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Barracuda Intronis Backup

Physical Imaging Backup Type Considerations and Recommendations

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Applicable Products

These instructions apply to the following products:

  • Barracuda Intronis Backup - MSP


Barracuda provides image-based backup solutions that protect server applications on physical machines. Barracuda physical image backup lets you back up physical machines as volume-level images.

You have the options of backing up volumes and revisions with:

  • Physical Imaging Standard backup
  • Physical Imaging Rapid Recovery backup

Physical Imaging Standard Backup

Physical Imaging Standard backup allows you to:

  • Create virtual machines from restored VHDs for physical-to-virtual recovery.
  • Recover from image backups on local storage and bare metal restore (BMR) in minutes.

Physical Imaging Standard backups use the Changed Block Tracking (CBT) driver to keep track of the changes made on the VMs over time.

CBT reduces the time needed to identify changes that need to be backed up. The entirety of a VM’s disks no longer need to be scanned to find what has changed. All changes are tracked and served to the agent as soon as the backup starts.

Subsequent backups are incremental containing only the changes detected by the CBT driver.

Note that full backups are performed by default at every 21st successful backup.

Any Physical Imaging Standard backups taken in previous versions of the Agent, before the introduction of the CBT driver, can be restored.

CBT makes Physical Imaging Standard more consistent with Hyper-V Standard, Hyper-V Rapid Recovery and VMware, which also use CBT.

Physical Imaging Standard provides the following restore options:

  • Restore to VHD/X Files
  • Restore to Hyper-V Virtual Machine
  • Restore via Bare Metal Recovery

Physical Imaging Rapid Recovery Backup

Barracuda Physical Imaging Rapid Recovery backup and recovery options allow partners to address the specific restore requirements of each client with the same features as Physical Imaging Standard, with one unique addition: Object-level restore.

Object-level restore allows you to explore and to extract specific files and folders quickly and easily, with no need to mount VHDs.

At the Object-level, you can browse all the files of the volumes that you backed up and select individual files from those volumes to restore. This feature allows you to recover individual files and folders from a local Physical Imaging backup directly through the management portal. This granular restore of data is performed without having to explicitly mount the disks and display their contents with Windows explorer.

General Considerations

  • Physical Imaging supports volumes up to 64 TB.
  • Images can be backed up locally and to the cloud.
  • Imaging backup sets store the last seven versions as the default.
  • Imaging backups need high-performance backup destination:
If backing up to...Then use…
an external hard disk,USB 3.0
network-attached storageat least 1 Gigabit Ethernet bandwidth. Your local network should have enough bandwidth to support transferring image backups to a NAS device.

Physical Imaging Standard backup and Physical Imaging Rapid Recovery are different pieces of a complete data protection strategy for Physical Imaging environments. Both can be used in your environment to provide multiple levels of protection.

Standard provides offsite, secure, and fewer backups.

Rapid Recovery provides onsite, rapid failover, and frequent replication. Rapid Recovery backups can be set to run every 15 minutes, and a default 96 revisions provides 24 hours of recoverable data.

Depending on customer needs, both can be used to provide coverage and redundancy in virtual machine


Use Standard when:

  • You would like to save a full image copy of your volumes and revisions offsite in case of a disaster.
  • You are in a single-host environment.
  • Data encryption (both in the cloud and locally) is a requirement.
  • The customer is sensitive to recovery time objective (RTO) and has standby hardware.
  • You are backing up locally and off-site (off-site only is fine if using Rapid Recovery) for DR scenarios.

Use Rapid Recovery when:

  • You have multiple hosts (you have a second host to be used for recovery volumes and revisions).
  • You have tighter recovery point objective (RPO) requirements and need to back up your volumes and revisions more frequently.
  • You need to have your volumes and revisions running and accessible quickly after VM or host failure locally.
  • Partners cannot afford high availability because of the hardware or software expense. The expense of a Rapid Recovery server is far less than for a high-availability server.

Specific Restrictions and Recommendations

The following list provides restrictions and recommendations for imaging configurations.

  • Do not back up to a disk local to the machine you are protecting because it does not provide adequate protection in the event of hardware failure.
  • Review Barracuda' restore options. One restore type may be preferable over another depending on:
    • The environment to which you need to restore.
    • Your customers' recovery time objectives.
  • To ensure incremental backups run quickly, disable any scheduled Disk Defragmenter tasks. A defragmented disk negatively affects backup performance. The disk defragmenter processes:
    • Cause the ECHOplatform agent to detect more changes to a disk than have actually occurred.
    • Increase the amount of time required to determine changed blocks.
    • Cause incremental backups to run longer than expected.
  • Running disk defragmenter prior to running an image backup can greatly improve the performance of your first and subsequent image backups. Run the disk defragmenter on any disk containing volumes selected to be backed up before running your first image backup. Do not schedule disk defragmenter jobs for these disks.
  • If you have a system running either SQL or Exchange then do the following:
    • Use the Exchange and SQL plugins so that the logs truncate.
    • Enable processes to enable the applications to manage logs, such as circular logging in Exchange.


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