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Old Aug 14, 2006, 09:09 AM   #1
Diavilo1
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Backup Solution for 1TB of Data

Does anyone have a good solution for backing up between 1/2 and 1TB of data? Not really interested in doing a hard drive solution but something like a firewire tape backup unit. I have a client who is an advertising agency with large amounts of data that has to be near line. He is archiving past jobs to DVD but for his current data it needs to be close in case of problems. I've looked at the Exabyte drives but the autoloader is the only thing I found and he doesn't want to have to take home 10 tapes a night. Any ideas?
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Old Aug 14, 2006, 09:45 PM   #2
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Well I am assuming with that much data on the line they already have a RAID 5 solution in place. So this backup solution would be a catastrophic failure kind of backup right? In which case the desire to keep it offsite.

How about setting up another RAID 5 box offsite and synchronizing the two boxes? Our office is a branch office with its own server running Windows Server 2k3 and it synchronizes all changes to our main office, so if the office ever burns down they have a copy of our data. I'll check what they use to synchronize data, but I am sure there is a way to do it even if you had something as simple as an Infrant ReadyNAS box running offsite. And of course I guess it depends how much churn they have, or new data or changed data they are producing. We never have more than 100MB really so its trivial to transfer the new data. But if we are talking gigs and gigs it may not be feasible.

If the guy wants to take something home every night get him an external 1 TB Lacie Drive. That's pretty much the only thing thats going to provide portability with that kind of storage.
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Old Aug 15, 2006, 07:10 AM   #3
Diavilo1
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thanks for the idea, unfortunately in this situation we're talking gigs per day so even an incremental backup is going to be huge over VPN or whatever. I have another client who is working with multiple external hard drives for backing up, it works its just not the fastest or easiest to restore from. This particular client will be putting in an XServer with 3 500GB drives in RAID5, currently their data is stored locally on all the machines and each user is responsible to backup to a hard drive every night and I was hoping to get away from that. Thanks for the suggestion though!
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Old Aug 15, 2006, 07:21 AM   #4
seanf
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Originally Posted by Diavilo1
... we're talking gigs per day ...
Have you looked at the Xserve RAID?

Sean
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Old Aug 15, 2006, 07:27 AM   #5
Diavilo1
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Originally Posted by seanf
Have you looked at the Xserve RAID?

Sean
I've proposed this as well, but there are only 5 users total and they archive all their old projects to DVD. I'm guessing that they won't exceed 1TB of data that they need to have on the XServe at any given time. Cost is a factor here, I would love to sell the RAID as well but they are a bit hesitant at this.
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Old Aug 15, 2006, 08:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diavilo1
thanks for the idea, unfortunately in this situation we're talking gigs per day so even an incremental backup is going to be huge over VPN or whatever. I have another client who is working with multiple external hard drives for backing up, it works its just not the fastest or easiest to restore from. This particular client will be putting in an XServer with 3 500GB drives in RAID5, currently their data is stored locally on all the machines and each user is responsible to backup to a hard drive every night and I was hoping to get away from that. Thanks for the suggestion though!
YIKES!!!! Thats got to be an administrative nightmare and is just asking for trouble.

Get them that Xserve already and if they are dealing with a lot of data install a gigabit switch and gigabit NICs if they don't already have them.

If you got the Lacie 1 TB external drive you would only need that one for a full backup from the Xserve assuming RAID 5 w/ 500GB drives.

Also if you need something now as opposed to waiting until October, you could get the Mac Pro. It is basically a server anyway and might be a lot more suited to their needs as I doubt they have a rack for the Xserve. In addition it has 4 drive bays instead of 3 and you can configure it with OS X server. The only potential drawback would be if you wanted to go with SCSI on the Xserve, which would probably be overkill and a lot more expensive. Also I don't see anything about a SATA RAID controller for the Xserve, but the Mac Pro does RAID in software. And at $400 a pop don't get the 500GB drives from apple, for that much money you could get 750GB drives.
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Old Aug 15, 2006, 09:13 AM   #7
kbonnel
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I think disk is your best option. Tapes are fine, but you would want to get a library, which increases costs.

Look at the infrant readynas NV, or X6. Holds up to 4 HD, and you can do x-raid, which is their LVM Raid5. (allows you to start with say a 500GB single drive, and then add an additional 500GB for mirroring, and then another 500GB for a Raid5 (1TB total), and then another 500GB if you need more space). You could also use the 750GB as well, but there is a 2TB limit right now due to the 2.4 kernel they are using. You can configure different shares, and have user quotas if you want.

I have the X6 in my basement with 2 400GB drives, and it works great.

Kimo
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Old Aug 15, 2006, 09:22 AM   #8
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Archiving past jobs to DVD isn't a quality method either if it is dye based, I could see DVD-RAM -- but it is slow and hasn't kept up, even though it is an archive quality medium.

Just make sure they are recording to an alloy-based DVD medium instead of a cheap dye-based one.

Edit: or has the quality changed on the degradation of alloy vs. dye these days. (haven't kept up).
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