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jgremillion
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Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by jgremillion » Nov 24, 2009 3:24 pm

I saw an earlier discussion about using DFS-r and rsynch to replicate .vbk and .vrs off-site. So I got to thinking, does anyone use RecoverPoint to do this? If you do does it work okay?

-JOe

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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by Veeam-dsiles » Dec 07, 2009 4:48 am

Joe,

You can use many different methods to accomplish what you are looking to do. First, Veeam Backup and Replication does provide the scheduled file copy option to allow you to copy all your VBK/VRB to another location be it local or remote. You can run the scheduled file copy on a schedule to run after your backup job or you can use the call from command-line functionality to call the file copy job as a post-job command from your backup job. Now I realize it does sound like you are looking for a syncing functionality to replicate only changed files instead of the entire directory of files every time.

If you do have visibility across your network or WAN to the remote site and you are publishing your remote network share via a CIFS or NFS share that can be access from your Veeam Backup server, you can use the great Microsoft Robocopy utility keep your offsite copies of the VBK/VRBs in sync with local copy.

One of our other users described this exact functionality and how you can also call this as a post job activity. Here is the link to that post. http://www.veeam.com/forums/viewtopic.p ... 093&p=5891

Dave
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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by jfowler » Dec 17, 2009 11:50 pm

Forgive me in advance, but I'm about to go off on a little rant...

Robocopy can't replicate in-file deltas. It copies the entire file when it has been changed.

At each backup, VBR creates a new synthetic full, and it creates a back-out file for historic restore points. Because of that, you not only have to copy a new massive .vbk file at every backup, your coping a reversal file. So if you use the built-in copy job, Robocopy, RichCopy, or whatever file copy utility floats your boat, your going to need a fat pipe to transfer all that data. That simply isn't feasible when you have a large, multi-terabyte backup set.

Now, you could use RecoverPoint, WANSync, or even Rsync to do block level replication of the in-file delta changes, but your still transferring twice as much data as you really should have to because its stored twice.

Synthetic backups are great for dy-to-day restores, but fail at disaster recovery. VBR needs to be more customizable than that. Give users the option to store in multiple destinations. Be able to choose to store the changes incrementally so they can be easily replicated to a DR site. Then provide a utility to build a synthetic full from the incremental files at the DR site rather than building it locally and trying to pushing it over a WAN pipe.

You also need to provide the ability to do replication and backup at the same time without have to time jobs or write powerscripts. Ideally, VBR would read the change file once, and then create a synthetic backup local, an incremental at the DR site, and replicate all in one job.

Just my $0.02

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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by Veeam-dsiles » Dec 18, 2009 12:05 am

Jeremy,

Understand your points and appreciate your feedback. I don't disagree with you about where we need to go as well. Your feedback is heard and well received. Our development has this feedback for feature request for future versions. We do listen to our customers and the community. Afterall our company motto is listening to you and building the tools you need.

Thanks for the candid response.

Regards,

Dave
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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by Gostev » Dec 18, 2009 8:47 am

Jeremy, we are addressing these issues with "tape-friendly synthetic" backup mode (this is how we call it internally), this option will be a part of our next release.

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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by jfowler » Dec 18, 2009 2:55 pm

Gostev wrote:Jeremy, we are addressing these issues with "tape-friendly synthetic" backup mode (this is how we call it internally), this option will be a part of our next release.
That is great news. When you say release, are we talking 4.2 or 5.0? What kind of time frame are we looking at?

I was thinking about the issue and I thought about a scenario where you would use two VBR servers, one running locally, the other at a DR site. I don't know if this is possible; could you configure the local instance of VBR to do backups to a local drive and replicate to a VM in the DR site, then have a second instance backing up the replicated version in the DR site. Obviously you would have to time all that so nothing is using the same resources at the same time. Perhaps that could be a job for Enterprise Management Server in future versions.

Anyway, is it currently possible to do backups of the replicated VM? That way the only data transferred over the WAN is the replicated change data and backups are done locally at each site. Thoughts?

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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by Gostev » Dec 18, 2009 3:10 pm

I am talking about the next major release. To give an idea, so far we used to have half-year cycles for all previous major releases.
Yes, replica VMs are no different from regular VMs, you can backup and replicate them normally.

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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by jgremillion » Dec 18, 2009 5:26 pm

Thanks guys. I was just thinking of finding a way to replicate the files easily to SAN at our DR site to get away from taping so much.

He have a requirement to keep on set of tapes off-site everyday. We currently do this with tape. Now that the VBR files are kept on disk I would liek to find a nice solution to be able to copy everyday's incremental changes off-site. We have a gig link between our production and DR site. I look at rich copy and robocopy (2 + tb's) but they took longer than taping the VBR stored files. I had thought about setting up stretched fiber (or iSCSI) between the two locations. That way I could set up the VBR at the DR site , attach it to our CX4 at our production site, backup the VMs and store the on the SAN at the DR site. It's a little complexed but it could work.

I was just looking for an easier solution and a way to get off of a little bit of tape. Looks like I may have to keep on tape a little while longer. :)

Joe Gremillion, VCP, EMCPA

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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by Gostev » Dec 18, 2009 6:11 pm

Joe, what about using R-SYNC or DFS-R for offsite backup copies for now?

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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by jgremillion » Dec 18, 2009 7:14 pm

I've looked at DFSr. It seems to have trouble replicating big .vbk files and tokk a really long time. I think it's time to look at rsynch. I think RecoverPoint would work pretty well but it's just too expensive to use for something like this.

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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by Gostev » Dec 18, 2009 7:30 pm

RSYNC definitely works well for this task, confirmed.

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Re: Does anyone use RecoverPoint to replicate backups off-site?

Post by jfowler » Dec 18, 2009 11:25 pm

Gostev wrote:RSYNC definitely works well for this task, confirmed.
I think Rsync could work well in *some* situations. However, you have to factor in four variables to determine whether it would work in your environment; time it takes to scan the entire backup set (process), daily deltas (changes), bandwidth available (speed), and backup windows (time).

For starters, a single T1 line can push about 16GB a day. That's if you have a good connection with low latency at 100% utilization of the line.
If your backup set consists of a handful of VMs totaling a couple hundred gigs of data, with maybe a a gig or two of changes a day, with other application's bandwidth utilization kept low with QOS, then rsync will work just fine.

If you got dozens of VMs, doing hundreds of gigabytes of transactions a day; I think you may have issues on a single T1. If your like me and fall in the middle of those two situations. Then you have to do the math.

(changes / speed) - process <= time

Rsync requires a server and a client on each side of the connection, that compares both sides for new and changed files. Rsync doesn't keep track of delta changes after a file has been copied/synced. It does a block-level checksum comparisons of files on the fly, requiring both the server and client to compare files each time a sync is run. For very large files this can take some time and may cause some older rsync versions to fail or crash.

Watch out for the hashing algorithm being used, it may default to a small hash table that works great with small files but terrible with the larger 100+GB ones. So be wary of these things and look at the options available to your version.

Many external NAS disk arrays offer built-in rsync clients, however the options on these aresn't always accessible and may default to the small hash tables. You may run into problems if your trying to use a NAS device that limits access to the underlining OS, such as the Buffulo Terastation. You aren't able to access the rsync client directly without hacking the firmware. Access to it is only available by mapping a drive or by the UNC path.

If you try to get around that hurdle by using DeltaCopy or some other Rsync Windows client that runs as a service, be aware that cygwin doesn't support UNC paths locations, and trying to map a drive to a Window's service account is fraught with headaches.

There is always programs like Double Take and CA/XOSoft WANSync, which keeps track of file changes and asynchronously replicates data. But they are not free; however, considerably less expensive then EMC's solutions.

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