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Nov
25
Troubleshooting ShadowProtect Backup Failure 503 Fatal I/O Error
Posted by Philip Elder on 25 November 2013 12:08 PM

Original Post Here:  MPECS Inc. Blog: Troubleshooting ShadowProtect Backup Failure 503 Fatal I/O Error

We have one SBS 2008 riding on a cluster that has started to fail its full backups but only at certain times.

The KB indicates that the problem is resident on the source if the error falls on a read or on the destination if on a write.

In this case our failure was on a write so we started to focus in on the destination.

For this cluster setup we have the backups stream across the wire to the standalone DC on an HP MicroServer that was also protected by ShadowProtect.

We looked into network connectivity as well as for disk I/O errors in the Event Logs with no results.

The last place to look was in the ShadowProtect setup on the DC itself.

Sure enough, the DC was set to run an incremental close to the same time the one backup on the SBS VM was failing.

We changed the standalone DC backup schedule to run one incremental at night to avoid any further conflicts with the VM backups that were streaming to it.

We now had a successful backup set on the SBS VM.

Philip Elder
Microsoft MVP
MPECS Inc.
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

Chef de partie in the SMBKitchen
Find out more at
www.thirdtier.net/enterprise-solutions-for-small-business/


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Nov
22
Questions to ask about Cloud and Backup
Posted by Philip Elder on 22 November 2013 03:43 PM

Original Post Here: MPECS Inc. Blog: Questions to ask about Cloud and Backup

Local Backup To Cloud

Okay, let’s say our on-premises servers are being backed up to a local NAS or storage server.

From there they are copied up to an online Cloud backup service as the default off-site backup location. Assume at least a 10Mbit upload speed to allow for the initial image upload or a seed done via courier to the backup service provider.

Now, the on-site servers fail. The cluster or standalone host is hosed.

Then, it turns out that the backup destination NAS/storage server was also hosed.

What then?

Well, we have our off-site now don’t we?

Yeah, we do … sorta.

Even at 1Gbit/Second how long would it take to download the full backup image and its incremental images? If image consolidation was ongoing, okay fine, how long to bring down that full image and possibly the extra few incremental backups?

One would imagine that if a business is not able to tolerate at least two to three days of downtime just for the restoration process, never mind replacement hardware procurement, then one really needs to evaluate another tier of local storage for an off-site rotation.

Cloud Services and Storage

Well now, how about the Cloud service vendor’s services?

An SLA is only as good as the bond paper it is printed on right? Or, at least as good as the vendor making the promise that our data will never disappear.

Oh really?

What about the mailboxes on GMail that seemingly disappeared? Did they ever get fully recovered?

What about that Cloud based ERP and accounting solution? What do they do to protect the multi-million dollar company’s Solution in the event of an internal failure at the Cloud vendor’s site?

Thus, that begs the question: Does the Cloud service provider facilitate the ability to back up the Cloud based data set to our own premises? If not, it may be in the company’s best interest to look for other Cloud vendors that do provide a facility to back up the company’s data to on-premises.

We have all seen failures of all sorts at all levels of IT Solution sets.

Given the scale of Cloud computing and its relative newness it is only a matter of time before we see catastrophic failures at the Cloud service vendor level.

When that happens what will become of the business that now depends on that Cloud service provider to restore the service _and_ data back to the way things were but that does not happen?

Please remember that when it comes to technology we are not talking about an “if it happens” we are talking about a “when it happens“.

Being prepared whether the service is on-premises or in the Cloud is key to business survival in today’s hybrid environments.

Philip Elder
Microsoft MVP
MPECS Inc.
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

Chef de partie in the SMBKitchen
Find out more at
www.thirdtier.net/enterprise-solutions-for-small-business/


Read more »



Nov
13

Original here: MPECS Inc. Blog: External Hard Disk Formatted GPT: Shows Healthy (GPT Protected Partition) in Disk Management

Okay, this was a bit of a puzzle:

image

A 2TB Seagate drive used for backups was originally formatted GPT on a Windows Server 2012 RTM Hyper-V host server.

We plugged the drive into a Windows Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V host to run backup recovery tests and ended up with the above. We tried a Windows 7 Enterprise system and the same result was to be had.

Getting a little concerned that any search results for the above stated to format the hard disk we tried one more thing. We plugged the drive into a Windows 8.0 Enterprise x64 machine to see if the VHDX files would show up.

image

Sure enough the drive received a letter and the files became available. Now to figure out how to get the newer server OS to read the drive!

Philip Elder
MPECS Inc.
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

Chef de partie in the SMBKitchen
Find out more at
www.thirdtier.net/enterprise-solutions-for-small-business/


Read more »



Nov
8

Original Published here: MPECS Inc. Blog: Cause For Pause: Accounting Firm Possibly Done In Due to Technician Error and Cryptolocker (reddit)

This article came across one of the lists I am a part of and really brought home our own experiences back when Backup Exec and Symantec spent three days working with us to recover a backup that in the end proved to be unrecoverable.

In the above case we were fortunate to have other methods in place to protect the data but we did end up losing the domain and 24 of a partner’s files out of 650GB of data (the failure was progressive – garbage in garbage out).

The BUE fail taught us to advocate strongly for us to be the ones to rotate the backups (the person responsible in the above case failed to rotate the two magazines) and to do a quarterly _full_ bare metal or hypervisor restore of the backup.

It also drove us to find a different backup and restore method that gave us portability for the backed up server along with good recoverability. We came across and have been running with StorageCraft’s ShadowProtect product ever since. Since then we have had some spectacular recoveries completed as a result of ShadowProtect and the skills learned via Jeff Middleton’s SwingIT migration methods.

One of the other lessons we learned early in our IT careers and is exemplified in the above article is the thoroughness with which we keep our client’s audit notes. We document absolutely _everything_ about their network setups. They get any updated versions after they have been updated. One can never be too sure!

A full bare metal/hypervisor restored backup is the ONLY known good backup. Period. Full Stop.

Philip Elder
MPECS Inc.
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

Chef de partie in the SMBKitchen
Find out more at
www.thirdtier.net/enterprise-solutions-for-small-business/


Read more »




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