Thursday, March 20, 2014

Prowicz / udonet network backup plan, March 2014

Prowicz / udonet network backup plan, March 2014

We have had backups in place for a while, using the main Windows 2003 server and an external WD 1.5TB USB connected disk and DirSync which runs nightly and sends any new files in our main directories to the USB disk.

This is an ok, better-than-nothing but not shockproof system.

I have decided to integrate two projects into one:
1. Create a backup system for our local network
2. De-commission and remove our single remaining Windows server (W2003)

What do we need to backup?
  • Digital photos and scanned photos going back to 1996
  • 150GB
  • Slow growing
  • Hours of person time to rip and catalog
  • 22GB
  • Fast growing
  • email Local folders, personal documents, household finances
  • 150GB 
  • Medium growing
  • Local copies of OS archives, applications, etc. 
  • 60GB
  • Does not grow; new replace old retaining 2-3 versions

Priorities / main sequence of events:
  1. Get a secondary local backup going, from the Windows server to the Linux server.
  2. Begin the process of switching over all users and applications from looking to the Windows server as primary to the Linux server as primary. 
  3. Finish creating Linux versions of all necessary current Windows services (DNS, LDAP, DHCP, HTTP, SQL, PHP)
  4. Reverse the secondary local backup from the Linux server to the Windows server.
  5. Create an initial full backup on the Linux server to archive and zip files from each of the major directories, retaining paths, into multiple files of about 2GB each.
  6. Burn the 2GB files to DVD, at the rate of 3 files per DVD
  7. Take the initial DVD sets to the bank and put them into the safety deposit box. 
  8. Remove the 1.5TB USB external disk from the Windows server and connect it to the Linux server.
  9. Set up basic file synch from the main directories to the external 1.5TB disk.
  10. Determine which directories need what type of backup rotation, and retention. Ex: Photos 1 full per year, 1 incremental per month, retain 2 copies on local disk and on external disk.
  11. Create scheduled cron jobs on the Linux server to archive and zip files from each of the major directories, retaining paths, into multiple files of about 2GB each using the rotation and retention from step 10. 
  12. Burn these new files to DVD and store them locally. Occasionally, take a stack to the safety deposit box. 
  13. Somewhere along the line, remove the Windows server from service. 
I think I can get the first three steps done sort of at once:

I have a 500GB 7200rpm SATA disk in the Linux server now, I ordered an additional 500GB 7200 SATA disk today. So just storage wise I should have about 0.75TB to use. I'll add that to the Linux machine when it arrives and create the directories for the four main file types, create the exports/NFS shares and then start the copying process from the Windows Server.

I will probably start with using rsync command-line utility on the Windows server running as a scheduled task which will synchronize the files from the Windows server to the remote NFS shares on the Linux machine.

Once that's done I'll give myself a month or so to get the dependencies moved from the Windows box to the Linux box and finish installing the last services on Linux that I haven't done yet.

I have already installed, tested and am using on the Linux server:
  • Apache HTTP server 2.0
  • PHP5
  • MySQL 5.7
  • Bind (not yet configured)
  • OpenLDAP (started configuring - about 1/2 done)

So really, all that's left is to finish configuring those that aren't yet and install something to handle the DHCP. Almost forgot: Serviio multimedia server which is now running on the Windows server will need a Linux equivalent or I will need to learn how to install an application from a tar.gz (probably just need to sit down and walk through the how-to.)

I should be able to get to at least step #7 by mid-Summer. I will hope to create a new post on my progress and plans for the subsequent steps around that time.

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