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Vol. 7 No. 7 September 2008

The lure of open-source backup programs

Many people who use open-source backup software become quite attached to their program, whether it's BackupPC, Amanda or Bacula. System administrators responsible for protecting data at small- and medium-sized companies or at the departmental level typically gravitate to these free programs because they're comfortable writing custom scripts; working with Unix and Linux; and using open-source backup tools such as rsync, which synchronizes files and directories between different locations, and tar, an archiving program. Tony Schreiner, a Unix system administrator for biology and physics at Chestnut Hill, MA-based Boston College, has used Symantec's Veritas NetBackup and EMC's NetWorker, but moved to BackupPC because he wanted a free product. But, says Schreiner, "some very large files, greater than 50GB, never complete [their backup.]" He hasn't found a workaround yet except to exclude those files. "I don't have a good scheme for backing up SQL databases, some of which are very large," he adds. "I could script a mysqldump as a ...

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Features in this issue

  • Ask the Experts: RTOs and RPOs

    Is there a standard ratio between RTOs and RPOs, or are they independent of each other?

  • CDP in depth

    Continuous data protection (CDP) technology is now a viable alternative to traditional backup software and storage system-based replication software. But CDP products can vary significantly, especially in the context of different storage architectures. Depending on specific environments, companies may have to evaluate very different criteria before settling on a CDP product.

  • The lure of open-source backup programs

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