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Restore Files from Backup

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Background: If you do not have shadow copies enabled, or are unable to restore the files with shadow copies you may use this procedure to restore a file, or folder, to an existing Virtual Machine from backup.  However, there are limitations.  The FLR restore mechanism is convenient and designed for granular restore of small files or folders.  File Level Restore is not supported for restore tasks where the files and folders that need to be restored exceed 1 GB in aggregate size.  To recover files and/or folders that exceed 1 GB in aggregate size, we recommend using the Restore Virtual Machine from Backup (Restore to a New Virtual Machine.  You may then copy the files from the restored virtual machine to the original virtual machine or contact CloudConnect Technical Support to mount an image of the restored Virtual Machine to the original Virtual Machine.

Process: Users may continue to work on the machine while the File Level Restore takes place.

Before you begin: Be sure that VMware Tools is running on the Virtual Machine to which you would like to restore files (the "destination Virtual Machine").  Note: VMware Tools does not need to be up to date to continue, but should be installed and the service should be running on the Virtual Machine.  If you do not have VMware tools installed, install the VMware Tools on the destination Virtual Machine before continuing.

From the vCloud Director dashboard navigate to: Data Protection

Select the Organization Virtual Datacenter that houses your Virtual Machine

Select "vApps" under the Copies section in the sidebar navigation

Select the vApp containing the Virtual Machine you'd like to restore. Click the context menu, and select "Show Backups".

Identify the date of the desired backup. Click the context menu, and select 'File Level Restore'

Select the Virtual Machine from the list and press 'Next' to continue.  Note, the following screen may take up to 10 minutes to populate depending on the complexity of the Virtual Machine's File Index.  Please be patient.

Navigate to the desired file/folder by selecting the folder icon of the desired drive

Select the desired file/folder by marking the checkbox, and press 'Next' to continue

Confirm your selection and press 'Next' to continue

Select the Virtual Datacenter that houses your destination Virtual Machine

Select the Destination Virtual Machine

Supply administrator credentials for the VM's Guest Operating System and press 'Login' to authenticate.  It is important to note that these credentials are usually different from your VMware Cloud Director credentials.  Tip: If the VM to which you are trying to restore files is joined to a domain, use "DOMAIN\Administrator" as the username where "DOMAIN" is the Active Directory Domain Name.  If logging in using a local windows account with local administrator rights, simply use ".\Administrator" as the username.  For Linux, use "root."

Once you have authenticated, press 'Next' to continue

Select the destination folder on the destination Virtual Machine by navigating through the directory tree

Mark your destination and select 'Finish' to begin the restore!

File level restore will begin and you will see the task start in the task manager below:

Please see the table below for an estimated time of completion for this task.  Remember, recovering files and folders that exceed 1 GB in aggregate for any single restore Task is not supported.

Folder/File Size (MB)

Approximate Restore Time (minutes)

1000(Not Supported)

Once the task is marked 'Success' the restore has completed!

Finally, you will see the restored file in the destination you have chosen on the destination Virtual Machine

Applies to: All Windows VMs that have VMware Tools running

Additional Notes: Be sure to double check that VMware Tools is running on the Virtual Machine or you will not be able to browse for File Level Restore.