Off Site Backup: Removable hard-drive racks or external USB hard-drives?

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Off Site Backup: Removable hard-drive racks or external USB hard-drives?

Andy B-3
Hello List,

I am building a backup server using Debian and BackupPC, and would like
to have an off-site backup rotated weekly.

I wonder if I might ask the list's opinion about which hardware I should
use to store the off-site backups on?

My tar archive is too large for tape (~300GB) so I have been considering
either:

- removable hard drive racks with SATA disks enclosed in a caddy
- external hard drives connected through a USB2 or firewire interface

The "SATA linux software status report"[1] indicates that hot-plug is
unsupported for SATA disks.

Q) Is still the case where the disk is connected through a removable
hard drive rack claiming to support hot-plug?

Q) Is hot-plug supported for external hard disks connected through a
USB2 or firewire interface?

My script can umount and mount as necessary, but I would like to avoid
reboots if possible.

Q) Do you foresee any problems configuring LVM or software RAID on top
of removable or external disks?

Thanks for your help, Andy

[1] http://linux.yyz.us/sata/software-status.html


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Re: Off Site Backup: Removable hard-drive racks or external USB hard-drives?

Rogério Brito
On Nov 24 2005, Andy wrote:
> Hello List,

Hi, Andy.

> I wonder if I might ask the list's opinion about which hardware I should
> use to store the off-site backups on?
(...)
> - external hard drives connected through a USB2 or firewire interface

This (an external PATA drive in a dual USB2/Firewire enclosure) is the
solution that I have been using for quite some time now.

In fact, I'm only using the Firewire side of it and it works quite well
for all my needs.

> Q) Is hot-plug supported for external hard disks connected through a
> USB2 or firewire interface?

Yes, at least for Firewire and USB 1.1.

> My script can umount and mount as necessary, but I would like to avoid
> reboots if possible.

No reboots needed here.

> Q) Do you foresee any problems configuring LVM or software RAID on top
> of removable or external disks?

I have never used LVM, though. I'm only using this external disk as a
way of backup/exchange of data among filesystems.


Hope this helps, Rogério Brito.

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Homepage of the algorithms package : http://algorithms.berlios.de
Homepage on freshmeat:  http://freshmeat.net/projects/algorithms/


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Re: Off Site Backup: Removable hard-drive racks or external USB hard-drives?

Joseph H. Fry
In reply to this post by Andy B-3
On Thursday 24 November 2005 9:22 am, Andy wrote:

> Hello List,
>
> I am building a backup server using Debian and BackupPC, and would like
> to have an off-site backup rotated weekly.
>
> I wonder if I might ask the list's opinion about which hardware I should
> use to store the off-site backups on?
>
> My tar archive is too large for tape (~300GB) so I have been considering
> either:
>
> - removable hard drive racks with SATA disks enclosed in a caddy
> - external hard drives connected through a USB2 or firewire interface
>
> The "SATA linux software status report"[1] indicates that hot-plug is
> unsupported for SATA disks.
>
> Q) Is still the case where the disk is connected through a removable
> hard drive rack claiming to support hot-plug?
>
> Q) Is hot-plug supported for external hard disks connected through
> USB2 or firewire interface?
>
> My script can umount and mount as necessary, but I would like to avoid
> reboots if possible.
>
> Q) Do you foresee any problems configuring LVM or software RAID on top
> of removable or external disks?

Depending upon the type of data being backed up (if most of it is static) I
would use an rsync script like rsnapshot or some custome script to backup
remotely... of course your intital full backup would be done with the backup
machine local to the server, but subsequent sequential backups would be done
remotely via the internet with ssh and rsync.

I use this solution on a college campus and backup a server from one building
to another, typical backup times are under a minute accross our campus
network... can't imagine if your utilization is similar that it would take
too much longer accross a broadband connection.
 
Joe


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Re: Off Site Backup: Removable hard-drive racks or external USB hard-drives?

Andy B-3
In reply to this post by Rogério Brito
Rogério Brito wrote:

> This (an external PATA drive in a dual USB2/Firewire enclosure) is the
> solution that I have been using for quite some time now.
>
> In fact, I'm only using the Firewire side of it and it works quite well
> for all my needs.

Great, ill go for external USB/Firewire disks then. It certainly seems
simpler than SATA disks in a hotswap bay at this point.

>> Q) Is hot-plug supported for external hard disks connected through a
>> USB2 or firewire interface?
>
> Yes, at least for Firewire and USB 1.1.

Great!

> Hope this helps, Rogério Brito.

Very much, thanks.

Andy




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