I'm currently looking to backup my SharePoint SQL databases with SMSQL. Has anyone tried this before? I know there's a separate product by NetApp for SharePoint but I would like to use what I have now without purchasing additional software.
The reason I want to use SMSQL for the SQL database backups is because my current application, NetBackup, is having issues.
I strictly recommend using SMSP (or SMMOSS / depends on version of sharepoint) to backup the whole Farm as the SQL Database Backups just restore the content without Master Pages, Web Application settings or IIS Metabase or such things. Basically what i've already done - restoring SQL Content Database into a Sharepoint Farm does work with SMSQL really good. Have that done with a customer but as i said, just restoring the content without anything around.
If the farm itself crashs you will lose data and restoring only the content database into a new installed farm is pain in the a**.
You can use Snap Manager for SQL to take backup of your content db's but it is strongly recommended to use Snap Manager for MOSS for backing up Sharepoint Web Applications and the content databases.
Choosing to backup the content database using SMSQL has some disadvantages like no notion of granularity of backup,no auto discovery of SQL Server for Sharepoint Layout..etc.
However, if you still choose to use both SMSQL and SMMOSS to back up a content database then keep in mind :-
If TLOG backups are being taken through SMSQL and full backups through SMMOSS then note that all the TLOG backups that are taken after the full backup taken by SMMOSS are applicable to only that full backup.
TLOG backups cannot be used by SMMOSS to do point-in-time restores. Hence, if you want to restore additional TLOG backups, then these will have to be done manually.
In case you are using SMSQL to take full backups of a content database in addition to using SMMOSS then please be aware that SMMOSS is unaware of SMSQL-initiated backups and hence will not list these.
In case SMSQL is used to perform a point-in-time restore outside of SMMOSS then it is recommended that a full backup be initiated from SMMOSS right after the PIT restore completes.
Make sure that backup schedules between SMMOSS and SMSQL do not overlap since this might cause both backups to take longer to finish.