Data Backup and Recovery

SQL Snapmanager and VMDK backups


I've been trying to wrap my head around using SQL Snapmanager for databases on a VMDk, I've used it with iSCSI luns before but never with VMDK's.

From what I've read it seems to be fairly straightforward with just a 'sdcli smvi_config set -host VSC Server IP' command required to link SQL snapmanager to VSC.

However, the Snapmanger docs also talk about some registry changes but that only seems to be required if there are snapmirrors involved and for this particular setup there won't be.

So bascially I just need to know if setting up SQL Snapmanager is that easy and do I get the ability to pick and choose databases in the same way that I would if this was being hosted on an iSCSI lun?

Also, I've seen some references to creating some sort of 'dr text' file for restores - is this actually required or is that for something else?

Finally, I take it that the SQL snapmanager needs to have IP connectivity to the server running the VSC plugin for this solution to work?

It would be good if there was a technote on setting up SQL Snapmanager for VMDK's

Many thanks for this.



Check the snapdrive documentation which says that snapdrive connecting to vfilers only supports iscsi…  I have the solution working on vfiler0 but not any actual vfiler…  More testing later today and i will confirm


Right, After some extensive testing this is what I've found:

Getting snapdrive over NFS working is not too difficult but the following must be observed:

1. The server must be able to connect to the VSC tool

2. The NFS areas must be held on the phyiscal filer and not a vfiler

3. VSC must be able to see the volumes that SQL uses - best way to test? Take a VSC backup of the volume. If it works, its good to go.

4. on the SQL server run the command sdcli smvi_config set -host [IP Address of host VSC sits on]

5. Net stop snapdrive, net start snapdrive

6. Launch snapdrive and marvel at the VMDK(S)'s sitting in there.

If it doesn't work then something on the list above is missing/unconfigured/wrong version. For refernence I used Snapdrive 6.4, SQL SnapManager 5.2 and VSC 4.0


Nice one -thanks for sharing this!


Does this work when the volumes are owned by a vfiler? I've configured snapdrive to talk to ESX and VSC (they are on the same server) yet SnapDrive isn't showing any disks.


Good question - I've never heard vfilers could make it not working & documentation doesn't say anything about it.

I'd think it should work.

One more thing: can you try disabling firewalls on both hosts & see whether it changes anything?


Thanks for all your help guys. One last issue!

I've got SMSQL installed and I've run the configuration wizard but it fails.

'Failed to Load configuration data. Details: Error Code: 0xc004025A Unable to locate active LUN drives on this system'.

Well.... Yes, they are VMDK's so how do tell SMSQL to point to the VMDK's? Is there something I need to do in Snapdrive? Command line? Nothing actually lists these steps or I've missed it.....



Did you provide valid credentials to both vCenter & VSC during SnapDrive installation?


No I didn't. So, Snapdrive pulls that data from VCenter/VSC then allows SMSQL to access it?


yes, it is a 3-way conversation between SnapDrive, vCenter & VSC.

SnapManager will handle anything which is visible through SnapDrive.


Hi Gary ,

You are correct that as of now some manual work requires to be done for setting up snapmirror relationships with VMDKs including registry changes.

Please halso ave a look into TR 3941 to help you with the deployment guidance for VMDK.




Thanks but tr3941 doesn't list registry changes required for SQL Snapmanager and VMDK's.

Also could some confirm if IP connectivity is required between SQL server and wherever the VSC is installed?

Thank you.


Yes you would require IP connectivity between SMSQL and VSC host box.The registry changes would be required when you try to establish a Snapmirror relationship.

You can also look into TR 3785 for layout related examples .


TR-4003 lists some registry tweaks, but they are not directly related to VMDKs - from the top of my head, I don't think you need them.


Perfect. Thank you all!

From re-reading tr3941 it looks like SQL SNapmanager can be told to connect to VSC so I guess that does the required reg tweaks.

Thanks again.


SMSQL needs to talk to both vCenter Server & VSC, so yes, you need IP connectivity.


Hi Gary,

There is a lengthy thread over here with some useful hints:

This TR now includes setting up SMSQL for VMDKs:



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