What is scheduled VMware snapshot
VMware snapshot is used to record the state and data of virtual machine at a given point in time. Snapshot is similar to a rolling-back point when a failure or system error occurs. It is convenient and fast to return your virtual machine back to the point.
But it's a pain to take every snapshot manually especially for enterprise. So, in this article you will learn how to schedule VMware snapshots automatically for once or at a periodic interval.
How to schedule snapshot in VMware
Is there a convenient way to create a scheduled task for my VMware snapshot? Instead of taking snapshots manually, you can simply schedule snapshot task via vSphere client or vSphere web client. There is only a little difference between them.
This part explains how to schedule snapshots step by step by using vSphere Web Client.
Steps to schedule a snapshot task in the vSphere web client
1. In the vSphere Web Client, navigate to the object for which you want to schedule a task.
2. Select Monitor > Tasks & Events > Scheduled Tasks > Schedule a New Task.
3. From the Schedule New Task drop-down list, select Take Snapshot...
4. In the Edit Setting page, type a name and add a description for the task.
5. In the Scheduling options page, configure the required settings for the task.
- To configure the scheduling settings for the task, click Change next to Configured Scheduler.
- The most important settings in the snapshot scheduling process are in the Change menu. There, you can set when and how often operations are performed.
- After setting up the date, press OK to finish this step.
6. Enter the email addresses to receive an email notification which is optional and press OK when you finish all of settings.
7. The task is displayed on the Scheduled Task List if you schedule snapshots successfully.
For the 3 buttons on the right of the Schedule a New Task, the green logo is Run Button which means the scheduled task is executed once you click it. The yellow logo is for Editing the scheduled task. The red logo is to Remove the task.
How to reschedule VMware snapshot
We usually set the time and frequency of snapshots according to the needs of work, so it requires that we have to modify the scheduled plan timely.
Please refer to the following steps to change the original scheduled task.
1. In the vSphere Web Client, navigate to the object for which you want to edit a scheduled task.
2. Select Manage > Scheduled Tasks.
3. Right-click the task and select Edit.
4. Change the task attributes as necessary.
5. Click OK.
How to remove a scheduled task
When the original scheduled snapshot task is no longer needed. Removing the task is necessary.
1. In the vSphere Web Client, navigate to the object for which you want to remove a scheduled task.
2. Select Manage > Scheduled Tasks.
3. Right-click the task and select Remove.
Caution: scheduled snapshot ≠ backup
Scheduled snapshots cannot be used as one of the common methods of backup for the following reasons：
1. One VM requires one separate scheduled task. If you own a wide range of VMs, it is complicated to create and manage snapshot tasks.
2. Do not use a single snapshot for more than 72 hours.
3. Maximum of 32 snapshots are supported in a chain. However, for a better VM performance only use 2 to 3 snapshots.
When you take a snapshot, the state of the virtual disk is preserved. The guest operating system stops writing to it, and a delta or child disk is created. Large amounts of data are subsequently recorded into child disk, and the snapshots size in production environment can run out of memory and cause insufficient memory errors, which can affect performance of VM.
How to create a scheduled backup instead of snapshot
The scheduled backup is more secure for data protection than snapshots, so this part will introduce a simple and convenient tool to schedule virtual machine backup.
AOMEI Cyber Backup is a professional backup software to performs fast and secure backups. It saves storages, time and extra costs for enterprise. It is also easy for you to schedule different backup task and specify the retention policy without any impact on VM performance.
Simple steps to back up VM using AOMEI Cyber Backup
1. Access to AOMEI Cyber Backup and add the device for backup.
2. Click Backup Task >> Add New Task to create the complete and secure backup task.
3. In configuration page, enter a name for the task and select the backup type as VMware ESXi or Hyper-V. Then select the virtual machines you want to back up. Click OK.
Note: It is possible to schedule backup task for multiple VMs at the same time.
4. Select the Backup Target to store the backups such as local path or network path.
5. Schedule backup with flexible strategies (full / incremental / differentail backup) and set up a data from daily / weekly / monthly (by date) / monthly (by week).
6. Set up Backup Cleanup: select the retention period for backup. It helps to save storage for deleting the useless and old backup files automatically.
7. Click Start Backup. You can monitor the whole backup process. Meanwhile, after backup, the recovery is rather secure once unpredictable events happen to your original VM.
This article introduced how to schedule VMware snapshots via vSphere Web Client and what we need to pay attention to while using it as backup.
As we know, snapshot cannot replace backup. For VMware data security, you’d better choose reliable VMware backup solution instead of snapshot.