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Offsite - Best Methodology?

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With Retro 8, I've been reexamining my backup strategies. I'm trying to figure out what the simplest and fastest method is of producing an offsite backup.


I have a Daily (1TB disk based media) backup that runs every day. Initial backup time is slow, but incrementals only take about 3 or 4 hours.


I have 3 rotating Offsite (1TB) Drives. Every week, Iron Mountain comes by to pick up one and drop off the next.


Current Practice: I have an Offsite Backup Script to an Offsite Media Set that essentially duplicates my Daily. This is simple to setup, but the Offsite has to fight with the Daily for time, and because there are 3 week gaps in between incremental backups, it takes the Offsite Script a long time to catch up.


OptionA: setup a "Copy Backup" Script, that copies my Daily Backup to my Offsite Media Set?


OptionB: setup a "Copy Media Set" Script that copies my Daily Media set to my Offsite Media Set?


Which is better/faster for my purposes: A or B, or is there some other method I should investigate like cloning my Daily hard drive?


If I use A or B and I have to Restore files someday, which catalog will be used? Will the Offsite Media set create it's own catalog for Restore, or will I be using the Daily catalog pulling from the Offsite media?


Also, what's the best way to get the Offsite catalog onto the Offsite Media? Should I schedule a copy operation? Should disaster strike, I don't want to have to rely solely on a rebuilt catalog.

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What I do for "off-site" backup (which, to me, seems faster...):


I have two RAIDs -- one is my primary daily backup system and contains my "disk" media sets.


On Friday, I connect the other RAID and use Carbon Copy Cloner to (basically) rsync the changes/new files from RAID1 to RAID2. And then I manually copy the current catalog files to RAID2.


Then I take the RAID2 drives out and store them off-site and bring them back the next Friday for updating again, etc.


I find this faster than using the "copy" script options within Retrospect. YMMV.

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Seems like a good strategy. Have you done test Restore operations on your Offsites? Do they work with the copied catalog without any hitches?



I have restored (copied back) a full disk media set from RAID2 back to RAID1, rebuilt the catalog on that recopied set and used that set without hitches (as a test).


Admittedly, I've not done anything with replacing the catalog files from the backup when I did this. But I don't believe that would have been an issue.

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