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Hardware Thread, Backing up servers - Okay lets have an argument..sorry I mean debate ;-) in Technical; I know this is gonna be a long one but bear with me.... Okay you have between 1TB and 5TB ...
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    wesleyw's Avatar
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    Backing up servers - Okay lets have an argument..sorry I mean debate ;-)

    I know this is gonna be a long one but bear with me....

    Okay you have between 1TB and 5TB of real data and 6TB of OS storage to look after 90% of which is virtualised.



    Hardware

    What type of hardware would you look to backup onto?
    Disk
    Tape
    RDX (I know it's disk but..)
    OffSite Cloud Storage
    Co-Locate Server

    If choosing Disk which type of hardware?
    SAN
    NAS
    JBOD Server

    If choosing Tape?
    LTO <add number here> Single Drive or Library
    Other

    If a library 8/12/16/24 slots?

    If RDX which brand?

    If Cloud Storage why and where?


    Software

    What software would you choose to backup said data?
    AppAssure
    Backup Exec
    Backup Assist
    Veeam
    Alike DR
    PHD Virtual Backup



    Right this has all come about because I am looking at our existing DR strategy and trying to look at options.


    Currently we are using Gigasoft for our offsite backups and a combination of Alike DR and AppAssure for in house backups.

    All of these have been faultless and I would highly recommend any of them however I have been looking at posts recently talking about Tape and Disk backups etc and I would hear other peoples views on the above, especially tape backups which most seem to have not so much moved away from as run away from ;-)

    Wes

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    mjs_mjs's Avatar
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    Disk to disk (daily via shadow copy/script) to tape (maybe once a week and stored offsite)

    #I would have a hardware NAS for the amount you have said (custom build RAID 5 with lots of 1.5/2TB WD Black or enterprise drives) Via a customised script running on each server/the NAS.

    then to tape using a scripted nt backup maybe, or a third party software. (writing from NAS to tape, so servers dont see the slow tapes.)
    Last edited by mjs_mjs; 9th May 2013 at 04:15 PM. Reason: added info.

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    glennda's Avatar
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    Personally I would look at Hybrid Cloud, so you backup backup to disk locally and then it replicates itself out to the cloud.

    I can highly recommend the Datto Units which do this utilizing the Shadowsnap protect software. It also will provide the ability to launch servers from the backup appliance and join them back into the network. You can also if required then pxeboot a server off the back of the appliance and restore your server back to it.

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    dhicks (9th May 2013)

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by glennda View Post
    Personally I would look at Hybrid Cloud, so you backup backup to disk locally and then it replicates itself out to the cloud.
    How much do you pay for such a solution? I've been looking at how to do something like this and have been wondering how people find the costs. 5TB of data can be expensive to store in the cloud - are there any cheap cloud "bulk storage" providors that can work with a Hrbrid Cloud backup device?

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    glennda's Avatar
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    It depends what you class as expensive I woke out of education now and don't class 5tb at £6/700pm that expensive, whereas in education you would class this as expensive I guess, with the initial device including unlimited server licenses with onsite virtulization around 8k initially (Siris). Or Without Onsite Virtulization about 3.5/4k. and slightly less a month (Siris Lite). (included unlimited support and monitoring) this is for a 5TB model, they come in smaller and larger capacities which and different prices.

    SIRIS_Lite_Brochure.pdfSIRIS_Brochure.pdf

    You could also look at solutions like Veeams Cloud edition which can tie directly into things like Amazon Glacier and Amazon S3 which are low cost per month. (5tb is 112.64 a month and data has to be kept for more than 90 days)

    Veeam Backup & Replication Cloud Edition for VMware and Hyper-V

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    Quote Originally Posted by wesleyw View Post
    however I have been looking at posts recently talking about Tape and Disk backups etc and I would hear other peoples views on the above, especially tape backups which most seem to have not so much moved away from as run away from ;-)
    We have just about completed a review and restructure of our DR. Our main changes have been to start using Veeam, to backup to disc as a primary staging area, and then to tape (currently LTO3, but we will be purchasing an LTO5 library in the next few weeks). We have a large site with many buildings, so we locate two fireproof safes at opposite ends of the site. We are backing up ~20+ TB.

    IMO tape is still the value for money solution for long term multi generational backups. It's nice to have failover, and hot standby but just doing replication misses one of the most frequent reasons for resorting to backup - data corruption. Snapshotting and de-duplication make multi generation on disc seem viable but again IMO it is either fragile or costly.

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    After recently looking at backups I must agree tape is the best value for long term backups.

    I'd go D2D2T. Not that it's perfect by any stretch if you have EES try dpm. Or even if you don't have EES the price is nothing compared to most other products.

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by glennda View Post
    It depends what you class as expensive I woke out of education now and don't class 5tb at £6/700pm that expensive, whereas in education you would class this as expensive I guess, with the initial device including unlimited server licenses with onsite virtulization around 8k initially (Siris).
    Many thanks, it's good to get an idea of costs. I'm partly looking at how our school backs up data, and partly thinking "Gosh, that's a lot of money, I reckon I could make one cheaper than that...".

    You could also look at solutions like Veeams Cloud edition which can tie directly into things like Amazon Glacier and Amazon S3 which are low cost per month. (5tb is 112.64 a month and data has to be kept for more than 90 days)
    Amazon Glacier looks like it would be right for photo archiving - a photo, once taken, doesn't actually get modified, so you can back it up in long-term storage, but disk images for VMs are going to be changing the whole time.

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    @dhicks, The Register had an article on cloud backup costs a while back (Here). Might be of interest.

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    buzzard (14th October 2013), dhicks (10th May 2013)

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    Duke's Avatar
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    Veeam would tick a lot of boxes for you on the software side. It obviously does disk backup very well, has vendor-independent cloud support, and if you wanted to take the tape route then support for that is coming in version 7.

    Having used Veeam a lot I love it compared to products like Backup Exec. Obviously if you're 90% virtual than that other 10% still needs to be considered.

    As far as the whole solution goes, Veeam running on a beefy server (it'll use plenty of CPU and RAM if they're available) with lots of local disk for backups and the Cloud edition to pipe it out (encrypted) to the provider of your choice seems like a valid solution. You could hang a tape library off the back and wait until Veeam v7 and use that for offsite backups if your internet connection wasn't up to the Cloud solution.

    Cheers,
    Chris

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    glennda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dhicks View Post
    Amazon Glacier looks like it would be right for photo archiving - a photo, once taken, doesn't actually get modified, so you can back it up in long-term storage, but disk images for VMs are going to be changing the whole time.
    But the idea of Veeam is that the original file is not modified and it just adds additional snapshot files for the VM's (depending on how you backup and retention periods) so technically you could set it to keep the data for 90 days and not pay a deletion fee. Transfers into the system are free. But there is loads of other options and vendors they support.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    We do D2D2D - an onsite NAS in a different part of the building, and then an external USB disk which a full backup is stored on, which gets swapped out and taken offsite.

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    Don't forget data protection, always ensure the data is encrypted when backed up, especially if going off site. Also make sure you do have the encryption keys stored somewhere safe offsite and have a plan for restoring the encrypted data, so an offsite copy of the backup software and if using tape then a tape drive that can handle the encryption used.

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    john's Avatar
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    I did twice daily snapshots on the two SANs which was fine for the eek I deleted X moments.

    Daily full backups to tape were taken for the Finance program, Daily full SQLs for the MIS to a NAS and then both SANs were backed up to tape over a 72hr window from Friday night to early Monday morning, this included agents on most VMs to take care of them and it worked well, tapes on a rotation schedule with a few taps for each type of job and quite pleased with it once it got setup and working which took its time.

    The tapes are stored on our 2nd campus so were off-site but still on-site so it worked well as it was a 16 slot autoloader it never needed tapes changing and they were off-site so ticked all boxes

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    D2D2T
    1 physical host with VEEAM installed with iscsi target for the backups (basically a fancy nas that supports iscsi)
    attached to an 8 bay LTO5 Autoloader (which comes with single server licence of Backup Exec)

    I'd consider an Amazon Glacier based system to supplement the tape element. But you would have to consider the backup scheme used by the D2D element, and how long it would take to ship the changes up into the cloud (what's your upload speed? How many files change, and by how much between glacier backups...? D2D 'forever incremental' would be fine for glacier based systems, but present a risk should one of the incremental files become damaged, where as 'synthetic full' with change pretty much all the files in the backup set each time it runs - very poor for shipping into cloud backups, and presents a risk to the D2D backup itself should a crash/power outage occur during their creation)

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