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What role do tape backups play in your DR solution?

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Does your organization rely on tape backups as a primary part of your business continuity plan? Where do you store your backups? How often do you perform backups? Share your comments about the role of disaster recovery solutions in your organization, as discussed in the Nov. 16 Disaster Recovery newsletter.

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backups? what backups?

by Belgarath1 In reply to What role do tape backups ...

live on the edge dont do backups!

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Paranoid employee

by Sue's Comment In reply to What role do tape backups ...

Having had near disasters before I tend to be paranoid on this issue!

I take a full back tape home, daily, (23 miles from site). I keep a copy of the 1st Tuesday of every month (for 1 year) and a copy of each Tuesday in a given month (for a week).

I also do a CD of our databases and "standards" monthly so all the required client database files and documentation could be up and running on a normal PC within minutes. I would like this to be weekly but I am having difficultly getting someone to buy the CDs. After all they cost pence!

At least this way we would be able to alert our clients immediately that there has been a problem but we are fully operational! As I look after the databases this also enables me to look at the state of the database at any one month. This is more a history than a backup.

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Storing backups at home?

by Flakes_73 In reply to Paranoid employee

Don't know what it is like in other countries but in the UK storing backups at home may invalidate your contents insurance for your home! Not sure of the exact details but a member of staff here was informed that if they stored backup tapes from their work at home then there house was regarded as a business and their current contents insurance would be invalid!

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TApe BAckups

by clane In reply to Paranoid employee

I change the tape and backup daily, the previous days tape goes home with me, also daily.

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Why do you do all handly?

by VZhuravlyov In reply to Paranoid employee

I think You spend too lot of your time for you restore scheme. We have our data backups with Legato Networker with Autochanger and all we have to do is controlling the process.

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Tapes at home

by jbrown In reply to Paranoid employee

I don't think this is a good idea for several reasons. What if the company fires you? You could destroy their backups. What if there is litigation and it's known that you store data at home? Suddenly, you're served with a warrant to search your premises. Either store the tapes at another office or contract with an offsite storage facility.

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Tapes at home?

by In reply to Paranoid employee

Having a tape at home doesn't seem to me to be any kind of secure or resilient DR solution to me? Why not use some sort of offsite storage company such as Iron Mountain (or their likes). Fairly low cost, they guarantee your data and you don't have to worry about no being able to restore a backup because your car breaks down on the way to work!

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Well I use a combination of

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to What role do tape backups ...

USB HDD, DVD and Tape. The HDD are made daily and stored in a fireproof safe on site, the DVDs are made weekly or more frequently and stored off site and the tape is a continuous backup which is run a a 5 tape rotor with 4 of the current backups being off site and the oldest one being on site being overwritten on a daily basis.

The HDD's are nice and fast but the drives get very hot and have a relatively short life compared to those same drives used in workstations but then again they are subject to far more shocks than if they where fitted in a computer. However I should add here that we use the 2.5 inch drives from LT's but this is just for ease of caring as the 3.5 inch drives in their caddies are a bit cumbersome to carry around.

The DVDs are nice as well but not overly reliable as I've had a few with critical read errors now and at present I'm searching for new media which works better as the current crop of DVDs do not seem to be as well made as the previous ones.

The tapes are a different kettle of fish and while being slow compared to the other two methods they still prove more reliable than any of the other backup systems that we currently use. The one advantage is the size over the DVDs as we use 40 GIG tapes but they are far slower to read/write than the HDD. On the up side so far we have yet have one fail and on all the major reinstalls that I've had to do it was always the tape which had more data stored than any of the other media.

While the HDD's and DVDs get you up and running quickly the tape eventually restores all the nice bits and pieces that the others can not copy. We have one server here with an autoloader which just runs away all day saving the data onto tape and at the end of the day we remove the used tapes and replace them with new ones or at least the oldest backup that we previously had. The unit than proceeds to backup all that days data while the business is closed for the day/weekend and anything else that was originally programed in to save.


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Logic and admin errors can wipeout online and nearline storage

by rograham1 In reply to What role do tape backups ...

There are three additional reasons for REMOVING the media:
1. There have been many historic situations where administrative error has obliterated massive quantities of online data (and real time replicas).
2. Errors in online/nearline infrastructure code and microcode can cause extensive data loss due to even a partial destruction of data.
3. Hardware failures can override normal write protection (including most WORM technologies).

The removal and off-site relocation of data can preserve an ability to restore an application baseline in the event that online and nearline technologies have corrupted all production versions.

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by silvioandpauly In reply to What role do tape backups ...

Backups run nightly. For the most part, full backups run weekly, sent offsite in a rotation of 4 weeks.

Differentials are run to a NAS running redundant hardware.

SQL is backed up to disk, then a tape backup which also goes offsite.

We run a recovery test every few months. I hate to get caught with my pants down.

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