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How do I backup snapshots to tape?

I am using NetBackup 6.5.3 to backup my NetApp filers to tape for longer term data retention via NDMP over our SAN.  All the filers see the robot and all drives just fine.  In fact, when I do run backups, everything works fine.  The problem is, I don't get any of my snapshots.  From what I have read, once the backup is initiated, it triggers a snapshot of the active WAFL filesystem on each filer and backs up that snapshot only.  I could care less about the active filesystem.

We are running SMVI and I want to backup those snapshots to tape for longer term retention.  How do I do this?  For instance, if I have snapshots on /vol/vol1, how would I backup the most recent snapshots taken or snapshots taken that day?  Would backing up /vol/vol1/.snapshot work (I know this would probably be VERY inefficient space wise)?  Or, would I have to write some script called by NetBackup to interface with SMVI to get the most recent snapshot taken?  I have seen examples with SMO where administrators have established a snapshot naming convention and rotated snapshots from within scripts.  For example, if 7 snapshots are kept, the most recent is called snapshot.recent and then all other snapshots are renamed to snapshot.1, snapshot.2, etc. with the oldest getting deleted.  Thus, you are always backing up /vol/vol1/.snapshot/snapshot.recent.

How do you backup snapshots to tape?  Again, when the backup is finished from NetBackup, no .snapshot directory exists to restore from.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Re: How do I backup snapshots to tape?

Hi Jamie,

This is neto from Brazil

How are you?

Glad to hear from you.

This is the same "methodology" of SMO.

You can execute pre-tasks on NetBackup and check the latest backup name (e.g. /vol/vol1/.snapshot/snap33) and use this as a reference to execute backup.

You cannot try to make the backup of the .snapshot (/vol/vol1/.snapshot) because this folder doesn't exist , where this is a virtual pointer access the backups (aka snapshots) on the virtualization layer (WAFL).

Typically, you can use this approach:

- short term - backups that you will execute in short period to execute operations on the day, two days... For example: snapshots every 2 hours 8AM, 10AM, 2PM, 4PM, 6PM. For example, one environment that has Oracle, is very common to keep one snapshot of the day (eg 8am, 10am, 2pm, 4pm, 6pm - 10PM make the snapshot the day and remove all others)

- medium term : you can use snapvault to have a medium backup to D25 to help and contribute with faster restores and "save" disk because using Snapvault you will have "one full backup and incremental forever" where the disk economy is huge with NetApp. You can keep data (retention) for days, months (I have customer using SV with retention of 180 days)

- long term: you can keep using snapvault, VTL. Also, you can use tape.

IMHO, you could try to think that tape is an "archive" for data and we have other methods to keep your data more close to your application level and you can use really tape only IF is really necessary.

So, I believe that you have some options:

1) If you would like to "save" all snapshots during the day (8am, 10am ...) - I believe the best approach could be snapvault

2) IMHO, apologizes in advance, but no make sense to make a backup of each snapshot to tape (8am, 10am...). You can "send" to tape the latest backup or the desired backup just inform to NetBackup the snapshot name.

I hope this helps. Feel free to contact me or contact your NetApp local office if you really need any help.

I'm here to help and contribute always.

All the best

neto

NetApp - My reason to live!

Re: How do I backup snapshots to tape?

Neto,

Thanks again for the quick response.  Yes, I don't think it is smart idea to backup every single snapshot either.  I think once a day would suffice.  I think we are talking about the same thing here.  The customer just wants a backup they can take offsite, but they don't have the budget to do SnapMirror, SnapVault, etc.  They have an existing SL500 library with (4) LTO3 drive, so I have to use that instead.  Here is my plan and tell me your opinion:

  1. Create a NetBackup backup policy and for each volume specify a path of /vol/vol#/.snapshot/snap.daily.  I don't know if you can use a path like this, but I need some static name to put in the backup policy.  If I can't do it that way, how do I specify the path in the backup policy so that NDMP can back it up to tape?  NDMP needs some path name.
  2. NetBackup can then execute a script before the backup starts and use the smvi CLI commands to determine the most recent SMVI snapshot taken per volume.  The script will either rename the most recent snapshot to snap.daily or FlexClone the snapshot to snap.daily.
  3. The backup runs.
  4. After the backup completes the snapshot is renamed to its previous name OR the FlexClone is destroyed.

Any thoughts?  Again, sorry about being unclear about my intentions.  I don't want to backup more than one SMVI snapshot per day per volume.  I totally agree with you that that makes no sense at all.  The customer has limited funds so this is the only reason they are doing this.  They don't have another NetApp offsite.

Thanks,

Jamie

Re: How do I backup snapshots to tape?

Hi Jamie,

This is neto from Brazil

How are you?

Glad to hear from you.

I like this option:

1. Create a NetBackup backup policy and for each volume specify a path of /vol/vol#/.snapshot/snap.daily.

You can use pre-scripts on NetBackup to execute an "awk" to get the first line that will be your last backup and you this value for your path.

You can use some examples on TR3665 (SMO 2.2) and the new TR of SMO 3.0 (remember that I told to you TR3761

All the best

neto

NetApp - I love this company!