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Backup Job Performance

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I would like to get a good idea of what kind of performance other Retrospect users are getting. Please include your MB/min, your backup device and what speed lan you are on (10, 100, 1000).


According to Retro, I'm getting between 200 and 300 MB/Min on a 100Mbps lan backing up to a Quantum PX502 with LTO3 tape drives. I'm moving to a GB segment this week, so hopefully I will have faster numbers soon.




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I glanced at some logs, and I get 100MB/min, 300MB/min, 500MB/min, 1000MB/min, etc.--i.e. all over the map for different backups & different destinations. And that's from & to fast SATA II HDs on the same system and to IDE HDs and USB 2.0 HDs on other PCs across a GBit LAN. Unless you back up the exact same files under identical PC loads to assorted media, it's hard to know how things will compare (I guess you could manually average a bunch of runs). You'll generally get higher performance with a few big files than with a lot of small files. And snapshots often dominate total backup time.


On the issue of LAN speed, a while ago I swapped out my 100M switch and NICs with a GBit LAN and NICs. I happened to be doing a recycle about then, so I got a chance to look at the last full backup under a 100M LAN with the pretty-much-the-same file set backed up over a Gbit LAN. In round numbers, this particular backup went from an hour to 45min. Lots of variables (PC speeds, source HD speed, dest. HD [or tape or whatever] speed, etc.) but, at least in my experience, increasing your LAN speed by 10x (at least from 100M to 1000M) does not 10x the total speed, esp. if snapshots are in play. HD or tape performance (seek, etc.), Retro overhead, etc. will probably come to dominate.


I've also found, in practice, raw speed doesn't matter that much to me for many of my backups. If a backup finishes "overnight" that's often good enough--if it takes 1hr, 2hrs, 4hrs, even 8hrs, etc., it doesn't matter if the PC isn't being used for much else and I'm not at work, not using the home PC, am asleep, etc. If you're actually using the PC being backed up, you'll probably be willing to live with a longer backup time *if* the load on the PC were low enough so that you could use it at the same time.

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