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Recycle Backup Question

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New Retrospect user question:




I am trying to backup a server (Win2kServer) running Retrospect Workgroup 5.6.132. I have created two Backup sets to rotate between; doing Recycle Backups once a week with a Normal Backup every other night. My problem is that the recycle backups are not erasing the contents of the tape. This leads to my ~2.7GB of data getting copied onto the tape multiple times to the point where the 40GB tape is full and asking to add another tape to the backup set. How can I (automatically) force the Recycle Backup to erase the contents of the tape so I won't need to flip tapes at 3am? Thanks. Also, is there a way to script a tape eject?

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Cut from Log:


+ Recycle backup using Server Backup Alpha at 7/2/2002 2:00 AM


To backup set Tape 1...


7/2/2002 2:00:18 AM: Recycle backup: The backup set was reset




- 7/2/2002 2:00:18 AM: Copying Sys (C:)


File "C:\WINNT\system32\Perflib_Perfdata_4b8.dat": can't read, error -1020 (sharing violation)


Can't back up Certificate Services when it is not started


7/2/2002 2:11:13 AM: Snapshot stored, 39.1 MB


7/2/2002 2:11:22 AM: Comparing Sys (C:)


File "C:\WINNT\Tasks\Windows Critical Update Notification.job": different modify date/time (set: 7/2/2002 2:09:00 AM, vol: 7/2/2002 2:19:00 AM)


7/2/2002 2:21:36 AM: 3 execution errors


Completed: 12501 files, 1.8 GB


Performance: 174.8 MB/minute (170.6 copy, 179.2 compare)


Duration: 00:21:18 (00:00:58 idle/loading/preparing)




- 7/2/2002 2:21:36 AM: Copying Home (D:)


7/2/2002 2:26:44 AM: Snapshot stored, 1,929 KB


7/2/2002 2:26:47 AM: Comparing Home (D:)


7/2/2002 2:31:52 AM: Execution completed successfully


Completed: 2923 files, 613.0 MB


Performance: 125.9 MB/minute (123.8 copy, 128.5 compare)


Duration: 00:10:16 (00:00:30 idle/loading/preparing)




7/2/2002 2:31:52 AM: 3 execution errors


Total performance: 158.9 MB/minute


Total duration: 00:31:34 (00:01:30 idle/loading/preparing)


Quit at 7/2/2002 2:32 AM




By my estimate, this come out to about 2.4 - 2.7GB.... I see the line where it says the backup set was reset, but how come the tape is filling up? Even if I copied all the data every night, I should be able to get at least 7 sessions on there (without compression - but I am using compression....) Any ideas? Thanks again.

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7/2/2002 2:00:18 AM: Recycle backup: The backup set was reset


this means that it was erased.....so this works.




Ok so this is about 2 gb...or a little bit more.


Go to Configure/Backupsets. Click on Backupset Tape 1. and go to Properties.


Go to Members...what does it say for tape number one on how much room it took up?




How large are our tapes? native.... What is the model of this tape drive again?


It didn't take that long to do either....hmmmm.

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Member listing is


1 - Tape 1 2.7G used




There aren't any others listed here although it always asks for 1- Tape 2 whenever I do a backup to this set.




Should I just erase the tapes and try again? Will I need to "forget" the catalog?





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I think I have fixed the problem. Apparently, the tapes weren't full, its just Retrospect was asking for the wrong tape for the backup set. I had set the strategy to do a recycle backup on tuesday at 2 am with a normal backup every other day at 2 am. This meant that I could flip the tapes on Monday at 9am. Problem was that Retrospect was trying to backup to the wrong set on Sunday and Monday. Something weird in the way the scheduler handles "every other week." Anyway, hopefully the new setup will solve the problem - thanks for all your help :-)

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  • 3 weeks later...

Using scripts someone else wrote, a client was running "Set A" and "Set B" normal (incremental) backups on alternate weeks. The unused set was stored offsite during the week.




Drawback was, of course, how each set expanded indefinitely as months went by. DLTs piled up. The good part was, the client could put in a tape on Monday and leave it there all week -- or until it asked for another Set A (or B) tape.




She wants to stop buying more tapes. They won't need to restore anything that was trashed more than two weeks ago.




What I WANT to do is write a script that *automates* the following: She brings in Set A on Monday. Retrospect erases or otherwise accepts the tape and does a fresh, complete backup. It continues using that same tape (or a 2nd tape, if needed) to append incremental backups on Tuesday through Friday nights. Next week, she brings in Set B tapes. Same drill.




Choosing a "Recycle" backup, however, what I got was a request for a new tape Monday, new tape again on Tuesday, again on Wednesday ... well, you get the picture. It did a complete backup every night. She hated having to feed it a new tape every day.




How can I tell Retrospect to do a Recycle backup on Monday, then Normal backup to the same tape(s) the rest of the week? If Tuesday through Friday can be somehow separately scripted as Normal incremental backups, could they simply build upon Monday's Recycle tape? I don't remember seeing a way to call Set A a Recycle backup, but having some of the days set separately as Normal.




I realize there are a couple ways to do the Recycle step manually, like making that choice for an immediate manual backup. But I would like to make it an automatic thing for her, if possible -- also without resorting to manually erasing old tapes.




One piece of information I am assuming, perhaps wrongly. I am pretty sure that a complete backup WILL fit on on 80Gb DLT. (Two server volumes at 6Gb each, about five network clients with less than 5Gb each.) But what if it doesn't? Would this force me to do a manual Recycle each Monday, so she can leave the 2nd tape in the rest of the week?




To further reveal my ignorance ... the original script was a single "Daily backup" script, although it directed backups to the separate A and B sets. When I tried to do a new one, it seemed I was forced to write separate scripts for Set A and Set B in order to schedule them for alternating weeks.




Believe me, I have plowed through the manual and FAQs here. I only get simplistic info like "Choose Recycle to start a new, complete backup instead of appending ..." This doesn't help me figure out how to work this into an automated script of the type I described above -- or whether that's even possible.




If someone could take pity on me and pass along some info -- even if it's only to say "Retrospect can't script quite the way you hope," or "Just tell her to do the manual Recycle on Mondays and get on with your life" -- I would much appreciate it!




-- Ron Hovingh




PS: In case it matters - Retrospect 4.3 on a B&W G3 AppleshareIP server on MacOS 9. No MacOS X anywhere.

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You can set up more than one backup scheule within a Script's schedule area. So what I would do is set up a Normal backups daily at 5AM *and* a weekly Recycle backup (Day of Week with only one day selected or Repeating Interval set to weekly) at 4:58AM within the same schedule of the same script. On the day that the Recycle runs there's a slight "penalty"--the Recycle runs followed by a Normal backup and the Normal backup won't start until the Recycle is done, but since the Recycle had just run there's probably nothing new so that Normal backup would be quick or has little in it.

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I should clarify that with your simple case you *don't* need to have a Recycle followed by a Normal backup on Monday. Just set the Recycle as a Daily for Monday only and the Normal as a Daily with Sun, Tues-Sat. except for Monday. I was referring to the more general case of using a reoccuring Recycle (e.g. once a month) that overlaps more frequent Normal backups (e.g. daily). In the later case, it's easier to just let the Normal backup happen after the Recycle on the single "special" day.




And the reason I set the Recycle to happen a miniute or two before the Normal backup on overlapping days (which you don't need to do for you example) is to make sure that the two execute in a determined & specified order (I'm not sure which order Retrospect will use if two tasks are set to start at the same time).

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