Create a Hyper-V Plain File Backup Job and Copy to Server

In order to copy VMs from one Hyper-V server to another and have them ready to boot at the backup server in case of a disaster, you need to set up a plain file backup job.

In BackupChain’s New Task Wizard, this option shows up a ‘no processing’. See Step-by-step instructions on how to set up a plain file backup in BackupChain (bottom of article)

If you already have a backup job and wish to convert it to a plain file copy job, simply deactivate deduplication (in the Deduplication tab) and compression in the compression tab.

First you need to create a new network share on your target server, where all new files are supposed to be written to. In BackupChain’s target folder settings, enter the network path as the destination. Enter user name and password required to access that network share.

In the File Types tab, set ‘number of backups’ to 1. This would be a typical setting for a common copy job that only keeps the latest copy of each file. You could, however, increase that number and BackupChain will keep N copies in the folder and clean up accordingly. Note that in order to create a new file version, BackupChain appends the date to the VHD file to avoid name clashes.

Once you have all of this set up and the VMs selected in BackupChain’s Hyper-V tab, run the task for the first time. You’ll see the original folder structure being replicated in the target server’s network share.

Now create new VMs on the target server and point them to the VHDs in the target folder, created by BackupChain. This is a once-off step and you only do this once and leave the VMs off, so BackupChain can copy and delete the VHDs as necessary.

You could now put the task on a schedule and leave it run. In case of a failure on the original server, all you need to do is power up the VM on the backup server and the VMs are back online within a minute.

This strategy is indeed very common, effective, reliable, easy to manage and set up, and low cost.