Cascading drive pools and/or intelligent pooled device allocation
I have two ideas that would make Backup Exec more friendly for our environment.
First and foremost, cascading tape drives would be very useful to us. Currently, our two-device tape drive pool of LTO4 media is insufficient to make it through the weekend full backup rotation without intervention. As BE2012 is designed, it's unable to change devices mid-job even though there is lots of free space on the other drive. The cascading devices feature from pre-BE2010 would let the job roll from a full tape to one with free space.
If cascading drives is no longer an option, BE2012 could still fulfil our needs by intelligently allocating backup jobs. To clarify this a bit: currently, my tape drives show 640GB free and 175GB free. I also have the "pre-scan" enabled for backup jobs, and let's assume that the next backup job to run has roughly 200GB of data to include in this backup as detected by BE2012. Ideally, this backup job would be routed to the drive with 640GB of free space, since the whole job could fit on that media. Sometimes, however, the job would be routed to the drive with only 175GB free. We do not have anyone in the office over the weekends when these full backup jobs run, and so any new media that is needed will be unavailable until Monday.
Please let me know if either idea could be implemented for a future version of BackupExec - it would make management of the backup jobs much more efficient.