Hi lpphiggp and ab,
Quote Originally Posted by ab View Post
On 09/04/2014 12:04 PM, lpphiggp wrote:
> I know that to clone a VM, the VM must be downed first. Then the
> process only takes about 5 to 10 minutes or so. However, it is unlikely
> I'm going to be able to down our servers for even that long without
> protests.
> Is there any reason I couldn't install my backup client on the host, and
> just backup the .raw files while the VMs are running?

Yes, because you'll likely corrupt things unless you can do something to
prevent writing to the disk during that time.
Other options may be using some kind of filesystem snapshotting
technology. I am not sure what that'd look like from the host, or if your
host's filesystem has that as an option, but maybe it'd work.
I would advise against this option, as you'd be snapshotting the host file system, not the guest file system.

You could think of this as instantly copying the physical disk of a machine - while there still may be tons of unwritten updates in the OS caches

How about backing up from within the virtual machine? Treat it like you'd treat any physical machine...