EMC Avamar Web Based Backup Access

Wednesday, March 7, 2012 Posted by

First off I want to state that this is not a supported EMC “product” or setup. This was done with an idea from David Payne at an Avamar User Group and a solution I came up with. I don’t know how well it scales, but thought it was a pretty cool idea/concept.

Ok with that being said the whole idea of this post is to show you how you can setup web based access to Avamar’s backups. The objectives I was trying to achieve are:

·         Provide file level access to Avamar Backups

·         Do not open AvFS/Samba access to all workstations/subnets (basically have a proxy)

·         Provide an “easy to use” web based interface

·         Provide search capabilities

·       Provide RBAC via Active Directory

·         Low to no cost

With this solution I have been able to accomplish all of these except the search capabilities (it works, but on a very limited basis so I consider it non-existent and even remove it from the web interface). Let’s get on with it.

Click here to watch the video!

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Rename Multiple Restored Avamar SQL BAK Files

Thursday, January 5, 2012 Posted by

This is a simple one liner that can be used to rename the default Avamar SQL Restored BAK from f-0 for multiple databases.

The Problem:

When restoring a database to a BAK file from Avamar it automatically restores the file into a folder named the Database and a file called “f-0”. That isn’t very helpful, especially if you have multiple databases you have restored. So I wrote a one line powershell script that you can use to rename every BAK file to the name of the database.

Get-ChildItemC:\RestoredDBs\ | foreach {Rename-Item-Path“C:\RestoredDBs\$_\f-0”-NewName“$_.bak”}

Script Steps:

1.       Make sure and change the directory where your restored BAK files/folders are located.

2.       The script just gets a list of all the directories in the folder and then performs a rename on the file inside called “f-0” to the foldername.bak.

3.       E.g., I have a database that I restored located at C:\ResotredDBs\DB1. Inside of this folder you have a file called “f-0”. This script will rename the “f-0” file to DB1.bak.

Hopefully you find this useful.


Avamar Failed Backup Query Script–SQL

Thursday, June 2, 2011 Posted by

Avamar is a great product, I love the backup technology, however, it is lacking in a few areas when it comes to data mining/reporting. I’m assuming DPA makes up for this lack of information gathering, but currently I do not have that luxury. I’ve had to come up with a different way to extract the required data from our Avamar environment. I do this using all the resources available from an Avamar perspective.

The issue I have tackled in this blog post is extracting data from SQL Agent Backups that have “Completed with Exceptions” (status_code 30005). In our environment our DBA’s take databases offline constantly, causing our backups to “Complete with Exceptions”. The problem is Avamar does not have a way to report on the client logs…meaning I had no way to see which databases were offline unless I opened each client log (remotely or via the Avamar GUI) and search through it for the word “offline”. Well not anymore, I wrote the following PowerShell script to automate this process. You can download it by clicking here.

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Automated Cisco UCS Server Provisioning part 2 (the meat!)

Friday, April 22, 2011 Posted by

I have been working on this concept for a couple of months off and on in my spare time. The thought process was to create a script that performs the manual processes required to deploy an ESX (or Windows) server using Cisco UCS blades. This includes everything from generating the Service Profile to Storage Configuration to Installing the OS. Just like in my Part 1 post below are the script steps.

 Script Steps:

1. Generate Server from Cisco UCS Service Profile 

2. Gather WWNN, WWPN, and MAC of eth0 (eth0 is my 3rd boot option under boot policy)

3. Generate zoning configuration/push to MDS 9509

4. Create boot LUN

5. Create storage group

6. Create initiator record for new server on the boot hba/fabric (in my case its Fabric B)

7. Add initiator/server to storage group

8. Add boot LUN to storage group

9. Generate pxelinux.cfg and kickstart files

10. Boot Service Profile/Initiate PXE install

I am happy to say I have successfully completed all steps in the above process. Below is a high level breakdown of what the script is doing. I believe I have broken down the script process within each section well enough for you to understand what is happening, if not let me know and I will be happy to describe it in more detail. At the end I have a video of the process in action. Please note I did this more to see if it was possible, so in order to make this script perform multiple installs at the same time you will need to make some modifications, but it does work for a single deploy. You can download the Server Build Script by clicking here. You can download the bundle of scripts by clicking here.

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Simple DNS Zone Creation Script

Friday, April 22, 2011 Posted by

This is a really simple DNS Zone Creation script, but since I don’t have a space limitation (ha, 5KB really matters) I thought I would put it here.

The Problem:

I needed an automated way to create primary zones in one of my 3 forests while creating conditional forward domains in my other 2 forests.

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Run fully populated B200 & B250 RAM at 1333MHz

Friday, April 22, 2011 Posted by

Ever wonder if your memory is running at 1066MHz or 1333MHz? If it is running at 1066MHz have you wondered if it CAN run at 1333MHz? I had this situation happen to me with the following configuration:

1 x B200M2

8 x 4GB 1333MHz Memory Modules

2 x Intel Xeon® X5650’s

When I went to my servers Inventory/Memory tab this is what I saw:


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Automate Cisco UCS Server Provisioning part 1

Friday, April 22, 2011 Posted by

I was going to wait to post this script until it was 100% complete, but I realized that it might help people as is. I will continue to update this post (or make new ones) as I add the other sections to this script. Below is the final script algorithm I am going to implement.

Script Steps:

1.       Generate Server from Cisco UCS Service Profile

2.       Gather WWNN, WWPN, and MAC of eth0

3.       Generate zoning configuration/push to MDS 9509

4.       Create boot LUN

5.       Create storage group

6.       Create initiator record for new server on boot hba/fabric

7.       Add initiator/server to storage group

8.       Add boot LUN to storage group

9.       Generate pxelinux.cfg and kickstart files

10.   Boot Service Profile/Initiate PXE install

So now you kind of understand the process here is the pudding. Below this script generates the service profile from the service template and then generates the zoning configuration and puts it into text files.

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Automate EMC Avamar Client Install

Friday, April 22, 2011 Posted by

Ever needed to deploy multiple EMC Avamar clients without having a deployment management software like SCCM? Well I had this scenario happen last week during my installation of our new EMC Avamar Grids. Looking around I found very little on this subject, so once again I decided to figure out a solution myself.

The approach is very straight forward and quite rudimentary but it got the job done. Below are the steps I used and the way I performed the install. However, this can be adapted to your use case quite easily, and the PowerShell script could be expanded to include Active Directory queries for a server list and then run the install on each host.

The Setup:

1.       Download PSExec from Sysinternals, and put it somewhere that is your path so it can be called from command window.


2.       Download all the different Avamar clients you need put them in a directory called C:\Avamar (on the box you will run the script from). The ones I use are:

·         Windows 32-bit (32bit.msi)

·         Windows 32-bit/System State Install (SystemState.msi)

·         Windows 64-bit (64bit.msi)

·         Windows 32-bit SQL (32bit-sql.msi)

·         Windows 64-bit SQL (64bit-sql.msi)

·         Windows 32-bit Exchange 2003 (exchange2k3.msi)

·         Windows 64-bit Exchange 2007/2010 (exchange2k7-2k10.msi)


You can name the files whatever you want, just make sure that they are set correctly in the PowerShell Script.


3.       Go find the avregister.bat file located in the C:\Program Files\avs\bin directory and copy it to the C:\Avamar directory.

a.       Edit the lines that reference “avagent” and change it to include the full path: “C:\Program Files\avs\bin\avagent.exe”

b.      This is because when psexec.exe runs it needs absolute file paths.


4.       Download the script and put it in your C:\Avamar directory, edit the script and change the $avamarUtilityNode variable to match your Avamar Utility Node hostname. You can download the script by click here.

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Automated Cisco UCS Backup

Friday, April 22, 2011 Posted by

Recently my cohort and I have implemented a new Cisco UCS system. The system consists of dual chassis and multiple B200 M2 blade servers. As we were going through the initial install I noticed something that Cisco had left out….a scheduling engine for UCS Backups. Since I didn’t want to rely on manually backing the system up on a regular basis I decided to tackle this head on. Below is that journey..

Need to Know:

1.       The Cisco UCS backup jobs are named the hostname you enter as the backup target.

2.       This script does have a hard-coded Cisco UCS username/password (I’m working on figuring out if I can pass the logged in credential to Cisco UCS)

3.       I use an SCP server (Linux box) as the target, but this could be adapted using FTP or the other transfer protocols the UCS allows.

4.       4 backup types exist within Cisco UCS, you can run all of them or choose one. To see the different backup types click here.

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Welcome to my technical blog.

Friday, April 22, 2011 Posted by

Hi All,

I have started this blog to help document different technologies and solutions I have worked on. This will include VMware, Cisco UCS, Microsoft Products (AD, DNS, Exchange, SQL, etc.), and other miscellaneous technology.