Our ESE agent makes the Hyper-V view available automatically if it detects the presence of a VSS writer on a machine. You can then use this view to select the virtual machines you want to backup. However, if ESE is running on the host machine, you can only recover a VM in its entirety. If you need to be able to do file-level recovery, we recommend installing an ESE agent on the VM itself.
To recover a VM from a host, simply select the relevant VM in it the Hyper-V view and click Recover.
- If the VM has been deleted, it will be recovered to the original location. If the VM is still present, recovering will overwrite it.
- If the intention is to test DR, InstantData Temporary can also be used to copy the disk images.
- If you prefer not to have ESE installed on the VM, you can backup flat files (VHDX) using ESE on the host, as long as the flat files are closed and not in use. On hosts with Cluster Shared Volumes (CSVs), VSS should not be enabled in ESE, as VSS writers tend to present issues for backup in this scenario (ESE is not cluster-aware and will only work on the active side). Closed files can also be backed up via a network share.
If you don't have the Hyper-V view visible on the host, you can still recover a VM manually using the steps below.
1. In the files view in ESE, select (include) the VM you want to recover. Make sure you select the highest folder structure level for the particular VM. Do not drill down and select individual files, as the disk file (VHDX), the descriptor file (VMDK), and the snapshot file (AVHDX) all need to be recovered together from and into the same location.
2. Click Recover.
3. Once the recovery has completed, open Hyper-V Manager.
4. Go to Import Virtual Machine.
5. Point to the root folder of the location where you recovered the files, and click Next.
6. Follow the wizard, selecting options based on your needs.