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Archive tape rotation / offsite storage

Archive tape rotation / offsite storage

Archive tape rotation / offsite storage

(appologies if there is a second but differently worded version of this posting from yesterday - I thought I posted it but can't see it)

Getting ever closer to actually deploying the content indexing & search I boght 10 months ago, one area I can't quite decide or see how to configure and can't see anyone else discussing is how to manage tape copies.

Setup so far:

Both Windows file & Email migration job running nightly. Dedicated storage policy writing to magnetic library, infinite retension. Sync copy to tape, infinite retension.

I envisage that I'll need to reduce the magnetic libaries retension time so ultimately only tape will be infinite.

I want to be able to send tapes off site but if I simply do that then I need an infinite amount of tapes which will all just have one days worth of migrated data. Even moving to weekly migrations, the numbers will add up and I assume just not the right way to do this.

What am I missing? What is normal??? I picture there must be some way of the system appending to a rotation of tapes and when a tape is full, it's permanently offsite and a new one starts the rotations.

As a secondary question, I'd like this arrangement such that I could have two copies so that I can keep one set permanently in the library so restores a few years down the track are still automatic.

RE: Archive tape rotation / offsite storage


1) That's exactly what should happen...a job going to a Storage Policy will write to any tape that is in the library that the Storage Policy owns...so you can automatically use your offsite rotation
2) Just create a second auxcopy (reading from your first auxcopy) and it will write to a second tape to offiste whilst keeping one in the library

CommVault Certified Engineer

RE: Archive tape rotation / offsite storage

Thanks Birky, I'm encouraged that you're suggesting that I am indeed missing something. But isn't the following what will actually happen, assuming a simple two tape rotation (and even if I'm making two tape copies so that a copy can stay in the library too);

Day 1
- archive job puts newly migrated onto tape 1
- Tape 1 taken offsite containing day 1 migration

Day 2
- archive jobs puts newly migrated data onto tape 2
- Tape 2 taken offsite containing day 2 data
- Tape 1 returned to library with day 1 data

Day 3
- archive job appends newly migrated data onto tape 1
- Tape 1 taken offsite containing day 1 & 3 data
- Tape 2 returned to library with day 2 data

etc. So at any given time, I don't have a complete archive offsite. I'm starting to come up with some overly complex ideas which might solve what I'm picturing, such as having two offsite compies which rotate out of sync but I must be over thinking this.


RE: Archive tape rotation / offsite storage

Problem is if you want to use rotation on a certain set of tapes then how can you always have a complete copy of your archive offsite?

You will always put 1 tape back into the library from the offsite location unless you use 3 aux copies or you use a brand new tape every time

If you are concerned about losing your migrated data on maglib then maybe you could look at configuring disk replication within CV to replicate to another location

CommVault Certified Engineer

RE: Archive tape rotation / offsite storage

Are you planning on archiving on a daily, weekly or monthly basis? Perhaps weekly...
Whatever you schedule, why not create a new aux copy every month, when you create a new copy and run it the once it will have copies of all the jobs in the primary when done.

You could call these aux copies offsite1, offsite2 or Nov08, Dec08 or whatever name fits. Obviously over time these copys will get bigger and bigger as more data is migrated to the primary. To avoid having 10s or 100s of these aux copies laying around you could just delete the oldest copies that you no longer need and have just two or three aux copies (or one) any one time. Remember, when you create a new aux copy and "run once" it will be populated with a copy of the entire primary copy, thus its a complete copy.

Howz that?

EMCTA & EMCIE - Backup & Recovery
Legato & Commvault Certified Specialist

RE: Archive tape rotation / offsite storage

Here's a late reply - I only just spotted that this thread had had another post!

Calippo - I did what you suggested, and that is the end result I was trying to acheive. I now have a tape that I have verified as having all my (weekly) archive jobs on it so can erase the various others with bits and pieces.

I'll play around, but does this idea entail the manual creation of a new aux copy each week or whatever that I want a single complete copy? That's the kind of situation where I assume I'm missing something because it seems to obvious a need for it to need such a manual workaround.

RE: Archive tape rotation / offsite storage

With Calippos idea working, but needing manual effort for each tape run, I did what I maybe should have done months back and opened a support call.

The CV guy listened to what I wanted to do, and started to poke around along the lines of "well, yeah, I'm sure we can do this"....

20 mins later he was escalating it to L2. 24 hours later the email came "sad to say...". So, my fairly reasonable request, to want to be able to do a full backup of some data, is apparently not catered for.

The only approach offered is to run the MagLib to multiple locations. Even if I had a second site with appropriate infrastructure (I don't) that would still not give me the security of a a few nice,  offline copies stored in nice secure offsite locations.

I find it genuinely weird for a company that is otherwise so GOOD at keeping tape relevant - eg in v8 they are extending de-dupe to tape where other vendors (that I've looked at) un-de-dupe when going from the library to tape. I've asked if there is a proper way to submit a feature request for a future patch or version - I really think being able to do full AUX copies of a storage primary copy should be there.

Anyway, I've thought of a dirty workaround that I'm going to try next week. Basically, I'll create a regular file system backup and include the path to the MagLib folders. Does that sound workable?


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