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Second Pool for Backup


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I just purchased the combo pack and absolutely love the software, great work!

 

I currently have one pool that consists of two 3TB Hard drives I am looking at adding 2 more 3TB hard drives in the near future. This pool is used for my Media and I am fearful of losing my data. My question is I want to be able to create a second pool that will make duplicate the data from the first pool. Is there a way to do this that is built into DrivePool? I have already thought about if there wasnt I could always set up a batch job to be done to do this for me but I really would like something more integrated within DrivePool to handle this task.

 

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We're glad to hear that you love it! :)

 

Well, you can just enable Duplication. That will make sure there are 2 copies of the files, and on different drives. You can enable it for the whole pool, or just certain folders. And you can specify higher than x2 duplication as well.

And the best part is that DrivePool handles this. It checks the files, makes sure there are the right number of duplicates, warns you when the parts don't match, etc. And it can boost performance (read striping) for the duplicated files.

 

So, while you could definitely set up a second pool, and set up something like Allways Sync on a schedule, there is the built in option. :)

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Note that DrivePool's duplication does one thing very well - it does its best to ensure you will have any given file on at least two disks.

 

So if what you're worried about is losing files due to a drive failure, then (like drashna said) just add your extra drives and turn on duplication. Done.

 

What it doesn't do is allow you to mandate which two disks hold copies of a particular file (the Ordered File Placement balancer may look like it can achieve this, but not quite). So if you have N disks in a pool and your duplication is set at less than xN, there is currently no way in DrivePool to ensure that any two disks will have a copy of any other two disks.

 

(now, if DrivePool could be used on itself, then you could do that - you'd just create two pools of N disks each, with duplication disabled, and then pool those two pools, with duplication enabled - and if it was truly volume agnostic, one could also do tricks like rotating and/or offsite backups! B) )

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..an alternative is to apply -one or more- offline parity disk(s) using snapraid.

You'll need a disk at least the size of your largest disk in the pool for that.

This can be an USB based one or other...for myself I am using an iSCSI disk with the target residing on my main NAS.

 

...works like a charm.

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Hi, 

 

I am in the middle of facing this question as well.

 

We are about to establish a 4x disk @ 2T ea DrivePool (A).

 

Even given what I am about to write, we are looking at using duplication within that pool A so we'll only have about 4Tb of effective space.. to allow for any single main pool "A" drive failure.

 

However we are also wanting to have off-line backup of the pool. We have been experiencing power surges in our area, one of which knocked out good surge protection and harmed a number of devices!

 

So we have been watching for "on special" prices and now have 4x @ 2T drives available to make a back up.

 

The question is, can I make a separate Pool  "B" as a second pool for backup (as in this forum topic) - but can that Pool "B" be not attached when not being Synced to as a pool drive letter, and then only be connected to the host computer when required for syncing? (We have been blessed with a  good second hand data safe for the drives to live in while not required.)

 

I saw a Google search result that suggested that direct syncing of each individual disk in the main DrivePool (A) (including hidden folders) one on one for each disk,  had once been recommended for StableBit DrivePool.

 

So my question then is, is a second pool (of the four additional disks) say "B" able to only be connected to the host computer part time, as it were, or will that cause too many error messages?

 

Or is it feasible to periodically connect the 4x backup drives and run something like http://freefilesync.sourceforge.net/

 for a drive to drive sync backup of each of the four drives in pool "A"?

 

If a sync approach (drive to drive) is followed - are those drive copies able to "drop in" replace their respective original pool disks, should there be a power zapp, or individual disk failure?

That could mean that File Duplication would not be needed on the Pool "A" and we could have a pool "A" of 8Tb then?

 

Any advice most appreciated please.

 

Paul

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All the "data" about the pool is actually stored on the drives themselves. Once you remove all the disks in a Pool, DrivePool is no longer "aware" of the pool. WHich not only means that removing all the disks in the pool "removes" the pool effectively, it also means that the pool is system independent.

 

 

I think that pretty much answers what you're asking. If not totally directly.

 

As for the system, I'd HIGHLY recommend buying a UPS (Battery backup) for the system. It's meant to help with power fluctuations. Surge protectors are basically glorified fuses. A good UPS does voltage regulation and such to prevent spikes and dips from affecting the hardware. They're definitely pricier, but it's definitely worth the investment (I'm a cheapskate, and *all* of my computers have a UPS attached to them)

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Awesome answers guys, this has really given me a great deal of information to digest. I think I am going to go the route of adding more drives to the pool and enabling duplication and read striping. To further ensure there is a safe backup I am most likely going to backup files to a NAS.

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Thanks Drashna,

 

All the "data" about the pool is actually stored on the drives themselves. Once you remove all the disks in a Pool, DrivePool is no longer "aware" of the pool. WHich not only means that removing all the disks in the pool "removes" the pool effectively, it also means that the pool is system independent.

 

So if all the disks of say DrivePool "B" (second pool backing up DrivePool "A") are restored/reconnected to the host machine, will DrivePool "B" automatically be recognized again?

 

 

As for the system, I'd HIGHLY recommend buying a UPS (Battery backup) for the system. It's meant to help with power fluctuations.

 

 

 

Yes well, it was a good UPS that the spike/surge broke through, knocked out one computer and some things attached!

 

So we are looking to off-line redundant back up/archive and the best way of achieving that. Seems sensible any way to have a copy of important stuff that is not electronically connected all the time any way.

 

And having seen how the Federal authorities can shut down a cloud storage situation leaving innocent and genuine people stranded (Mega dot com fiasco) it seems that you can not rely blindly on the 'Cloud' for viable backup - and sensibly need a redundant off-line local hard copy any way  :mellow:

 

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So if all the disks of say DrivePool "B" (second pool backing up DrivePool "A") are restored/reconnected to the host machine, will DrivePool "B" automatically be recognized again?

 

Yes, exactly. If you plug in/enable one or more the disks from "Pool B" in, it will recognize the disk, and even list the missing disks. As well as show the current contents, in a "Read Only" mode. Once they're all attached, it will list all the contents and set it back to "normal" (no longer read only).

 

Yes well, it was a good UPS that the spike/surge broke through, knocked out one computer and some things attached!

 

So we are looking to off-line redundant back up/archive and the best way of achieving that. Seems sensible any way to have a copy of important stuff that is not electronically connected all the time any way.

 

And having seen how the Federal authorities can shut down a cloud storage situation leaving innocent and genuine people stranded (Mega dot com fiasco) it seems that you can not rely blindly on the 'Cloud' for viable backup - and sensibly need a redundant off-line local hard copy any way  :mellow:

Ouch! Well, at least it was the UPS that died, and hopefully not your hardware! And you can see why I adamantly recommend them.

 

And I definitely understand the "off site" storage. It's actually REALLY good idea. Because, you know, what happens if the site catches on fire? Or the like. I know that's being a bit on the paranoid side, but it *is* a possibility.

 

And yeah, cloud is ... horrible.  How many cloud services also OWN your data? And better yet, how many will report that a gov't service has a warrant for your data? And best yet, have you actually READ the EULA for the service?  

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Thanks again drashna,

 

 

PaulANormanNZ, on 01 Dec 2013 - 1:46 PM, said:snapback.png

So if all the disks of say DrivePool "B" (second pool backing up DrivePool "A") are restored/reconnected to the host machine, will DrivePool "B" automatically be recognized again?

 
Yes, exactly. If you plug in/enable one or more the disks from "Pool B" in, it will recognize the disk, and even list the missing disks. As well as show the current contents, in a "Read Only" mode. Once they're all attached, it will list all the contents and set it back to "normal" (no longer read only).

 

 

 

I hoped that was what will happen.

 

So my current plan is to have 4x 2Tb in Pool A (file Duplication on), and have a Pool B 2x 2Tb (no file duplication), and Pool C 2x 2Tb (no file duplication).

 

And from time to time reattaching Pool B and Pool C alternatively to do flat filesyncs from Pool A.

 

Which means at any one time (even when backing up which will take a while sometimes - http://ResourceSpace,org multimedia stuff) there is one set of disks with the previous backup which is not attached electrically to anything. 

 

Ouch! Well, at least it was the UPS that died, and hopefully not your hardware! And you can see why I adamantly recommend them.

 

Yes!

 

It was my friend's on the same properties LAN as we are on, and unfortunately he lost his computer as well..., the router and all the LAN hubs went crazy, and had to be completely powered off (dis-attached) for a few minutes each. Awesomely we had a virtualbox image of that machine, and backups of his recent database data to help him restore everything on a new Windows 8 pro hyper-v type setup.

 

A few years ago, another friend with more than adequate UPSes and even industrial strength spike protection over his whole his setup, lost absolutely everything throughout his complex (fax machines, phone routers, printers, the works).

 

So I am a great fan of off-line redundant backup!

 

And I definitely understand the "off site" storage. It's actually REALLY good idea. Because, you know, what happens if the site catches on fire? Or the like. I know that's being a bit on the paranoid side, but it *is* a possibility.

 

Not at all paranoid, especially with original multimedia type material, it can even be irreplaceable, or very very expensive to get/shoot/photograph again.

 

We were blessed with a cheap, but very worthwhile, second hand fire-proof ( —  probably EMF proof as well :)), data-safe to put the backup hard-drives in, and may always have one set offsite completely!

 

Thanks again for the necessary information.

 

Paul

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That sounds like a very good plan, indeed. 

 

And yes, it may take a while to copy everything over. I'd hope you use something that is 'aware' enough to not copy over identical files. Will save time.

 

 

And yeah, unfortunately, nothing is full-proof. So yes, the offsite backup is a good idea. 
 

And glad to hear about the fire-proofing. I'm sure you're very happy about it. :)

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Dear drashna,

Thanks for that,

 

And yes, it may take a while to copy everything over. I'd hope you use something that is 'aware' enough to not copy over identical files. Will save time.


We've been finding this straightforward, but excellent tool, very useful so far http://freefilesync.sourceforge.net/ is there anything better suited?

 

And glad to hear about the fire-proofing


People should keep an eye on "second hand", buying that way, a decent sized fireproof data safe — may cost less than one external hard drive!

So just to clarify please, when using a secondary detachable DrivePool as a backup option...

Are there any steps to take in dis-attaching the two hard drives in say Pool "B"?

I intend to use "Safely remove Hardware" - then just disconnect each of the two USB drives from the USB 3.0 hub and put them away.

To keep things stable, do I need to tell DrivePool anything first, will it try to stop "Safely Remove Hardware" form letting the drives go?

Do I need somehow to cause any caches or file buffers to write to the drives first? Can DrivePool do that for me?

Or does DrivePool simply respond to the hard drive removals by itself?

Thanks,

Paul
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For what it's worth, I also use FreeFileSync to backup to/from pools, without issue (if you are using NTFS permissions to secure parts of the pool on a per-user basis, remember to tick the relevant box in FFS's global options), and Safely Remove Hardware releases the drives, pretty much exactly as you describe (though minus the fireproof data safe, something I should remedy).

 

My bugbear is Microsoft's search indexing service, which does not seem to respect Safely Remove (or anything else, really, besides a reboot).

 

My personal experience is that DrivePool itself only holds pool drives/files/folders open when: you are actively writing to the pool; you are actively reading from the pool; the pool is being balanced, duplicated or remeasured; or (sometimes) you have the DrivePool GUI open.

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