Microsoft Launches Preview of Backup Reports in Azure

A new Azure feature called Backup Reports is now available as a public preview, Microsoft announced on Wednesday.

Organizations can use Backup Reports (which can be accessed via the Azure Portal) to forecast their backup needs, monitor backup trends and gather information for audits. It lets IT pros drill down into details, and it has "filters" to customize its dashboard views.

Partners that use Azure Lighthouse, a managed services provider tool for Azure customers, can use Backup Reports "to view reports across all your tenants," the document added.

The reporting enabled by Backup Reports is supported across Azure virtual machines (VMs), including SQL and SAP HANA/ASE used on Azure VMs. It also works with Azure Backup Server, Azure Backup Agent and System Center Data Protection Manager, per a Microsoft document description.

Backup Reports are based on using "Azure Monitor Logs and Azure Workbooks" solutions. The capability is built into the Azure Portal, where it'll show as the Backup Reports menu item. However, for that to occur, IT pros have to first to make a configuration change to have Azure data sent to the Log Analytics service.

The licensing needed to use Backup Reports isn't clear from Microsoft documentation, but the announcement implied that it was free.

"Backup Reports can be viewed right on the Azure portal without the need to purchase any additional software licenses," Microsoft's announcement claimed.

Last month, Microsoft announced a similar preview called "Backup Explorer," which is a tool used for "real-time monitoring" of Azure backups. Backup Reports, in contrast, appears to be designed more for analysis and getting trends data than for simple oversight and management activity.

"With our reports, you can answer questions including 'Which Backup Item(s) consume the most storage?', 'Which machines have had consistently misbehaving backups?', 'What are the main causes of backup job failure?', and many more," Microsoft's announcement explained regarding the Backup Reports capability.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.