vSphere 6.5 introduces native Backup and Restore functionality with the vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA). This means you will no longer need to use a 3rd-party backup tool to backup your vCenter. Backing it up also couldn’t be much simpler than it already is.
Backing up the vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA)
To back up your VCSA, log into the appliance management portal at https://<FQDN of VCSA>:5480
On the summary page you will see in the top-right of the screen a ‘Backup’ button (green in the screenshot below)
There are three steps to backing up the appliance. The first is setting the Backup Details. Your choices for the transfer protocol are:
In this post, I have a simple FTP server setup on another VM in my lab that I point to.
*Note: YOU MUST SPECIFY AN EMPTY FOLDER OR YOU WILL GET AN ERROR ON THIS PAGE
I set my location to the FTP server followed by the correct folder.
I checked the ‘Encrypt Backup Data’ checkbox and entered a password that will be used to decrypt it if/when I do a restore. click ‘Next’
Select parts to backup – This second page will allow you to choose which portions of the VCSA you want to backup. ‘Common’, which is your inventory and all of your vCenter configurations is always chosen (this cannot be deselected, which makes sense), and ‘Stats, events, alarms, and tasks’, which will allow you to backup all of your historical data (THIS IS HUGE! Many people have asked for this capability in the past).
Once you’ve selected the parts to backup, you can review your selections and hit ‘Finish’. VCSA will then begin its backup.
You will see the Backup Progress and what part is being processed at any given time.
Once the backup finishes it will tell you what time it finished and a recap of where you sent it.
As you can see, I’ve opened the target folder and here I have all of the config and historical data from my VCSA, ready for Restoring if needed. You’ll also see that each of these files is encrypted, except for the JSON file.