Subscribe

Backup and Verification frequency?

So, how often do YOU do it in your Exchange environment? Some typical scheduleds that I hear of are:

  1. Backups every 2 to 4 hours unverified and discarded at the end of the day

  2. 2 backups kept online per day, with the 12am (fictional time) backup to be verified during off hours

Is that fairly typical for your environment? What are some factors that might affect that schedule?

Feel free to comment...even if that's your exact schedule. Other folks in this community would love to hear how you've configured your Exchange backup/verification schedules.

Re: Backup and Verification frequency?

We use SMEX and we have following schedule on our exchange servers:

  • between 4 am and 9 pm: we take every hour a unverified snapshot: we keep them for 7 days

  • at the same frequency, we also snapvault this to an other filer on an other site an we keep them for 1 month

  • at 0:30 am we check one snapshot

Re: Backup and Verification frequency?

Thanks Reinoud!

Just curious...have you deviated from that schedule much since it'd been implemented? I guess I'm asking if there have been occasions where you've needed to run a one-off backup for whatever reason. Is that something that happens regularly?

Re: Backup and Verification frequency?

In the beginning, we took less snapshots (every 4 hour) but we did every time the verification. As you can see, we have change this to more snapshots and less verification.

Sometimes, just before an upgrade or when there was a problem with the snapshot (no space left), than we start the process manual and start the verification.

Re: Backup and Verification frequency?

In your original message you state, "Some typical scheduleds that I hear of are:

Backups every 2 to 4 hours unverified and discarded at the end of the day 2 backups kept online per day, with the 12am (fictional time) backup to be verified during off hours "

The idea of performing unverified snaps during the day and performing the verification during off hours makes a lot of sense. However, this was not even presented as an option by the consultants that we had brought in for our install. Are you aware of any best practices documents on this? Beyond the "you still need to run a verification before you can use the snaps" issue are there other problems in doing things this way that you are aware of?

BTW - Thanks for the great question

Re: Backup and Verification frequency?

Hey Paul...

First off...thanks for the great questions. Secondly, I'm sorry the consulants did not present this type of scenario to you before your installation. Since I don't have the specifics of your configuration, I can't say if they did you a disservice or not.

Either way, there are no "best practices" written around how many times you do a backup in your Exchange environment. With our solution, we give you the option to do as many backups during the day that you wish to perform. There are key considerations though that you have to be aware of when deciding how often to perform your backups.

  1. How hot/busy your production Exchange server is

    • This we do perform "hot backups" for your Exchange data, the e-mail that is flowing in during the backup is queued on the Exchange server and delivered when the database is free'd (after the backup is taken). So, you obviously would not want to take backups one right after the other. But you still want to have regular backups that meet your SLAs (especially your RPO).

  2. Verifications

    • Backup sets still have to be verified before you can use them to restore your Exchange data. Deciding which backup sets get verified, which ones don't need verification, when to verify, where....all contribute to when you want to perform a backup.

  3. SLAs/RPO

    • Depending on how tight your RPO is, you might have to take more frequent backups to meet those times.

As for issues doing it this way, I have not heard of any. Most of our customers run their backups in a similar way. And it works great for them, meets their needs, and makes them happy.