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Prerequisites for protecting machines with ShadowProtect and rCloud

 
 
 

Physical or virtual machines not running on vSphere/ESX(i) can be backed up using StorageCraft ShadowProtect and uploaded to rCloud.

Supported ShadowProtect Versions
  • ShadowProtect Server version 3.5 to 5.1.x
  • ShadowProtect SBS version 3.5 to 5.1.x
  • ImageManager 3.5 to 6.x
Additional Requirements
  • Microsoft .Net Framework 3.5. SP1 is required for agent installation. Microsoft .Net Framework 4.0 alone will not currently work, although you can have both installed
  • The protected machine must trust the following Certification authorities:
    • Entrust - Entrust (2048) Certificate
    • Godaddy - GoDaddy Standard SSL Wildcard Certificate
  • The machine being backed up must have a static IP address
  • The Agent requires a portion of local disk space to work in referred to as "workspace". This must be equivalent to 5% of the total protected volumes (e.g. a total 1TB of disk space on the protected machines will require 50GB of workspace). This directory can have any name, but must be created on a local volume prior to importing any machines.
  • The machine on which the agent is installed must have a supported version of ShadowProtect installed.
  • ShadowProtect must be configured in continuous incremental mode
  • When setting up a ShadowProtect backup task, do not change any volume or file names, leave the default names. Changing backup file names is not supported by rCloud.
  • ImageManager must be installed and configured to collapse the incremental backups into daily backups
  • Only NTFS volumes are supported for backup
  • The rCloud Agent must be able to connect to the disk containing the ShadowProtect backup files locally or via UNC path. It can authenticate to another workgroup or domain to do this if needed.
  • The agent needs outbound connectivity to the internet using DNS, specifically to:
    • rCloud hosts: *.accelerite.com
    • IP service address range: 72.5.50.0/24 (72.5.50.1-72.5.50.254)
    • TCP Ports:
      • 443
      • 8443
      • 8640
      • 9580
Incompatible Software/Configurations
  • Systems running any other block level backup technology are not supported and will conflict with ShadowProtect. Furthermore installing ShadowProtect on systems already running this type of software can cause the system instability including blue screens. Known conflicting software includes, but is not limited to:
    • Acronis
    • Backup Exec/Symantec System Recovery Editions
    • Sonicwall CDP Solution
  • Non-NTFS/GPT partitions, including utility partitions. If you want to backup a utility partition you can do that in a separate backup job and backup folder, it must not be in the same folder as the backups for partitions being uploaded to rCloud.
Unsupported Configurations
  • Dual-boot/Multi-boot systems
  • IPv6 is not supported
  • Multi-homed systems (multiple NICs are supported as long as only 1 is in use)
  • Systems with software RAID
  • Systems with volumes over 2TB in size
  • Peripherals and external devices (i.e. USB/Serial dongles, modems etc)
ShadowProtect Implementation

We recommend you review StorageCraft.s documentation to become familiar with their software. There are 2 common .gotchas. we often see that are worth noting:

Defragmentation

ShadowProtect does backups at the block level. Disk defragmentation will cause almost all the blocks to be moved around on a disk, meaning that when ShadowProtect runs the next incremental backup after a defragmentation it will be a very large backup, which will take a long time to upload to the Cloud. We therefore recommend running a defragmentation before performing the first backup. In the future, we highly recommended running defragmentation only when absolutely necessary.

Local Backups to disk to protected drives

If you are running any type of local backup to disk that writes to a drive protected by ShadowProtect you will cause large incremental backup jobs. For example a SQL dump to disk will write a new file every day. The ShadowProtect incremental backups will capture these changes and you will struggle to keep offsite backups up to date. All local backups to disk should be directed to drives that are not backed up by ShadowProtect.

 
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