By Alison / Last Updated May 6, 2022

Important: VMware vSphere Data Protection End of Availability (EOA)

VMware Data Protection (VDP) is a robust disk-based backup and restore solution that fully integrated with VMware vCenter Server and VMware vSphere web client. It enables centralized and efficient management of backup tasks while storing backups in deduplicated destination storage.

VDP has replaced the deprecated VMware Data Recovery (VDR) since vSphere 5.1. However, starting from vSphere 6.5, VMware Data Protection is also announced the end of availability.

VMware Data Protection EOA

According to VMware, vSphere 6.5 is the last release that includes vSphere Data Protection. Future vSphere releases will no longer include it. All existing vSphere Data Protection installations with active support and subscription (SnS) will continue to be supported until their End of General Support (EOGS) date.

This means that VMware has decided to exit the data protection market and focus its investments on VMware vSphere Storage APIs. As the task of data protection is handed back to the third-party ecosystem, customers will then need to migrate their backup policies to other third-party software.

In this article, I will further explain it and introduce a great alternative to VMware vSphere Data Protection.

What are the key features of VMware Data Protection

VMware Data Protection is primarily targeted at small-medium enterprise environments. As each ESXi host can only run a single VDP appliance, each vCenter Server supports up to 20 VDP appliances and each VDP appliance supports backup of up to 100 virtual machines. Its key features include:

  • Image-level virtual machine backup
  • Offsite restore
  • Backup verification
  • Web browser–based administration
  • Capable of restore VM when vCenter Server is offline
  • Backup and restore databases in standalone configurations and clustered environments

For more information, you can refer to VMware’s official documents: VMware vSphere Data Protection 6.1 Technical Overview

Will it affect VMware vSphere Storage APIs – Data Protection (VADP)

As I mentioned, VMware has decided to step out of the data protection market and is committed to investing in VMware vSphere Storage APIs – Data Protection. You may be wondering what is it, and will the EOA of VMware Data Protection affect it? Or can it replace VDP?

Yes and no. VMware Storage APIs for Data Protection is VMware’s data protection framework that enables backup products to do centralized, efficient, off-host LAN free backup of vSphere virtual machines. It is not a backup software, but many backup vendors provide solutions based on it.


To replace deprecated VDP, VMware will continue to enrich vStorage APIs’ feature set, so that the third-party software based on it can better protect the VMware VM data.

A great alternative of VMware Data Protection - AOMEI Cyber Backup

With the announcement of VMware Data Protection End of Life, you may want another VMware backup solution to protect your VM data afterwards. In this section, I will introduce a great alternative of VMware Data Protection that based on vStorage APIs – AOMEI Cyber Backup. It has the following benefits:

Image-level Multiple VM Backup: independent image-level VM backups can be used to create new VMs.
Auto Backup Schedule and Cleanup: you can create an automatic schedule to backup VMs regularly and a cleanup task to save space.
Offsite Restore: capable of restoring backups to new VMs on another datastore or host.
Role Assignment: allows one administrator to create sub-accounts with limited privileges, effectively avoid errors caused by others’ mis-operations.
Affordable Pricing: reasonable charges only base on the number of bound devices, regardless of how many VMs are on the host.
Supported Versions: centrally manage VMs on VMware ESXi 6.0 and later versions, as well as Hyper-V in Windows 8/8.1/10/11, Windows Server/Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2012 R2 and later versions.

Next, I will demonstrate how to create an automatic backup task that covers multiple ESXi VMs. You can click the following button to start a free trial.

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3 easy steps to backup and restore multiple ESXi VMs

1. Bind Devices: Access AOMEI Cyber Backup web client, navigate to Source Device > VMware ESXi > + Add VMware ESXi to add a host, and then click > Bind Device.

Note: Once bound the host you do not need to repeat this step later.

Add VMware ESXi host

2. Create Backup Task: Navigate to Backup Task > + Create New Task, and then set the Task Name, Backup Type, Device, Target, Schedule, and Cleanup.

Create a VMware ESXi backup task

  • Device: you can cover multiple, or even all VMs on the host in one backup task.
  • Target: selecting to back up to a local path, or to a network path. Used paths will be saved in Favorite Storage for handy selection.

Select a network path

  • Schedule: performing full, differential or incremental backup, and automate execution daily, weekly or monthly according to the frequency you specified.

Backup schedule type

  • Cleanup: specify a retention period, and the old backup files that exceed the period will be automatically deleted.

Backup Cleanup

Now you can click Start Backup and select to Add the schedule and start backup now, or Add the schedule only.

Start Backup

3. Restore VM: Click > Restore on the backup task to open a wizard, and click Select Content to specify a restore point. Select to Restore to original location or Restore to new location, and click Start Restore.

Note: By selecting Restore to new location, you can restore the backup to a new VM on original or another datastore, host, and reset the RAM and Virtual Processor according to your needs.

Restore to new location


If you are using VMware Data Protection to backup VMware ESXi VMs, you will need to migrate to another backup software, since it won’t be included in the later versions of vSphere 6.5.

In this article, I explained some details of End of Availability for VMware Data Protection, and introduced a great alternative for it.

AOMEI Cyber Backup is a simple, flexible and affordable VM backup solution. You can centrally manage and automate the backup and restore of multiple VMware ESXi and Hyper-V VMs. Free yourself from the heavy workloads at a low price. It’s definitely worth a try!