Shadow Copies Are Not A Backup Replacement





  • People like to think snapshots are magic. They don't want to think about what they are or how they work.



  • @scottalanmiller Yup. Walking into an environment and hearing someone say that snapshots are their backup strategy...here's what you do.

    1. Apply face to palm.
    2. Remove face from palm.
    3. FIRMLY apply palm to other person's face. Repeat until sense has been enabled.


  • I've never actually heard of any environment doing that. I think people talk about how bad it is far more than it actually happens.



  • I actually see it mentioned more on Spicewood than I've personally seen. I can count on one hand how many places I've walked into where it was the strategy. Oh man, I remember when I was first I trounced to the concept when 2003 came out. A shop I worked at deployed quite a few sbs servers and it was setup for the customers to do quick restores. I remember sitting with an engineer while he was demonstrating how it worked for us and the customer. I still think it's a useful tool.



  • Yes, Spiceworks does seem to have it come up quite often.



  • @ajstringham said:

    @scottalanmiller Yup. Walking into an environment and hearing someone say that snapshots are their backup strategy...here's what you do.

    1. Apply face to palm.
    2. Remove face from palm.
    3. FIRMLY apply palm to other person's face. Repeat until sense has been enabled.

    I sort of did this until about 6 years ago - A VMWARE expert who was helping me setup my infrastructure laid it out for me about snapshots. Whenever I talk about them now, I express that my policy is that snapshots are only allowed to live on my network for a few hours, until I am assured that I don't need to immediately go back to it. It is a fall back process, not a backup strategy.



  • I call them an "under the hood" component of other processes.



  • @Bob-Beatty said:

    @ajstringham said:

    @scottalanmiller Yup. Walking into an environment and hearing someone say that snapshots are their backup strategy...here's what you do.

    1. Apply face to palm.
    2. Remove face from palm.
    3. FIRMLY apply palm to other person's face. Repeat until sense has been enabled.

    I sort of did this until about 6 years ago - A VMWARE expert who was helping me setup my infrastructure laid it out for me about snapshots. Whenever I talk about them now, I express that my policy is that snapshots are only allowed to live on my network for a few hours, until I am assured that I don't need to immediately go back to it. It is a fall back process, not a backup strategy.

    That's exactly right. I've been told to never snapshot a DC though if it's in a dual+ DC environment. Causes split-brain issues. Makes sense.



  • @scottalanmiller Exactly. An "under-the-hood" component...



  • @ajstringham said:

    @Bob-Beatty said:

    @ajstringham said:

    @scottalanmiller Yup. Walking into an environment and hearing someone say that snapshots are their backup strategy...here's what you do.

    1. Apply face to palm.
    2. Remove face from palm.
    3. FIRMLY apply palm to other person's face. Repeat until sense has been enabled.

    I sort of did this until about 6 years ago - A VMWARE expert who was helping me setup my infrastructure laid it out for me about snapshots. Whenever I talk about them now, I express that my policy is that snapshots are only allowed to live on my network for a few hours, until I am assured that I don't need to immediately go back to it. It is a fall back process, not a backup strategy.

    That's exactly right. I've been told to never snapshot a DC though if it's in a dual+ DC environment. Causes split-brain issues. Makes sense.

    People say this about DCs but it applies to any database or HA system.



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    @ajstringham said:

    @Bob-Beatty said:

    @ajstringham said:

    @scottalanmiller Yup. Walking into an environment and hearing someone say that snapshots are their backup strategy...here's what you do.

    1. Apply face to palm.
    2. Remove face from palm.
    3. FIRMLY apply palm to other person's face. Repeat until sense has been enabled.

    I sort of did this until about 6 years ago - A VMWARE expert who was helping me setup my infrastructure laid it out for me about snapshots. Whenever I talk about them now, I express that my policy is that snapshots are only allowed to live on my network for a few hours, until I am assured that I don't need to immediately go back to it. It is a fall back process, not a backup strategy.

    That's exactly right. I've been told to never snapshot a DC though if it's in a dual+ DC environment. Causes split-brain issues. Makes sense.

    People say this about DCs but it applies to any database or HA system.

    That would be true and make sense. Anything that has references between points or failovers this would be a bad thing to do to.



  • Came across this thread and was wondering what had happened to the OP? His disappeared from here and other forums too.


  • Vendor

    @Bill-Kindle said:

    I see this all the time. People will setup Shadow Copies as a replacement for their normal backups, and then are shocked when they run out of space on their under-provisioned servers. And on top of that, they create multiple copies per day!

    I need to add "Shadow Copies are not a replacement for backups!" saying to the "Snapshots are not backups!" line I use all the time.

    Aside from all of that, what is this forum running? Looks pretty slick.

    Bill is active on SpiceWorks. Renamed himself to Little Green Man so you don't see "Bill Kindle" tagged posts anymore.



  • Ah I think that I knew that. Although I don't feel like I've seen his alter ego much either.