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Snapmanager for exchange + 3rd party backup product

We are looking to use SME to facilitate transactional consistent replicas of Exchange 2007 VM in conjunction with snapmirror, I have a few questions around this:

1, Storage was never sized to hold backups (snapshots) for any lengthy period of time, however it would be nice to hold a few days worth and gain the benefits of using SME as a backup product – Is it possible to have SME keeping a few days worth of backups then utilise the 3rd party product for longer term backups?

2, If we want to use SME purely to create consistent replicas can we use one volume and lun for all databases (5) and another volume and lun for all SG transaction logs? – In this scenario we will not be interested in splitting things up for granular restore capability as this will be achieved with the 3rd party product.

Snapmanager for exchange + 3rd party backup product

First, Exchange is an application, with that, for any application databases you cannot have two backup products doing the same job, even though they are run at different times. This because you cannot control this application backup to not to truncate t. logs. By running two products, will create holes in the t. logs. THis means, backups will be successful from both the products, but recovery will fail!!!

Now, what you can do is:

- use SME to run a backup, as usual

- and if the intention is to run third party backup for tape purpose on a weekly basis, then, again run SME backup, say Sunday, and as part of the post backup, make a call to the third-party backup to mount the LUN(s), and then, backup as if its backing up like a normal file-system! THis use case is in teh sysadmin guide for SME.

For your q2: the layout you stated is possible as well, where you are creating 5databases/LUN OR you could go with one DB/LUN but all 5LUNs in one FlexVol! THis will provide faster recovery if that's what you want in addition to the 3rd party backups!

Cheers, balbeer

Snapmanager for exchange + 3rd party backup product

There are a couple of options for you.

Option 1.

Use SME and do all the backups and have it truncate the transaction logs. Very conventional, very normal. Then use FlexClone to mount up the Snapshot and stream the flat files off to tape or some other medium. That's done by admins all over the world and is very, very familiar to us so your local CSE or partner VAR can help you set that up quickly.

Option 2.

Use SME 6.0.2 and do Copy Mode backups of Exchange rather than Full's. You then use your Exchange-aware app to do the log truncating. This meets your basic requirement but does have drawbacks.

Option 1 is better because SME and the storage controller gets to control everything and you can restore databases up to their point of failure. Option 2 only gives you limited point in time recovery and single-item restores.

You can host your DBs and Logs as  you state but as you probably gathered, you lose a lot of granularity. You have NetApp for rapid, granular backup and recovery so you don't want to deliberately throw away a lot of that value.

Snapmanager for exchange + 3rd party backup product

I took option 2 although I know it is not the best - I also have a single volume/lun for alll storage group logs and a single volume/lun for all databases - However, when running the configuration wizard I cannot place more than one database on the database lun? Any ideas?

Re: Snapmanager for exchange + 3rd party backup product

Yes. If you want to use SME, for any option, you need to follow the placement rules. You therefore need more FlexVols (one per DB) and, ideally but not mandatory, a FlexVol per log set. That said, lots of people use a single log set per half-dozen or so databases. If you have a single FlexVol for the whole server and you have 20 stores you're going to have to back up all 20 stores together. That might cause a few time-outs here and there. If you have a Flexvol for DB1 thru 4 and another one for DB5 thru 8 (numbers for example, YMMV!!) you can break SME up into chunks which is good for Exchange.

It's just the best practice stuff that SME is asking you to enforce.