File to Tape Media Set question

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File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby tombpcnpa » Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:28 pm

Hi. I'm having trouble working out how best to configure a file to tape job to maximise our recovery options. I'm moving across from Backup Exec and the use of Media Sets within Media Pools is confusing me.
I have 1.3TB of files to backup and would like to run a full backup on Friday night, then incremental backups on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday.
I currently have 2 Media Pools, one for full backups and the other for incrementals and intend on assigning tapes a tape to each pool for each week the job is run.

The full backup seems straightforward, my question is how to be able to see each individual incremental backup. It seems as if each incremental backup overwrites the previous one, meaning that the changes to files are saved, but only the most recent one. If a user had been working on a file all week and on Friday wanted to go back to Tuesdays version, all I would be able to restore was the previous night's incremental backup (Thursday)

Sorry for the poor explanation, but hopefully someone can explain this.
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby Shestakov » Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:46 pm

Hi Tom and welcome to the community!
New increments do not overwrite previous ones, they both will be saved.
By the way, are you going to write on the tapes backup files only or something else? Maybe it`s better to use backup-to-tape rather than file-to-tape.
Thanks!
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby tombpcnpa » Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:53 pm

Thanks for the quick reply.

The files I'm backing up are user files not VM's so I need to use file to tape jobs.
I've created 2 test Media Pools to backup the IT folders files. The "IT Full" Media Pool has the Media Set option of "Do not create, always continue using current media set".
The "IT Incrementals" Media Pool has the Media Set option of "Create new media set for every backup session". My thinking was that each incremental job would then be available

I ran a full backup of the IT folder using a tape from the IT Full Media Set. I then edited a number of files so that the subsequent incremental job would pick them up
I ran the job again, and it took a tape from the "IT Incrementals" Media Set. When the job had completed I used the view files from the tape properties to confirm that only the changed files had been copied.

I then edited some of the files again, then ran the job once more. When the job had completed, only the most recently edited files were shown in the tape properties.
When checking the file restore options for one of the files that I edited twice - and therefore thought there should be 3 copies on the tape, the full backup, first incremental and second incremental, only the full backup on the full media set and the last incremental were shown.

How do I setup the incremental backups so that I can go back to a file that was backed up at a particular point in time, not just the first or last backup? I'm running Bakup & Replication version 9.5.2.823
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby Shestakov » Thu Feb 16, 2017 3:06 pm

Tom, what are the data retention policy settings on the media pool you use for increments?
Thanks!
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby tombpcnpa » Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:31 pm

Hi Nikita

The data retention settings for the "IT Incrementals" Media Pool are "Do not protect data (cyclically overwrite tapes as required)
Each IT incremental job is only copying a few MB, and even when I run the main job it only copys 5-10GB so I thought that leaving the data retention settings at their default would be fine.

For your information I'm using a Quantum SuperLoader 3 with an LTO6 drive. Both the drive and the library have been installed using the specific manufactuers drivers. The tapes are barcoded using the originally supplied labels.
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby Shestakov » Fri Feb 17, 2017 4:25 pm

If you choose "Create new media set for every backup session" option and do not protect media sets, each new job run will use new tape and they will overwrite each other, that`s probably the reason why you cannot find older increments.
I would suggest to create new media set weekly rather than daily.
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby tombpcnpa » Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:47 am

Thanks for the solution to the overwritten tapes Nikita. I can confirm that using a single media set per week will show all the backup copys of a file that was modified multiple times during a week.
With this now working, how can I use a single tape for incremental jobs for 4 weeks? The incremenatal jobs will only take up 100GB per week so I'd like to use a single tape for one month.

If the media set is created on say, Monday 1st, how do I make sure that the following week's media sets don't overwite the first one? Should I enable the data retention policy so that data is protected for 4 weeks?
If that worked should I then end up with 4 media sets on the tape, each containg a weeks worth of incremental backups? That's what I'm hoping.
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby Shestakov » Mon Feb 27, 2017 12:33 pm

Great that it helped.
Here is how it works: retention policy is implemented to the whole media set starting from the moment when new ones is created. So if you create new media set every 4 weeks and set protection period = 4 weeks, you will have up to 8 weeks of increments.
That needs to be synchronized with "Full" media sets retention. How often do you want to create full backups on the source backup job and for how long do you want keep restore points on tapes?
Thanks!
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby tombpcnpa » Mon Feb 27, 2017 2:16 pm

I can't see an option to createa new Media Set every 4 weeks, In the Automatically Create New Media Set (Daily) I have the option Everyday or On These Days - with a choice of specific days of the week.

Just as a test, I changed the Data Retention Policy for the exisitng tape I've been using for Incremental backups (with a media set created last Monday) and ran the job.
I was hoping that a new Media Set would be created for this job (as the Media Set rule is to create a new Media Set each Monday, but that the media set from last week would not be overwritten since the data retention policy was set.
Unfortunately the job now wants a tape to be added, as I guess it won't use the current tape with the Data Retention Policy of 4 weeks.

On your last point about synchronization of Full and Incremental Media Sets, I'd like to use somthing along the lines of the following.
Full backup every Friday night using a rotating pool of 6 tapes and a periodic archive:
Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Month 1, Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Month 2, Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Month 3, Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Archive

The Weekly and Monthly tapes would be re-used as required and the Archive tapes never re-used. The Weekly and Monthly Full Backup jobs would give enough restore options, especically if we could have the incremental jobs backing up the changes during the week. We used to run a Full backup job every night using Backup Exec, but as you can imagine, that was a waste of time and tapes as hardly any files changed night on night. It did give us the easiest of restore options though as we only ever needed 1 tape to restore anything.
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby v.Eremin » Mon Feb 27, 2017 2:48 pm

Unfortunately the job now wants a tape to be added, as I guess it won't use the current tape with the Data Retention Policy of 4 weeks.

This is an expected behaviour - a tape with retention that is yet to reached cannot be overwritten automatically. You can mark the tape as free and re-use after that.

Full backup every Friday night using a rotating pool of 6 tapes and a periodic archive:

A GFS media pool with monthly and quarterly media sets sound like a good fit. Though, it's a bit different from what you've requested - in the suggested scenario archive point will be created every 3 months, not every 4 ones.

Thanks.
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby tombpcnpa » Mon Feb 27, 2017 3:44 pm

I didn't think you could create file to tape jobs using GFS media sets, only simple media sets.
If it is possible then that could be an option. I'm not wedded to using my suggested setup, that's just how we've configured backups previously in order to give us good restore options. Having an archive using a quarterly media set would work.

Would your proposed GFS media pool still allow me to create Incremental jobs and run them for a set time before then being re-used?
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby v.Eremin » Mon Feb 27, 2017 5:49 pm

Sorry, I must have missed that you were talking about file to tape jobs. In this case, indeed two or three jobs and same number of media pools will be required: weekly, monthly and archive one. Thanks.
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby tombpcnpa » Mon Feb 27, 2017 10:56 pm

OK. Will forget about GFS pool. Could I not just have a single Media Pool for the Full backups and another Media Poll for the incrementals?
The Full job will run every Friday night, it's only when I've run through a cycle that I'll start re-using the tapes based on my Weekly 1,2,3 Month1, Weekly 1,2,3, Month 2, Weekly 1,2,3, Month 3 schedule.

The main problem I seem to be facing is getting multiple weeks Incremental backups onto 1 tape. Knowing now that any Media Set with a Date Retention Policy will stop that tape being re-used until the time-out has been reached (based on the last time it was used) How can I get more than 1 weeks (4 days) worth of Incremental backups on 1 tape. I'm now trying out a Media Set with the option set to Do Not Create Always Continue, and a Data Retention Policy set to Never Overwrite Data. I'll update this tread once the job finishes.
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby tombpcnpa » Tue Feb 28, 2017 10:26 am

As I expected, setting the Media Set to Do Not Create - Always Continue, and the Data Retention Policy to Never Overwrite Data, the File to Tape job requested a new tape.

I don't seem to be able to get any sort of file backup comparable to our old Backup Exec setup which is very frustrating. Veeam works well with backing up virtual machines to disk, but struggles to offer enough settings and configuration to backup files to tape.
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Re: File to Tape Media Set question

Veeam Logoby v.Eremin » Tue Feb 28, 2017 11:13 am

You can select "do not create, always continue using current media set" option, specify whatever retention you want to (say, 4 weeks) and export a tape manually or automatically (PS script) every four weeks.

Exporting tape will automatically initiate creation of a new media set.
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