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Side by Side migration from DPM 2012R2 to DPM 2016 - Recommended Process? RRS feed

  • Question

  • My current DPM server is running Windows Server 2012R2 and DPM 2012R2.  I want to 'upgrade' to the 2016 versions of OS and DPM, but would prefer to build out a new VM rather than perform an in-place upgrade.  

    I found this documentation on how to perform an in-place upgrade, but haven't yet found anything specifically addressing a side by side migration from 2012R2 to 2016.  I was hoping that there would be a documented process for attaching the legacy storage & backup data to the new dpm server, and either migrating the database or inventorying the legacy backup data on the new server so that it could restore if needed. 

    The closest info I've found so far is this document on how to move DPM 2012R2 to a new server.  As I read it, the "with different settings" section effectively says 'Build the new server, update agents on protected servers, use new server for protection but keep old server running until old protected data isn't needed anymore.'

    Is that basically the recommendation for a side by side migration from DPM 2012R2 to DPM 2016, to just start fresh with 2016 and keep the 2012 server around as an archive? 

    Note: In my case, both DPM servers are Hyper-V VM's running on the same host, if that makes a difference. 

    • Edited by NeighborGeek Wednesday, December 14, 2016 12:56 PM Added detail
    Wednesday, December 14, 2016 12:55 PM

All replies

  • Hi,

    There is no such thing as a side-by-side migration.  The only way maintain settings when moving to DPM 2016 is to perform the upgrade.

    What is the reasoning for not wanting to perform the upgrade ?


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    Wednesday, December 14, 2016 10:04 PM
    Moderator
  • There are a number of valid reasons for doing a side-by-side migration.

    1) What if something goes wrong? It's pretty routine to learn that there are unforeseen problems with the new version of a product, aside from the "an unexpected error occurred" which causes the upgrade to fail and breaks the existing version, leaving you with no data protection. This isn't to hammer Microsoft products specifically; that kind of thing happens all the time outside the lab, especially with a server that's been running for years, with generations of Windows updates, etc.

    2) moving to a new physical server. In the above instance, this person is using VMs on the same host, but in our case, we're replacing a 6-year-old server which is well out of warranty.

    3) upgrading to a newer OS. DPM 2016 only supports Modern Storage with Server 2016, so you'd first have to upgrade the OS, which is never the preferred option, even if there are no compatibility issues with the older version of DPM and the newer OS.

    Wednesday, December 14, 2016 11:03 PM
  • Thanks Tom_Breit, those are good reasons.  All of the options you mentioned influenced, to some degree, my decision not to upgrade the existing DPM server. 

    1) What if something goes wrong?  -- I still have a functional DPM 2012R2 server, while I've been working on preparing the new DPM 2016 server.   Worst case, if I have problems when I begin protecting servers on DPM 2016, I can switch back to using the DPM 2012R2 server.  And, while my experience may have been different had I upgraded, I have definitely ran into problems with building out the new server.  A vacationing staff member ended up causing a weeks delay in the middle of my build process, as he had a key piece of information I needed to continue.  Once he was back, something kept going wrong with DPM setup, to the point that setup would appear to complete, but the final screen would say that DPM wasn't successfully installed, and had to be uninstalled from add/remove programs before attempting to install again.  After several tries, I gave up, deleted the VM, and started over.  

    2) In my case, I'm not moving to new physical hardware, but since the disks for DPM 2016's backups need to be presented as REFS formatted volumes instead of as raw disks, it seemed like a good time to build the new server out fresh rather than adding disks to the existing server.  

    3) Upgrading the OS has always been considered less than ideal.  Server 2016 setup even pops up a warning when choosing to upgrade stating that it is recommended to do a clean install vs an in place upgrade.  

    None of those are major issues that REQUIRE a rebuild rather than an upgrade.  They just seemed to point slightly that direction.  If there's no option to migrate my old backup data to the new server, and I just have to wait for that data to expire before decommissioning the old server, it's not the end of the world.  It's probably not even worth starting over and doing the upgrade instead.  I'll just go ahead with adding the protected servers to the new DPM server, and let the old one sit idle until the data on disk is expired.  

    Thanks,

    Steve


    Friday, December 16, 2016 2:41 PM
  • Keep in mind that you will not be able to restore data directly to the servers anymore. DPM agents cannot be used for two different DPM servers. DPM 2016 and DPM 2012R2 protection agents are not compatible, so you will need to upgrade those too. So if you ever need to recover data you will have to recover it to a folder somwhere and manually copy it to where you need it. Might be good enough if you only need to recover a file, could be difficult if you need to recover something from Sharepoint (item level) or SQL server.

    Thursday, February 2, 2017 10:32 AM