How to Back Up Your Network, Part 3

By: Walter Metcalf
Date: 08/09/00

Running the Backup

    Although it took a while to get here, the rest is, as the mathematicians like to say, trivial. Well, almost trivial. After two weeks describing how to get ready for backups, we are almost ready to actually start running them.

  1. The Backup Cycle consists of a single Full Backup of the LAN plus a series of Differential Backups.

    1. Typically the Full Backup is run at night, once every two weeks to a month, depending on your needs and your tape inventory. It's important that all PC's be online to OS/2 when this is run so you need to either check the PC's yourself or appoint someone else to do it. Making signs asking people not to touch the machines during this time may help as well, especially if you have night-owls around.

    2. The Differential Backup should be run nightly (or more often if required.) This can be run safely along with a minimal amount of network activity.

  2. Preparing a Set of Tapes

    1. Before beginning your backup cycle, you need to prepare a set of labelled tapes (or alternative media). You need two sets (sometimes called father-son) at the very least. Personally I don't feel safe unless I have at least three sets (grandfather-father-son), and I'm much more comfortable with four.

    2. The number of tapes in each set will depend on how big and how many disk drives you have and on which tape technology you are using: e.g. TRAVAN, 8mm, DAT, etc.

    3. You should give some thought on where you want to store the Differential Backups. The setup described in this article append them to the end of the Full Backup, continuing onto other tapes as necessary. This minimizes the number of tapes required. However some people prefer to keep the Full Backup on tape(s) by itself and keep the Differential Backups on a different set of tapes completely.

  3. Starting the Backup Cycle

    1. Make sure all PC's on the network are online to OS/2, are idle, and will be left idle for a sufficient time to complete the backup.

    2. If using a Maintenance Partition, start it, and open the BackAgain/2000 folder. Open the Sets folder, and drag-and-drop the FULL_SYSTEM icon on top of the BackAgain/2000 program icon in the parent folder.

    3. When the main BackAgain/2000 Workstation window appears, click on "Start".

    4. When the Change Volume window appears, insert the first volume of one of your tape sets in the drive.

    5. Make sure the "erase media" box is checked, and click on "OK".

    6. The Backup will now start and run until all the files have been backed up.

    7. To complete the Full Backup, shutdown the maintenance partition, and boot up your main OS/2 partition.

    8. Close all applications except those necessary to support your network, e.g. the InJoy Firewall Gateway program.

    9. Logon to your network using an administrative userid. Wait a few moments after the requester has finished initializing, and then run the NET VIEW command to confirm that all PC's are online. If they are not, take the corrective action suggested previously.

    10. Open the BackAgain/2000 folder, and then open the Sets folder. Drag-and-drop the FULL_LAN icon on top of the BackAgain/2000 program icon in the parent folder.

    11. When the main BackAgain/2000 Workstation window appears, click on "Start".

    12. When the Change Volume window appears, make sure the "erase media" box is NOT checked, and click on "OK".

    13. The Backup will now start and run until all the specified files on the network have been backed up.

  4. The Differential Backups

    1. The differential backup is run manually from the main system exactly like the Full Backup except that DIST_LAN is used instead of FULL_LAN and "erase media" must be unchecked instead of checked. (The latter should already be set correctly from the Set file definition, but it still a good idea to check.)

    2. Differential Backups, however, are usually scheduled by BackAgain/2000 and run automatically. Although there are at least two different ways to set it automatically, I have found the following mixed system to be the most reliable method.

    3. Scheduling Backups

      1. Open the "BackAgain/2000 Workstation" folder.

      2. Open the "BackAgain/2000 Scheduler" folder.

      3. Open the "Sets" folder in the "BackAgain/2000 WorkStation" folder.

      4. Drag and drop a shadow of "DIFF_LAN.BST" into the "BackAgain/2000 Scheduler" folder.

      5. Click on the "Change" button on the "BackAgain/2000 Scheduler" folder.

      6. When the "Scheduler Entry" window appears, select "Scheduling Mode" settings. ("Daily" and "Everyday" are recommended.) Choose a time of day when the network is relatively unused.

      7. Click on OK.

      8. Close the "BackAgain/2000 Scheduler" folder.

      9. Close the "Sets" folder.

      10. Drag and drop a shadow of the "BackAgain/2000" program icon into the "Startup" folder (located inside the "OS/2 System" folder on the Desktop.

      11. Start "BackAgain/2000" program.

      12. Minimize BackAgain/2000.

      13. Close the "BackAgain/2000 Workstation" folder.
That concludes my tutorial on backing up your network. If you have any questions, please mail me and I'll do my best to answer them.

Walter Metcalf

Unless otherwise noted, all content on this site is Copyright © 2004, VOICE