Is Veeam replication compatible with VMware NSX?

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Recently I’ve been asked by a colleague if Veeam Backup & Replication supports VMware NSX. The answer to me was pretty clear, since Veeam works at the vSphere layer and what is sees are “just” portgroups, regardless if they are simple, distributed, or NSX virtual wires. Nonetheless, I decided to do a quick test to prove it.

The theory

Veeam replication leverages vSphere API to create a functional snapshot of a virtual machine at the hypervisor layer, connects to the underlying storage (either directly or using the ESXi storage stack, depending on the environment), retrieves the needed data and replicates both configuration files and virtual disks on the destination.
What’s important to know, to understand why NSX is completely supported, is that from a configuration point of view, Veeam takes care of replicating and eventually modifying also the configuration files stored with the virtual machine. Among them, the main file is the vmname.vmx file, that is the main configuration file of a virtual machine. In this file, the information about the virtual machine’s components like virtual disks and also networking are stored. There, a VM is configured to be connected to an NSX virtual wire.

The test

In this example, I have a small Linux VM connected to an NSX virtual wire:
In Veeam, I simply create a new Replication job, selecting this virtual machine as the object to be replicated. I go through the wizard and configure all the different options, like the target vSphere cluster, the target datastore. Thanks to the “Network mapping” feature of the software, I can instruct Veeam to re-configure the source network with a new one, that is available at the target site:
In the test, virtual wire 5000 at source is going to be replaced at destination with virtual wire 5001. We then complete the replication job configuration and let it run at least once.
When the job is completed, we can see the Replica VM correctly registed at the target site in vSphere, with its new configuration:
Every parameter of the virtual machine has been preserved in its replica, and at the same time the new virtual wire has been configured. The replicated VM is ready to be powered on at the target site.
So, as you can see, Veeam totally supports NSX, since its configuration is totally transparent being it “just” another network port group that can be selected and applied to a virtual machine.

 

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