Guest Post by Ben Weiss, Technology Consultant, EMC Backup Recovery Systems Division
It’s no secret that DBAs crave the rapid backup/restore capabilities of disk but often settle for tape for long-term retention requirements. But the question is, why?
While Oracle RMAN has significantly improved the efficiency and ease of backup and recovery of Oracle environments, as Oracle databases continue to grow in size, the number of users multiplies and customers virtualize more databases, recovering these environments becomes increasingly challenging and expensive. More so if you’ve backed up to tape.
At Oracle OpenWorld last week, EMC demonstrated the capabilities of a powerful new feature – Data Domain Boost for Oracle RMAN – that integrates with Oracle RMAN to enable high-performance, efficient backup and recovery.
So, what does DD Boost for RMAN do?
It makes RMAN backups run faster by reducing the amount of data RMAN sends over the network to Data Domain. DD Boost for RMAN uses RMAN’s SBT_TAPE interface. To accomplish the network data reduction, it performs a portion of Data Domain’s data deduplication on the host where RMAN and Oracle reside. Since the computer running RMAN has less network I/O to perform, CPU utilization during the backup drops. DD Boost for Oracle can also catalog a backup sent to a second remote Data Domain device, which means the RMAN catalog knows about the backup on the local Data Domain as well as the backup on the remote Data Domain. This managed replication also simplifies maintenance and reporting on offsite backup.
Additionally, RMAN data can get to Data Domain via backup software RMAN plug-ins, provided by virtually all leading backup software packages, and native RMAN can send data directly to Data Domain via NFS.
What does this mean for my business?
When DD Boost for RMAN is released, Oracle shops will definitely benefit from the technical advantages described above. But there are business benefits too. IT departments will be able to meet auditing requirements easier since they can prove backups have been done. RMAN reports will be able to show that RMAN backups are available in remote facilities, assuring business continuity. Furthermore, IT departments will be able to meet business service level agreements for backup duration on even large databases. And, lastly, IT departments will save money by eliminating costly RMAN plug-in licenses for backup software.
By all accounts, the challenges DBAs face every day: rapid data growth, pressure to meet service-level commitments, stringent archive/retention requirements and rising energy costs are not going away anytime soon.