Step 4: Run a Backup

Storage + Backup Set + Sources = Data Protection
Backup sets allow you to group multiple sources based on backup properties such as storage location, frequency, and type of backup (incremental or full). We will guide you through the process of configuring a backup set and executing your first backup.
After configuring storage, initializing a backup set, and adding sources, you are now ready to run your first backup and begin protecting your data!
Another optional step before running your first backup is to create a schedule. For steps to create Intelligent Schedules, please visit this article.

General Steps

  1. 1.
    In the left navigation bar of the ZMC, click Backup Sets
  1. 2.
    Click on the icon next to the Backup Set that you wish to perform a backup for
In the screen that appears, you will see a workflow consisting of the following steps: Backup What -> Backup Where -> Backup Staging -> Backup How -> Backup When -> Backup Now.
You will also see a 7th page called Backup Media. This contains a table of all backups that have been performed for this backup set. We will cover this further on the Run a Restore page.
You may navigate through each step by clicking on its name in the above bar, which acts as a navigation bar.
In each step, you will see some advanced configuration options. For a full guide on what each of the options does, click here. We will only be covering the essentials in this article.
  1. 3.
    Let's go through the backup workflow:

Backup What

Here, you will see all of the Sources that you linked to this specific Backup Set. Check the boxes next to the sources that you wish to back up. If you do not check any boxes, then all of the entries will be backed up.

Backup Where

Most of the fields in this step are informational, and the Taperscan drop-down is only applicable for tape backups.
The exception to this is if you are using AWS S3 as a storage option, in which case you should see the Special Steps for AWS S3 section found at the bottom of this page.
When you are ready, click UPDATE CONFIGURATION.

Backup Staging

Staging is used primarily for backups to tape, but you may also use them for other storage media. We recommend disabling staging unless you are using tape. See here for more details.

Backup How

This page contains Performance Parameters and Time Out settings that you are free to configure as needed. The default settings are acceptable for most environments.
You can also enable email notifications on this page. You must first configure your server to use SMTP. See this article for more details. You may enter multiple emails using a comma-separated format.
Click UPDATE and continue to the Backup When page.

Backup When

This is where you may add or replace the schedule linked to this backup set. Simply click on the drop-down, select the schedule you wish to apply, and click UPDATE SCHEDULE. If you have not configured any schedules yet, you may leave this as None as shown below.

Backup Now

As the name suggests, you may start your backups from this page. If you opted to add a schedule in the previous step, you can click on the red play button to activate the backup set and it will begin to backup according to the schedule that you have specified.
If you wish to run a backup immediately, you may select the backup level and click either the green play button or START BACKUP NOW. You will then be taken to the Monitor page where you can monitor the progress of your backups.

Backup Media

The Backup Media page is not a required step in the backup workflow. It is where you may configure the retention period for a given backup set as well as the backup cycle. You may also see and manage backup media on this page.
As shown in the movie above, you may adjust the backup cycle and retention policy as desired. Upon changing the retention period, you will see if there are any expired backups (media). If you click on the button, this will prune/remove all expired backups.
For a detailed description of what a backup cycle is, please see this article.
Clicking the button will verify the data integrity for the given backup media.
Clicking thebutton will take you to the Restore workflow for the given backup media.

Special Steps for AWS S3

If AWS S3 is the storage target for your backup set, you will have some additional essential options to configure - specifically on the Backup Where page.
The first feature to note is the Archive to Glacier checkbox. When you select this option, you will then be able to choose after how many days the backed-up data will be transitioned from the S3 standard tier to S3 Glacier Flexible Retrieval.
The next feature to note is the Immutable Backup slider. The slider will only be active the first time you visit the Backup Where page, and inactive after you click Add Configuration for the first time. Activating this option will allow you to choose between the AWS-defined Governance and Compliance Immutability modes, as well as select the retention period in days.
Another feature unique to AWS is the ability to select the availability zone as shown below. This feature is also unconfigurable after the first time you click Add Configuration.
The final feature that you may configure is found in the Advanced Options menu. Here we recommend changing the Max Upload Speed and Max Download Speed fields to match your specific environment's capabilities. For example, if you normally expect upload speeds of 10MiB/s, put 10000 in the Max Upload Speed field. You may also choose how many threads to use per Upload/Download.
After configuring these settings, you may click ADD CONFIGURATION and continue using the General Steps to perform the backup.

Special Steps for Tape Backups

Similar to AWS S3, Tape Backups also have special steps during the backup workflow, specifically on the Backup Where, Backup Staging, and Backup Media pages.

Backup Where

This page appears as follows:
  1. 1.
    Ensure that the Slot Range is configured per your requirements. By default, a Backup Set will use all slots
A "Slot" is equivalent to a Storage Element. You can see a list of the Storage Elements by clicking MTX / LSSCSI -> MT/MTX
  1. 2.
    Next, select the correct Tape Drive Device. A "Tape Drive Device" or "Drive Slot" is equivalent to a Data Transfer Element (DTE). Please follow the below substeps if you have more than one DTE:
2A. Check the status of both data transfer elements. You can do this by running the following commands
// Go to the appropriate directory
cd /dev/tape/by-id
// View the devices and soft links
ls -la
// Check the status of the DTEs.
//Make sure the nst# matches the output of the ls command
mt -f /dev/nst0 status
mt -f /dev/nst1 status
//Sample Output of mt command
SCSI 2 tape drive:
File number=-1, block number=-1, partition=0.
Tape block size 0 bytes. Density code 0x0 (default).
Soft error count since last status=0
General status bits on (50000):
2B. If the last line of the output says DR_OPEN for each DTE, run the following commands to load a tape into the DTE. If one of the outputs says BOT ONLINE, proceed to step 2C.
//double-check the sg#.
mtx -f /dev/sg6 status
//load a tape from one of the full elements into the DTE
//In the below example, 5 is the Storage element number,
//and 1 is the DTE number
mtx -f /dev/sg6 load 5 1
2C. Repeat the mt commands from Step 2A to check if one of the DTEs has a tape loaded. In our case, nst0 is loaded, so take note of which device this corresponds to based on the ls -la command from Step 2A.
The nst number and the DTE Number do not always match. For example, DTE 0 could correspond to nst1
2D. Find the corresponding device in the Backup Where page under the Tape Drive Device section. Leave the checkbox next to that drive unselected, and select Skip for the other devices.
2E. Make sure the Drive Slot number corresponds with the Data Transfer Element number from the mtx command and click NEXT
2F. Click Confirm on the Update and Verify pop-up. If you are taken to the next page, go back to the Backup Where page and ensure that you see a green check beside the Tape Drive Device name. If you do not, click NEXT again to Update and Verify.

Backup Staging

On the Backup Staging page, you may configure how big of a staging area you would like for your backups. Staging is beneficial as it allows you to utilize tape space more efficiently. We recommend initially setting your staging area size to be slightly less than your native tape size which will allow you to maximize your tape capacity. As you run more full and incremental backups, you may adjust the size of the staging area to correspond with the average size of said backups to compensate for factors such as compression.
You may also configure where backups will be staged on the backup server, as well as how much of the partition space to reserve for root using the Reserved for root % field.
To calculate, look in the Live Statistics section and calculate the correct percentage based on the Partition total space.

Backup Media

This is where you will label tapes for use with the backup set.
Each Backup Set will use only the tapes that are labeled for it, and each backup job will take up one tape unless you enable staging.
In other words, ensure you assign enough tapes to each backup set to account for the maximum expected data size of your backup. You will not be able to label tapes mid-backup if you underestimate the backup size. You can always relabel unused tapes for use with other backup sets in the future.
In addition, if you run a backup job with a native size of 100 GB, but your tape has a native capacity of 1 TB, there will be at least 900 GB of unused space on that particular tape that you will not be fully utilizing. To account for this (and using the same example), you can set the staging area to be 1 TB in size. This will allow you to fully utilize the space on each tape.
Labeling tapes is a simple process. When you scroll to the bottom of the Backup Media page, you will see a table like this:
  1. 1.
    Select the Overwrite Media check box.
  2. 2.
    You will then be able to select the boxes next to the Slots of the tapes that you wish to relabel.
  3. 3.
    Click the icon. The tapes will be re-labeled and therefore assigned to the Backup Set that you are currently configuring.
  1. 4.
    The re-labeling process will erase the data currently stored on the tapes you selected and will relabel the tapes. Once this is complete, you should see green check marks next to each tape you selected.
After labeling the tapes, you can go back to the Backup Now page and run a backup, or to the Backup When page and activate the backup schedule.