How to configure replication of Microsoft SQL Server with VERITAS Volume Replicator using Backup and Checkpoint

Article:TECH21060  |  Created: 2004-01-21  |  Updated: 2004-01-21  |  Article URL
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Technical Solution



How to configure replication of Microsoft SQL Server with VERITAS Volume Replicator using Backup and Checkpoint


VERITAS Volume Replicator (VVR) can be used to replicate volumes containing Microsoft SQL databases for disaster recovery purposes.  The installation and configuration of Microsoft SQL Server and the creation of data and logs volumes in preparation for replication by VVR is described in detail in the document Using VERITAS Volume Replicator for Disaster Recovery of a SQL Server - Application Note.

The Checkpoint feature of VVR enables the synchronization of a Secondary using a block-level backup and restore method.  The data is backed up on the Primary and the media is then physically shipped to the Secondary location, where it is restored to the Secondary.  This feature is particularly useful in environments with low bandwidth or where very large data sets are involved.  The VERITAS Volume Replicator for 3.0 Windows 2000 User's Guide provides more information.

Once both the Primary and Secondary have been prepared for replication, the steps outlined below can be taken to set up VVR using Backup and Checkpoint: 

1.  Ensure that all Microsoft SQL Server services are stopped on the Secondary and that no other processes are accessing the volume (for example, Windows Explorer windows must be closed).  This is necessary so that VVR can acquire a lock on the volume. 

The Microsoft SQL Server services on the Primary should be started if an online backup will be used.  If an offline backup will be taken, the Microsoft SQL Server services should be stopped on the Primary.

2.  Set up a new Replicated Data Set (RDS) specifying the Primary only.  Figures 1 to 6 illustrate the steps involved.

Figure 1
Setup Replicated Data Set

Figure 2
Specify Replicated Data Set Name and Replicated Volume Group Name

Figure 3
Select dynamic disk group, data volumes and replicator log

Figure 4
Do not specify Secondary (ignore warning)

Figure 5
Do not start replication on Primary

Figure 6
RDS containing Primary only (RVG not started)

3.  When you are ready to commence, start the RVG, as shown in Figure 7.

Figure 7

Figure 8 shows the Primary RVG in a started state.

Figure 8

4.  Start the Checkpoint (Figure 9)...

Figure 9

...and specify a name for the Checkpoint (Figure 10).

Figure 10

5.  Carry out a full block-level backup the Microsoft SQL database(s) on the Primary.  This can be achieved using backup software such as VERITAS NetBackup, or a Snap Shot can be taken of the Primary volume using VERITAS Volume Manager 3.0 for Windows 2000. 
Note:  It is essential that a block-level backup is taken rather than a file level backup.  More information on this subject can be found in the following TechNote:

6.  Ship the media to the Secondary location and restore the data to the server that will become the Secondary using the appropriate method.

7.  End the Checkpoint on the Primary (Figure 11).

Figure 11

8.  Add the Secondary to the RDS but do not choose to attach the Secondary at this time.  Figures 12 to 14 illustrate the necessary steps.

Figure 12
Add Secondary

Figure 13
Verify volume information

Figure 14
Uncheck boxes "Attach" and "Start Replication"

9.  When you are ready to attach the Secondary and start replication, follow the procedures shown in Figures 15 to 17 below.

Figure 15
Attach Secondary

Figure 16
Choose Checkpoint

Figure 17
Start Replicated Volume Group on the Secondary

Figure 18 shows the final screen.  Replication is occurring successfully between the Primary and Secondary.

Figure 18

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