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We are planning to switch away from TimeNavgiator and are considering either to go with Retrospect EMC or Amanda, the open source alternative. I found the CSM-20 to be compatible with Retrospect in the device support database. Does anyone here have some experience using this library with Retrospect?

 

In the product sheet for EMC Retrospect 8 i found this:

See the EMC Retrospect Web site for a complete list of supported drives. Some drives, such as tape libraries (which can accommodate and automatically load multiple tapes) may require a license for the Advanced Tape Support add-on.

Does this additional license apply for the CSM-20? All sorts of annoying additional license schemes made us decide to move away from Time Navigator ;-)

 

I also found :

Catalogs for Tape Media Sets are usually stored on the Retrospect server’s hard drive.

If this catalog is damaged, what is the chances of recvering data from the tape library?

 

We are planning to use the software for backups both to disks and tape, will that be a problem with a single license / single server?

 

Thanks,

Gaute Helfjord

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Gaute,

 

Welcome to the forums. Although it's not clear from the forum names, the best place to make this post is really in the Retrospect 8 forum:

Retrospect 8 for Macintosh forum

 

Primarily for historical reasons, this particular forum here is mostly for Retrospect 6 device questions. Retrospect 8 is a different animal, new code, different answers.

 

I found the CSM-20 to be compatible with Retrospect in the device support database. Does anyone here have some experience using this library with Retrospect?

You really ought to contact EMC support for an answer on this one:

Contact EMC Retrospect support

 

The device support database isn't really up-to-date for Retrospect 8. In your favor, though, is that the library is supported both by Retrospect 6 (Mac) and Retrospect 7 (Windows). Library support is pretty good, and you really don't have an oddball library.

 

In the product sheet for EMC Retrospect 8 i found this:
See the EMC Retrospect Web site for a complete list of supported drives. Some drives, such as tape libraries (which can accommodate and automatically load multiple tapes) may require a license for the Advanced Tape Support add-on.

Does this additional license apply for the CSM-20? All sorts of annoying additional license schemes made us decide to move away from Time Navigator ;-)

The Advanced Tape Support license is needed if you expect to have multiple tapes active at once (e.g., transfer tape-to-tape, etc.) or multiple concurrently-operating tape destinations, etc. I'm not familiar with the CSM-20. Does it have multiple tape drives? Our library just supports a single tape drive, so I haven't run into this problem. Whether you have multiple tape drives would pretty much answer your question about the Advanced Tape Support add-on. I suggest that you ask this question of EMC Retrospect Support (see link above). They are the authoritative ones on licensing issues like this, not those of us in these user-to-user support forums.

 

I also found :
Catalogs for Tape Media Sets are usually stored on the Retrospect server’s hard drive.

If this catalog is damaged, what is the chances of recvering data from the tape library?

Excellent, providing that the tape media set itself isn't damaged.

 

To understand why, you need to understand the Retrospect paradigm, which is different from other backup programs. Under the hood, it's a full initial backup plus incrementals backup strategy. The media set (formerly known as a "backup set", formerly known as a "storage set") is really a database, a bucket of bits into which files and metadata is dumped.

 

The big win with Retrospect comes at restore time, because of its "snapshot" model. Retrospect gives the illusion, by its "snapshot" interface, of showing you the files that were present on the source at the time of each backup session, rather than simply the files backed up during that session. Some of the files present on the source were not backed up during the session because they were already in the backup set (um, media set). But the "catalog" is simply a database index into the media set, pointing to the location of each of the files shown in the session "snapshot". Some of the files shown in the snapshot will have pointers into previous session backups; some of the changed files will have pointers into more recent session backups.

 

All the catalog does is to permit the "snapshot" model and to enable rapid recovery of files by going directly to the desired files in the media set. With other backup programs, you have to restore the first full backup and then all following incrementals, in order, so that you end up with the right set of files.

 

If the catalog becomes damaged, Retrospect can recreate it (somewhat slowly - it has to read and digest the entire media set) from the media set.

 

Clear? Oh, and you can always replicate (copy) the catalogs onto another disk as a precaution. All the catalogs do is save you time (possibly days, if your media set has lots of tapes in it) rebuilding the catalog if it becomes lost (or damaged - Retrospect 8 is not very mature right now. Stuff happens. It's getting better with each bug fix release, but it's far from rock solid right now).

 

We are planning to use the software for backups both to disks and tape, will that be a problem with a single license / single server?

No, providing that you aren't backing up other servers. If Retrospect runs on the server, and doesn't back up any other servers as clients, then it's a "single server" license. If you back up other servers as Retrospect clients (the clients chat with the Retrospect server to do backups for the clients), then you will need a multi-server license.

 

Clear?

 

Oh, and one other caution. If you are getting a SCSI HBA card, get an ATTO card. There can be problems with the others. Been there, done that.

 

Russ

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Gaute,

 

Welcome to the forums. Although it's not clear from the forum names, the best place to make this post is really in the Retrospect 8 forum:

Retrospect 8 for Macintosh forum

 

Primarily for historical reasons, this particular forum here is mostly for Retrospect 6 device questions. Retrospect 8 is a different animal, new code, different answers.

Thank your for pointing that out :-)

 

I found the CSM-20 to be compatible with Retrospect in the device support database. Does anyone here have some experience using this library with Retrospect?

You really ought to contact EMC support for an answer on this one:

Contact EMC Retrospect support

 

The device support database isn't really up-to-date for Retrospect 8. In your favor, though, is that the library is supported both by Retrospect 6 (Mac) and Retrospect 7 (Windows). Library support is pretty good, and you really don't have an oddball library.

 

In the product sheet for EMC Retrospect 8 i found this:
See the EMC Retrospect Web site for a complete list of supported drives. Some drives, such as tape libraries (which can accommodate and automatically load multiple tapes) may require a license for the Advanced Tape Support add-on.

Does this additional license apply for the CSM-20? All sorts of annoying additional license schemes made us decide to move away from Time Navigator ;-)

The Advanced Tape Support license is needed if you expect to have multiple tapes active at once (e.g., transfer tape-to-tape, etc.) or multiple concurrently-operating tape destinations, etc. I'm not familiar with the CSM-20. Does it have multiple tape drives? Our library just supports a single tape drive, so I haven't run into this problem. Whether you have multiple tape drives would pretty much answer your question about the Advanced Tape Support add-on. I suggest that you ask this question of EMC Retrospect Support (see link above). They are the authoritative ones on licensing issues like this, not those of us in these user-to-user support forums.

 

I also found :
Catalogs for Tape Media Sets are usually stored on the Retrospect server’s hard drive.

If this catalog is damaged, what is the chances of recvering data from the tape library?

Excellent, providing that the tape media set itself isn't damaged.

 

To understand why, you need to understand the Retrospect paradigm, which is different from other backup programs. Under the hood, it's a full initial backup plus incrementals backup strategy. The media set (formerly known as a "backup set", formerly known as a "storage set") is really a database, a bucket of bits into which files and metadata is dumped.

 

The big win with Retrospect comes at restore time, because of its "snapshot" model. Retrospect gives the illusion, by its "snapshot" interface, of showing you the files that were present on the source at the time of each backup session, rather than simply the files backed up during that session. Some of the files present on the source were not backed up during the session because they were already in the backup set (um, media set). But the "catalog" is simply a database index into the media set, pointing to the location of each of the files shown in the session "snapshot". Some of the files shown in the snapshot will have pointers into previous session backups; some of the changed files will have pointers into more recent session backups.

 

All the catalog does is to permit the "snapshot" model and to enable rapid recovery of files by going directly to the desired files in the media set. With other backup programs, you have to restore the first full backup and then all following incrementals, in order, so that you end up with the right set of files.

 

If the catalog becomes damaged, Retrospect can recreate it (somewhat slowly - it has to read and digest the entire media set) from the media set.

 

Clear? Oh, and you can always replicate (copy) the catalogs onto another disk as a precaution. All the catalogs do is save you time (possibly days, if your media set has lots of tapes in it) rebuilding the catalog if it becomes lost (or damaged - Retrospect 8 is not very mature right now. Stuff happens. It's getting better with each bug fix release, but it's far from rock solid right now).

 

We are planning to use the software for backups both to disks and tape, will that be a problem with a single license / single server?

No, providing that you aren't backing up other servers. If Retrospect runs on the server, and doesn't back up any other servers as clients, then it's a "single server" license. If you back up other servers as Retrospect clients (the clients chat with the Retrospect server to do backups for the clients), then you will need a multi-server license.

 

Clear?

 

With "backing up other servers" you mean other Retrospect servers, right? That won't be a problem for us. We will only need one server - at least one running Retrospect.

 

 

Oh, and one other caution. If you are getting a SCSI HBA card, get an ATTO card. There can be problems with the others. Been there, done that.

 

Russ

 

Luckily we already own an ATTO card :-) Thank you so much for a very thourough reply, Russ. Getting good answers isn't always as easy! Makes a huge difference when choosing between these kinds of products. Thanks!

 

Gaute

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With "backing up other servers" you mean other Retrospect servers, right? That won't be a problem for us. We will only need one server - at least one running Retrospect.

No. There are two types of computers that are counted as "servers":

 

(1) any computer running Mac OS X Server (as contrasted to non-server). In other words, any computer running Mac OS X Server and also running the Retrospect client program (to chat with the computer running Retrospect) counts as one "server".

 

(2) the computer running Retrospect itself. If the computer running Retrospect is also running Mac OS X Server, that only counts as one "server".

 

Here's the product description:

 

Retrospect for Macintosh Editions

 

Retrospect 8 Multi Server Unlimited Clients is designed for small and midsize businesses and branch offices, and departments in large organizations protecting more than one server. Retrospect Multi Server runs on a Mac OS X or Mac OS X Server computer and provides licenses to protect an unlimited number of networked Mac, Windows, and Linux servers, desktops, and notebooks. Annual Support and Maintenance is included with this product.

 

Retrospect 8 Single Server Unlimited Clients is designed for small and midsize businesses, branch offices, and departments in large organizations protecting one server. Retrospect Single Server runs on a Mac OS X server and provides licenses to protect an unlimited number of networked Mac, Windows, and Linux desktops and notebooks. [color:red]A server client license can be purchased to protect an additional networked Mac, Windows, or Linux server.[/color] Annual Support and Maintenance is included with this product.

 

Retrospect 8 Single Server 20 Clients is designed for small and midsize businesses, branch offices, and departments in large organizations protecting one server. Retrospect Single Server runs on a Mac OS X server and provides licenses to protect up to 20 networked Mac, Windows, and Linux desktops and notebooks. [color:red]A server client license can be purchased to protect an additional networked Mac, Windows, or Linux server.[/color]

 

Russ

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Ouch! That would mean quite a big number of servers - possibly as much as 20.. I will check this first.

Well, then, just get the "Multi-server" edition, and you don't have to worry about how many servers there are.

 

Russ

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Before you buy, I STRONGLY urge that you download the trial version and make sure it works in your configuration. Retrospect 8 is still in its infancy, and there are growing problems right now. It gets better with each bug fix release (I understand that there is another big bug fix release expected within a month), but it is a bit unstable right now. Test thoroughly before production deployment. You might want to read the Retrospect 8 forums to get a better sense.

 

The EMC support group is very good.

 

Russ

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I don't like buggy backup software, makes it hard to sleep at night! Will be testing extensively first. At the moment I am testing Amanda on a few computers here.

 

Gaute

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