SnapProtect - Advanced Snapshots - NAS iDataAgent

Table of Contents

Managing Snapshots

The snapshots of the data created by the SnapProtect backup are also available for various other operations like list, mount, unmount, delete or revert.

List Snapshots

The browse operation provides the capability to see the snapshots created for an agent, job, or a snapshot copy. The list of the snapshots displayed is corresponding to the entity selected for the browse operation, for e.g., browsing the snapshots for an agent will display all the snapshots created for the selected agent. You can view volume or disk related information for the snapshots. Follow the steps given below to browse snapshots.
  1. From the CommCell Browser, navigate to Client Computers | <Client> | <Agent>.
  2. Right-click the subclient and click List Snaps.

    The Snaps created during SnapProtect operation dialog box appears.

  1. The Snaps created during SnapProtect operation dialog box displays a list of all the snapshots created for the selected subclient. It also displays important information about each snapshot, including the source mount path, snap mount path, the storage array, and the source client.
    • Right-click the snapshot and click Details to view the snapshot properties.
    • Click the Disk View tab to display the snapshot name, e.g. SP_2_79_1286222629.

Mount Snapshots

You can mount any available snapshot to access the data included in the snapshot. Follow the steps below to mount snapshots:

  1. From the CommCell Browser, navigate to Client Computers | <Client> | <Agent>.
  2. Right-click the subclient and click List Snaps.

    The Snaps created during SnapProtect operation dialog box appears.

  1. Right-click the snapshot that you wish to mount and click Mount.

    A dialog box appears that asks if you are sure you want to continue.

  2. Click Yes.

    A message appears that says any changes made to the mounted snapshot will be lost when it is unmounted.

  3. Click OK.
  4. From the Destination Client list, select the destination client.
  5. In the CIFS Share Name box, enter the name of the CIFS share.
  6. Click OK.
  7. Click OK to close the Subclient Properties dialog box.

    The mounting of snapshots is supported for Unix MediaAgents if NetApp volume security model is a Unix type.

Unmount Snapshots

Follow the steps given below to unmount snapshots:

  1. From the CommCell Browser, navigate to Client Computers | <Client> | <Agent>.
  2. Right-click the subclient and click List Snaps.

    The Snaps created during SnapProtect operation dialog box appears.

  1. Right-click the snapshot you wish to unmount and click Unmount.

    To select multiple snapshots, hold <Shift> key and select the snapshots to be mounted.

  2. Click Yes when prompted if you want to continue.

If the snapshot does not get unmounted, select the Force Unmount option to mark the snapshot as unmounted.

Delete Snapshots

Snapshots can either be deleted using job-based pruning or from the list of displayed snapshots when browsing snapshots. Data Aging can also be used to define the retention rules and pruning of snapshots. Follow the steps given below to delete snapshots:

  • Manual deletion of snapshots is not recommended. When a snapshot is deleted, it is no longer possible to perform data recovery operations from the snapshot copy. However, if a backup copy was created from the snapshot, data recovery operations can be performed from the backup copy.
  • Ensure that the snapshot to be deleted is not mounted.
  • For NetApp E-series PiT engine, the order to delete snapshots should be the oldest snapshot first.

  1. From the CommCell Browser, navigate to Client Computers | <Client> | <Agent>.
  2. Right-click the subclient and click List Snaps.

    The Snaps created during SnapProtect operation dialog box appears.

  1. Right-click the snapshot you wish to delete.

    Ensure all snapshots with the same Job ID are selected for a successful deletion operation.

  2. Click Delete.
  3. Enter the confirmation text string, erase snapshots.
  4. Click OK.

Force Delete

The force delete operation is useful when a client, subclient, or a storage policy copy has been deleted or when a source MediaAgent computer is unavailable and you want to delete snapshots from the CommCell database. The force-deleted snapshots are not moved to tape and are not deleted on the array.

  1. From the CommCell Browser, navigate to Client Computers | <Client> | <Agent>.
  2. Right-click the subclient and click List Snaps.

    The Snaps created during SnapProtect operation dialog box appears.

  1. Right-click the snapshot to select it to force delete.
  2. Click Force Delete.
  3. Enter the confirmation text string, force erase snapshots.
  4. Click OK.

Revert Snapshots

You can use the revert operation to bring the data back to the point-in-time when the snapshot was taken. This operation overwrites any modifications to the data since the time when the snapshot was created. This option is available if the storage arrays that you are using supports revert. Revert operations are supported on NetApp File Servers but not from SnapVault or SnapMirror snapshots. You can either perform an application aware revert or a hardware specific revert.

Review the following before performing a revert operation:

On Windows clients, disable automount using the following command:

diskpart> automount disable

  • It is recommended to verify the contents of the backup and ensure that you want to perform a revert operation as it is an irreversible operation.
  • If you plan to perform a revert operation, you will not be able to use the associated storage policy for further auxiliary copy operations.

Perform a Hardware Specific Revert

  1. From the CommCell Console, navigate to Client Computers | <Client>.
  2. Right-click the subclient and click List Snaps.

    The Snaps created during SnapProtect operation dialog box appears.

  3. Right-click the snapshot that you wish to delete and click Use hardware revert capability if available.
  4. Enter the confirmation text string, confirm.
  5. Click OK.

A hardware specific revert operation reverts back the volume included in the snapshot. If the volume being reverted is the source of vault/mirror relation and if the protection topology is Primary-Vault, Primary-Mirror, or Primary-Vault-Mirror, then the baseline snapshot on primary volume will be shifted to the snapshot of the reverted volume. In case of Primary-Mirror-Vault or Primary-Mirror1-Mirror2 topologies, the baseline snapshot for Mirror-Vault relationship and Mirror1-Mirror2 relationship, respectively, is not shifted, which may lead to auxcopy job failures.

The revert operation might delete some snapshots. To avoid failures, when selecting SnapProtect jobs for auxcopy or backup copy operations, unpick all SnapProtect jobs that have deleted snapshots as a result of a revert operation. Running auxcopy or backup copy operations with SnapProtect jobs from deleted snapshots might produce failures.

Catalog Snapshots for Backup

By default, data is cataloged during an SnapProtect backup. Depending on many factors, such as the number of files on the file server volume, this operation can be time consuming. You can enhance the performance of this operation by delaying the cataloging phase of the backup to a later time. This feature enables you to reduce the load on the primary file server.

By default , cataloging is done on the primary copy but if you want to reduce the load on the server, use the mirror or vault copy.

Prerequisites

  • It is recommended that you create a new storage policy with Disable Backup Copy selected in order to catalog snapshots. If you want to use an existing storage policy, you must ensure that the backup copy option for the storage policy is disabled.
  • If you want to continue to catalog snapshots after upgrading the CommServe to version 10, you must ensure that backup copy option for the storage policy is disabled.
  • The storage policy should only be associated to a NAS subclient, because if you associate it with subclients from other agents, you will not be able to perform a backup copy operation for those subclients.

Configuration

To catalog snapshots, you need to configure the storage policy associated with the NAS subclient.

Use the following steps to configure the storage policy:

  1. Right-click the <Storage Policy> and click Properties.
  2. Click the Snapshot tab.
  3. Select Disable Backup Copy.
  4. Under NAS File system Snap Catalog Options, click Catalog snapshots.
  5. Click Yes in the Confirm dialog box.
  6. Click OK.

  • If a storage policy is used for backup copy, then it cannot be used for Catalog Snapshots.
  • You cannot use an Incremental Storage Policy for Catalog Snapshots.
  • Catalog Snapshots is not supported for deleted subclients and deconfigured NAS clients.

Catalog Snapshots

Use the following steps to run snapshot cataloging:

  1. From the CommCell Browser, expand Policies | Storage Policies.
  2. Right-click the <Storage Policy>, point to All Tasks, and then click Run NAS Snapshot Cataloging.

    You can view the progress of the job in Job Controller window.

If you want to run Catalog Snapshots on incremental backups, ensure that either there is a full backup present or in case if only incremental backups are present, Catalog Snapshots has been performed on at least one incremental backup.

Fore more information about Catalog Snapshots, see SnapProtect - Frequently Asked Questions - NAS iDataAgent.

View Snapshot Details

You can view the details of a snapshot for an agent, job, or a snapshot copy. When you right-click any of these entities, you will be able to browse all the snapshots corresponding to the selected entity.
  1. From the CommCell Browser, right-click the entity that contains the snapshots you want to browse, and click All Tasks | List Snaps.
  2. The Snaps created during SnapProtect operation dialog box displays a list of all the snapshots created for the selected entity and displays important information about each snapshot, including the source mount path, snap mount path, the storage array, and the source client.
  3. Right-click the snapshot and click Details to view the snapshot properties.

Select a Job for Backup Copy

You can select a specific job for creating backup copy. Once selected, the Move Snap to Tape field for the specific job will be changed to Picked (i.e., the next backup copy operation will move this job to media).
  1. Right-click a storage policy containing SnapProtect backup jobs, and then click View Jobs.
  2. Right-click the job and then click Pick for Backup Copy.

Disable a Job for Backup Copy

You can prevent a job from being moved to media. You can apply this option to those jobs that were previously selected for moving to media. On selecting this option, the Move Snap to Tape field for the specific job will be changed to Not Picked (i.e., the next backup copy operation will not move this job to media).
  1. Right-click a storage policy containing SnapProtect backup jobs and then click View Jobs.
  2. Right-click the job and then click Do not Backup Copy.

SCSI Reservation

SCSI reservation can be enabled for SnapProtect backup for all the agents. Enabling SCSI Reservation prevents other applications (SCSI3 compliant) from using the reserved SCSI Device (i.e. the mounted snapshot).

If this option is enabled and the hardware does not support this type of operation, subsequent backup jobs may fail.

Use the following steps to enable SCSI reservation:

  1. From the CommCell Browser, navigate to Client Computers.
  2. Right-click the <Client>, and then click Properties.
  3. Click Advanced.
  4. Click the Additional Settings tab.
  5. Click Add.
  6. In the Name box, type nSCSIReserveForSnap.
  7. In the Category box, select iDataAgent.
  8. In the Type box, select Integer.
  9. In the Value box, type 1.

For more information on additional settings, see Additional Settings.

Restore Files from a Snapshot (Browse from Snapshot)

You can browse and restore files and folders directly from a snapshot when a backup is performed. If you ran a SnapProtect backup without the cataloging phase, you must browse and restore from the snapshot, as the data is not indexed during the backup process.  The Find and View All options are not available when your browse and restore from a snapshot.

You can browse and restore files from a snapshot on a version 10 MediaAgent only. You cannot browse and restore files from a snapshot on a version 9 MediaAgent.

This operation is also supported for Cluster-Mode file servers.

Use the following steps to browse and restore from a snapshot:

  1. From the CommCell Browser, navigate to Client Computers | <Client> | NAS | <Backup Set>.
  2. Right-click the subclient that contains the data that you want to restore, and then click Browse and Restore.

    The Restore Options dialog box appears.

  3. Click the Advanced Options tab, and then select Browse from Snapshot.
  4. Click View Content.

    A tab for the subclient appears in the right pane.

  5. In the subclient tab, select the data that you want to restore, and then click Recover All Selected.

    The Restore Options dialog box appears.

  6. On the General tab, specify the location to which the files will be restored.
  7. Click OK.

    The files are restored to the location that you specified.