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Windows Server 2008 Thread, Backup Exec 12 problem on Windows 2008 in Technical; We've just replaced our aging Quantum LTO1 Valueloader with a bit more capacious Quantum LTO3 Superloader 3 - but performance ...
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    Backup Exec 12 problem on Windows 2008

    We've just replaced our aging Quantum LTO1 Valueloader with a bit more capacious Quantum LTO3 Superloader 3 - but performance under Backup Exec 12 on a Windows 2008 server seems, well, pants- to put not too fine a point on it!

    With the old valueloader on the same server, we were seeing data transfer rates over 500Mb/min - but with the new Superloader 3, we're getting only 5Mb/min!

    It starts off around the 600Mb/min mark, then plummets steadily and quickly in the first few minutes of the job until it bottoms out around 5Mb/min. A recent 800Mb test job (backing up the program files folder from the media server itself, to rule out any agent issues) took nearly 3 hours to complete!

    Obviously this isn't great when trying to back up nearly a terabyte of data overnight - it just isn't going to happen.

    I've checked and confirmed SCSI connections - it's on an Adaptec 29160LP adaptor: not the newest HBA, but it worked fine with the other one. Changed cables, changed terminators. Still the same.

    We've even gone to the extremes of completely reinstalling the server to ensure any old drivers from the original Valueloader have been well and truly removed from the environment. No change.

    We're using the Quantum driver for the autoloader mechanism, and the Symantec driver for the tape drive. Autoloader operations complete fine and in a timely manner suggesting the quantum driver is OK. We've updated the Symantec drivers using a hotfix from their website, and applied SP3 for Backup Exec 12, still no change.

    We're using brand new Sony LTO3 media throughout.

    Given Backup Exec will use a network folder as a target for backup, and record throuput in the region of 300Mb / min when it does so, we're comfortable that it's not an agent issue pulling files from machines, or that the software itself is rubbish.

    It seems confined to this autoloader - which suggests SCSI, driver, or physical device issue. However we've been on to Quantum, who have inspected the device logs and had us run some test software against the device only to find no fault. Under the test software, it is returning the expected data transfer rates and they're insisting the device is working fine - it must be something else.

    Any suggestions?

    I think there can only be a config problem left - but I'm beating my head against a brick wall over what it could be as I've spent so long staring at it without success! Seeing woods for trees, and all that.

    I can see that I'm going to have to buy in another SCSI HBA just so I can do some swap-out testing, or even upgrade to Backup Exec 12.5 to rule out 12, but I'd rather not spend precious wodges of my budgets if I can avoid it!

    Thanks in advance!




    Jim
    Last edited by john; 27th June 2009 at 05:25 PM. Reason: please refrain from using bad language

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    The only things that I can suggest are to check for the avalibility of a firmware upgrade for the drive and to try a different driver for it if one is avalible.

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    If I recall correctly, it's important to use Veritas's own drivers for your drive, and not the OEM ones that come with it. Why I have no idea, but we had a similar issue with a Quantum superloader 3 and Backupexec 11d, and changing the drivers sorted it out!

    I think Symantec do them as a bundle, and the 32bit version of the file can be found here;

    Backup Exec 12.0 for Windows Servers revision 1364 hotfix 305849, Device Driver Installer DDI20080815 (August 15th, 2008) - 32bit download.

    Mike.

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    Thanks guys - we've already tried both of those.

    Upgraded the firmware on the drive, and ensured we are using the Symantec drivers for the drive itself (did I not say this in my first post....? Apologies if I didn't!)

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheCrust View Post
    Thanks guys - we've already tried both of those.

    Upgraded the firmware on the drive, and ensured we are using the Symantec drivers for the drive itself (did I not say this in my first post....? Apologies if I didn't!)
    Hi,

    Try using the microsoft driver for the autoloader i.e. change the driver to Unknown Medium Changer in device manager. Also make sure that you are using the symantec drive for the tape drive.

    On the SCSI properties of the scsi card that is connected to the autoloader make sure that enable scsi wide negotiation or similar (sorry can't remember the exact option).

    This will help a lot and i'm assuming that that the scsi card is only connected and serving the autoloader i.e. you are not using the same scsi card for your raid setup. Make sure that RAID setup uis turned off on the adaptec scsi card if it supports it.

    For more info check this --> Performance: Dell PV-124T

    Its for BE 11d but it should be relevant for your situation.

    HTH,

    Ash.

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    TheCrust (29th June 2009)

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    Ashok, you star.

    We removed the quantum media changer driver - leaving it as "unknown media changer" - and tried another test backup.

    Reported transfer rates were up in the gigabytes-per-minute this time, and the backup of the 800Mb program files directory on the machine took less than a few seconds. In fact it was so fast we thought it had failed and quit on us!

    We're now running some test backups from network servers using the agents but it seems this has sorted it - one fix that definately WASN'T documented on either the Quantum or the Symantec websites!

    Many thanks again!

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    I've just installed a Quantum LTO3 Superloader 3 on server 2008 and I installed the windows drivers so it didn't show as an exclamation mark in device manager but I did tell Backup Exec to use it's own drivers.

    I've not had time to run a full backup with it yet but are you saying that if I encounter problems that I should uninstall the drivers so it just shows as an unknown device?

    Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cookie_monster View Post
    I've just installed a Quantum LTO3 Superloader 3 on server 2008 and I installed the windows drivers so it didn't show as an exclamation mark in device manager but I did tell Backup Exec to use it's own drivers.

    I've not had time to run a full backup with it yet but are you saying that if I encounter problems that I should uninstall the drivers so it just shows as an unknown device?

    Thanks.
    Hi,

    If you are having speed issues then in device manager, make sure that the driver for the autoloader is set to unknown medium changer and not the manufacturer driver. The driver for the tape drive itself should ideally be the symantec one for better compatibility with symantec BE product.

    Ash.

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    cookie_monster (18th August 2009)

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    Hey Ash, can you clear a couple of questions up for me.

    When I remove the loader it is re added the next time I restart the server is there a way to stop this can I just dissable the device?

    How do I make the tape drive use the Symantec drivers it is currently showing the Quantum driver and I'm not sure where to look for the Symantec drivers. Should Backup Exec just override this when it runs?

    Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cookie_monster View Post
    Hey Ash, can you clear a couple of questions up for me.

    When I remove the loader it is re added the next time I restart the server is there a way to stop this can I just dissable the device?

    How do I make the tape drive use the Symantec drivers it is currently showing the Quantum driver and I'm not sure where to look for the Symantec drivers. Should Backup Exec just override this when it runs?

    Thanks.
    Hiya,

    Don't remove the device but rather change the driver by right-clicking the autoloader and then update driver. Go through the wizard and select the unknown medium changer. This installs the microsoft driver rather than the manufacturer. This was also the case with 11d, i thiought the may have fixed it in v12.5 but looks like they haven't.

    Ash.

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    Ah yes I can see it now.

    Thanks.

    As extra info if the tape driver from the manufacturer needs to be changed to the Symantec one you need to run tapeinst.exe

    C:\Program Files\Symantec\Backup Exec\tapeinst.exe

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