After nearly 6 months of System Center 2019 Data Protection Manager Update Rollup 1 release, Microsoft just announced the Update Rollup 2 for System Center 2019, and with it comes SCDPM 2019 Update Rollup 2 as well. This is the second update rollup that Microsoft release for System Center 2019.
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.
SCDPM 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, 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 2 and what are the bug fixes that have been addressed by Microsoft in this release.
What’s new in SCDPM 2019 UR2
The main new features that were included in this release are the following:
- Support for SQL Server Failover Cluster Instance (FCI) using Cluster Shared Volume (CSV).
- Optimized Volume to Volume Migration.
- SQL Server 2019 support as System Center Data Protection Manager database.
- Offline Backup using Azure Data Box.
Let’s dive in deeper.
Support for SQL Server FCI using CSV
SQL Server on Cluster Shared Volumes (CSVs) provides users with fault tolerance, high availability, and resiliency, but it doesn’t guarantee that the data is safe in event of accidental deletion of data, data corruption, or ransomware attacks. In these scenarios, users would want a solution that they can use to restore their “clean” data from a previous point in time.
DPM 2019 UR2 version introduces the support for protecting and recovering SQL Server Failover Cluster Instances on Cluster Shared Volumes. If you were already using SQL Server on CSVs, you can go ahead and start protecting your SQL DBs with DPM 2019 UR2.
Optimized Volume to Volume Migration
Starting with SC DPM 2016 UR4, you can move your backup data from one volume to another (i.e. storage upgrade from low performant volume to high performant volume). You can also move your data sources to other volumes when an existing volume is getting full and cannot be extended.
The DPM team took this further and added a new optimized volume-to-volume migration. DPM 2019 UR2 introduced a new concept of optimized volume migration, which allows you to move protected workloads from an old (Modern Backup Storage) volume to a new (Modern Backup Storage) volume in a much faster way. The enhanced migration process migrates only active backup copy (Active Replica) to the new volume. All the new recovery points are created on the new volume while existing recovery points are maintained on the existing volume. This less data transfer compared to the full volume migration approach results in a faster data source migration.
With this new optimized volume migration, DPM 2019 UR2 and later versions will start supporting the following two options to migrate data to a new volume:
- Full migration (default) – all the data for a particular data source is migrated from the current volume to the new volume. The time to complete the migration is based on the size of the protected data source and the number and size of the recovery points. Larger data sources or data sources with a large number of recovery points take more time to migrate to the other volume. Please check the following article to learn more about how to migrate back up data from one volume to another.
- Optimized migration (DPM 2019 UR2 and later versions) – allows you to move data sources to the new volume much faster. The enhanced migration process migrates only the active backup copy (active replica) to the new volume. All the new recovery points are created on the new volume, while existing recovery points are maintained on the existing volume, and are purged as per the retention policy. To use this new optimized option, you first need to add the following registry key on your DPM server. Open Windows PowerShell and run this command:
- New-ItemProperty -Path ‘HKLM:\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Microsoft Data Protection Manager\Configuration\DiskStorage’ -Name OptimizedMigrate -Value 1 -PropertyType DWord
SQL Server 2019 support as DPM DB
SQL Server 2019 is the latest version of SQL Server. Since a lot of SQL users have migrated already to SQL 2019, DPM has also introduced support for SQL 2019 as its database starting DPM 2019 UR2 release. You can now install SQL Server 2019 on a remote server, or on the System Center Data Protection Manager server.
SQL Server must be installed and running before you start installing SC DPM 2019.
Offline Backup using Azure Data Box
Since the release of SCDPM 2012 SP1, Microsoft added support for hybrid backup by integrating DPM with Azure Backup and Microsoft Recovery Services Vault for offline and long-term protection.
Azure Backup replaces your existing on-premises and off-site backup solution with a cloud-based solution that is reliable, secure, and cost-competitive. System Center Data Protection Manager (SC DPM) and Microsoft Azure Backup Server (MABS) can be integrated with Azure Backup service so you can protect your data in the cloud without worrying about Ransomware attack and data corruption.
Up until SCDPM 2019 RTM and SCDPM 2019 UR1, the initial full backups for transferring large amounts of data to Azure which require more network bandwidth and time was based only on the Azure Import/Export service. Azure Import/Export service is used to securely import large amounts of data to Azure Blob storage and Azure Files by shipping disk drives to an Azure datacenter. This service can also be used to transfer data from Azure Blob storage to disk drives and ship to your on-premises sites. Data from one or more disk drives can be imported either to Azure Blob storage or Azure Files. With the Azure Import/Export service, you need to supply your own disk drives which should be supported using a certain list of disks required by Microsoft here.
With SCDPM 2019 UR2, Microsoft is adding support for Azure Data Box for offline/initial seeding besides the Azure Import/Export service. With Azure Data Box you can use Microsoft provided disk and save on time and cost of acquiring your own disk.
While creating the new Protection Group, you can choose to transfer your data using Microsoft’s own disks (Data Box) as shown in the figure below. Please note that you still have the previous option if you wish to supply your own disk drives.
Next, you need to sign with your Azure account and follow the wizard…
Just make sure before using Azure Data Box with SCDPM 2019 UR2, you need to update the existing MARS agent on your DPM server to the latest version. At the time of this writing, the current MARS agent is version 2.0.9190.0. You can download the latest Microsoft Azure Recovery Services (MARS) and Azure Backup agent from here.
To learn more about Azure Data Box Disk, please check the following document from Microsoft.
SCDPM 2019 UR2 bug fixes
Here is the list of bugs that are fixed for SCDPM 2019 in the Update Rollup 2:
- A stale file entry in the ActiveOwner folder breaks VMware protection.
- Bare metal backups running longer than 24 hours will time out. Registry key added to the protected server to extend the timeout.
- Disk Utilization Report was not reflecting Modern Backup Storage (MBS) usage.
- In some scenarios, re-protecting an inactive workload re-calculates the required disk space to be excessively large
- In SQL Always-On configuration with a Failover cluster backup, sometimes the backups will fail because the backup preferences are not honored.
- Modify Protection Group operation may take a long time while protecting a large number of client machines in a single protection group.
- Pre and Post Backup scripts don’t work with RCT based Hyper-V workloads.
- Consistency check for deduped enabled NTFS volumes fails with error: ID 30134 Details: Cannot create a file when that file already exists (0x800700B7).
- SharePoint backup fails when the SQL server is a different domain than the front-end SharePoint server.
- In Modify Protection group wizard, changing retention settings will result in changes to the backup schedule.
- DPM console crashes when attempting to restore with throttling on clustered VMs.
- Hyper-V VM protection fails when the total size of the VM file name and DPM mount path is more than 256 characters.
- If a vCenter server is protected with a Windows agent, and if the same server is added as a VMware server, the console crashes.
- If the remote DPM UI version is lower than the DPM version, the remote UI may crash.
- In some cases, the DPM UI can become unresponsive on the Protection tab and while browsing through protection groups.
- In addition to these, all the issues fixed in SC DPM 2016 Update Rollup 9 and prior UR for DPM 2016 are also included in SC DPM 2019 UR2.
DPM Team will continue to work on more updates and new features, and they would love to hear your feedback in the comments section below.
Download SCDPM 2019 UR2
To download Update Rollup 2 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 2 from here.
Once you install Update Rollup 2, the DPM version will be upgraded to 10.19.379.0.
Note: A fresh installation of the Update Rollup 2 Agent could cause a restart of the protected server.
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.