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APP Flare backups.

Overview of backup requirements

The Civica Public Protection data sets are protected in depth by:

Standard UNIX tools are used through out to create portable archives which may be easily migrated to new platforms.

Archived copies of the APP data are retained for 1 month only.

In order to conform with the Data Protection and Freedom of Information Acts, records that have been closed in excess of 6 years are erased from the production system each month. Its is essential therefore that archives are retained for no longer than 60 days beyond the date of creation.

Mirrors

The discs upon which the data is stored are mirrored. This means that in the event of a single disk failing the system will continue to operate as normal.

At the time of writing the discs used for data storage are mounted on the server blades. Replacing a disc will therefore require a system shutdown. Operations may be maintained until a replacement disc is available. Total downtime for replacement should not exceed 15 minutes.

By May 2006 the data store will have been migrated to an external fibre channel RAID. This will permit hot swapping of failed discs reducing the the total replacement downtime to zero.

On-line data copy.

Each evening prior to the data verification a copy of the data set is taken and stored within the APP data area.

This copy is primarily for use by Civica to enable them to rebuild damaged files on-line should the need arise, without recourse to data restore from off-line archives.

The on-line data copies are retained for 24 hours only.

Local tape backups

The APP data set is archived to tape at 23:00 hours each evening.

A new tape volume is created each evening for 7 days. At the end of each week the tape is ejected.

Messages are e-mailed to the system operators requesting the mounting of a new tape. These messages are repeated until such time as a tape is loaded into the drive.

When tapes are removed from the drive the date of removal must be recorded.

Each new tape loaded must be marked with it's identification number and the date of 1st use. Tapes must be used sequentially. Tapes are not tied to particular dates. Use each tape in turn following the index numbers. In the event of a tape not being replaced at its normal time simply use the next tape in the sequence. Do not miss a tape.

Remote archives

A Veritas remote backup client has been installed on the Flare server with the intention of enabling nightly remote multi-plexed backups to to the corporate disc based backup facility. At the time of writing the service has not been activated. It is anticipated that Corporate IT will make the remote facility available sometime in 2006.

When the remote service is implemented it will be important to ensure that the archives are not retained longer than 30 days in order to comply with legislative requirements.

Off-site storage archives

At the end of each week the previous weeks tape may be removed to a secure location in order to facilitate disaster recovery and business continuity should the authority experience total loss of facilities on site.

C W Fulford
7th March 2004. Revised 27th March 2006.


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