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RDX - append

Created: 09 Sep 2012 | 14 comments

I have to agree that this is another dismal failure. I just installed my first RDX device, and I see no option to append whatsoever.

 

Does anyone know if append jobs to RDX work in Backup Exec 2010? I hate to uninstall just when I was prepared to start fresh with 2012... damn!

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pkh's picture

In BE 2012, you cannot append to either Disk Storage or Disk Cartridge Device.  I believe that RDX will have Disk Cartridge Device defined on them, so you cannot append to RDX cartridges.

For disk media, there is no advantage to appending to a media.  For tape, you append data to them to maximise the use of the tape capacity.  For disk, you can use as much or as little disk space as you require, provided you have not set the B2D folder property to allocate the maximum size for the .bkf files.  By appending to a disk media, you would extend the overwrite protection period of that media and thus preventing it from being recycled earlier.  For example, your first job creates a .bkf file and the overwrite protection period is 3 days.  On the 4th day, this .bkf can be overwritten and the disk space occupied by it is re-used.  However, if there is a second job the next day which appends to this file, then the .bkf will only be overwriteable on the 5th day.  Thus the space occupied by the data from the first job is locked up for another day before it can be overwritten.

Philip Lakic's picture

I use a 2 day RDX cartridge rotating system with the follow media set values.
Keep Data for 18 Hour Overwrite Protection Period + 12 Hour Append Period.

However the problem you're going to run into is that the useless BE2012 software will not overwrite your IMG0000xx folders containing your system state, exchange data, etc. on your RDX cartridge without a patch fix.

Eventually your cartridge will run out of space and your backups will fail.

Bulbous's picture

I have an RDX device that I am treating just like a tape device. I will be using a new cartridge every day, and I need to do a full backup each night of two servers.

If this were a tape device, I would set the first job to "overwrite" and the second to "append" (then eject).

With the RDX device, the options to overwrite or append are gone, and I see no way to do a full backup of two servers in a single evening.

Ken Putnam's picture

Make sure the retenion period for the media set is long enough, so the second job won't overwrite the first, even if you use the same media set.   

Just make sure you select a small BKF file size, so you don;t waste disk space in the last BKF of the first job

The default of 4GB should  be fine

 

If this response answers your concern, please mark it as a "solution"

Philip Lakic's picture

PKH had it right in his opening sentence. BE2012 doesn't treat the RDX data cartridge like a tape so there is no append option. 

However in the media set options you can set an APPEND PERIOD for the RDX data cartridge that will allow you to append a second backup job of your second server after your first backup job has finished. You just need to make sure that the append period is a sufficient amount of time in order to complete both of the backup jobs.

Basically you'll end up staggering your backup jobs. It's exactly what I do to get two servers backed up at one of my sites.

1st Backup Job of the 1st Server starts at 9:00PM.
2nd Backup Job of the 2nd Server starts at 12:00AM the following morning.
As long as your APPEND PERIOD is long enough in your media set, BE2012 will just append the second job to the RDX data cartridge.

Bulbous's picture

Since there is no option to select append or overwrite, how do you prevent the second job from overwriting the first? Even with the Media Set configured appropriately, the job seems to prefer overwrite.

pkh's picture

As I have said before, in BE 2012, you cannot append to a media when it is in a Disk Storage or Disk Cartridge Device.

Your RDX is a Disk Cartridge Device.  Just define a media with the correct OPP and use that in you your jobs.  When you select your RDX, also select the media set that you have just created.

Let's say, you set the OPP to 1 week.  Job1 will write to 00000001.bkf file.  When it ends, 00000001.bkf will be protected for 1 week because of the OPP in the media set.  When Job2 comes along later in the day, it will not be able to overwrite 00000001.bkf because the week is not up.  It will then create and write to 00000002.bkf.  After Job2 ends, 00000002.bkf will be protected for a week and the story continues.

Read this document

OPP and AP explanation

Philip Lakic's picture

That makes perfect sense.
Pity that BE2012 doesn't overwrite the IMG0000xx folders.
I'm using 2 cartridges and they run out of space in less than 2 nights worth of backups.

Bulbous's picture

OK, I think I've got a handle on what you are saying. For my two jobs, I set the overwrite period such that the second job can't overwrite the first, and the append period such that it can append.

Now I have a tape with several files:

B2D000006.bkf

B2D000007.bkf

...

B2D000015.bkf

 

When I use the tape next week, and both the overwrite protect period and append period have expired, will the first job blow away all of these .bkf files? If not, I am going to run out of space on the cartridge.

pkh's picture

If you are referring to what happens with RDX cartridges, then it is correct, except that append does not apply.  If you are really referring to tapes, then it is not correct.

Philip Lakic's picture

I was referring to the IMG0000xx files on the rdx cartridge. Once you've completed a backup, you can take a look on the cartridge through windows explorer and you'll see the folders I'm talking about.

It's these folders that don't get overwritten and eventually you run out of disk space on the cartridge.

Apparently there is a fix for it, but they wont give you the fix if you're using trialware.

Bulbous's picture

I believe I now have the overwrite/append settings correct. However, now I am seeing the IMG0000xx folders. New folders appear to be created with each job. Eventually these folders will fill up the disk.

Do you have a technote on that fix that I could reference if I open a ticket?

Philip Lakic's picture

Apparently there is a fix for this issue, however they wont release it to you unless you have a valid support agreement which is utterly useless to all parties testing and trialing the BE2012 using the RDX drives and cartridges. I'm still peeved that it hasn't been released yet and I can't find anyone with a BE2012 support agreement so that I can get hold of the fix to see if it actually works.

It's pathetic that the issue has been around in so many versions of the BE software.