Enterprise Linux Log

Jul 31 2007   9:00PM GMT

Linux backup: Seven backup dos and don’ts

ITKE ITKE Profile: ITKE

Ready for some quick tips? Here are six best practices for handling backup, compliments of Anthony Johnson, president and CEO of Storix Inc.

  • Do get a full-system backup, not just your data.
  • Do verify your backups.
  • Do encrypt your backup data.
  • Do always test your full-system recovery process.
  • Do understand your recovery down-time restrictions.
  • Don’t assume your restore process will recover everything as it was.
  • Don’t assume your backup will always be restored to the same hardware.

Johnson shared these tips during a LinuxWorld 2007 preview interview. He also discussed the differences between handling backup on Windows and Linux, saying:

“Windows systems are typically configured for simple storage configuration — a single filesystem on each disk. After a failure, its simplicity means that customers usually must re-partition the disks and re-install the operating system from the original distribution, then restore other files from a backup.”

Linux backup systems require more IT administrator know-how, but deliver greater flexibility and functionality. With Linux, said Johnson, savvy IT managers can take advantage of LVM (Logical Volume Management), software RAID and other options for higher performance, availability, recoverability and security. There is a catch, said Johnson:

“However, flexibility brings complexity, and re-installing the operating system in the same manner as with Windows systems is much too complex and time-consuming for most corporate environments. Linux systems typically come with no full-system recovery tools, so users must find the best backup product to suit their stringent backup policies and recovery requirements.”

Looking for more Linux backup advice? Check out Linux backup software how-to on Alessandro Tanasi’s blog.

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