PDA

View Full Version : Back up solution suggestion



Kevin Walsh
2004-12-08, 08:18
spw [slim (AT) clock-tower (DOT) com] wrote:
> I have been in the computer business since 1967 and have pondered on the
> best backup solution ever since.
> You have two problems to overcome:
> 1. Accidental loss of data due to hard drive failure
> 2. Loss of your PC itself due to fire, theft etc.
> A RAID solution will not overcome the second scenario.
> DVDs are impractical if you have a large collection (>50Gb), and I don't
> believe in incremental backups unless you are super-organised.
>
I have an old P200 server with 200GB of usable disk space. Every day
(5:05am), this server contacts all of the other servers, in turn, and
grabs a full system backup (mirror) using rsync. Rsync is ideal in that
it only transfers files that have been modified since the last backup
ensuring that, once the run has completed, the snapshot is up to date.

If an original server dies then the backup is accessible. If the backup
server dies then it can be replaced and a new backup run can be started.
The contents of the backup server are saved to a bunch of DDS-4 tapes
every week. It doesn't really matter how long a tape backup run takes
(within reason) because nobody is actually "using" that server.

Lastly, every server has its own RAID array. The critical system have
hardware raid and the others have software RAID. The backup server has
a simple software RAID mirror. This all helps recover from a simple
disk failure.

This is a disaster recovery system; The only thing I can't do is
recover a file I deleted two days ago, unless it happens to be on tape.
It's difficult to guard against stupidity. :-)

This is a good use for an old server that you might have sitting
somewhere, collecting dust. It doesn't take a lot of processing power
to run a backup server, and the solution is reasonably scalable;
You can increase the size/number of disks in the backup server or run
multiple backup servers.

The backup server doesn't have to be on the local LAN because rsync/ssh
uses an encrypted link. Remote backup servers can also help you recover
from server theft, and you can set one up wherever you can find a DSL
line that's not in use at 5:05am.

--
_/ _/ _/_/_/_/ _/ _/ _/_/_/ _/ _/
_/_/_/ _/_/ _/ _/ _/ _/_/ _/ K e v i n W a l s h
_/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/_/ kevin (AT) cursor (DOT) biz
_/ _/ _/_/_/_/ _/ _/_/_/ _/ _/

Ben Klaas
2004-12-08, 14:46
I second the motion that rsync is the way to go...

Also, take a look at a simple perl wrapper around rsync called rsnapshot
http://www.rsnapshot.org/

"Using rsync and hard links, it is possible to keep multiple, full
backups instantly available. The disk space required is just a little
more than the space of one full backup, plus incrementals. "

(Kevin, it ain't perfect, but this is a way to safeguard against file
deletion stupidity you mention below)

I use it to backup to an internal secondary HD for music at home, and I
use it rsyncing via ssh across a network for work backups. In both
cases, works like a charm.

cheers
#!/ben

Kevin Walsh wrote:
> spw [slim (AT) clock-tower (DOT) com] wrote:
>
>>I have been in the computer business since 1967 and have pondered on the
>>best backup solution ever since.
>>You have two problems to overcome:
>>1. Accidental loss of data due to hard drive failure
>>2. Loss of your PC itself due to fire, theft etc.
>>A RAID solution will not overcome the second scenario.
>>DVDs are impractical if you have a large collection (>50Gb), and I don't
>>believe in incremental backups unless you are super-organised.
>>
>
> I have an old P200 server with 200GB of usable disk space. Every day
> (5:05am), this server contacts all of the other servers, in turn, and
> grabs a full system backup (mirror) using rsync. Rsync is ideal in that
> it only transfers files that have been modified since the last backup
> ensuring that, once the run has completed, the snapshot is up to date.
>
> If an original server dies then the backup is accessible. If the backup
> server dies then it can be replaced and a new backup run can be started.
> The contents of the backup server are saved to a bunch of DDS-4 tapes
> every week. It doesn't really matter how long a tape backup run takes
> (within reason) because nobody is actually "using" that server.
>
> Lastly, every server has its own RAID array. The critical system have
> hardware raid and the others have software RAID. The backup server has
> a simple software RAID mirror. This all helps recover from a simple
> disk failure.
>
> This is a disaster recovery system; The only thing I can't do is
> recover a file I deleted two days ago, unless it happens to be on tape.
> It's difficult to guard against stupidity. :-)
>
> This is a good use for an old server that you might have sitting
> somewhere, collecting dust. It doesn't take a lot of processing power
> to run a backup server, and the solution is reasonably scalable;
> You can increase the size/number of disks in the backup server or run
> multiple backup servers.
>
> The backup server doesn't have to be on the local LAN because rsync/ssh
> uses an encrypted link. Remote backup servers can also help you recover
> from server theft, and you can set one up wherever you can find a DSL
> line that's not in use at 5:05am.
>