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VM backup with the "file recovery" option, and GPT partitions

Hi all,

In NetBackup, the feature "Enable file recovery from VM backup" is equivalent to Backup Exec's GRT backup and restore (Granular Recovery Technology).

With this technology, basically you get to backup a VM as a whole, then it lets you restore it back either as a whole VM, or (if you want) just selectively restore individual files, individual Exchange mails, individual SQL DBs, individual Sharepoint objects and individual AD objects.

With Backup Exec 2010 it is confirmed that GRT is NOT supported for GPT partitions inside VMs. GRT only works with MBR patitions.
I couldn't find any official documentation anywhere about whether this has been "fixed" in Backup Exec 2012.

With Netbackup. I also couldn't find any information regarding the following, but would appreciate if anyone could point me to some answers.
In Netbackup 7.0.x and 7.1.x, let's say a VM's OS uses GPT partitions, and that the VM is backed up as a whole (using the policy type VMware):

 - Can normal flat files be individual restored?
 - Can MS SQL DBs be individual restored?
 - Can Exchange items be individual restored? (Answer is No:
 - Can AD items be individual restored?
 - Can Sharepoint items be individual restored?
 - What about System State/Shadow Copy Components?
 - Are things the same in Netbackup 7.5?

Please share if you have more information regarding the combination of VM, GPT partitions and GRT (Granular Recovery Technology).

Thank you,


1 Solution

Accepted Solutions
Accepted Solution!

VMware does not support GPT with VDDK

5 Replies

Netbackup BMR (Bare Metal

Netbackup BMR (Bare Metal Restore) also does NOT support GPT partitions.
The following KB doesn't really confirm whether it is supported in Netbackup 7.5:

MBR - Master Boot Record - older partition format
GPT - GUID Partition Table - newer partition format, often used with newer Windows and with volumes larger than 2TB
EFI - Hardware specification that is compatible with GPT partitions

BMR - Bare Metal Restore in Netbackup
GRT - Granular Recovery Technology


Anyone got any ideas?

I could probably fire up some VMs and test them, and the results would probably show that GRT does not work with GPT partitions. But I'm hoping to get some official input on this topic. It could be in the form of some paragraphs in a guide, a technote, a release note, etc. I myself have so far only managed to find very little.

Thanks for your time,


Accepted Solution!

VMware does not support GPT with VDDK



Thanks for the links.

I guess it makes sense how Symantec wouldn't say much on this. Not even VMware supports GPT when using VDDK/vStorage!

It would have been nice if Symantec had documented this issue clearly though.


Time to hunt for more information on GPT with Hyper-V and XenServer VM platforms. (Not alot found so far.....)

Thanks again,




Just found out from the Backup Exec Software Compatibility guide that Hyper-V VM GPT partitions are not supported. It also seems to imply that both GRT backups, and OS agent level backups are not supported on GPT partitions.

Well, at least with VMware you could still do OS agent level backups on GPT partitions.

And I guess I'll just have to forget about XenServer...