If you are a current Veeam Backup & Replication user, you are eligible for one or two years of free Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 mailboxes (depending on if you have Standard or Enterprise licensing). It’s also available as a standalone with the pricing per user per year.
Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365 is an add-on within Veeam Backup & Replication that allows you to back up data from Exchange Online to your Veeam repository, where you can easily browse and restore at the item level. This includes mailboxes, folders, messages, tasks, and contacts.
Overall, backup of Office 365 doesn’t concern many because of how Microsoft manages all the data. However, this is excellent for organizations that already have a need for long-term archival or retention policies, fully functional search and granular restore capabilities. If you’re on a hybrid Exchange setup, this is a great way to migrate mailbox data between Exchange Online and your on-premises Exchange. Or, if you’ve been writing off moving to a hybrid model because mobility between your on-premises and online Exchanges was a concern, this may be what makes hybrid Exchange a reality for you.
If your deleted file retention is the main concern, Exchange Online comes default as 14 days and you can extend that to 30, tops. You have a bit more leeway with your on-premises Exchange. So, if a user deletes a deleted item within Outlook, it will stay by default on the server for 14 days (or whatever you as the admin have determined). After that, you’re out of luck and will have to dig through backups (if you have them) to find that item. This can happen more often than you’d think. So, if you have some Office 365 users who may have very important emails that may be prone to accidental deletions, enabling this could save you lots of time and heartache.
The Nuts and Bolts of Veeam Backup for Microsoft Office 365
So how exactly does this work? Firstly, it’s compatible with Veeam Backup & Replication v9.5, so get up to date on what this new update offers and what its system requirements are. It’s also compatible with Veeam Backup Free Edition if you’re utilizing that. You can also use this as a standalone program, but you can’t get the first one or two years free if you don’t tack it onto Veeam licensing.
The program gathers your mailbox data from Exchange Online through Exchange Web Services and PowerShell and it then stores it in the repository by transferring it through SSL. You can schedule a backup job, which creates a restore point that corresponds to where the mailbox datastore is. From there, Veeam Explorer for Microsoft Exchange can browse, search and restore items from Office 365 mailboxes.
Admins can export mailboxes, folders and items as Personal Folder Files (.pst), save mailbox items at Microsoft Exchange Mail Documents (.msg), send mailboxes, folders and items as attachments via email, and restore mailboxes, folders and/or items to Exchange Online or on-premises. All of this works for both virtual and physical environments.
You can back up to local storage on your backup server, a direct attached storage device connected to the backup server, a SAN, or SMB 3.0 share. Your storage volumes repository must be NTFS or ReFS.
It’s licensed per user per year, so do your calculations up front before you just take advantage of the first one or two years free so you know what you’ll end up coughing up later.