Service may crash during DPM maintenance jobs.
- In addition to these, all the issues that are addressed in SCDPM 2016 Update Rollup 8 are also fixed for SCDPM 2019 UR1.
What about the big annoying issue (Unable to mount VHD for protected workload)? Unfortunately, this issue is not addressed in SCDPM 2019 UR1 for multiple reasons. Because this specific error is logged in multiple scenarios and Microsoft engineering team is currently working to investigate all possible scenarios. Stay tuned for Update Rollup 2 (UR2).
Download SCDPM 2019 UR1
To download Update Rollup 1 for System Center 2019 Data Protection Manager, please check the official Knowledge Base article for details about these fixes and installation instructions.
You can obtain and install the update package from Windows Update directly, or using Windows Server Update Services (WSUS), or you can directly download the update rollup 1 from here.
Do you want to learn more about System Center Data Protection Manager and how to create a hybrid-cloud backup solution? Make sure to check my recently published book: Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager Cookbook.
With this book (over 450 pages) on your side, you will master the world of backup with System Center Data Protection Manager and Microsoft Azure Backup Server deployment and management by learning tips, tricks, and best practices, especially when it comes to advanced-level tasks.
Thank you for reading my blog.
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