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michaelh

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About michaelh

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  1. Hi, I have two questions for everyone: 1.) Does anyone have any experience using a Spectralogic 2k (Tree Frog) automated tape library, or any other automated tape system from Spectralogic, with Dell hardware, Windows 2k/2003 Server, and Retrospect 6.5 multiserver? If so, any information that you could provide about your experiences with such a configuration would be most appreciated. 2.) If you were building a backup solution for Mac clients and had to use MultiServer 6.5 (for multiple concurrent streams) on a Windows server, backing-up to an automated tape library, what kind of configuration would you recommend (for both server hardware and tape library)? I apologize in advance if these questions have been asked and answered before but I don’t recall seeing any and I could really use your feedback. Thanks Much! -Michael
  2. Hi, I have two questions for everyone: 1.) Does anyone on this list have any experience using a Spectralogic 2k (Tree Frog) automated tape library, or any other automated tape system from Spectralogic, with Dell hardware, Windows 2k/2003 Server, and Retrospect 6.5 multiserver? If so, any information that you could provide about your experiences with such a configuration would be most appreciated. 2.) If you were building a backup solution for Mac clients and had to use MultiServer 6.5 (for multiple concurrent streams) on a Windows server, backing-up to an automated tape library, what kind of configuration would you recommend (for both server hardware and tape library)? I apologize in advance if these questions have been asked and answered before but I don’t recall seeing any and I could really use your feedback. Thanks Much! -Michael
  3. Hey Nate, No we're not currently using compression in Retrospect. We were considering doing so but after reading your reply I'm beginning to think it's not a very good idea. Would it make any difference, from a Retrospect perspective, to add a second processor, meaning is Retrospect multiprocessor aware? Also, is there a way, in Retrospect not Windows, to priortize use of the processor during backup to permit administrative access? On the subject of disk fragmentation, should I be concerned about the integrity of the data we are backing-up to such a fragmented disk? Needless to say, I don't want to defeat the purpose of securing data in the first place by not being able to restore it to its original state. What is Dantz's position? As always, thanks much. -Michael
  4. I have two questions: 1.) Is there a recommended block allocation size for Retrospect to use when backing up to disk that might help reduce fragmentation? We've backed-up about 2.9 TB to a SCSI-attached ATA RAID array and the RAID is 95% fragmented. Short of using a scheduled defrag. utility, which we plan to use, I'm wondering if there is an optimal Retrospect config. to help minimize this. 2.) Why does Retrospect, specifically MultiServer 6.5, hit the processor so hard during backup operations? The system we're using runs a 2.4 Gig Xeon w/a Gig of RAM. While backup occurs, we've noticed that at 4 streams (of 8 total) the Windows task manager reports that the processor is anywhere between 98-100% utilized. Needless to say, Retrospect crawls while trying to do anything else (read ops log, view device manager, etc.). My expectation would certainly be to see heavy disk and network I/O but I'm very surprised to see such extreme use of the processor.
  5. Nate, A couple of things since my last post: Spoke w/tech. support at Dantz (Michael), during which we discovered that the Spectra2k's library firmware is NOT up-to-date afterall. The most current version is 1022–very recently released–and mine is using 1020. Then I received the Dantz ASM newsletter where Robin Mayoff references Dantz KB article 28162: Spectralogic Tape Libraries and Retrospect (http://www.dantz.com/index.php3?SCREEN=kbase&ACTION=KBASE&id=28162). Looks like I need to upgrade some firmware! I'll let you know how it works out. Thanks, -Michael
  6. Nate, Secret preferences, eh? Well it was worth a shot but, alas, this too has failed to correct the problem. Besides, it worked for months just fine using ASPI. So now what? This is a big problem for us as this system manages the backup for nearly 50% of our 600 Mac clients. We need help fast! I'm going to call tech. support again but any other advice or insight that you–or anyone else reading this–might be able to provide would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Much, -Michael
  7. Thanks for tips. I'll check it out.
  8. Nate, The drivers had become re-enabled; however, disabling them has not corrected the problem
  9. Nate, Thanks for getting back to me. I'll check the Windows Device Mananger and disable the drivers if they have managed to somehow become re-enabled. Configure--Devices--Environment indicates that ASPI is in use.
  10. Hey Nate, I'm experiencing the exact same problem with a similar configuration: Windows Server 2003, Retrospect MultiServer 6.5.350 w/the latest rdu.px, Spectra2k Library w/dual AIT drives. The Library's firmware is up-to-date. The Library is connected to a Dell PowerEdge via an ATTO ExpressPCI card (which appears to use an Adaptec 29160 chipset). Only in my case, any compatible tapes placed within the Library and scanned by Retrospect are "identified" as unknown, regardless of whether or not they contain Retrsopect-written data or are erased. Also, The tape drive status indicator never changes from No Media even though I can watch the robot load and unload tapes into and out of the drives. The only tapes that are recognized are the cleaning tapes! Of course this is one of those problems that came out of nowhere. This configuration worked well for months and then one day... I've tried to eliminate SCSI voodoo to the best of my ability by swapping cables, SCSI IDs, replacing terminators. I've also connected the Library to a similarly configured Dell server running the same version of Retrospect and the same thing happens; however, when I connect the Library to a Mac XServe, same type of SCSI card, running Retrospect Server 6.0, it works as expected. I've spoken with Dantz tech. support and they had me try the following: Deleting Retrospect prefs. and initiating a first run. Depressing the shift key while ejecting the Library cartridge, then rescanning tapes. Connect the Library to another Windows server running Retrospect (mentioned above). So far, none of these attempts have been successful. Do you have any other suggestions?
  11. Marc, I don't mean to be a pest but would you be willing to have an offline dialogue, via phone or email, so that I might pick your brain a little bit concerning your experience with Multiserver and your overall backup strategy? I would be particularly interested in how many clients (servers or personal computers) you backup, how often, how long you hold/store the data, and what kind of technology you are using. If you wish to only post your reply in this forum that would still be very helpful. Thanks in advance for your time and consideration. -Michael
  12. Hello Marc, Thank you for taking the time to reply, your response was very helpful and reassuring. We are indeed hoping to switch to a centralized server model for data storage and filesharing services but this is a long term goal for us. Right now the Mac backup situation here is so hot it's on fire and we need to act quickly. The cost of migrating from Retrsospect Server (Mac) to Retrospect Multiserver (including all add-ons and service agreement) is so relatively inexpensive for us that it seems like a great short term solution. And who knows, if it performs well with few problems it might have a chance at fending off some of my colleagues' desire to deploy Veritas or Legato as our overarching Institutional backup solution. Thanks again. -Michael
  13. Hello, We currently backup a mix of Mac OS X Jaguar and Panther, and OS 9 computers (550 clients, 4.5 TB of data) with three separate versions of Retrospect Server 5.1 (upgrade to 6.0 soon for full Panther compatibility). Because of the limitations of this version of the Server product, we are seriously considering moving to Multiserver 6.5 because of its ability to perform multiple simultaneous operations in parallel to both disk and tape drives. What I am looking for with this post is feedback from anyone who has used or is using Multiserver in this manner (backing-up Mac clients) and what their experiences have been. I've read all the documentaion on the product available at Dantz's website but I am interested in hearing from people who have real experience using it for this purpose. Our backup situation is currently in crisis, any input or feedback on this topic offered as quickly as possible would be very helpful. Thanks Much! -Michael
  14. I too am becoming increasingly more frustrated with tape backup (AIT-2 and AIT-3), especially given the increasing cost incurred for sufficient media to regularly backup over 500 Macs that generate 1.5 TB every two weeks. Never mind the effort of rotating and managing tapes. Oi! The money. I'm currently exploring the possiblity of migrating our backups to a host-attached storage (SATA RAID Array) device, specifically Promise's UltraTrak RM 15000. This device can contain up to 15 250 GB ATA or SATA hard drives, from any manufacturer, is supposedly OS-independent, and can be remotely administered through a Web interface. The approximate cost for the box and drives combined is only $7,100.00, small-change compared to what it costs us, and would continue to cost us, for tape. If anyone out there has some experience with this or can see any gaping holes in this logic, I'd love to hear from you. Thanks. Michael
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