2

The existing system: I have a FreeBSD based backup/archive server, which pulls the backups from the live servers via rsync every night and does a zfs snapshot to archive the backup contents for a specific time.

This results in the situation, that on this server there are lots of ...

  • ... rsync tasks,
  • ... storage pools (one for every backup task the server fullfills),
  • ... snapshot tasks on that pools with different creation rules (from every 5 minutes to daily) and different retention times (from 3 days to 5 years),
  • ... already existing snapshots (~8k).

The task I want to accomplish now:

I want to build a offsite server that is a perfect mirror of this backup server and which is syncing daily with the above described system.

The Problem:

I haven't found any solution yet, which lets me easily sync the whole server / zfs filesystem including all snapshots. I only know that you can send a single snapshot to a remote zfs filesystem via zfs send. Obviously it would be great to not have to recreate the complex pool & snapshot structure on the offsite server because I feel this would be a total mess maintenance wise.

Is there any solution which allows to mirror a complete zfs filesystem including snapshots?

2
  1. option - when you want to stay with FreeBSD, check FreeNAS to automate complexity you are afraid of.
  2. option - NexentaStor, it is Solaris based storage appliance SW with great management web gui. Up to 18TB setup is for free. Again there you can easily manage complex zfs send|receive vs. a lot of datasets configuration.

If you have speedy lines between sites you want to mirror, I can imagine something like you export iSCSI volumes from sites storages and put them zpool mirror and add some local disks for ARC, ZIL, cache to lower read/write peaks running over iSCSI. If your storage is mainly for backups, then it would be OK. Nevertheless SUN once had such product behaving like that on ZFS.

  • 2
    Nobody uses Nexenta anymore! – ewwhite Nov 18 '14 at 11:42
  • Thank's for your answer, but could you elaborate a bit more how FreeNAS would help me with not having to configure everything twice? (BTW speed is not an issue at all, it's solely backup/archiving). – s1lv3r Nov 18 '14 at 11:45
  • @ewwhite somebody do, otherwise they are already bankrupt... ;-) But yes, for me personally NexentaStore is no benefit. I assume the same for you. – nudzo Nov 18 '14 at 12:11
  • 1
    ZFS replication does not fail gracefully (i.e. if one fails the whole pipeline gets jammed). I've had much better results with rsync and local snapshots. I'll use ZFS replication over a LAN, but nothing slower. – quadruplebucky Nov 18 '14 at 12:51
  • 1
    @nudzo if one of the rep snaps fails, the others won't proceed, and if you're looking for a "mirrored fs" (which the OP asked about and is not solvable within ZFS anyway) rsync comes much closer to success over WAN. – quadruplebucky Nov 18 '14 at 13:41

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.