Veeam released their backup tool for Office 365 sometime ago. It is a standalone product that can be used in conjunction with Veeam Backup & Replication or just by itself.
The main thrust of the product is to allow you to backup O365 mailboxes to another location. A lot of people would question why you’d want to back up O365 data as Microsoft has your back, don’t they? Well, yes, they do in the sense that they ensure there are multiple copies of your data in multiple locations. But what they don’t do is allow for “point in time” copies of your data. They also don’t allow for recovery of accidentally deleted data outside of a short window. If you discover that data is missing outside of the recovery window then you are out of luck. So there is good reason to back up your email data. After all, you can’t control the actions of users!
While some O365 backup vendors back up to Azure or another Cloud store, Veeam’s tool backs up to a local data store (on-prem). The idea is that you have total control over your backup data because it is completely in your hands. This does mean that you need to have good Internet connectivity available. Slow connection speeds will severely cripple your ability to backup and recover data in a timely fashion. While Veeam does everything it can to make the backup data stream as “thin” as possible, restores will always require raw bandwidth.
Installation is typical Veeam … straightforward and very easy. You can install on any machine that fits the requirements. In my case I installed on my existing Veeam server. There is integration available between Veeam Backup & Replication and Backup for Office for 365 but it is not a requirement. You can operate your install as a completely separate entity if you wish.
You download the Veeam installer ZIP file and unzip. There are two install files, one for the O365 Backup tool and one for the “Veeam Explorer for Exchange” tool.
You install the backup tool first then the Explorer tool.
Now the Explorer tool:
As I said, it’s an easy install!
Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 is now installed on your machine and an icon is installed on your desktop.
Configuration and First Backup
Configuring Veeam Backup for O365 is pretty easy as well. First you have to install the license like any other Veeam product. Once the license is installed you have to create an “Organization”. This is your “link” to your O365 tenancy.
The user you select should have O365 admin rights.
The Organization will appear under the Organization’s heading and it will show up as the “onmicrosoft.com” version of your domain. Remember, this is the actual “tenancy” name inside O365.
At this point you are ready to configure backups!
Highlight the organization then click Backup and start configuring your backup job.
You can elect to backup ALL or specific mailboxes, I am backing up all mailboxes.
This is a typical Veeam scheduling dialogue, I am setting up for an immediate backup.
The backup connects to O365 and backs up the mailboxes to the local data store. The time required is totally dependent on the amount of data in O365 and your Internet connection speed.
That is literally all there is to creating and executing a backup of your Office 365 mailboxes.
In my next post I will look at the steps needed to recover data from backup and back into Office 365.