Hey Checkyourlogs fans,

Today, I want to showcase a hidden little gem with Veeam Agent for Windows. Let us have a look at our problem.

This VM is a SQL Server, and in the original design, the team decided to build out on their ISCSI SAN using Pass-Through Disks. These are known as Raw Device Mappings (RDMs) in VMware. The problem is that Veeam or Azure Site Recovery cannot replicate a VM with this configuration.

Here is what the Pass-Through disk looks like inside the VM.

So, how can we fix this? I like to use Veeam Agent for Windows it can read the data inside the VM while it is live similar to Disk2VHD from Sysinternals. However, it is very efficient when it backs up. Let’s have a look at one of my jobs.

I choose the option for Server and Managed by Backup Server.

Then select Entire computer.

Note: Make sure to disable any SQL Services and such while taking the backup to prevent any data from coming into the source VM while we are converting it.

Once the backup is complete. Shut down the source VM. Here you can have a look at the size of the backup files. This one was about 750 GB of data and only used 124 GB in the VBK compressed.

Now, Export the disk content as virtual disks. I put the VHDx files that have been converted from the Passthrough disks directly onto my Cluster Shared Volume for the Virtual Machine.

Here is what the Job itself looks like.

Below you can see the disks on the CSV Volume.

The last step is to stand up a Hyper-V Virtual Machine and attach the VHDx files in the correct order.

This process works like a charm for me, and after this is done, the Virtual Machine is ready to be replicated using Veeam or Azure Site Recovery.