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Step by step guide for AIR on DataDomain

Created: 18 Feb 2014 • Updated: 01 Oct 2014 | 16 comments
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Dear All,

It seems I'm missing a lot of things after reading NBUAdmGuide_I and DDOSAdmGuide. I'm trying to set up AIR using DD's replication, but it is not working for me. I'm not stating that the cause of this AIR not working is on my NBU servers; I'm still searching.

Now to the details. What I have is:

- NBU7.6.0.1 Master/Media as a Source. The same for the Destination.

- DataDomains and DDBoost working properly on both sides (Source and Destination).

- Regular backup policies writing on DD1 on the source side. Also regular backup policies writing on DD2 on the destination side.

- A SLP on the source which first writes as usual and then duplicates the recently created backup image to a special DD1 DDBoost storage unit.

- A SLP on the destination which has only an import operation defined. During my tests that import operation used either the regular DD2 DDBoost storage unit and the DD2 DDBoost storage unit that is supposed to receive the replicated backup images from DD1 (by means of DataDomain replication technology).


- NBU_Source writes on DD1, both on the regular DDBoost storage unit and on the DDBoost storage unit which is defined as the source for the DataDomain replication.

- NBU_Destination doesn't even blink an eye after the duplication has been done on the Source.

OK, I'm not entirely sure that the resulting files on Source are really being duplicated to Destination (speaking about DD layer here), but, can I be sure that my configuration is right on both NBUs?

I'm going a little bit crazy with this, since Symantec's documentation seems to be more devoted to MSDP than to OpenStorage API-compliant devices.

Many, many thanks in advance for your help/ideas/suggestions.




Operating Systems:

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pep-e's picture

BTW, I read but I don't think it applies to me, since AIR+DD didn't work as promised nowadays[1]. Besides, there are not any details about how they reached that error back then, which might have been useful for me because I would have caught some hint al least.

[1] NBU 7.6 + DD plug-in 2.6 + DDOS 5.4 is supposed to make AIR work smoothly. As per what I understood from Symantec's PDFs, NetBackup should only write on origin, then DD do the replication and on the other end NetBackup should be told by the DD plug-in that a new backup image has arrived, then the import would happen automagically. I really want to see that work!  :-)

Nicolai's picture

You need to be on DDOS 5.4 as well.

See page 36 for EMC configuration guide line using Netbackup AIR and Data Domain:

Assumption is the mother of all mess ups.

If this post answered your'e qustion -  Please mark as a soloution.

pep-e's picture

Thanks Nicolai,

I already have DD OS on both DDs (Source and Destination).

I'm in the process of configuring DD2 (Destination) on NBU_Source (where DD1 was already configured). Maybe I'm laking that setup, but I didn't expect it to be necessary... I'll keep you updated. In the meantime, should you have any more ideas, please do not hesitate to tell them here!

Thanks a lot.

Marianne's picture

I have not tried it myself, but see if this DD White Paper helps you:

DD Boost with NetBackup Auto Image Replication .is covered on p. 36.

Supporting Storage Foundation and VCS on Unix and Windows as well as NetBackup on Unix and Windows
Handy NBU Links

Nicolai's picture

LOL - too late Marianne cheeky

Assumption is the mother of all mess ups.

If this post answered your'e qustion -  Please mark as a soloution.

pep-e's picture

Hi Marianne,

Appreciated as well  :-)

BTW, I also stablished a trust relationshib between NBU_Source and NBU_Dest.

I already went through h7296-data-domain-boost-openstorage-wp.pdf. I'm repeating the experience, just in case.

pep-e's picture

OK, now NBU_Source has also DD2 (Destination) as a storage server. A new disk pool has been created, choosing from the list of available targets for replication of DD2. There's also a new storage unit on top of that new disk pool.

I've used that new storage unit, which, remember, represents the target storage unit on DD2, to set up a Duplication that follows the initial backup of the SLP in NBU_Source. That way, my "Test" policy on the source writes to a normal DD storage unit (DD1), and afterwards that backup image is supposed to be duplicated onto the remote DD storage unit (DD2).

The result of this has been nothing. The backup is performed as per the SLP's definition, but then nothing appears in the Activity monitor regarding the duplication to DD2 (Destination).

I'm still working on it.

pep-e's picture

NBU 7.6 AdmGuide I, page 964, Process Overview, Step 1, referring to the originating master server: "The SLP must include at least one Replication operation to similar storage in the target domain".

In my SLP (Source), there's a backup operation but, even after adding a duplication operation, I cannot specify the  target storage server when adding a Replication operation. Why is this?

pep-e's picture

I'm really wondering if I need SLPs at all for this. I'm using two DataDomains with DD OS and DD plug-in applied to my master servers ( In NBU 7.6 AdmGuide I, page 968, "Third party vendor disk appliance" says: "The originating NetBackup domain has no knowledge of the storage server in the target domain or domains."


I've gone back to a SLP on Source which simply does the initial backup and then duplicates the resulting backup image to the source DD storage unit. I've done quite a few tests so far, and I've been surprised by what is shown in the web GUI of my source DataDomain. Kindly find it in the attached screen shot 20140218_Tiny_step_forward_SymantecForums.JPG. When trying an SLP where there was a duplication explicitly going towards the target DD and that one FAILED, I'm assuming that this is the result of that SLP configured differently, that is, performing the regular backup and then duplicating the resulting image onto the source DD storage unit. Maybe, who knows, maybe NBU was not wrongly configured and DD only needed some time to do its job. I'm still waiting, since source DD's web GUI isn't changing and on the destination DD's web GUI there's no trace of this data. It should be reaching the destination DD at some point in time...

chack22's picture

You need to configure a replication pair for the storage units on the Data Domain for this to work.

From pg. 36 of the 2.6 Boost Guide.

The source Data Domain system (D1) provides the routing for the backup image copies to
the target domain:
ddboost association create D1-SU-A replicate-to D2 D2-SU-B
The target Data Domain system (D2) provides for the authentication and event
ddboost association create D2-SU-B replicate-from D1 D1-SU-A
pep-e's picture

Hi chack22, thank you for taking the time to read and answer.

I stablished that association and DD1 shows what I attached to this discussion using file 20140218_Tiny_step_forward_SymantecForums.JPG. On DD2 (Target), there is no trace of what was expected to be replicated from DD1 to DD2.

Now I'm picking the pieces of yesterday's battle against this. I will continue today, but please, do not hesitate to post here any other thoughts. They are vey much welcome.

pep-e's picture

Maybe the file wasn't attached yesterday properly. I'm repeating the operation now.

chack22's picture

Did you have the Storage Unit replication setup on the Data Domain prior to getting the storage servers/disk pools configured in NetBackup?

pep-e's picture

Hi chack22,

Yes, I did create both DataDomain storage units and the association between them prior to creating the correspondent disk pools, etc. on NetBackup (both Source and Target).

I'm sorry I didn't tell, but I opened a case with Symantec Support hours ago. I'm already in touch with a support technician/engineer (? don't know yet) who has just begun to study this case.

For the sake of completion, and for those interested in this, please note that I'm also reviewing the FW rules that are supposed to be letting replication traffic go from DD1 (Source) to DD2 (Target).

I'll keep you all updated.

pep-e's picture

I'd bet FW rules are OK.

Tomorrow I'll be joining a support session with this person from Symantec in order to do some troubleshooting. We'll see what comes out of it.

Gonz's picture

I have helped pep-e during the course of a Webex session to configure this.

The steps are (assume DD7200 is the source DataDomain and DD7200A is the destination DataDomain)

1) Create an storage unit on the source DataDomain

ddboost storage unit create airA

2) Create an storage unit on the destination DataDomain

ddboost storage unit create airB

3) Link them

On DD7200

ddboost association create aira replicate-to DD7200A airb

On DD7200A

ddboost association create airb replicate-from DD7200 aira

4) On source NetBackup master server, create a Diskpool that must target the volume create in point 1)

Bear in mind that if that volume does not appear as a "Replication Source" type, then you did wrong the point 3)

5) On source NetBackup master server, create an SLP (we named it AIRTEST) containing one backup against the storage unit type source (in our case aira) and a replication

6) On source NetBackup master server create a test backup policy, targeting in the Policy storage the SLP created in 5)

7) On destination NetBackup master server, create a Diskpool that must target the volume created in 2)
That volume must be of type Replication target. Otherwise point 3) was not performed or performed wrongly

8) On destination NetBackup master server, create an SLP with the same name as in 5 (in this case AIRTEST), but it must be an Import operation against the DiskPool created in 7)

When you start the backup in source NetBackup, a ddbost job will run against the source DataDomain. When the backup completes, a replication from DataDomain source to DataDomain destination will start.

Once the replication finishes an event will be generated (you should be able to see it with # ddboost event show). That notifies destination NB that an import must be started. You will see an import job in destination NetBackup Master Server.

This is very textual, but it is how it works. I will prepare a more visual guide.


Gonzalo Murillo


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