backing up substantial VM's without centralised data storage (XenServer)
Another day another question.
We run a Xenserver with a handful of utility type service VM's running, it was only ever a P.O.C and nothing of consequence runs on it at this stage. I backup the VM's to a physical file server via XenCentre which depending on the size of the VM can take 10 minutes to 30 mintues. My VM's are currently between 10GB and 30GB usually.
I understand that in a mature solution the OS's and DB's would be virtualised and the raw data (CIFS, SMB) would be available and centrealised on a SAN/NAS, this is not that case.
If the size of the VM increases significantly, IE 100GB how are backups addressed? As far as i know (limited):
Snapshots are not 100%
100% guarenteed backups are achieved only when VM is unavailable
VM size == size of data (no or limited compression)
If these are wrong please let me know!
So what i do see is this, you can only guarentee backup consistency via taking the VM down, if that VM is significant is size it will just take that long to backup it up to another location.
Now i write this it all sounds so obvious but just looking for some concrete answers. Also does anyone know of any good XenServer literature, best practices etc. I know Citrix provide some good docs but i just hate their site lol.