The Virtual Disk Development Kit (VDDK) cannot be used by free, unlicensed installations of ESXi. This toolkit is an essential component of the API used by the NetVault VMware Plugin 2.x. Without the use of this toolkit, Virtual Machines (VM) cannot be backed up by the plugin.
VMs can only be backed up from licensed ESXi, ESX or Vcenter environments.
A backup of a VM on an unlicensed ESXi server will fail with messages similar to:
Proceeding to snapshot the VM
Failed to snapshot VM
Failed to backup VM '[name]' uuid '[uuid]'
The Failed to snapshot VM message will contain context messages similar to:
VMware tools inside VM '[name]' uuid '[uuid]' not OK - will not be quiesced
Attempting to snapshot VM
Failed to create snapshot of VM: [X]
Soap error is fault.RestrictedVersion.summary
If VMware Plugin backups are required, the ESXi server must be licensed.
If the ESXi installation cannot be licensed, then the VMs can be backed up by installing a NetVault client and running file system or plugin/APM backups.