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Choose a backup unit

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Frequent Advisor

Choose a backup unit

I plan to use some storage equipment to backup my web application (server) and the database (such as oracle) server. My questions are:

1) What are the popular ways to do the backup, using tape?

2) Which way is better, internal or external backup?

3) If I use the internal backup, I may have to use the DL 380 server in my case, it looks like having more space. If so, what are the model I should consider for the internal backup?

4) If I use the DL 360 server, I may have to use the external backup. Since I'll also be charged by the rack space the unit will take, what model should I consider for the backup?

5) Suppose I have two servers one for Web App, the other for the database, if I choose the external rack mountable tape backup unit, can I use the same tape backup to do the backup for both servers? i.e., put 2 tapes in, one for web app, and the other for database backup?

Thanks to help.

Steven Clementi
Honored Contributor

Re: Choose a backup unit


1. Generally, tape is the standard method for backup.

2. It depends on the size of the data you need to back up. If you need to back up 3GB worth of data, you can probably get away with a 72GB internal drive.

3. Again, depends on the data you need to back up. You can get a hot plug 72GB DAT drive or a 320GB SDLT drive (and external enclosure). Your backup solution should be sized to backup as much of your internal storage as possible. An autoloader would be nice to automate weekly/monthly schedules.

4. Again, depends on the amount of data you have to backup. Single drives fit into 1U of space. Autoloaders are general 2 or 3U big.

5. Yes. The external box usually has 2 or more ports that you can either chain together or use separately. You can probably get away with 1 drive large enough to backup everything attached to your DB server. From there, you can backup the smaller web data over the network as it would not need direct access to the tape drive. probably fit on one tape too, depending on the db size.

Steven Clementi
HP Master ASE, Storage and Clustering
MCSE (NT 4.0, W2K, W2K3)
VCP (ESX2, Vi3, vSphere4, vSphere5)
NPP3 (Nutanix Platform Professional)
Jaclyn Rothe
Trusted Contributor

Re: Choose a backup unit

I prefer exteranl unit because they are easier to get info from (ie: serial and part #) as well as replace or power cycle if the server is already on and unable to be powecyled. This eliminates down time for your server in most cases.

Tape back ups usually require an Adpatec 29160 card as a recommended card. They are not compatible with proliant onborad cards (ie: Smart array cards) see the advisory regarding this here:

Also, Popular back up software are Veritas Back Up Exec, Tapeware, and Arcserve.

For proliant server and tape back up compatibility go to:
and select proliant server.

Depending on the amount of data you are backing up and if some of it needs to be compressed or if it is already compressed, will depend on what kind of tape drive you are looking for. Some products are out of support, like DAT 8, DAT 24 and DAT 40, DLT 1, DLT 40 and DLT 70.

I prefer DLT drives because of reliability.
DLT 80E specs:

For other useful specs see doc:
Robert Dobalina
Valued Contributor

Re: Choose a backup unit

There are already great points in this thread but there are numerous choices but first cost is the consideration, then followed by future needs. I could tell you to grab a MSL libary attached via fiber and you would have great backups plus a future fiber infrastructure for when that oracle database outgrows your disk storage, but the fact you have pizza box servers and are concerned about rack cost I would go with a Hot Plug tape drive such as dat or ait.

Ask yourself is this backup unit going to only backup these units 3 years from now? How much work am I willing to do to keep these backed up. What software am I going to use and most importantly what are you prepared to spend?
Jaclyn Rothe
Trusted Contributor

Re: Choose a backup unit

If you want to be cost effective DAT would probably be the best way to go. There are new USB DAT 40 and DAT 72 drives available, however this is newer technology. I prefer scsi drives because I know them best.

Other useful links for making decisions:
HP Surestore DAT and DLT Drives â SCSI Cables and Termination Explained

HP DLT â DLT Cleaning and Media Cartridge Compatibility

HP Storage Media â DLT Media Product Warranty

HP DDS Media â DDS Media Compatibility Matrix

HP StorageWorks Media â DDS Media Product Warranty

The rackmount option is handy because you can connect one drive to one server and the other drive to another server and run backups simultaneously. Daisy chaining for tape drives is never recommended, and tape drives should be isolated on their own scsi card and properly terminatd.