Quick Intro to Azure Backup Explorer

2 minute read

Here’s what you need to know about Azure Backup Explorer which has been released in public preview as of 5th Feb 2020.

What is Azure Backup Explorer?

  • It’s currently available for use with Azure Virtual Machines
  • A single pane of glass for monitoring backups of your Azure Virtual Machines
  • Removes complexity and manpower associated with monitoring backups using Azure Log Analytics Workspaces

How do I access it?

TLDR = Azure Portal > any RSV > Overview > Backup Explorer

  1. Login to https://portal.azure.com
  2. Open any Recovery Services Vault in your Subscription
  3. From the Overview page select the Backup Explorer link


What I like about it

  • It’s integrated into the Azure Portal which is perfect for most managed services teams to utilise.
  • It contains built-in Search and Query functionality.
  • The Summary dashboard allows you to quickly identify issues such as Virtual Machines not backed up.
  • Backup Explorer contains portal links to Recovery Services Vaults and Virtual Machines for seamless changes so you don’t need to open new browser windows.
  • You have the ability to Export to Excel


What can you do?

The Summary page gives you a quick overview of the status of backups across all RSVs and all Subscriptions. You can also filter by;

  • Subscriptions
  • Vault Location
  • Vault
  • Time Range


The Backup Items page shows your Virtual Machine protection status and you can search/filter by;

  • Backup Item or Resource Group
  • Vault
  • Protection State - Actively Protected, Protection Stopped, Initial Backup Pending
  • Resource State - VM Active, VM Not Found
  • Health Check Status - Passed, ActionRequired, ActionSuggested


The Jobs page shows the status of backup jobs for Virtual Machines added to your RSVs and you can search/filter by;

  • Backup Item or Resource Group
  • Operation - Backup, Restore, ConfigureBackup, DeleteBackupData
  • Status - Completed, CompletedWithWarnings, Failed, Cancelled, InProgress
  • Error


The Alerts page shows alerts for Virtual Machines added to your RSVs and you can search/filter by;

  • Backup Item or Resource Group
  • Alert Type - Backup Failure, Restore Failure, Delete Backup Data
  • Status
  • Severity - Critical, Warning, Info

The Policies page shows an overview of RSV policies and you can search/filter by;

  • Vault or Policy
  • Has Protected Items? - Yes, No
  • Schedule Frequency - Daily, Weekly
  • Retention Type - Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Yearly
  • Snapshot Retention - 0-5


The Backup Not Enabled page shows a list of Virtual Machines with no backup configured and you can search by;

  • Machine Name
  • Tags


Improvements I’d like to see

  • Add a new page for “Backup Storage” showing GB usage across Recovery Services Vaults.
  • Integration with Azure PowerBI for;
    • Reporting templates such as:
      • Successful/Failed Backups for Week/Month/Year
      • Latest Recovery Point per VM
    • Ability to subscribe to Critical Alerts & Events

Closing Remarks

Azure Backup Explorer makes it easier to monitor backups across multiple Azure Subscriptions from the Azure Portal and quickly identify gaps/issues.

Cheers, Jesse

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