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Need Advise: upgrading server to Tiger


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My company is upgrading it's G4 Power Mac from OS X 10.3.8 to Tiger. Obviously, we have concerns about Retrospect 6 making a clean transition to the new OS. Specifically, we run several scripts throughout the week that are crucial to business, and losing those scripts would be devistating. Also, are there any differences between Retrospect running on Panther vs Tiger?

 

We plan to erase and install a clean copy of Tiger. I should also mention that we are currently running version 6.0, but plan on updating to 6.1.126. We backup to both LaCie Firewire drives and an Exabyte VXA-1 tape drive.

 

What do we need to know before starting this task? Your advise is much appreciated!

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hi heywood,

 

for a thorough examination of this, you should check the Manual on page 162, in the section entitled, "Moving Retrospect":

 

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

 

basically, you want to grab the preferences and the Catalog Files. you'll want to place the preferences in the correct location (/Library/Preferences/Retrospect) before installing Retrospect on the Tiger install and then point Retrospect to the Catalog files so it knows all about your Backup Sets.

 

cheers.

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hi heywood,

 

no issues i know of that were not present in 10.3. SCSI issues seem to top the list, but i can't tell from your earlier posting whether you have a Firewire Autoloader or SCSI.

 

if SCSI, just make sure you are using an ATTO card. also, some posters reported problems with the latest Exabyte firmware for thier Autoloaders, but once again that is not a 10.4 issue.

 

definitely make sure you are running 6.1.126.

 

cheers.

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Heywood,

 

It's a bit unclear whether you are updating to Mac 10.4.7 Server or Mac 10.4.7 client (non-server). We run 10.4.7 Server on our G5 Xserve with Retrospect Workgroup 6.1.126 just fine to our Exabyte VXA-2 1x10 1u (SCSI) with ATTO UL4D. Adaptec doesn't work, and some people have had trouble with the ATTO UL3S/UL3D. Walt's comments about latest Exabyte firmware, in my experience, aren't for the autoloaders (that firmware is fine) but with the VXA-2 firmware for VXA-2 drives in the autoloader, which seems to have some issues in the error recovery routines that the prior version didn't have.

 

The only real update issues you might see will not be with Retrospect, but with 10.3.x Server to 10.4.x Server, but your clean install of 10.4. would cure that except for issues on OS X Server with Spam Assassin (there's a symlink that is missing and prevents spam training) and changes in the OD schema (if you are going to import a custom 10.3 OD schema). And, if you are using 10.4.x Server, there are some issues with AFP shares not starting up if they were brought forward from older versions (like ASIP) because Apple changed the meaning of some of the permissions bits about 10.4.4 - if you are using 10.4.x Server and have this problem, contact me with a PM and I can give you the fix. Again, if you are doing a fresh 10.4 install, though, you shouldn't have problems. But, like Walt says, use the current Retrospect software and RDU.

 

Regards and good luck,

 

Russ

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Russ,

Thank you for your response. Very thorough and very helpful. We will NOT be upgrading to Tiger Server. It's functions are beyond our needs. Also, we are running Retrospect Desktop instead of Workgroup. Oh, and the Exabyte VXA-1 is connected via firewire.

 

Here's an additional question I just thought of: Should I upgrade Retrospect to version 6.1.126 before upgrading Tiger?

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Hmm... One "gotcha" for you to think about - If you do have to do a restore of your machine's OS (as opposed to files), as might happen if you ever want to "roll back" if the update fails, note that you can only restore in place onto the same version OS (and update level) as was used for the backup. Details are complex as to why. But you can always do a full disk restore when booted off of another disk.

 

If I wanted peace of mind, what I would do would be to get a spare drive, boot off something else (perhaps a boot or install CD or something), clone your 10.3.8 drive onto the spare drive (so you could always go back if the upgrade fails), then wipe and install. We always do a variant of this (by a RAID 1 mirror split, which keeps the server up while cloning) when we do any updates to our Xserve in case things go wrong. The only "gotcha" with this cloning approach (whether by cloning or by RAID 1 mirror split) is that you need to remember to turn off Retrospect's schedule (in preferences) before doing the clone - otherwise, if you have to boot the clone drive (which might be when you are under great stress if the update failed), Retrospect will fire up and start doing backups that it thinks have been missed (because of the passage of time).

 

Just a suggestion because peace of mind is always good....

 

Russ

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Quote:

we run several scripts throughout the week that are crucial to business, and losing those scripts would be devistating

 


 

Crucial.

 

Devastating.

 

If this were my business I would be sure to test and qualify any hardware, software or operating system changes before bringing them online.

 

It's a Macintosh, it likely it will "just work." But when dollars and reputations are on the line, what's your fall-back plan if something in the upgrade goes terribly wrong? (did you say "erase?" Shudder)

 

Since you're starting clean anyway, you should consider a brand new hard drive. Install OS X and Retrospect on this new physical drive, and run it and test it. When you're ready, move over your data and/or settings (there are different ways to do this depending on your configuration and needs). But don't erase your data. At the price of new drives, it seems an unnecessary risk.

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