NetApp VSC 4.1 Series - Part 4/7: How to Restore a VM

Here we will delete a VM from a shared datastore and recover it (without affecting the other VMs on the datastore.) The VM has first been powered of as in the 1st image below. We right-click the VM, choose ‘Delete from Disk’, accept the warning, and it is gone as in the 2nd image below.

Image: Before deleting WIN2K3-32BIT-MS-05

Image: WIN2K3-32-BIT-MS-05 deleted!

To get the VM back

vSphere Client > Home > Solutions and Applications > NetApp
Backup and Recovery > Restore
- Click the ‘Refresh’ button in the top right to display the available backups
- Select the backup we want to restore from
- Right-click the entity we want to restore and select ‘Restore’ and the ‘Virtual Machine Restore’ window pops up

Image: VSC 4.1 > Backup and Recovery > Restore > Restore (VM Entity)

Virtual Machine Restore
- Here we choose ‘The entire virtual machine’
- And the ESX host to restore to
- Click Restore

Image: VSC 4.1 Virtual Machine Restore Window

And wait for the VM to be restored to its original datastore!

Image: NetApp Restore from Backup Completed!

The final step is to add the recovered VM to the Inventory!

vSphere Client > Home > Inventory > Datastores and Datastore Clusters
- Right-click the NFS Datastore that the VM was restored to, and select ‘Browse Datastore…’
- Open the folder containing the restored VM, and right-click on the .vmx file
- Click ‘Add to Inventory’ and follow through the ‘Add to Inventory’ wizard
- Power on the restored VM as required!

Image: WIN2K3-32BIT-MS-05 is back!

The End!

IMPORTANT NOTE: Essentially the VM files are being taken from a read-only snapshot copy, and copied to the live volume, so it will take however long it takes to copy. In this highly nested lab, it took 20 minutes to restore a VM of 2GB size.

Image: NetApp Restore from Backup Start and Finish (~24 minutes)

Note: With the VSC, it is also possible to simply mount a backup snapshot, and VMs could be run from here then Storage vMotioned back into the original datastore.

Image: VSC 4.1 > Right-click VM > NetApp > Backup and Recovery > Mount

APPENDIX: The .snapshot folder

When the VSC creates an NFS datastore, it creates it with the vol options VOLNAME nosnapdir off. This option - nosnapdir off - allows you to see the .snapshot directory. The .snapshot directory contains folders for all the snapshots of that volume. These snapshots are read-only.

Image: VMware NFS Datastore showing the .snapshot folder

There is another ‘options’ that should be set to off for this to work:

options nfs.hide_snapshot off


  1. The information on this blog is very useful and very interesting. If someone needs to know about the just click
    access Mp3lemon in UK


Post a Comment