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20 hour groom (and Exchange best practice)

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I have an Exchange (2007) Mailboxes (only, not the database) backup script that runs nightly. I have 13 Exchange mailboxes (about 9 of them really active users). And I have a daily grooming script that runs for the backup set (this is to a disk, locally on the Retrospect box). (The Exchange database, which is not backed up by this script, is 37 gigs.)


I have Retrospect set to keep 99 copies (and the backup runs once per day). Currently the set reports that it is 65 gigs and backing up 2,707,929 files. Its catalog file is 4 gigs.


My question is about best-practice for Exchange Mailboxes backups... I notice that now my Exchange Mailboxes groom job takes 20 hours to run, narrowing quickly in on the time it takes to back the thing up and still fit in a day.


Obviously 'every day for 99 days' is not a reasonable way to do this. So what is? (Juggling restricting space, etc..) (Maybe keep 31 copies and then have a separate script that runs once a month? Or 7 copies and a weekly run that keeps 12 copies?)


How do you arrange your Exchange mailbox backups?





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1) I would never do a groom every day. You are better off getting more disk space.


2) By setting grooming to 99, you are telling Retrospect to keep 99 copies of every mailbox you back up. Typically people set grooming to a value of 5 or 10.


If you need 99 copies, then I would set the number to 99 and only groom once my disk fills up. I would not groom more then once a week at the most. I groom about once every 2 months.

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But doesn't that mean, in my case, that I would have to have space enough for 99 copies plus 60 for the every 2-months and/or that if I do not then the backup job itself will take 20+ hours because as it reaches copy 112 [and that's how much space I have allocated] it will attempt this groom in-place?



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