What is an effective VMware backup solution

Due to the risky operation, natural disaster, malware attack, power outage, etc., it’s necessary to backup VMware virtual machines in case of unwanted data loss and business interruption.

An effective VMware backup solution should have the following abilities:

  • Keeping several copies of your VM data;
  • Storing your VMware backups in multiple locations;
  • Providing complete copies of your systems, down to every last document;
  • Being independent and not relying on any single part of your internal infrastructure;
  • Having the ability to backup applications inside VM as well, such as databases, ERP, CRM’s, etc.

To meet these conditions, it’s best to create image-level backup of entire VMs. But as you may know, virtual machine backups (especially in enterprise environments) are often technically challenging and expensive. Is there any affordable or even free VM backup solution?

Free VMware ESXi backup for best data protection

VMware does have some built-in functions for data protection. For example, you can take snapshots, copy virtual machine disk files or export virtual machines as OVF templates.

However, these methods need to be done manually on a VM-by-VM basis. For centralized management and batch operation situations, you can try a free VMware backup software – AOMEI Cyber Backup which is a free and agentless VMware backup software. It could be an ideal choice to create independent VMware backups for long-term data protection.

Compared with the built-in utilities, it enables you to add virtual machines into the central console without installing Agent, and offers flexible backup strategies to safeguard your VMware environment without human interruption. With it, you can easily backup multiple VMware virtual machines automatically instead of repetitive manual operations, and it reduces business downtime by backing up virtual machines while running.

AOMEI Cyber Backup supports ESXi 6.0-7.0 version (as well as Hyper-V backup 2012 and above) and works for all size of business such as electricity, manufacturing, retailing and IT service providers. You can choose to install this VM backup software on either Windows or Linux system. It can completely backup entire virtual machine including OS, configuration, application, personal data and system state.

With the backup in hand, when a virtual machine cannot boot or system crashes suddenly, you can quickly restore it to a backed-up history version. Now I will show you how to make a backup with it.

How to Backup VMware ESXi Step by Step

The AOMEI Cyber Backup solution for VMware backup and recovery delivers complete data protection for vCenter-managed and standalone ESXi workloads. Ensure that your VMs, applications and data are recoverable within minutes in any data loss scenario.

Next, I will show you how to perform free VMware backup with AOMEI Cyber Backup.

3 easy steps to perform free VM backup

1. Bind Devices: Access to AOMEI Cyber Backup web client, navigate to Source Device > + Add VMware Device to add vCenter or Standalone ESXi host as the source device. And then click  > Bind Device.

2. Create Backup Task: Navigate to Backup Task > + Create New Task, and then set Task NameBackup TypeDeviceTarget, and Schedule.

  • Device: cover multiple VMs on the host within one backup task (up to 10 VMs in one task on Free Edition).
  • Target: select to back up to a local path, or to a network path.
  • Schedule: choose to perform full, differential or incremental backup, and automate execution according to the frequency you specified.

3. Run Backup: Click Start Backup and select Add the schedule and start backup now, or Add the schedule only.

Created backup tasks will be listed and monitored separately, for restoring, progress checking and schedule changing.

✦ While the Free Edition covers most of VM backup needs, you can also upgrade to Premium Edition to enjoy:

Batch VM backup: batch backup large numbers of VMs managed by vCenter Server or on standalone ESXi hosts.

Backup cleanup: Configure a retention policy to auto delete old backup files and save storage space.

Restore to new location: Create a new VM in the same or another datastore/host directly from the backup, saves the trouble of re-configuring the new VM.


Virtual machine backup is an important VM data protection measure, that ensures you to recover data in time in case of disasters. As VMware ESXi is a widely used type-1 hypervisor, you may also want to backup VMware ESXi VMs for better data security.