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Use backup vaults to protect items

Updated: January 30, 2015

Azure Backup uses vaults to store items backed up from your on-premise computers. You must create the backup vaults using the Azure Management Portal before you configure your on-premise computers to backup to Azure. Once you have created the backup vault, you can then download the Azure Backup agent and use it to register the backup vault with the on-premise computer.

To create the relationship between the on-premise computer and the Azure backup vault, you use a certificate or credential. Previously Azure Backup used a public certificate to identify or register the on-premise computer with the Azure vault. If you have established a vault with a certificate, you can still use that certificate. But now, it is much easier to generate a vault credential in the Azure portal and use the credential to register your vault with an on-premise computer. The following information takes you through the high-level process for creating a backup vault.

To access the Azure portal, you must have an Azure account. Open the Azure portal and click Recovery Services, then Create a New Vault, to create your backup vault.

Once you have created your vault, you need a certificate or credential to register your vault with the on-premise computer. Previously you would need to either create or acquire an X.509 v3 certificate and upload it to the computer. If you have existing vaults that use certificates, you may continue using these certificates. If you are creating a new backup vault, use the following procedure to acquire a vault credential.

  1. In the Azure portal select your backup vault and from the Quick Start page click Download vault credentials

  2. The portal generates the credentials and names the credentials a combination of the vault name and current date. In the open or save dialog, click Save. The credentials are saved to the Downloads folder for the active account.

Once the credential has been successfully uploaded the certificate thumbprint and expiration date with be displayed on the dashboard. Credentials have a 2-day lifespan.

Agents are used to prepare content for backup on computers. There are different agents for different types of computers. Each of the agents is available on the Microsoft Download Center and has its own installation process.

Registering a computer with Azure Backup creates a storage space allocation in the Azure backup vault, and it associates the computer with your subscription. Before you can back up any items from a computer, you must register that computer with an Azure backup vault.

Use the Azure Backup Agent to register a computer. Once a computer has been successfully registered its name will be displayed on the Servers tab of the backup vault.

Selecting items to protect identifies the files, folders, volumes, or Virtual Machines that you want to backup to Azure.

You identify these items using the local agent to establish a backup schedule that includes the individual data that you want backed up. Once the backup schedule has been run, the items you selected will be displayed in the Protected Items tab of the backup vault.

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