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[Qemu-discuss] Consistent VM backup via snapshot

From: Michael Weiser
Subject: [Qemu-discuss] Consistent VM backup via snapshot
Date: Thu, 16 Feb 2012 13:57:16 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.21 (2010-09-15)


I am trying to backup a KVM VM by creating a snapshot of the running VM
and extracting that snapshot from the running VM using qemu-img convert.
Sources on the net suggest that I would get an image that contains
all the machine state of the snapshot. So when I run the VM it would
continue to run just where it was when the snapshot was created.

But instead, when I run the VM with the converted image, the guest boots
up and does a filesystem recovery just as if it had crashed. So the
machine state information seems to go missing when extracting.

Should this work or am I missing something?

Would it instead be possible to create a snapshot of the running VM and
then just rsync the qcow2 image file to the backup location while the VM
is still running? This way, the snapshot inside the image with all state
information of the running VM would stay intact and could be resumed. I
tried this and it worked. I'm just not sure whether it would always
work, that is: Is a snapshot guaranteed to stay consistent even when the
VM is running on top of it and the image file is copied away from under
Thank you,

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