Recently, I looked into backing up ESX configuration because I needed to do a reinstall. I was just looking for a way to speed up the re-install process. We are using shared storage for the VMs so this isn't required.
What I found was two methods. I will be using them both and report back with the results on the recovery process.
Backup Process 1:
#ssh to your host and run the following commands
# Sync config to store files
# Create Backup
# This will provide you with a download link you can use in your web browser
Backup Process 2:
# Install vSphere CLI
# Run the follow commands via cmd
cd C:\Program Files (x86)\VMware\VMware vSphere CLI\bin\
vicfg-cfgbackup.pl --server=<server IP> --username=root -s <Save backup file location and name>