Backup Options for small/medium sized company?

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by TotalEclipse, Feb 12, 2003.

  1. TotalEclipse

    TotalEclipse Guest

    I work for an engineering firm of approximately 80 employees and want to get ideas to improve our backup infrastructure. We currently use a HP tape drive and 8 tape autoloader with Backup Exec but I don't find the performance "up to snuff". What other options are there? The information we back up is of the utmost importance and I don't feel our current habits are extensive enough.

    Thanks
     
  2. crontab

    crontab (uid = 0)

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    What do you mean that the performance is not up to snuff? You need to give a bit more information than that if you plan to upgrade your backup infrastructure. How much data are you backing up. How many clients are there. How often do you do full backups? Incrementals? Differentials? Level 0-9? Do you backup databases? Hot or cold? Do you dump db transactions to tape?

    Is this a LAN based environment? Or SAN Based? Probably LAN. If so, then do you have your duplexes identical from server to switch and clients to switch? Is the pipe of your Veritas NetBackup server big enough to handle all the streams from the clients and data to the 8 drives. Does it have a GigE card?

    What type of drives do you have? Do you specify the high-density logical tape device to use? Are you using the recommend block size by Veritas? Are these scsi drives or fibre drives using the scsi protocol?

    Are the backup jobs/groups staggered enough so you maximize the usage of the backup resources WITHOUT bottlenecking other backup components?

    -crontab -l
     
  3. TotalEclipse

    TotalEclipse Guest

    Okay. We have a LAN based environment of five servers and one NAS box. We do nightly incremental backups, along with weekly full backups and monthly full backups. The entire size of the backups is approximately 125-150 GBs. We backup one SQL database (we backup the backup file that SQL outputs).

    Ooops, we have one drive and 8 autoloader slots. Sorry, I mistyped there.

    We are mostly looking for other ways to perform backups more efficiently. Whether it be a multi-drive autoloader, off-site storage space, or anything else.

    We have considered installing a NAS box at a branch office and performing backups to that box as well as the tape backup. This seems like it would produce good redundency and good security (off-site and on-site backups).
     
  4. crontab

    crontab (uid = 0)

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    Ahh, there's a big difference between a 1 drive 8 slot jukebox than a 8 drive library. I was perplexed since I have an environment with only 6 drives that backs up ~20 TB of full backups weekly.

    So all your backups are straight file system backups. Do you use NDMP to back up the NAS box? Or do you backup the nfs/cifs mounted file systems from the NAS box?

    Hmm, more efficient back ups differ from offsite. But it seems that offsite is a higher priority, which is should be.

    I don't really get what you mean by using a NAS box as backups. Do you mean you're going to snapshot data to that remote NAS box? The tape backup that you just mentioned, is that on the local or remote site? Is this remote site ~50 miles away? I think that's the recommending distance for DR sites at the last conference I went to. Is the cost of sending all the data through the pipe cheaper than using a off-site tape vaulting utility like Iron Mountain?

    If your remote site is far away enough, the pipe is fast enough and cheap enough. A remote tape library would be a good and easy setup.

    If not, then you can clone the backed up data during the day and then ship them off to your own retention policy. But this requires another tape device.

    I'm assuming that this a tiny tower dlt jukebox that has no expandabilty. Do you have upgrade options from your supplier? A rackmount dual drive 20 dlt tape device can serve your needs easily. But that's if you willing to manually ship offsite backups. But I'm assuming that you are rotating the tape manually weekly to keep retention.

    A remote jukebox is a good idea if the financial boundaries allows.

    If money is no matter. You can kill two birds with one stone and not waste anytime and use RAIT or twinning. StorageTek has a fibre switch environment that can create two mirror tapes from one input stream. These two tapes can reside in the same library or two in two seperate libraries which accomplishes the onsite and offsite tape requirements. Although this setup costs a lot of money.

    Another big questions is, how much does your data grow annually? You may want to proceed with this project under that future forcast.

    -crontab -e
     

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