VMware Solutions Discussions

Got questions about SMVI?


Our team is very interested in the questions posted on SMVI functionality, configuration, and automation … thanks for taking the time to share.  And please keep the questions and feedback on your experiences working with SMVI, good or bad, coming.  Good feedback makes for a good day, bad feedback makes for a better product J.

I also wanted to let you know that NetApp is hosting an SMVI/SRM Webcast on February 19 focusing on data protection in a VMware environment: NetApp SMVI for backup/restore and VMware SRM for disaster recovery. SDDPC Sys Admin Rick Scherer - who designed and maintains a 25 host VMware ESX 3.5 farm with well over 300 Virtual Machines, plus writes a great blog (http://vmwaretips.com/wp/) - will be joining us to describe how his team uses SMVI. There will also be a panel of folks, including best practices authors and reference architects, to address questions submitted via chat.

Webcast: http://communications.netapp.com/p/Network_Appliance/20090219140000WL?REF_SOURCE=communities

Lisa Haut-Mikkelsen

SMVI Product Manager

213 REPLIES 213


We had an email misconfiguration issue yesterday and all the job status notification emails didn't make it to us. Now we're having a difficult time figuring out which jobs were failed/success last night and we require this information. We've opened a support case and uploaded the logs but they don't seem confident about being able to get this information either.

Is there really no other source for this info in the logs? How difficult is it to retrieve it? We have 20+ SMVI jobs daily. I can't imagine the notification emails are the only place...they should be as the name implies, simply a notification and not the source for job status. For a data protection product, this is critical.


You could also check the VSC plug-in GUI, specifically the Backup and Recovery > Backup > All Backup Jobs list which has real-time view of schedule status and "Last Run Status". But I agree in the future update release of VSC 2.0.1 the addition of a more robust "reporting" engine for VSC Backup and Recovery module would be very helpful. script out to run a daily report against the SMVI logs and report back all backup jobs, last run status, time stamp, etc.


I'm sorry hear about the troubles. With the current release the logs are going to be your best source of information. We have a log viewer tool located here  http://now.netapp.com/NOW/download/tools/logviewer/

Another thing you could quickly do is check the NetApp controller to see the time stamps on the SMVI backup jobs. This won't show you if you had any VMware snapshot failures but you would then know you at least have all the VMs backed up on the storage array.



Is there a SnapManager for VI GUI and CLI for VSC 2.0.1?  If not, is it possible to use SnapManager for VI GUI 2.0 to manage VSC 2.0.1 backups/restores?


The only GUI for VSC 2.0.1 is the one intrgrated into VMware vCenter. The CLI however does still exist on the VSC/SMVI server. You cannon manager VSC 2.0.1 with a SMVI 2.0 GUI.




By coincidence I was looking at the VSC documentation today. We are doing a new VMware deployment and I think we should be using VSC.

The notes for VSC suggest that it is a complete replacement for SMVI. However, the VSC documentation makes reference to an SMVI installation at numerous points. Are there scenarios where you need to have both ?

Further to that particular point, can VSC be remotely controlled by Protection Manager or is this in the pipeline ? I know that there was a script to allow PM to trigger SMVI backups.



Hey Brendan,

I admit that the documentation is a little confusing right now. It's something i have taken on and hope to correct soon. There is just the VSC release however the Backup and Recovery module of the VSC is the old SMVI and you will note that the VSC installs and configures a SMVI service on the VSC server. So when you read SMVI translate it as "Backup and Recovery Module for VSC" and viceversa.

The current release does not integrate with Protection Manger at all, but that is definitly in the pipeline. In fact the version in the pipe has very very tight integration with PM. Stay tuned there!



Thank you for that, Keith. VSC looks like a great product today but I will, of course, be watching that pipeline eagerly Having the virtualization backed up under the control of Protection Manager will be something quite special.


Hi all,

I've got a quick one for you..

I'm reasonably new to the SMVI stuff as we had a dedicated resource for that - however he's left and I'm currently building a new ESXi environment for us to migrate to..

I've got a new VC Server managing this new ESXi Datacenter and I've installed VSC etc...

Both VC Servers use the same NFS Datastores..

I've got existing SMVI jobs for the datastores on the 'old' VC Server.. So I want to backup VM's that I've removed from inventory on the original VC Server, using SMVI on the new VC Server.. I'm wondering how this will affect my original jobs - will it duplicate the backups, [as it seems they're done by datastore and not individual VM], or will each VC Server back up the VM's that it controls...

This may seem a little gibberish-y but I hope you get what I'm trying to explain..

Many Thanks for any feedback,



Hi Mike,

If you have built the backup jobs at the datastore level as you indicated then you can simply move your VMs from one VC to the new one. You will though have to rememeber if you have to do a restore which datastore it was on at the old VC in order to perform the restore.



We have a business need to trigger restores of VMs using SMVI from an external system.  From what I have read the SMVI GUI client talks to the SMVI server via SOAP.  Are there any documents describing all of the SOAP methods available in the SMVI server?  The SDK seems geared more towards ONTAP in general & there is no mention of SMVI in the SDK.

As a workaround we could create a web service running on the same server as the SMVI server & generate the necessary SMVI command line client commands to perform the restores.  Is NetApp aware of any clients using SMVI in this manner?


Can I ask you to either contact me directly for this request or start a new thread?

I don't quite understand the request here. You want to start the restores from a remote system not connected to VI client? Or you want to restore VMs to an alternate VMware environment while leaving the production one intact?



We're testing SMVI, and wondering about the best way to move the backups off to tape.  We use NetBackup, but unfortunately don't have the NDMP license.  Are there any other options to get the SMVI backups to tape?  Maybe a CIFS or NFS mount that we can backup from a windows or linux server with the NetBackup client?


Hi everyone hope someone can give me some pointers.

We recently purchased SMVI 2.0 to test in our lab environment. We tested this  using Vsphere 4.1 NFS and a NetApp FAS2020.

I have some questions.

When we run an SMVI backup of a virtual guest it always backs up the entire  LUN rather than just the guest ?

I might add we do not have a flexclone license on this 2020 unit is this the  reason why this is happening ?

I'm a bit behind the times and noticed that Netapp released VSC 2.0. Is this  snapin to replace SMVI 2.0 ?

I read the requirements regards SVC. It mentions you need an SMVI licence we  have one listed againt the 2020 unit we purchased bit it's not a actual key or  number associated with it, is this correct ?

And same question again do we need a Flexclone license to backup individual  guests using SVC 2.0 ?

Really confused at the moment if any one can shed some light on the matter  i'd really appreciate it.




Hi Jason!

SMVI work rather different that most VM backup products since it leverages the snapshot ability of the NetApp controller. It will always take a snapshot of the Volume on the controller (usually containing the VMFS LUN). Therefore rather than building a backup job per VM we strongly recommend you build a backup job for the entire datastore. This has 2 benefits, firt you now have one snapshot created that has all your VMs in it and 2 when you add new VMs to the datastore they will automaticlly be backed up.

Second question, yes VSC 2.0 replaced SMVI 2.0. In fact the most current version you will want to install is VSC 2.0.1P1 This is the newest version of SMVI which is now called Backup and Recovery module for VSC.

If you purchased the SMVI license for your 2020 you are fully covered for VSC versions incluing the B&R module,

FlexClone is not required, same as before, you don't really backup a single VM rather create a snapshot of the whole volume.



Thanks for the fast replies Keith. Very Helpful.

Where can I download VSC 2.0.1P1 ?





at the bottom of the list there is a list to access specific software, select virtual storage console in the version box type 2.0.1P1

you will need a NOW account to access this


Is SMVI AD aware?  We have some VM's that are Domain Controllers; if the backup is not system state aware and we restore a DC, it will cause a DSN rollback (epic ugly).  If it isn't, that would be my 'A numbah 1' feature request; using the built-in MS backup to capture system states on VM's is kind of a necessary evil and a major hassle, both.


AFAIK SMVI has no knowledge of the operating system being snapped.  It relies on the vmware snapshot functionality and it's knowledge/interaction with the OS.  again AFAIK vmware doesn't do a very consistent backup of 2008 machines.  To be safe, I have a script to shut down  my DCs, vmware snapshot them and start them up again (one at a time).  that way I'm guaranteed a consistent snapshot exists.

hope this helps.

I have a stuation with SMVI 2.0 where I have a VMware vSphere 4 virtual machine with its disks thin provisioned by VMware on a VMFS datastore.  When I go an restore the VM, the disks come bck as thick provisioned.  I have not seen a parameter that I could pass to SMVI 2.0 to tell it that the disks should be restored as is.

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