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Thread: New territory

  1. #1
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    Question Unanswered: New territory

    Hi guys, we lost one of our IT guys and all of SQL SERver will be falling on me. He use to handle the backing up with BackUp Exec but now I will be handling it. I will not use Backup Exec I will use SQL Server itself. I was thinking of creating a Maintenance plan for all the user databases, Full Backup twice a week and Differential backup three times a week, setting the Database at Simple Recovery since we are nto the interested in Point in Time recovery. No one is entering data on a daily basis all throught out the day. Data is entered every other day I would say.

    Does this sound like the correct approach guys??

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    That sounds fair. Some people on here (me included) aren't fans of maintenance plans but they are probably best right now.
    I would check the backup exec backups - maybe try a test restore on a test box. Unless he used the special SQL Server backup version of backup exec they are probably worth squat and are unrestorable.
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    Quote Originally Posted by desireemm
    Hi guys, we lost one of our IT guys and all of SQL SERver will be falling on me.
    Congratulations on your promotion and sure-to-be-following pay raise.
    If it's not practically useful, then it's practically useless.

    blindman
    www.chess.com: "sqlblindman"
    www.LobsterShot.blogspot.com

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    Red face

    Quote Originally Posted by blindman
    Congratulations on your promotion and sure-to-be-following pay raise.
    I certainly hope so

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    Quote Originally Posted by pootle flump
    That sounds fair. Some people on here (me included) aren't fans of maintenance plans but they are probably best right now.
    I would check the backup exec backups - maybe try a test restore on a test box. Unless he used the special SQL Server backup version of backup exec they are probably worth squat and are unrestorable.
    How come you dont like Maintenance plans and what do you use?? Any advice would be greatly appreciated

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    Most (but not all) of the experience admins on here (I don't admin anymore sadly ) don't like maintenance plans. The primary problem is debugging the things when they go wrong. Also, for more complex stuff than backups they don't always have enough parameters.

    For backups I would use T-SQl and a job. For other stuff like index management I have my own code.

    You can look here at Tara's code for standard administrative tasks:
    Database maintenance routines
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    Maintenance plans are kind of like GUI tools... They are great when they work, most of the time you can tell whether or not they worked, and they are really easy to use.

    The problem comes where the rubber meets the road, when something breaks. Then you discover that the GUI tool didn't know or care about some marginal condition that has been happening for six months that has b0rked your environment to the point that you're not sure if much less how to recover back to the last known good state. Dont' get me wrong: features like GUI tools and Maintenance Plans are easy to use and they are great when you understand exactly how they work and what their limiatations are, but I won't bet the business/my job on them when the chips are down.

    In the hands of someone that intimately knows both the Maintenance Plans and your environment, it takes about an hour to roll up a good solicd plan... You can roll up a decent plan that will work more often than not in fifteen minutes.

    I'm a purist of the old school. I'm a firm believer that Mr. Murphy was an incurable optimist. I'd bet that you could manually write SQL scripts to do what you wanted, cope with errors the way you think it should, and would report things as you wished in less than a quarter of the time needed to get a maintenance plan implemented completely correctly to do the same job.

    There are tools that I trust to "do the right thing" when it comes to backups and maintenance. Lightspeed comes right to mind. The stock maintenance plans don't measure up for me unless you understand exactly what they do, why they do it, what they report, and what you need to manually verify every time the plan runs. Very few if any people actually watch their maintenance plans that closely, and that somethimes frightens me!

    -PatP

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    Pat - if you inherited a load of servers, had an empty tool box, had to sort this lot out quickly, and had desireem's experience, would you put together maintenance plans as a band aid and then work on scripts?

    I'm with you in the long term, I wonder though if, given that time is not a luxury (hell, I suspect she hasn't got one good backup from the previous regime), she should take the path of least resistance first....
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    Quote Originally Posted by pootle flump
    Pat - if you inherited a load of servers, had an empty tool box, had to sort this lot out quickly, and had desireem's experience, would you put together maintenance plans as a band aid and then work on scripts?

    I'm with you in the long term, I wonder though if, given that time is not a luxury (hell, I suspect she hasn't got one good backup from the previous regime), she should take the path of least resistance first....

    yeah Unfortunately I am still learning, I dont have the experience you guys have. And the guy that handled the backups before kept to where only he did it. Which I dont like but there you have it, would have like to have gotten more hands on experience with backups. And I would have rahter used SQL SErver for that purpose like I suggested in the past rather then Backup Exec. Now It's time to put that book knowledge to use

    But I agree with Pat on the long term he is right

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    The reason backup exec is a scary backup device is that the default file system backup exec will not backup SQL Server files. There is a version for using on SQL Server files but I know nothing about it. If he was not using that then you could be without a single viable backup. (my experience is a couple of years out of date - dunno if things have changed). If you can prove that then you will really be proving your worth when you get your backups set up
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    ur codings are working excelent.

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    Hmm when I got inside the actual MSSQL file under backups I see LDF files and MDF files, looks exactly the same as the MSSQL\Data date modified 3/06/2008. Now I do see one that has the extension .BAK but thats it the rest look like the MDF and LDF files

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    what is Light Speed??

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    Lightspeed is the greatest thing since sliced bread when dealing with large databases (anything over 200 Gb or so). It is a lifesaver.

    Like all lifesavers, Lightspeed is expensive in terms of the check that you write, but when you consider what it does for your overall operations cost it is actually VERY cheap. What you save on disk, time, and associated costs will pay for LightSpeed many times over.

    Like all tools, there is a point below which the cost of the tool exceeds its value. If you want to balance your checkbook, LightSpeed is overkill. If you want to do an ERP system or a data warehouse for a decent sized company, then LightSpeed is cheap.

    -PatP

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    To echo Poots, a maintenance plan is better than nothing. It isn't what I'd like, but it is still much better than nothing.

    Based on what Desiree is describing in BackupExec, I'd bet that she doesn't have any usable backup of her SQL files. Based on that, I'd bet that there isn't a usable backup for Exchange or any other server tools either. That's a frightening thought to me.

    Desiree: You need to figure out what you have and what you don't pretty quickly. I literally could not sleep if I didn't have good backups, and we don't know what you've got. I think this needs to be your top priority, over and above anything besides bodily functions until you get something backed up and off site.

    -PatP

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    Trust me its stressing me out, I have been DREAMING about it. And Sleep hasnt been easy. I am so STRESSED OUT

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