Microsoft finally releases RTM version of its System Center Data Protection Manager (SCDPM) 2007, which introduces live backup for virtual machines hosted by Virtual Server 2005 R2 Service Pack 1, through the Windows Server 2003 Volume Shadow Service (VSS).
SCDPM is not free of charge but has been included in the System Center Management Suite Enterprise, along with Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM) 2007, Operation Manager (SCOP) 2007 and Configuration Manager (SCCM) 2007, priced at $860 per virtualization host (with unlimited virtual machines on top).
Read a whitepaper about the integration with SCVMM here and download the trial product here.
This release finally gives the opportunity to partially address the critical challenge of reliability in virtual infrastructures. Now customers should expect (and demand for) official support statements by third party ISVs, recognizing the virtual machine live backup through VSS as a valid one for their applications.