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What is the best way to use a NAS filer for backup?

Can you tell me the best practice storage architecture using a NAS filer for backup and recovery?


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I'm not sure what you mean by the question. You may mean, "what is the best way to back up a NAS filer?" You may also mean, "what is the best way to use a NAS filer in your backup and recovery system?" I'm guessing that you mean the latter.

My answer would depend on whether or not:

(a) You use a NAS filer to hold your production data
(b) Your NAS filer supports synchronization to another filer

If the answer is yes to both, then my answer would be to synchronize your data to an alternate location and back it up from there. This method works even better if you can put databases into backup mode (or shut them down) and then create a snapshot on your production filer that gets replicated to the destination filer. Then you can back up the snapshot at the destination filer, and you have stable image of your database on tape.

If you do not use a filer for your production data, then the best way to use a filer in your backup system is to NFS/CIFS mount it to your backup server, then use it as a disk storage device for your backups. Once it's backed up to disk, then DUPLICATE/CLONE it to tape.

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This was first published in August 2003

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