f



"Network tape drive" for VMS

Is there anything available that could be called a
"network tape drive" that is supported with

(a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
(b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?

The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
server for easier access to change the backup tapes.

Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)

Albrecht
0
ajs567 (57)
7/17/2008 1:11:14 PM
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Albrecht Schlosser wrote:
> Is there anything available that could be called a
> "network tape drive" that is supported with
> 
> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
> 
> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
> 
> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)

I always have real difficulty trying to comprehend such
requests.

What's the limit on xxx-SCSI cable length ?  25 metres ?
Why can't you simply place the tape drive in e.g. a separate
room.

And why can't it be another VMS server/cluster-node with
a tape drive ?  What's wrong with that idea ?
0
Roy.Omond (380)
7/17/2008 1:54:45 PM
On Thu, 17 Jul 2008 06:11:14 -0700, Albrecht Schlosser <ajs567@tiscali.de>  
wrote:

> Is there anything available that could be called a
> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>
> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>
> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>
> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>
> Albrecht

If you have fibre, put it on a Modular Data Router

-- 
PL/I for OpenVMS
www.kednos.com
0
tom298 (792)
7/17/2008 2:01:15 PM
R.A.Omond wrote:
> Albrecht Schlosser wrote:
>> Is there anything available that could be called a
>> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>>
>> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
>> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>>
>> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
>> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>>
>> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
>> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
>> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
> 
> I always have real difficulty trying to comprehend such
> requests.

To help you to understand, why I asked this question: a customer's
(Alpha) server should be moved to the data center, but the users
(and not the IT personnel) would have to change the backup tapes.
The users don't have access to the data center.

> What's the limit on xxx-SCSI cable length ?  25 metres ?
> Why can't you simply place the tape drive in e.g. a separate
> room.

Because the distance would probably be more than SCSI could handle.

> And why can't it be another VMS server/cluster-node with
> a tape drive ?  What's wrong with that idea ?

Because the intention is to move the server into the data center.
And because of cost, management needs, and maybe more.

Albrecht
0
ajs567 (57)
7/17/2008 2:34:59 PM
Albrecht Schlosser wrote :
> Is there anything available that could be called a
> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>
> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>
> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>
> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>
> Albrecht

Tape drives with a fiber channel interface can be connected to
the host via a FC switch, thus enabling multiple hosts to access the
device. Be sure not to access the drive from two systems 
simultaneously,
though...

-- 
Marc Van Dyck


0
7/17/2008 5:09:18 PM
R.A.Omond wrote:
> Albrecht Schlosser wrote:
>> Is there anything available that could be called a
>> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>>
>> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
>> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>>
>> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
>> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>>
>> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
>> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
>> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
> 
> I always have real difficulty trying to comprehend such
> requests.
> 
> What's the limit on xxx-SCSI cable length ?  25 metres ?
> Why can't you simply place the tape drive in e.g. a separate
> room.

It's 25 meters ONLY for differential SCSI.  It's more like two meters 
for single ended.

> 
> And why can't it be another VMS server/cluster-node with
> a tape drive ?  What's wrong with that idea ?

You would have to:
1. Buy another computer,
2. Cluster it.
3. Keep it OUTSIDE the computer room which makes it a security hole all 
by itself.
4. The OP did say "And this should *not* be another
VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)"

0
rgilbert88 (4439)
7/17/2008 6:19:05 PM
In article <n0t3l5-2ij.ln1@news.hus-software.de>, Albrecht Schlosser <ajs567@tiscali.de> writes:
> 
> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)

   OK, I could do that with a VMS workstation (cluser node) with a tape
   drive.  ;-)

   Multinet supports remote tapes, and is probably compatable with some
   UNIX implementations.

   You really want a tape as network attached storage?  How about an
   Infoserver?

0
koehler2 (8314)
7/17/2008 6:39:43 PM
Richard B. Gilbert wrote:

> It's 25 meters ONLY for differential SCSI.  It's more like two meters 
> for single ended.


What about iSCSI ? Could this be a solution ? Does VMS support iSCSI ? I
recall one TCPIP engineer having done work on it at about the time he
was made redudant by Seniorita La Carly.

0
7/17/2008 7:18:03 PM
JF Mezei wrote:
> Richard B. Gilbert wrote:
> 
>> It's 25 meters ONLY for differential SCSI.  It's more like two meters 
>> for single ended.
> 
> 
> What about iSCSI ? Could this be a solution ? Does VMS support iSCSI ? I
> recall one TCPIP engineer having done work on it at about the time he
> was made redudant by Seniorita La Carly.
> 

No experience with iSCSI!  I worked for technologically backward 
employers who used only wired SCSI.  I once looked into SAN sometime 
between 1999 and 2004 and was told that VMS did not support the 
available hardware!

Fiber SCSI might be a solution.
0
rgilbert88 (4439)
7/17/2008 7:31:49 PM
Seems to me this is the wrong problem to be solving - the requirement 
arises because end-users are changing the backup tapes themselves. I'm 
sure they're only doing that because 'historically' the server was in 
their office.

Surely the /right/ solution is to get someone in IT to do that? Why move 
the server to the DC, if not to make it more secure, more maintainable 
and more reliable.
0
7/17/2008 8:36:14 PM
On Jul 17, 9:36 pm, Mark McIntyre <markmcint...@TROUSERSspamcop.net>
wrote:
> Seems to me this is the wrong problem to be solving - the requirement
> arises because end-users are changing the backup tapes themselves. I'm
> sure they're only doing that because 'historically' the server was in
> their office.
>
> Surely the /right/ solution is to get someone in IT to do that? Why move
> the server to the DC, if not to make it more secure, more maintainable
> and more reliable.

Why move the server? Because "policy" says it's the done thing,
perhaps, without actually considering the real advantages and
disadvantages in any particular circumstances?

A long time ago, when I wanted to solve the problem being addressed
here, ie there was no guarantee that a server-room-authorised person
would be on site to change tapes, the "clustered VMS node with tape
drive, outside the server room" was the exact solution chosen. We put
the tape drive (and its host) where there *was* always going to be a
person available to change tapes, because in the circumstances at that
time, we considered the "security risks" of having a VMS system
outside the computer room were outweighed by the value of having
reasonable confidence that the daily backups would still get completed
even if multiple tapes were needed. Sites with particularly sensitive
data or other different factors to consider might end up making
different decisions. One size does not necessarily suit all.

2p
John
0
7/17/2008 9:39:11 PM
johnwallace4@gmail.com wrote:
> Why move the server? Because "policy" says it's the done thing,
> perhaps, without actually considering the real advantages and
> disadvantages in any particular circumstances?

Well, the advantages could be significant. I once worked in a firm where 
the fileserver was in the admin office. And, no shaggy dog story, 
someone once powered it off by mistake to plug in their razor. Most 
amusing. I've also had kit nicked from offices. Racked in a DC a server 
is secure, on redundant PSUs, on the UPS, can have multiple network 
paths and so forth.

> A long time ago, when I wanted to solve the problem being addressed
> here, ie there was no guarantee that a server-room-authorised person
> would be on site to change tapes, 

I find it a little tricky to understand how that circumstance can arise. 
  If you have a secure server room, you have people managing it. A 
friday afternoon job can be to swap tapes. I suspect the problem only 
arises when some PHB decrees there shall be a locked server room, but 
doesn't hire an IT team to manage it....

 > One size does not necessarily suit all.

I agree. Why invest in a secure server room if your data isn't 
important? :-)
0
7/17/2008 11:01:45 PM
On Thu, 17 Jul 2008 07:01:15 -0700, Tom Linden <tom@kednos.company> wrote:

> On Thu, 17 Jul 2008 06:11:14 -0700, Albrecht Schlosser  
> <ajs567@tiscali.de> wrote:
>
>> Is there anything available that could be called a
>> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>>
>> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
>> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>>
>> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
>> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>>
>> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
>> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
>> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>>
>> Albrecht
>
> If you have fibre, put it on a Modular Data Router
>
You didn't say whether you had fibre or not, but I just checked
an MDR will run you ~$500.  You can get a fibre switch for less
than $300 and HBAs can be had for $20-40 each.  This is your
best solution, allowing you to put the tape unit as far away as
you please from the computer room

-- 
PL/I for OpenVMS
www.kednos.com
0
tom298 (792)
7/17/2008 11:21:04 PM
On Jul 17, 9:11=A0am, Albrecht Schlosser <ajs...@tiscali.de> wrote:
> Is there anything available that could be called a
> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>
> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>
> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>
> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>
> Albrecht

I'll second the many comments about getting a fibre HBA installed in
the system (if it doesn't already have one), and a fibre switch, and
an MDR or NSR (is that what the newer ones are called?), and putting
the tape outside the data center.

However, there's also this new technology called "auto loaders".
Pretty nifty.  You can have multiple LTO or DLT cartridges in the
thing and they load automatically.  Only been around, oh, 25 years or
so.  That would allow you to leave the tape drive in the data center,
where it belongs, and let the operator/IT admin worry about it.

To more directly answer your question about whether network tape
backups are available for OpenVMS: probably.  Just keep in mind,
though, that a network tape backup device is just another server with
a tape drive attached.
0
sapienza (410)
7/17/2008 11:34:12 PM
Mark McIntyre wrote:
> johnwallace4@gmail.com wrote:
>> Why move the server? Because "policy" says it's the done thing,
>> perhaps, without actually considering the real advantages and
>> disadvantages in any particular circumstances?
> 
> Well, the advantages could be significant. I once worked in a firm where 
> the fileserver was in the admin office. And, no shaggy dog story, 
> someone once powered it off by mistake to plug in their razor. Most 
> amusing. I've also had kit nicked from offices. Racked in a DC a server 
> is secure, on redundant PSUs, on the UPS, can have multiple network 
> paths and so forth.
> 
>> A long time ago, when I wanted to solve the problem being addressed
>> here, ie there was no guarantee that a server-room-authorised person
>> would be on site to change tapes, 
> 
> I find it a little tricky to understand how that circumstance can arise. 
>  If you have a secure server room, you have people managing it. A friday 
> afternoon job can be to swap tapes. I suspect the problem only arises 
> when some PHB decrees there shall be a locked server room, but doesn't 
> hire an IT team to manage it....
> 
>  > One size does not necessarily suit all.
> 
> I agree. Why invest in a secure server room if your data isn't 
> important? :-)

Backups can, and sometimes do, run for many hours and require multiple 
tapes.  Usually, you schedule backups for "off hours" when very few 
people, ideally no one, is using the system.  Do you pay an operator for 
eight hours of swing shift or graveyard shift only to change a backup 
tape?  Some do.  It may be cheaper than paying the capital and 
maintenance costs of an automated tape library.  I had operators to 
mount tapes so I only had to schedule the batch job, and check the log 
for errors in the morning.
0
rgilbert88 (4439)
7/17/2008 11:44:32 PM
FrankS wrote:
> On Jul 17, 9:11 am, Albrecht Schlosser <ajs...@tiscali.de> wrote:
>> Is there anything available that could be called a
>> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>>
>> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
>> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>>
>> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
>> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>>
>> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
>> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
>> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>>
>> Albrecht
> 
> I'll second the many comments about getting a fibre HBA installed in
> the system (if it doesn't already have one), and a fibre switch, and
> an MDR or NSR (is that what the newer ones are called?), and putting
> the tape outside the data center.
> 
> However, there's also this new technology called "auto loaders".
> Pretty nifty.  You can have multiple LTO or DLT cartridges in the
> thing and they load automatically.  Only been around, oh, 25 years or
> so.  That would allow you to leave the tape drive in the data center,
> where it belongs, and let the operator/IT admin worry about it.
> 
> To more directly answer your question about whether network tape
> backups are available for OpenVMS: probably.  Just keep in mind,
> though, that a network tape backup device is just another server with
> a tape drive attached.

I've used such a gadget, actually two.  One was just a "stacker that 
held seven or eight DLT tapes and would load them in sequence.  The 
other was a "robot" from Storage Technology that held some large number 
of tapes (50??, 100????) and could select a particular tape using a 
barcode scanner, mount that tape and let you access it over the network.
That gadget backed up just about the whole data center!
0
rgilbert88 (4439)
7/18/2008 12:01:44 AM
On Jul 18, 12:01 am, Mark McIntyre <markmcint...@TROUSERSspamcop.net>
wrote:
> johnwalla...@gmail.com wrote:
> > Why move the server? Because "policy" says it's the done thing,
> > perhaps, without actually considering the real advantages and
> > disadvantages in any particular circumstances?
>
> Well, the advantages could be significant. I once worked in a firm where
> the fileserver was in the admin office. And, no shaggy dog story,
> someone once powered it off by mistake to plug in their razor. Most
> amusing. I've also had kit nicked from offices. Racked in a DC a server
> is secure, on redundant PSUs, on the UPS, can have multiple network
> paths and so forth.
>
> > A long time ago, when I wanted to solve the problem being addressed
> > here, ie there was no guarantee that a server-room-authorised person
> > would be on site to change tapes,
>
> I find it a little tricky to understand how that circumstance can arise.
>   If you have a secure server room, you have people managing it. A
> friday afternoon job can be to swap tapes. I suspect the problem only
> arises when some PHB decrees there shall be a locked server room, but
> doesn't hire an IT team to manage it....
>
>  > One size does not necessarily suit all.
>
> I agree. Why invest in a secure server room if your data isn't
> important? :-)

"If you have a secure server room, you have people managing it."

Indeed, but does "managing it" routinely imply "physically present in
it", except on special occasions (e.g. kit adds/moves/changes and the
odd emergency)?

"Lights out computing" [1] isn't a phrase you hear much these days,
but once upon a time, there was a widespread goal of keeping people
OUT of the computer room as much as was possible, because a routinely
locked and routinely unoccupied computer room was (and still should
be) a safer computer room. Once upon a time, "managing" a server room
didn't require physical access to PeeCee consoles or whatever, stuff
could mostly be done remotely without requiring people actually
present in the computer room. In principle, systems could be managed
from anywhere on the corporate network using things called VT100s and
terminal servers and VAXcluster Console Systems (if you were lucky),
and related cleverness. These days, with a few honourable exceptions,
you routinely have people in the server room because you routinely
need access to the kbd/mouse/monitor to do routine sysadmin stuff on
x86 boxes and and whatever other PC-centric kit is in there, and you
routinely have people in there adding new servers (or maybe blades)
every time a new production app arrives... I believe some people call
it progress.

You want a shaggy dog true story? A former colleague commissioned the
VMS-based multi-site SCADA network for a major UK utility. One day,
his host for the day on a particular site was off sick, and therefore
because my colleague would have been unescorted, the security folks
didn't allow him on that particular site. Did it stop him doing what
he'd planned for the day? No. He explained the situation to an
understanding manager on a different site, who was happy to allow
access to his network and **the day's work was done remotely** over
the WAN, invisible to the security man who said you can't come in
because you need an escort. How does that work these days with PCs and
the like (unless you've spent a small fortune on Proliant-class high
end server management option cards and high-bandwidth low-latency
inter-site links)?

Whatever.

[1] http://www.it-analysis.com/technology/infrastructure/content.php?cid=8169
0
7/18/2008 12:07:51 AM
Tom Linden wrote:
> On Thu, 17 Jul 2008 07:01:15 -0700, Tom Linden <tom@kednos.company> wrote:
> 
>> On Thu, 17 Jul 2008 06:11:14 -0700, Albrecht Schlosser 
>> <ajs567@tiscali.de> wrote:
>>
>>> Is there anything available that could be called a
>>> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>>>
>>> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
>>> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>>>
>>> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
>>> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>>>
>>> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
>>> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
>>> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>>>
>>> Albrecht
>>
>> If you have fibre, put it on a Modular Data Router
>>
> You didn't say whether you had fibre or not, but I just checked
> an MDR will run you ~$500.  You can get a fibre switch for less
> than $300 and HBAs can be had for $20-40 each.  This is your
> best solution, allowing you to put the tape unit as far away as
> you please from the computer room

Thanks to all who replied. Here's a summary of what I read so far.

Fibre channel seems the way to go, if at all. It's supported on
both platforms neede, including OpenVMS/Alpha 7.3-2. The server in
question doesn't have FC yet, but maybe it could be upgraded.

However, I can't believe the prices above. Are these for supported
configurations? I had a price of about 4000 EUR (ca. $ 6000 ?) in
mind for a FC adapter for Itanium, maybe together with or additional
to a FC switch that would be needed. I'll have to check that further.

iSCSI seems not to be supported yet. I found something about a
demonstration kit for V. 8.3-1H1 (I64 only). Seems to be supported
with 8.4 at best. Does anybody know more?

Also thanks for all the interesting comments regarding DC and
backup management. For the original question, there are two points
to mention:

(1) The "users" are not necessarily personnel in the same company
as the IT people. Today, the server is in the users's office, but
they complain about the noise, and the server can't be cooled
appropriately. Thus the idea of moving it to the DC/server room.
The IT of the other company would host the server, but they wouldn't
like to do daily maintenance jobs like changing tapes :-(

(2) Everything is a question of costs. There is no cluster, and
having another server in the office to serve the backup tape
would not help to remove the server from the office.

Albrecht
0
ajs567 (57)
7/18/2008 10:40:49 AM
In article <ii86l5-ar4.ln1@news.hus-software.de>, Albrecht Schlosser <ajs567@tiscali.de> writes:
[...]
>Also thanks for all the interesting comments regarding DC and
>backup management. For the original question, there are two points
>to mention:
>
>(1) The "users" are not necessarily personnel in the same company
>as the IT people. Today, the server is in the users's office, but
>they complain about the noise, and the server can't be cooled
>appropriately. Thus the idea of moving it to the DC/server room.
>The IT of the other company would host the server, but they wouldn't
>like to do daily maintenance jobs like changing tapes :-(
>
>(2) Everything is a question of costs. There is no cluster, and
>having another server in the office to serve the backup tape
>would not help to remove the server from the office.

I woud prefer the suggested solution with an autoloader. Depending on
the number of tapes and backup cycles it might be sufficient to exchange
tapes once a week. Then, either the IT people change the magazine or
one of the office people has to go to the IT department and do it.

Regards,
   Christoph Gartmann
 
-- 
 Max-Planck-Institut fuer      Phone   : +49-761-5108-464   Fax: -80464
 Immunbiologie
 Postfach 1169                 Internet: gartmann@immunbio dot mpg dot de
 D-79011  Freiburg, Germany
               http://www.immunbio.mpg.de/home/menue.html
0
gartmann3 (396)
7/18/2008 11:44:21 AM
In article <69755f51-0707-446d-90ee-40054683fbc5@m73g2000hsh.googlegroups.com>, johnwallace4@gmail.com writes:
>On Jul 18, 12:01 am, Mark McIntyre <markmcint...@TROUSERSspamcop.net>
>wrote:
>> johnwalla...@gmail.com wrote:
>"Lights out computing" [1] isn't a phrase you hear much these days,
>but once upon a time, there was a widespread goal of keeping people
>OUT of the computer room as much as was possible, because a routinely
>locked and routinely unoccupied computer room was (and still should
>be) a safer computer room. Once upon a time, "managing" a server room
>didn't require physical access to PeeCee consoles or whatever, stuff
>could mostly be done remotely without requiring people actually
>present in the computer room. In principle, systems could be managed
>from anywhere on the corporate network using things called VT100s and
>terminal servers and VAXcluster Console Systems (if you were lucky),
>and related cleverness. These days, with a few honourable exceptions,
>you routinely have people in the server room because you routinely
>need access to the kbd/mouse/monitor to do routine sysadmin stuff on
>x86 boxes and and whatever other PC-centric kit is in there, 

Nowadays you have a remote-KVM (KVM over IP) solution installed which is 
basically the same as the Vaxcluster Console system but with a graphical
rather than serial/VT100 connection.

David Webb
Security team leader
CCSS
Middlesex University


>and you
>routinely have people in there adding new servers (or maybe blades)
>every time a new production app arrives... I believe some people call
>it progress.
>
>You want a shaggy dog true story? A former colleague commissioned the
>VMS-based multi-site SCADA network for a major UK utility. One day,
>his host for the day on a particular site was off sick, and therefore
>because my colleague would have been unescorted, the security folks
>didn't allow him on that particular site. Did it stop him doing what
>he'd planned for the day? No. He explained the situation to an
>understanding manager on a different site, who was happy to allow
>access to his network and **the day's work was done remotely** over
>the WAN, invisible to the security man who said you can't come in
>because you need an escort. How does that work these days with PCs and
>the like (unless you've spent a small fortune on Proliant-class high
>end server management option cards and high-bandwidth low-latency
>inter-site links)?
>
>Whatever.
>
>[1] http://www.it-analysis.com/technology/infrastructure/content.php?cid=8169
0
david20
7/18/2008 11:49:56 AM
In article <1f7df0f8-b35f-4319-b040-028d3383f5f7@59g2000hsb.googlegroups.com>, johnwallace4@gmail.com writes:
> A long time ago, when I wanted to solve the problem being addressed
> here, ie there was no guarantee that a server-room-authorised person
> would be on site to change tapes, the "clustered VMS node with tape
> drive, outside the server room" was the exact solution chosen. We put
> the tape drive (and its host) where there *was* always going to be a
> person available to change tapes, because in the circumstances at that
> time, we considered the "security risks" of having a VMS system
> outside the computer room were outweighed by the value of having
> reasonable confidence that the daily backups would still get completed
> even if multiple tapes were needed. Sites with particularly sensitive
> data or other different factors to consider might end up making
> different decisions. One size does not necessarily suit all.

   I would be concerned about the physical security of the backup tapes
   themselves.  I would be very concerned about any IT structure that
   could not provide reliable backups inside a physically secure
   environment.

0
koehler2 (8314)
7/18/2008 12:36:28 PM
On Fri, 18 Jul 2008 03:40:49 -0700, Albrecht Schlosser <ajs567@tiscali.de>  
wrote:

> However, I can't believe the prices above. Are these for supported
> configurations? I had a price of about 4000 EUR (ca. $ 6000 ?) in
> mind for a FC adapter for Itanium, maybe together with or additional
> to a FC switch that would be needed. I'll have to check that further.

Supported doesn't mean you have to buy from HP.  Qlogic for Itanium
Emulex LP8000 for the Alphas, Brocade Silkworm switch (maybe branded  
compaq)
Google and ebay are your friends. For the Emulex HBAs you will need to  
upgrade the firmware, which requires an alpha that has wwidmgr in the SRM  
console.  I bought a DS10L just for this purpose (more-or-less) I may have  
spares lying about. I would put in two HBAs in each node and get two  
switches, that way you have fully redundant paths.  Then you can throw in  
and HSG80 ... :-)
Google and ebay are your friends


-- 
PL/I for OpenVMS
www.kednos.com
0
tom298 (792)
7/18/2008 1:35:14 PM
>>> If you have fibre, put it on a Modular Data Router
>>>
>> You didn't say whether you had fibre or not, but I just checked
>> an MDR will run you ~$500.  You can get a fibre switch for less
>> than $300 and HBAs can be had for $20-40 each.  This is your
>> best solution, allowing you to put the tape unit as far away as
>> you please from the computer room
> 
> Thanks to all who replied. Here's a summary of what I read so far.
> 
> Fibre channel seems the way to go, if at all. It's supported on
> both platforms neede, including OpenVMS/Alpha 7.3-2. The server in
> question doesn't have FC yet, but maybe it could be upgraded.
> 
> However, I can't believe the prices above. Are these for supported
> configurations? I had a price of about 4000 EUR (ca. $ 6000 ?) in
> mind for a FC adapter for Itanium, maybe together with or additional
> to a FC switch that would be needed. I'll have to check that further.
> 

    Those pries will be for a supported configuration using
used equipment.

    There's a modular data router on Ebay right now with a starting
bid of $249.

http://cgi.ebay.ca/COMPAQ-MODULAR-ROUTER-storageworks-171979-001-163083-B2_W0QQitemZ270255472245QQihZ017QQcategoryZ11183QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

One thing to watch when buying a modular data router
is the kind of SCSI interface it supports. Many of the used
ones on the market support HVD SCSI, whereas I suspect your
current tape drive is LVD. The one I mention has LVD SCSCI.

The older, supported host apapter for Alpha is the KGPSA-CA/CX.
There's an ebay Buy-it-now for $19.95 for these:

http://cgi.ebay.ca/COMPAQ-DS-KGPSA-CX-DEC-Fibre-Channel-HBA-PCI-X-CARD_W0QQitemZ110215497592QQihZ001QQcategoryZ11182QQrdZ1QQssPageNameZWD1VQQcmdZViewItemQQ_trksidZp1638Q2em118Q2el1247

a 16 channel 1gb fibrechannel switch is on ebay for $9.99

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Compaq-StorageWorks-SAN-Switch-16-Fibre-Channel-Switch_W0QQitemZ310067388105QQihZ021QQcategoryZ80221QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

So your total cost for switch,adpater and data router would be about 
$280 US (plus the cost of running the fibre).

The above is all for 1gb fibrechannel equipment (which should be
more than adequate if all you're driving is a tape). I don't
know if the modular data router can even support faster fibrechannel.

Hope this helps.
0
nothome (451)
7/18/2008 3:00:37 PM
Albrecht Schlosser wrote:
> Is there anything available that could be called a
> "network tape drive" that is supported with
> 
> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
> 
> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
> 
> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
> 
> Albrecht


Does it absolutely have to be TAPE?

I have a solution - might not be what they want, but it will work.

Purchase 2 devices - a Netgear NAS 1100 (or smaller/similar). This 
device could live in the office where access was necessary.
You would simply NFS mount your VMS box to this device, copy your data 
to this device and from there, back it up, move it or whatever...
This device comes with a USB port where you can plug in one of the USB 
backup disks and has a one-button copy operation of pre-defined 
user-level backups.  The USB device can even be a thumb-drive if 
requirements are small enough...
0
maustin (1437)
7/18/2008 11:28:48 PM
I'm surprised no one has suggested a tape library or a loader, and/or a 
big rack of cheap/slow/capacious archival disks.

Such a library solves several different problems that can arise here.

The other question revolves around what the end users will be restoring, 
and how often, and at what cost the convenience might come.

There are various alternative archival solutions that may well be 
applicable here, depending on the particular local requirements. 
Centralized backup can be feasible, though there are often distributed 
alternative around, as well.  (And in most any approach, there are 
various considerations...)

Tapes, too, are somewhat problematic.  Disks can be a better near-line 
storage resource and for use in tiered archival processing; the boxes I 
manage are using 750 gigabyte and terabyte disk spindles, and the 1.5 TB 
drives have been announced and are coming on-line.  (Tapes are having 
trouble keeping up with disk capacities here.)  The client backup tool 
target for one workgroup is a terabyte spindle that deals with all of 
the processing over wired or wireless, for instance.  No operator input, 
secured storage, but the end-users can restore their files.


-- 
www.HoffmanLabs.com
Services for OpenVMS
0
hoff13 (384)
7/19/2008 1:26:23 AM
In article <g5rfrv$25i5$1@pyrite.mv.net>, Stephen Hoffman <Hoff@HoffmanLabs-RemoveThis-.Org> writes:
>
>I'm surprised no one has suggested a tape library or a loader, and/or a 
>big rack of cheap/slow/capacious archival disks.
>
>Such a library solves several different problems that can arise here.

I picked up a used TZ877 for free.  Not the faster DLT on the planet but
suffices for my most of my needs.  Someone must still change the tapes in
the shuttle of the loader if this is to be use for this solution.  Also,
what is to stop the person on the remote side from using a tape that has
already been used?  BACKUP has safeguards but they can also be defeated.

XROBOT (Media whatever it's called) leaves me pining for a quality piece
of control software too!


>The other question revolves around what the end users will be restoring, 
>and how often, and at what cost the convenience might come.
>
>There are various alternative archival solutions that may well be 
>applicable here, depending on the particular local requirements. 
>Centralized backup can be feasible, though there are often distributed 
>alternative around, as well.  (And in most any approach, there are 
>various considerations...)
>
>Tapes, too, are somewhat problematic.  Disks can be a better near-line 
>storage resource and for use in tiered archival processing; the boxes I 
>manage are using 750 gigabyte and terabyte disk spindles, and the 1.5 TB 
>drives have been announced and are coming on-line.  (Tapes are having 
>trouble keeping up with disk capacities here.)  The client backup tool 
>target for one workgroup is a terabyte spindle that deals with all of 
>the processing over wired or wireless, for instance.  No operator input, 
>secured storage, but the end-users can restore their files.

And don't we now have "virtual tape" a la LD?  BACKUP to a big container
could be made simpler with this ability as the users wouldn't need to be
trained to use different backup schemes.


--
VAXman- A Bored Certified VMS Kernel Mode Hacker      VAXman(at)TMESIS(dot)COM

.... pejorative statements of opinion are entitled to constitutional protection
no matter how extreme, vituperous, or vigorously expressed they may be. (NJSC)

Copr. 2008 Brian Schenkenberger.  Publication of _this_ usenet article outside
of usenet _must_ include its contents in its entirety including this copyright
notice, disclaimer and quotations.
0
VAXman
7/19/2008 11:58:33 AM
VAXman- @SendSpamHere.ORG wrote:
> In article <g5rfrv$25i5$1@pyrite.mv.net>, Stephen Hoffman <Hoff@HoffmanLabs-RemoveThis-.Org> writes:
>> I'm surprised no one has suggested a tape library or a loader, and/or a 
>> big rack of cheap/slow/capacious archival disks.
>>
>> Such a library solves several different problems that can arise here.
> 
> I picked up a used TZ877 for free.  Not the faster DLT on the planet but
> suffices for my most of my needs.  Someone must still change the tapes in
> the shuttle of the loader if this is to be use for this solution.  Also,
> what is to stop the person on the remote side from using a tape that has
> already been used?  BACKUP has safeguards but they can also be defeated.
> 

Any safeguard can be defeated.  BACKUP/EXPIRATION=<date> should keep 
people from inadvertently overwriting tapes.  It can, of course, be 
overwritten but if someone is THAT determined to use THAT tape your only 
recourse may be to get a gun and shoot him!
0
rgilbert88 (4439)
7/19/2008 3:12:24 PM
VAXman- @SendSpamHere.ORG wrote:
> In article <g5rfrv$25i5$1@pyrite.mv.net>, Stephen Hoffman <Hoff@HoffmanLabs-RemoveThis-.Org> writes:
>> I'm surprised no one has suggested a tape library or a loader, and/or a 
>> big rack of cheap/slow/capacious archival disks.
> Someone must still change the tapes in
> the shuttle of the loader if this is to be use for this solution.  

The old DLT loaders are far from the only options available here, and 
may or may not be sufficient for the particular (and unstated capacity) 
requirements here.  Far larger DLT and Ultrium loaders and libraries are 
available.  Some of the garden variety HP MSLs offer upwards of 96 
terabytes, and various folks including HP and Sun has options that scale 
up into the petabyte range.


> Also,
> what is to stop the person on the remote side from using a tape that has
> already been used?  BACKUP has safeguards but they can also be defeated.

And who in their right mind would allow a human at the BACKUP utility?

I've met exactly one killer backup application over the years.  The 
OpenVMS BACKUP utility isn't it.  And I can and do use rsync for some 
tasks, but that too isn't it.  Just because a substantial subset of the 
folks here in c.o.v. know how to use the cryptic UI that is the BACKUP 
utility doesn't imply that is a generally-available skill within the 
larger community of computer-using humans.

In the general case, access to BACKUP and to the command prompt just 
won't end well, and won't scale well.  Accordingly, this is where a 
CAPTIVE menu or GUI or web interface is used; to manage the loader or 
library or tape drive, and to keep the

> XROBOT (Media whatever it's called) leaves me pining for a quality piece
> of control software too!

The state of the user interface in the existing environments here -- all 
the way up the stack -- is comparatively weak in general, yes.

The Enterprise-oriented UIs in this area do seem to increasingly trail 
the industry norms.


> And don't we now have "virtual tape" a la LD?  BACKUP to a big container
> could be made simpler with this ability as the users wouldn't need to be
> trained to use different backup schemes.

LDDRIVER LD-style virtual tapes (the LM devices that are available 
starting with Jur's V9 logical disk driver release) are certainly useful 
for specific contexts and applications, such as when presenting an 
interface that is expected by older tasks and older sequences.  For 
testing BACKUP procedures, for instance.  For tasks akin to those of a 
simh environment, too.

Emulation aside, there are other ways to use modern storage hardware for 
archival purposes, rather than emulating traditional sequential-access 
storage.  Here?  Four and more recently now six terabyte four-slot disk 
arrays are the size of toasters, and HP and other vendors have far more 
massive arrays available.  Why not use these disk arrays as, well, the 
gigantic disk arrays that they are?  And with capacious disks being (due 
to speeds and feeds) slower and cheaper, what was once near-line via 
library or loader or tape library can potentially be fully on-line.

NAS and SAN devices massively increase the permissible scale of disks 
and disk storage configurations, too, albeit with lower-speed 
interconnects.  You're not nearly as limited with SAS and SATA as with 
some of the older interconnects, and NAS and SAN allow storage to span 
outwards yet further.

And regardless of the use of LD/LM or libraries or loaders or of 1.5 
terabyte disk spindles and arrays, or virtual tape libraries (VTLs; 
think "EVA virtual disk, but for tape storage"), you'd (still) want a 
menu or GUI here, as the same basic issues around allowing humans loose 
within the data archives remain.  Even the most experienced can make a 
boo-boo.

Here?  Some near-line storage and a standard magazine loader or three 
might work.  Without some idea of how large a media library or how deep 
an archive might be planned, more specific suggestions aren't easily 
feasible.



-- 
www.HoffmanLabs.com
Services for OpenVMS
0
hoff13 (384)
7/19/2008 5:35:14 PM
Stephen Hoffman wrote:
> VAXman- @SendSpamHere.ORG wrote:
>> In article <g5rfrv$25i5$1@pyrite.mv.net>, Stephen Hoffman 
>> <Hoff@HoffmanLabs-RemoveThis-.Org> writes:
>>> I'm surprised no one has suggested a tape library or a loader, and/or 
>>> a big rack of cheap/slow/capacious archival disks.
>> Someone must still change the tapes in
>> the shuttle of the loader if this is to be use for this solution.  
> 
> The old DLT loaders are far from the only options available here, and 
> may or may not be sufficient for the particular (and unstated capacity) 
> requirements here.  Far larger DLT and Ultrium loaders and libraries are 
> available.  Some of the garden variety HP MSLs offer upwards of 96 
> terabytes, and various folks including HP and Sun has options that scale 
> up into the petabyte range.
> 
> 
>> Also,
>> what is to stop the person on the remote side from using a tape that has
>> already been used?  BACKUP has safeguards but they can also be defeated.
> 
> And who in their right mind would allow a human at the BACKUP utility?

And what is the typical system manager?  I've never seen or heard of a 
four legged critter occupying that slot.

OTOH, BACKUP should be run with minimal human intervention required. 
Somebody has to put the proper tapes in the drive and/or stacker but 
that's about it.  A good DCL procedure and a good batch scheduler such 
as JAMS are also a big help.  I wrote such a script many years ago and 
have been using it since.  It required minor modifications as I moved 
from one employer to the next and received occasional enhancements as 
they occurred to me.
0
rgilbert88 (4439)
7/19/2008 6:45:37 PM
johnwallace4@gmail.com wrote:
> On Jul 18, 12:01 am, Mark McIntyre <markmcint...@TROUSERSspamcop.net>
....
> "Lights out computing" [1] isn't a phrase you hear much these days,
> but once upon a time, there was a widespread goal of keeping people
> OUT of the computer room as much as was possible, because a routinely
....
> 
> [1] http://www.it-analysis.com/technology/infrastructure/content.php?cid=8169

Ah yes I remember that. I pioneered some of that using VMS and Robomon 
as was (from CIS, Heroix now Itheon) and doing dial out to pagers, using 
high capacity tape drives (not natively available from Digital at the 
time) (circa 1991) and look what happened?

Yep, VMS was run out of the data centre, to be replaced with those boxes 
that when remote desktop fails, some one has to go in and power cycle 
the damn thing, usually by pulling *all* the redundant power leads.

-- 
nclews at csc dot com aka Mr. CP Charges
"The idea that Bill Gates has appeared like a knight in shining armour 
to lead all customers out of a mire of technological chaos neatly 
ignores the fact that it was he who, by peddling second-rate technology, 
led them into it in the first place."- DNA
0
baldrick
7/21/2008 7:47:38 AM
In article <n-ydnVtMztOGohnVnZ2dneKdnZydnZ2d@posted.plusnet>, baldrick <nospam@[127.0.0.1]> writes:

> nclews at csc dot com aka Mr. CP Charges

   Good to see you back, Nic.

0
koehler2 (8314)
7/21/2008 12:32:40 PM
On Jul 21, 8:47 am, baldrick <nospam@[127.0.0.1]> wrote:
> johnwalla...@gmail.com wrote:
> > On Jul 18, 12:01 am, Mark McIntyre <markmcint...@TROUSERSspamcop.net>
> ...
> > "Lights out computing" [1] isn't a phrase you hear much these days,
> > but once upon a time, there was a widespread goal of keeping people
> > OUT of the computer room as much as was possible, because a routinely
> ...
>
> > [1]http://www.it-analysis.com/technology/infrastructure/content.php?cid=...
>
> Ah yes I remember that. I pioneered some of that using VMS and Robomon
> as was (from CIS, Heroix now Itheon) and doing dial out to pagers, using
> high capacity tape drives (not natively available from Digital at the
> time) (circa 1991) and look what happened?
>
> Yep, VMS was run out of the data centre, to be replaced with those boxes
> that when remote desktop fails, some one has to go in and power cycle
> the damn thing, usually by pulling *all* the redundant power leads.
>
> --
> nclews at csc dot com aka Mr. CP Charges
> "The idea that Bill Gates has appeared like a knight in shining armour
> to lead all customers out of a mire of technological chaos neatly
> ignores the fact that it was he who, by peddling second-rate technology,
> led them into it in the first place."- DNA

Welcome back indeed.

As Kerry said, everything old is new, and vice versa. Your quote from
Douglas Adams is just as current in the Vista era as it was in the
Win95 era when he said it. Then and now, it could have benefited a
little from a few extra words: "peddling second-rate technology
>>borrowed from other people<<"...
0
7/21/2008 5:18:11 PM
"Albrecht Schlosser" <ajs567@tiscali.de> wrote in message 
news:n0t3l5-2ij.ln1@news.hus-software.de...
> Is there anything available that could be called a
> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>
> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>
> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>
> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>
> Albrecht


We hired a service where a person come in every day to change tapes and 
bring the ones from the last backup to the vault.
Services like this exist everywhere in major cities.
You don't have to change tapes yourself. As for us, we rarely go to our 
computer room which is 10 minutes from here. Only to push the reset button 
on a windows server once in a while.

Syltrem


0
syltremzulu (582)
7/30/2008 2:11:02 PM
In article <YD_jk.7656$ZW1.5694@en-nntp-01.dc1.easynews.com>, "Syltrem" <syltremzulu@videotron.ca> writes:
>
>"Albrecht Schlosser" <ajs567@tiscali.de> wrote in message 
>news:n0t3l5-2ij.ln1@news.hus-software.de...
>> Is there anything available that could be called a
>> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>>
>> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
>> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>>
>> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
>> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>>
>> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
>> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
>> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>>
>> Albrecht
>
>
>We hired a service where a person come in every day to change tapes and 
>bring the ones from the last backup to the vault.
>Services like this exist everywhere in major cities.
>You don't have to change tapes yourself. As for us, we rarely go to our 
>computer room which is 10 minutes from here. Only to push the reset button 
>on a windows server once in a while.

A service that provides secure transportation of vital and privileged 
data such as was employed in this case???

http://breachblog.com/2008/07/18/bms.aspx

It's costing BMS a good few pennies now to provide safeguards for its
employee's credit and identity as well as their family's members.
 
--
VAXman- A Bored Certified VMS Kernel Mode Hacker      VAXman(at)TMESIS(dot)COM

.... pejorative statements of opinion are entitled to constitutional protection
no matter how extreme, vituperous, or vigorously expressed they may be. (NJSC)

Copr. 2008 Brian Schenkenberger.  Publication of _this_ usenet article outside
of usenet _must_ include its contents in its entirety including this copyright
notice, disclaimer and quotations.
0
VAXman
7/30/2008 2:30:27 PM
Syltrem wrote:
> "Albrecht Schlosser" <ajs567@tiscali.de> wrote in message 
> news:n0t3l5-2ij.ln1@news.hus-software.de...
>> Is there anything available that could be called a
>> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>>
>> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
>> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>>
>> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
>> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>>
>> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
>> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
>> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>>
>> Albrecht
> 
> 
> We hired a service where a person come in every day to change tapes and 
> bring the ones from the last backup to the vault.
> Services like this exist everywhere in major cities.
> You don't have to change tapes yourself. As for us, we rarely go to our 
> computer room which is 10 minutes from here. Only to push the reset button 
> on a windows server once in a while.
> 
> Syltrem
> 
> 
Note that a decnet remote tape driver was on sigtapes and has been 
available for some time. Look for dtdriver or zrdriver - it was named 
various things - but worked well. Vax or alpha. Never tried on IA64, but 
source is around (in macro32). The base driver calls a local daemon 
process to do actual storage which communicates with a daemon on the box 
with the actual tape. A tcp/ip version exists too. Hunter Goatley wrote 
some DCL procedures around this that made it easier to use; I think he 
has it in his archives also. Look among the virtual disk submissions.

Glenn Everhart
0
Everhart (99)
8/1/2008 10:53:08 PM
<VAXman- @SendSpamHere.ORG> wrote in message 
news:48907b03$0$4999$607ed4bc@cv.net...
> In article <YD_jk.7656$ZW1.5694@en-nntp-01.dc1.easynews.com>, "Syltrem" 
> <syltremzulu@videotron.ca> writes:
>>
>>"Albrecht Schlosser" <ajs567@tiscali.de> wrote in message
>>news:n0t3l5-2ij.ln1@news.hus-software.de...
>>> Is there anything available that could be called a
>>> "network tape drive" that is supported with
>>>
>>> (a) OpenVMS / Alpha 7.3-2
>>> (b) OpenVMS / I64, 8.2 or 8.3 ff. ?
>>>
>>> The reason is to have the backup tape drive separated from the
>>> server for easier access to change the backup tapes.
>>>
>>> Please don't ask, why would you want to do that. It's simply
>>> because of a user's request. And this should *not* be another
>>> VMS server (cluster node) with a tape drive ;-)
>>>
>>> Albrecht
>>
>>
>>We hired a service where a person come in every day to change tapes and
>>bring the ones from the last backup to the vault.
>>Services like this exist everywhere in major cities.
>>You don't have to change tapes yourself. As for us, we rarely go to our
>>computer room which is 10 minutes from here. Only to push the reset button
>>on a windows server once in a while.
>
> A service that provides secure transportation of vital and privileged
> data such as was employed in this case???
>
> http://breachblog.com/2008/07/18/bms.aspx
>
> It's costing BMS a good few pennies now to provide safeguards for its
> employee's credit and identity as well as their family's members.
>


You can always use encryption with backup if this is a problem. Out of the 
box.

BACKUP

  /ENCRYPT

        /ENCRYPT=([key] [,ALGORITHM=algorithm])

     Creates and restores encrypted save sets. Specify the /ENCRYPT
     qualifier anywhere on the BACKUP command line.


Syltrem


0
syltremzulu (582)
8/4/2008 5:16:05 PM
Reply: