Jump to content

Recycle and New Media "Backup Server" sets


Recommended Posts

I'm running Retrospect 6.1 on a Macintosh server.

We have about 15 laptops that come into the office fairly randomly, so the freedom of "Backup Server" solution is really nice.

However, I don't understand how to Recycle data sets that are made using "Backup Server" functionality. Nor do I understand an efficient way to add "New Media" backups within the "Backup Server" model.

 

Do I point a separate Recycle Backup script toward "Backup Server" data set to erase it? It seems like a strange way to do it. Assuming that I'm on the right path, I was planning on recyling the data on a Sunday when none of our laptop users are in the office. Do I still need to add each of the laptop users to that Recycle Script?

Likewise, how can I ensure that the data sets get added to "New Media" (for offsite removal) if I don't know when the laptops will be present. The hypothesis I came up for that one, was to automate a Duplication of the data set from the local Retrospect backup disk to tape (as opposed to directly from the laptop clients).

 

Thanks in advance for your help.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

hi peul,

 

you are on the right track. here are the steps i would use for a 'Recycle':

 

1) set a time for 'Backup Server' to be inactive

2) during that time, run a scripted 'Recycle' backup backing up either something small or an empty folder to the same backup set*. so if you are using 'Backup Server' to 'Backup Set A' you will also use that backup set in your 'Recycle' script.

3) when 'Backup Script' kicks off again your backup set will either contain a small amount of data or no data, depending on how you did the 'Recycle'. you are done.

 

*NOTE: you don't have to add all of your laptops to the 'Recycle' backup. just add a small or empty folder.

 

for 'New Media', you would do the same basic steps as above, except when you do the 'New Media' Retrospect will change the name of the backup set, for example to 'Backup Set A [001]'. when your 'Backup Server' script starts up again it will pick up the change to the backup set automatically.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the quick response.

Ok. I follow the Recycle backup plan that you laid out, but I'm still a little vague and how to implement this for the New Media backup.

Let's say I pause the 'Backup Server' for the weekend and schedule a New Media backup for Saturday. What should be my Source? Will it still be the various laptops that randomly appear on the network or should it be my local Retrospect data set? If my Source is the local Retrospect data set would I be better off just setting up a Duplication script pointed toward removable media as opposed to a New Media script? And if the Source is the laptops, how can the New Media script pull data from machines that aren't on the network at that moment.

I also don't follow what you were saying about Retrospect changing the name.

 

Thanks again.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

hi peul,

 

your souce should be a small or empty folder. think of this as setting things up for when you resume 'Backup Server'.

 

with a 'New Media' backup, Retrospect will change the name of the backup by adding an '[001]' onto the end. if you do another 'New Media' backup at a later time, the number will become '[002]'. so, for example, if you are backing up to tape, you'd have one tape named 'Backup Set A [001]', and another named 'Backup Set A [002]'. the 'Backup Server' will pick up the change.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There is some part of the New Media puzzle that I'm not seeing here. Maybe the New Media scripts function differently than I envision.

Ok, so I pause the "Backup Server" for the weekend and set up a New Media script to run on Saturday and point the Source towards a small unrelated folder. The script runs and backs up nothing (because it's pointed towards a small unrelated folder) to my removable media. And then the "Backup Server" resumes again on Monday morning and continues to back up to the same local data set (hard disk) that it was backing up to on Friday evening. I still don't understand how the "Backup Server" data is getting transferred to the removable media. Is that scripted from the "Backup Sever" interface or the Backup New Media script?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

hi peul,

 

yes, you are way off the mark here. i'll try to explain better:

 

there is no 'Transfer'. when you do 'New Media' you are starting the whole backup from scratch to, eherm, new media. in your case, that would be a new hard drive. once the 'Backup Server' resumes, it will see that there is no data in the backup set and back up all of the data. kind of like when you started using the script, oh so long ago.

 

i may not be explaining this so well. here is a link to the 6.X manual:

 

http://kb.dantz.com/article.asp?article=1116&p=2

 

check out page 23, 'New Media Backups', and page 75, 'New Media Backup'. hopefully that will help explain things.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

yeah, I've been buried in that manual for a while now.

I think I finally "got it". I was thinking of a New Media backup as a means of introducing a new destination exclusively for off-site backup. But it actually (correct me if I'm wrong) is a way of SWITCHING your destination entirely -- not just for a day or an hour or whatever.

 

so I think that leads me back to using a Duplication script to transfer the data from the local data set (hard disk) to removable media for an offsite backup.

thanks for the feedback.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Man, I've about had it. Maybe I just need to set this aside for a few days. It seems like I'm trying to do something very common and Retrospect is fighting me every step of the way.

I just want to back up some laptops to hard disk 98% of the time and then transfer that data to a few circulating tapes and take them offsite in case the damn office burns down.

As far as I can tell, I can't use a New Media backup with the Backup Server because that's going to switch the destination of backup from hard disk to tape which won't work because I can't keep a tape loaded for 3 weeks until all the laptops happen to show up. And I can't use a Duplication script to transfer the data sets from my local hard disk to tape (which was my kinda sketchy Plan B) because the tape drive doesn't show up as a destination for a Duplication script...not to mention that it'll only let you chose one folder at a time -- which is a pain. The workaround for Recycling the Backup Server data is also pretty lame, by the way. All of this functionality should be built into the Backup Server "solution".

My initial impression was that Retrospect made an offsite backup of the Backup Server data pretty straight forward. My current impression is just the opposite. I've invested at least 30 hours in this. Maybe I'll just switch all the laptops to Backup Scripts since that data seems to be much more pliable. The convenience of the priority queuing is hardly worth these headaches.

I guess the kicker of it all is that I have a hunch what I'm doing is totally feasible. I'm just missing it.

Maybe I need to spell out more specifically exactly what I'm trying to do.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

hi peul,

 

have you tried using the 'Transfer' function? sounds like you want to 'Transfer' the data from the hard drive to the tape, then do a 'Recycle' (as we've already discussed) and then start the 'Backup Server' again.

 

'Transfer' starts on page 60 of the manual.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quote:

Maybe I need to spell out more specifically exactly what I'm trying to do.

 


 

Your most recent post seems to have described your needs, and Walt's suggestion of Tranfers is probably what you want.

 

Tools->Copy->Transfer

 

Make a new File Backup Set on the external hard drive, then Transfer the data from your Tape Backup Set to your File Backup Set. There are not a whole lot of features available, but it can copy the files in the most current Snapshot from one Backup Set to another (be sure not to select "move" as it will delete all the files from your tapes, making you very unhappy).

 

I just want to comment on your use of the term "Backup Server data" by noting that there is nothing special about the data collected by a Backup Server Script; the stored data is the same as from any other Backup operation in Retrospect (Duplicates _are_ different then Backups).

 

The Backup Sets contain the data (on media such as tape, disk, ftp server, etc), while the scripts just schedule the executions. Being familiar with the terms used in Retrospect (Source, Destination, Backup Set, Snapshot, Catalog, Session, Media, etc) is helpful to understand the program's paradigms.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey guys,

Thanks for your continuing help. Your posts have helped a lot.

 

I think where my frustration with the Backup Server Script comes into play is that the scheduler is so much more limited. Yes, I agree that the data collected by the Backup Server Script is the same as that of the other Backup operations. But because of the limitations of the scheduler what you can you do with that data seems prohibitive. (Not being able to Recycle the data using an internal Backup Server Script, not being able to schedule the data to go to different locations week by week...)

 

I don't think I want to use the Transfer tool since it doesn't seem possible to automate a Transfer. The documentation in this regard is a little confusing. There's a little paragraph on page 61 called "Scripting a Transfer" that would seem to indicate this is possible. Then three pages later in the Overview of Scripts it says "you can automate all of the operations (except Transfer) described in Chapter 4" and there's no mention of automating a Transfer in the rest of the chapter.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A couple more days of looking at the setup and I've pretty much got Retrospect working well.

The last thing I'd like to check off the list (for the moment) is something that I alluded to in the last post: Is there a way to automate a Backup Server Script to write to rotating destinations. What I would like to do is write to two different sets from one week to the next and Recycle them on the off weeks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

hi peul,

 

one easy way to do this would be to add both backup sets to the script, and then rotate them out.

 

let's take for this example 2 external hard drives, one containing Backup Set A, and the other Backup Set B.

 

1) go to the destination button of my backup server script.

2) add both Backup Set A and Backup Set B as destinations

3) week one, take Backup Set B offline

4) week two, take Backup Set A offline

 

NOTE that you will get an error in your logs saying, "Backup Set B is missing or unavailable" the first week, but Retrospect will do the backup to Backup Set A. the reverse is true on week two.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Quote:

Is there a way to automate a Backup Server Script to write to rotating destinations.

 


Throughout this whole thread there's not been any mention of autoloaders, so it's not clear whether you have one or not. Since it's not mentioned, perhaps not (but then again, there's not any specific configuration info given other than some unspecified tape hardware using some unspecified version of Retrospect 6.1 running on some unspecified hardware running some unspecified version of Mac OS, perhaps some version of Mac OS X Server, but many people use Mac OS X (standard, non-server) as a "server" for a limited number of computers). Lack of details makes a precise answer difficult. But, if you do have an autoloader, one variant of what waltr suggested is to put both backup sets into the script with an appropriate schedule that alternates between the two. You can also throw in "new media" and "recycle" events in the schedule as desired. The only shortcoming is that Retrospect isn't too good about respecting barcode labels in an autoloader (or even pre-named tapes) when it runs over the end of a tape and picks another - it will just pick the first erased tape it finds, regardless of barcode, regardless of pre-existing name given to the erased tape. I've requested a feature enhancement to fix this in a future version. Other than that, it works pretty good. But this is just a thought to consider if you do have an autoloader, because it eliminates the constant shuffling of tapes. If you don't have an autoloader, then waltr's solution is the right one. Regards, Russ

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...