SIRIS, ALTO, and NAS: Getting Started with the Datto Windows Agent

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This article describes system requirements for the Datto Windows Agent. For a technical overview of the Datto Windows Agent, see One Take: A Look at the Datto Windows Agent.

Environment

  • Datto Windows Agent 2.0
  • Datto Windows Agent 2.1
  • Datto Windows Agent 2.2

Description

Versioning

Version numbers for all Datto Windows Agent endpoints protected by your Datto device appear on the appliance's Device Overview page, in the Local Agent Information field, under the Agent Version heading for each listed production machine.

For Windows XP & Windows Server 2003

The current version of the Datto Windows Agent is 2.0.9, with driver version 1.10.0.0. For release notes, refer to the Datto Windows Agent (DWA) 1.0 & 2.0: Software Release Notes.

You can download this version of the agent software from the following link: Datto Windows Agent: Legacy Installer.

For Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, and Above

The current version of the Datto Windows Agent is 2.2.0.0 with driver version 1.12.12.3. For release notes, refer to the Datto Windows Agent (DWA) 2.1: Software Release Notes.

You can download this version of the agent software from the Datto Downloads page.

Datto Windows Agent Version 2.2 is a significant upgrade. This release includes new drivers, which means that existing agent installations will not automatically updateTo update your agent software, follow the steps in our Updating to Datto Windows Agent Version 2.2 article.

Update Notes for All Versions

The agent software also automatically updates itself when a new version becomes available, except when the release includes a driver update. Because a driver update requires an update and reboot of the host system, you will need to download and install these versions manually.

If your protected machine does not have regular internet access, you will need to check for and install updates manually.

Compatibility

The Datto Windows Agent is tested for compatibility with the following operating systems:

Datto Windows Agent 1.0 and 2.0

  • Windows XP Service Pack 3
  • Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 2
  • Windows Vista

Datto Windows Agent 2.1 and above

  • Windows Server 2008 Service Pack 2
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 and later
    • Includes Windows Small Business Server 2011
  • Windows 7 Service Pack 1
  • Windows 8
  • Windows 8.1
  • Windows 10
  • Windows Server 2012
  • Windows Server 2016
  • Windows Server 2019

NOTE: French versions of Windows older than Windows Server 2008 are unsupported by the Datto Windows Agent.

Compatibility of this backup solution with any hypervisor environment or operating system not listed in this article is untested and may yield unreliable results.
  • Acronis True Image and Acronis Disk Director are incompatible with the Datto Windows Agent. Ensure that neither product is present on the protected system before attempting to install the Datto Windows Agent.

See System Requirements For Windows-Based Backup Solutions for additional compatibility statements.

Warnings

  • Do not install the Datto Windows Agent on any system currently protected by the ShadowSnap Agent, even if the ShadowSnap Agent is not present. Installing the Datto Windows Agent will start a new backup chain for the protected system and will not continue your existing ShadowSnap chain
  • Before installing the Datto Windows Agent, disable or remove all other backup software from the production machine. When uninstalling, use a high-level program that eliminates all traces of the incompatible software, including registry keys, DLLs, and stray folders. These components can cause conflicts.
  • Due to their mobile nature, Datto does not endorse or support backing up laptops. Laptops must be inside the LAN, and not on a wireless network, to perform backups promptly. Attempts to back up laptops are at your discretion. Because of this, and due to the range of touchpad drivers, custom drivers, and hardware configurations available for both laptops and all-in-one workstations, restoration support for these platforms is 'best-effort' only.
  • The Datto Windows Agent can only back up volumes that are recognized by the Windows operating system as logical, stable volumes. It cannot back up mapped network drives, iSCSI targets not attached as a logical volume, or removable drives.
  • The Datto solution is capable of backing up multiple types of disk sector schemes. The process writes an image-based backup to a file which is 512 bytes per physical sector. While rare, some software which relies on advanced formats, such as 4K, may have issues with the sector size change. Datto recommends performing regular DR tests to ensure that all required applications function as expected in our virtualized environment.
  • FAT32 filesystems are currently unsupported.
  • Backup of deduplicated volumes is untested and may produce inconsistent results.
    • File restore of deduplicated volumes is not possible. The Datto Windows Agent, ShadowSnap Agent, and agentless backup solutions are capable of restoring deduplicated volumes through:

System Requirements

Protected Machine Hardware Requirements

Backup agents require sufficient space to track and block-transfer changes for subsequent backups. Each protected volume must meet the following requirements:

  • The Datto Windows Agent needs each volume selected for backup to have 10% of the volume's total size available for the DattoCtrl or Datto.ctl file except in the following scenarios:
    • For versions 2.0 and below of the Datto Windows Agent, if the volume is large enough that 10 GB is less than 10% of the total disk space, the agent will use the percentage of the volume's size that is closest to and is at least 10 GB. For example, for a 560 GB volume, the COW file size will be 2% of the volume and be about 11.2 GB in size.
    • For versions 2.1 and above of the Datto Windows Agent, if the 10% number is larger than 10 GB, the file's size will be 10 GB, regardless of the total size of the protected volume.
  • Datto Windows Agent
    Version 2.0 and Below
       
    Volume Size Space Required Example
    Less than 100 GB 10% of the volume* 80 GB = 8 GB
    100 GB to 1 TB Approx. 10 GB* 1 TB = 10 GB
    Greater than 1 TB 1% of the volume* 5 TB = 50 GB, 10 TB = 100 GB
         
    Datto Windows Agent
    Version 2.1 and Above
       
    Volume Size Space Required Example
    Less than 100 GB 10% of the volume* 80 GB = 8 GB
    100 GB and above 10 GB* 1.5 TB = 10 GB
    Figure 1: Datto Windows Agent protected volume requirements

In all sizing scenarios, the agent requires an additional 2 GB of free space for operational overhead.

  • At least 1 GB of RAM must remain free during normal operations of the production machine for install and backups to run.
  • The production machine must use a ReFS or NTFS filesystem.

Antivirus Requirements

  • Set service-level exceptions for the Datto Backup Agent and Datto Provider services.
  • Set an application-level exception for the Datto Windows agent (DattoBackupAgent.exe).
  • Whitelist the following installation path: %PROGRAMFILES%\Datto\Datto Windows Agent\

Networking Requirements

The following are the minimum networking requirements your environment must meet to support the Datto Windows Agent. For a complete overview of Datto's networking requirements, see the SIRIS, ALTO and DNAS Networking & Bandwidth Requirements article.

  • The host network must provide gigabit connections from the Datto appliance to all appropriate network infrastructure. For best results, the Datto appliance should be connected to a gigabit switch whenever possible.
  • The protected machine must have Internet access and be able to reach https://device.dattobackup.com/certApi.php for the initial installation of the Datto Windows Agent.
  • Ensure that outbound connectivity is available for the following ports through all active firewalls on the protected machine:
    • Port 443 (for Datto Cloud communication)
    • Port 3260 (for iSCSI)
    • Port 3262 (for MercuryFTP)
  • Ensure that inbound connectivity is available for the following ports through all active firewalls on the protected machine:
    • TCP port 25568 (for Datto Windows Agent service)
      • The Datto Windows Agent uses MercuryFTP as its primary transport method; however, if this method fails, backups are intended to fall back to iSCSI.
    • From the Datto appliance to the Internet:
      • Ports 22, 80, 123, 443 outbound to at minimum the addresses specified in this article.

Figure 2 illustrates a generalized data flow for the Datto Windows Agent solution.

Figure 2: Datto Windows Agent logical data flow (click to enlarge)

Installation

Before installing the Datto Windows Agent, to ensure an issue-free setup experience, review our Windows Pre-Deployment Configurations and Best Practices guide. Then, follow the steps in Installing the Datto Windows Agent to learn how to deploy the agent to your production machine.

Additional Resources


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