For those who have virtualized SQL Servers with very high volume transaction workload (very high rate of data change), I am curious how you handle VM backups, or if you even do them.
Of course, I manage a separate chain of transactionally-consistent native database backups. But the standard policy at the virtualization level has always been to backup all VMs. This is currently using a typical 3rd party VM backup solution (Initiate VM snapshot, copy snapshot data to backup appliance, release snapshot). However, these servers have an extremely high rate of data change, resulting in the change files growing large very quickly. And the system is reaching a point where it is choking on the amount of data that needs merged during the snapshot release.
I am toying with the idea of skipping the VM backups altogether. I don't permit any other apps to be installed on SQL Servers, and the base OS and SQL configuration is pretty vanilla. So it wouldn't take much in a failure scenario to just deploy a new VM from template, install SQL bits on it, and start restoring database backups.
Thoughts? Alternatives? Pitfalls I'm missing? Thanks for your input.