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NETAPP VTL

NetApp VTL Operations Guide with Best Practices


Version 1.0

NetApp, Inc. 495 East Java Drive Sunnyvale, CA 94089 U.S.A. Telephone: +1 (408) 822-6000 Fax: +1 (408) 822-4501 Support telephone: +1 (888) 4-NETAPP Documentation comments: xdl-psguides@netapp.com Information Web: http://www.netapp.com Part number: 215-04472_A0 March 5, 2009

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Table of Contents
1 2 3 3.1 3.1.1 3.2 3.3 3.3.1 3.3.2 3.3.3 3.3.4 3.3.5 4 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.6.1 4.6.2 4.6.3 4.7 4.8 4.8.1 4.8.2 4.8.3 4.9 4.10 4.11 4.12 5 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.4.1 5.4.2 5.4.3 5.5 5.6 5.7 5.7.1 5.7.2 5.7.3 5.7.4 5.7.5 5.8 5.8.1 5.8.2 5.8.3 5.8.4 5.9 5.9.1 5.9.2 5.9.3 5.9.4 6 6.1 6.2 6.3 INTRODUCTION .......................................................................................................................................................7 ACCESS TO THE NOW SITE...................................................................................................................................8 NETAPP VTL ARCHITECTURAL OVERVIEW ........................................................................................................9 Introduction to NetApp VTL................................................................................................................................9 Backup Workflow ............................................................................................................................................12 Hardware Overview ...........................................................................................................................................13 NetApp VTL Deduplication (VTL 6.0 and Later) ..............................................................................................16 Requirements for Effective Deduplication .......................................................................................................17 What is Different in VTL 6.0 ............................................................................................................................19 Deduplication Configuration and Monitoring GUI Overview ............................................................................19 VTL 6.0 Workflow Example .............................................................................................................................21 VTL Duty Cycles .............................................................................................................................................22 GENERAL BEST PRACTICE RECOMMENDATIONS...........................................................................................24 NetApp VTL Compatibility List.........................................................................................................................24 AutoSupport ......................................................................................................................................................24 VTL Serial Console............................................................................................................................................24 When to Reboot a VTL ......................................................................................................................................24 Backup Application Multiplexing .....................................................................................................................25 Stream Count Recommendations....................................................................................................................26 VTL Releases Prior to 5.5 ...............................................................................................................................26 VTL 5.5 and 5.6...............................................................................................................................................26 VTL 6.0 ...........................................................................................................................................................26 Virtual Tape Drive Unload/Unmount Policy for VTL 6.0 .................................................................................27 Tivoli Storage Manager .....................................................................................................................................27 General Considerations ..................................................................................................................................28 Virtual Library Configuration............................................................................................................................28 Tivoli Storage Manager Mount Retention Settings ..........................................................................................29 Physical Library Sharing ..................................................................................................................................29 Number of Initiators per VTL Port....................................................................................................................29 Virtual Tape Record Size ..................................................................................................................................30 Enable VTL HTTP and SSH Ports.....................................................................................................................30 VTL MONITORING .................................................................................................................................................31 Administrator Overview ....................................................................................................................................31 Actions Required...............................................................................................................................................31 Notifications.......................................................................................................................................................31 Statistics ............................................................................................................................................................32 Virtual Library I/O Load ...................................................................................................................................33 RAID Group I/O Load......................................................................................................................................33 Physical Tape Device I/O Load .......................................................................................................................34 Import/Export Requests....................................................................................................................................34 Event Log ...........................................................................................................................................................34 Deduplication Tasks (VTL 6.0) .........................................................................................................................34 Background Tasks ..........................................................................................................................................34 Postprocessing Window..................................................................................................................................34 Deduplication Status .......................................................................................................................................35 Task Management ..........................................................................................................................................35 Deduplication Task Scheduling .......................................................................................................................36 Capacity Management.......................................................................................................................................36 VTL 5.5/5.6 without DTC or Overallocation.....................................................................................................36 VTL 5.5/5.6 with DTC and/or Overallocation ...................................................................................................37 Sizing the VTL to Avoid Running out of Disk Space........................................................................................38 VTL 6.0 ...........................................................................................................................................................38 VTL Maintenance Procedures ..........................................................................................................................42 Configuration Management .............................................................................................................................42 VTL Software Updates ....................................................................................................................................42 Disk Drive Replacement..................................................................................................................................42 VTL Troubleshooting.......................................................................................................................................42 PHYSICAL TAPE MANAGEMENT OPERATIONS ................................................................................................43 Direct Tape Creation (DTC)...............................................................................................................................43 Physical Tape Caveats and Best Practices.....................................................................................................44 Shadow Tape Caveats and Best Practices......................................................................................................44
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6.3.1 6.4 6.4.1 6.4.2 6.5 6.5.1 6.6 6.7 7 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.3.1 7.3.2 7.4 7.4.1 8 8.1 8.1.1 8.1.2 8.1.3 8.2 8.2.1 8.3 9 9.1 9.2 10 10.1 10.2 10.2.1 10.2.2 11

VTL 6.0 and Shadow Tapes............................................................................................................................45 Cloning a Virtual Tape to a Physical Tape ......................................................................................................45 Deferred Cloning .............................................................................................................................................46 VTL 6.0 Specific Behavior...............................................................................................................................46 Exporting from a Virtual Library to a Physical Library...................................................................................46 VTL 6.0 Specific Behavior...............................................................................................................................46 Tape Drive Cleaning..........................................................................................................................................47 Physical Tape Drives Maintenance Operations ..............................................................................................47 RESTORE ...............................................................................................................................................................48 Restore Operation with Tapes in the Virtual Library ......................................................................................48 Restore Operation with Tapes not in the Virtual Library ...............................................................................48 Manually Importing Tapes into a VTL Caveats and Best Practices ...........................................................52 Manually Importing Shadow Tapes .................................................................................................................52 Manually Importing Physical Tapes.................................................................................................................52 Automated Shadow Tape and Physical Tape Import .....................................................................................54 VTL Integration Script with NetBackup............................................................................................................54 PHYSICAL TAPE VAULTING AND RECYCLING..................................................................................................55 Moving Tapes from the Physical Library.........................................................................................................55 Opening the Main Door on the Physical Drives...............................................................................................55 Using the Entry/Exit Port (EEP).......................................................................................................................56 Offsiting Policies..............................................................................................................................................56 Making New or Returning Tapes Available .....................................................................................................57 Recycling ........................................................................................................................................................57 Automating Physical Tape Vaulting and Recycling .......................................................................................59 USING VTL WITH OTHER NETAPP PRODUCTS .................................................................................................60 Backup Data on a NetApp FAS system ...........................................................................................................60 Using VTL with NetApp DataFort .....................................................................................................................61 APPENDIX A: NETAPP VTL UPGRADE ...............................................................................................................62 VTL OS Upgrade Process .................................................................................................................................62 VTL Shelf Firmware Upgrade Process and Best Practices............................................................................62 Shelf Firmware Upgrade Process ...................................................................................................................62 Upgrading from VTL Release 5.2.2 or Earlier .................................................................................................62 APPENDIX B: REFERENCES................................................................................................................................63

List of Tables Table 1 Table 2 Table 3 Tivoli Storage Manager configurations ......................................................................................... 28 VTL sizing example ...................................................................................................................... 38 Reference documents................................................................................................................... 63

List of Figures Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 Figure 10 Figure 11 Figure 12 Figure 13 Figure 14 Figure 15 Figure 16 Figure 17 Figure 18 NetApp VTL data center ................................................................................................................. 9 NetApp VTL Direct Tape Creation................................................................................................ 11 NetApp VTL backup solution setup example................................................................................ 13 NetApp VTL300 connectivity diagram .......................................................................................... 14 NetApp VTL300 locations diagram............................................................................................... 15 NetApp VTL700 connectivity diagram .......................................................................................... 15 NetApp VTL700 locations diagram............................................................................................... 16 Dedupe ratio ................................................................................................................................. 18 NetApp VTL options...................................................................................................................... 19 Virtual library list ....................................................................................................................... 20 Deduplication tasks .................................................................................................................. 20 Virtual tape list .......................................................................................................................... 21 Dedupe Configuration page ..................................................................................................... 21 Duty cycles in 5.x ..................................................................................................................... 22 Duty cycles in 6.0 ..................................................................................................................... 23 Multiplexing............................................................................................................................... 25 Administrator Overview screen ................................................................................................ 31 Statistics screen ....................................................................................................................... 32
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Figure 19 Figure 20 Figure 21 Figure 22 Figure 23 Figure 24 Figure 25 Figure 26 Figure 27 Figure 28 Figure 29 Figure 30 -

Dedupe Configuration screen................................................................................................... 35 Deduplication tasks .................................................................................................................. 35 Dedupe Configuration screen................................................................................................... 36 Compression ratio at appliance level ....................................................................................... 39 Compression ratio at virtual library level .................................................................................. 40 Compression ratio per virtual tape ........................................................................................... 40 Export with shadow tapes ........................................................................................................ 43 Cloning and export ................................................................................................................... 44 Create virtual tapes using the barcodes option........................................................................ 58 Import virtual tapes from physical library with the quick-load option........................................ 59 NDMP Fibre Channel (SAN)-attached model ....................................................................... 60 NetApp DataFort FC525 (2 port) architecture ....................................................................... 61

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Preface NetApp creates innovative storage and data management solutions that accelerate business breakthroughs and deliver outstanding cost efficiency. Discover our passion for helping companies around the world go further, faster at www.netapp.com. The purpose of this document is to detail the best practices for everyday VTL management operations; it is not to be used as a configuration guide. The NetApp VTL Troubleshooting Guide is used in connection with this document. For additional information, see Appendix B - References.
AUDIENCE

The document is primarily intended for NetApp Virtual Tape Library (VTL) administrators.
NON-DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENTS

Copyright 2009 NetApp. All rights reserved. This document contains the confidential and proprietary information of NetApp, Inc. Do not reproduce or distribute without the prior written consent of NetApp.
FEEDBACK

We continually try to improve the quality and usefulness of NetApp documentation. If you have any corrections, feedbacks, or requests for additional documentation, send an e-mail message to xdlpsguides@netapp.com.
INFORMATION ABOUT THIS DOCUMENT

All information about this document including version history, review and approval, typographical conventions, references, and a glossary of terms can be found in the final chapter of this document.

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1 Introduction
This guide introduces the NetApp VTL appliance and provides configuration and operations information. Its objective is to familiarize VTL administrators with NetApp VTL functionality, operations, and best use of VTL for day-to-day management. This guide provides information about how to configure and use a NetApp VTL appliance, and enables administrators to understand and work with virtual libraries and volumes. This guide is designed for a qualified system administrator. It is assumed that this person is familiar with storage area network (SAN) and backup applications.

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2 Access to the NOW Site


This document refers to content on the NOW (NetApp on the Web) site. A customer login name and password are required to access these links. To log in to the NOW site, perform the following steps: Click the following link or paste the link in the URL field of your web browser: http://now.netapp.com Log in using your user name and password.

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3 NetApp VTL Architectural Overview


NetApp VTL software combines a hardware controller and one or more disk subsystems into a single system that publishes virtual tape libraries on a SAN. These virtual tape libraries are direct, plug-andplay equivalents for physical tape libraries.

3.1

Introduction to NetApp VTL


NetApp VTL appliances operate like physical tape libraries to the backup application (Figure 1).

Figure 1 -

NetApp VTL data center

For example, the NetApp VTL retains the native format of the backup application. When the NetApp VTL copies data to the physical tape, the result is a physical tape that is in the native format of the backup application. The backup application can then restore data from these tapes directly. The major features of a NetApp VTL appliance are as follows: Transparency to the backup application: The backup application writes data to the VTL in the native format and the VTL behaves like a physical tape device. Virtual tape libraries take less time to back up the data.
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Virtual tape libraries: Like their physical counterparts, virtual tape libraries have cartridge slots, one or more tape drives, an import/export slot, and a robotic arm. These attributes (the number of slots, the capacity of tape drives, and so on) are set when the virtual library is created. NetApp VTL comes with a number of predefined virtual library types. New library types can also be created to fit the needs. Virtual tape drives: The NetApp VTL includes a number of virtual tape drive types. The type specifies properties such as vendor information, the capacity of the drive, and the tape optimization algorithm. Virtual tapes: Virtual tapes are the NetApp VTL equivalents of physical tapes. Like physical tapes, virtual tapes have a specified capacity and are labeled by barcodes. Backup applications use these barcodes to track virtual tapes in the same way that they track physical tapes. There is a one-to-one correspondence between the virtual and physical barcodes. The backup application considers virtual tapes as their equivalent physical tapes. Direct Tape Creation (DTC): The NetApp VTL can export data to physical tapes directly by copying virtual tapes to a physical tape library connected to its backend. This feature is also known as Direct Tape Creation (DTC). The physical tapes are written in the native format of the backup application so that when virtual tapes are exported to physical tapes, there is a 100% match between the two. This implies that any virtual tape that is stored on the NetApp VTL and written to a physical tape can be restored from any standard tape drive that is supported by the backup server. It is therefore possible to back up data to the disk while keeping the data offsite on physical tapes that are stored in the native format of the backup application. Control of physical library Entry/Exit Port (EEP): The correspondence between virtual tape movement and physical tape movement extends to the movement of tapes, into and out of the libraries. When moving a virtual tape that has a corresponding physical tape to the virtual library entry/exit port, the NetApp VTL can also move the physical tape to the physical library EEP (this is controlled by the Move Physical Tapes to EEP after Virtual Export advanced option). Control of ACSLS-managed libraries: The NetApp VTL appliance can use the physical tape libraries controlled by Sun/STK Automated Cartridge System Library Software (ACSLS). The ACSLS server and the VTL appliance communicate over a LAN, while the ACS tape drives communicate with the NetApp VTL appliance over the SAN. The NetApp VTL appliance does not communicate directly with the ACS robotic arms. In addition to the networking and SAN requirements, you must set the advanced option Use ACSLS to control the physical libraries, before using an ACSLS with a NetApp VTL appliance.

Note: Either Fiber Channel managed libraries or ACSLS-controlled libraries can be attached to a NetApp VTL appliance, but not both. Before trying to configure the VTL appliance to use an ACSLScontrolled library, ensure that no Fiber Channel managed library is attached to the appliance. Import/export: When importing a physical tape, the NetApp VTL creates a virtual tape that is an exact copy of the physical tape including the barcode and file mark information. Similarly, when exporting a virtual tape, the NetApp VTL sends data from the virtual tape to an attached physical tape device, resulting in a physical copy of the virtual tape. The cloning feature of the backup application (sometimes called inline copy) can also be used as a slower alternative. The tapes that the NetApp VTL creates are in the native format of the backup application.

Each virtual tape has an export status that suggests whether there is a need to copy this tape to a physical tape. Therefore, the export status is one of the following: Needs export: a virtual tape that contains data, and is ejected from a virtual tape drive or library. Does not need export: an empty virtual tape or a virtual tape that is already copied to a physical tape.

Tape exports are triggered when one of the following occurs:

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The tape is ejected from the virtual library: The backup application ejects a tape from the library, based on its offsite policies (if applicable), and the NetApp VTL recognizes the event (tape moved to the EEP), locates the corresponding physical tape, and initiates the copy. The tape export is manually triggered: It is possible to trigger exports by changing the export status of a tape. This is useful to re-create missing or failed physical tapes.

Figure 2 -

NetApp VTL Direct Tape Creation

After the tape export, the virtual tape is deleted (unless the shadow tape feature is enabled). Shadow tape pool and shadow tapes: While exporting a virtual tape, in parallel with the creation of the physical tape, NetApp VTL can create a shadow tape that is stored in the shadow tape pool. The shadow tape pool is a special storage pool inside the VTL; it is not visible from the backup application. The backup application continues to manage the physical tape, with the shadow tape invisible to the backup application (and invisible to the library on the NetApp VTL). A shadow tape can be instantly imported back to a virtual library, which makes it immediately available for restores. Shadow pool is managed in a way that does not affect normal VTL functionality. In case the VTL is running short of space, the shadow tape pool is automatically reduced. Shadow tapes are also assigned a retention period within a VTL. When a backup application is writing to the NetApp VTL, if the NetApp VTL needs additional space for an existing virtual tape, the VTL reclaims the shadow tape space. Space is reclaimed first from the expired shadow tapes; but if more space is needed even after reclaiming the expired tapes, it can be reclaimed from the unexpired shadow tapes. Cloning: VTL cloning is similar to the export process, but with cloning, a copy of the data is always retained on the disk (regardless of whether the shadow tape feature is used). That is, cloning means exporting the data to the physical tape without deleting the corresponding virtual tape (or without moving the virtual tape to shadow tape). Smart cloning and tape exporting: When a tape is cloned or exported, and the (virtual) tape is updated, the NetApp VTL keeps track of the location of change (the point starting from where the physical tape differs from the virtual tape). When the tape is again cloned or exported, the NetApp

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VTL needs to write data to the physical tape beginning from the location of change. Smart cloning is a default behavior. Disk compression: While smart sizing adjusts the size of a virtual tape to match the capacity of a physical tape by taking into account the physical tape drives own data compression algorithm, VTL data compression reduces the size of the data stored on a virtual tape, which in turn, saves disk capacity. NetApp VTL appliances support hardware-based disk compression. Hardware-based compression has high speed and is a recommended procedure. Data compression can be separately enabled or disabled for each virtual tape (the default, data compression on or off, can be set separately for each virtual library when the library is created). When compression is enabled, the NetApp VTL appliance selects hardware compression, or it selects software compression if hardware compression is not available. For both hardware-based and software-based compression, the compression ratio depends on the actual data compressed.

Note: VTL 6.0 also supports data deduplication. For details, see section 3.3 NetApp VTL Deduplication (VTL 6.0 and Later). Smart sizing: This feature is aimed at maximizing the storage efficiency of the physical tapes that are managed by the VTL. All data is compressible at different rates. This implies that the actual amount of data that the physical tape drive writes to the tape depends on the compressibility of the data. It is crucial that the amount of data on the virtual tape fits on the physical tape, without going over its capacity, because the NetApp VTL must be able to export virtual tapes to physical tapes. If the data from a virtual tape cannot fit on a physical tape, it cannot be exported or cloned. Most VTL vendors solve this issue by matching the capacity of virtual tapes to the native (uncompressed) capacity of the corresponding physical tapes. This is not an efficient solution because it does not take compression into account. For example, if the physical tape drive can compress data at a ratio of 2:1, more than half of the physical tape remains unused when the virtual tape is exported. With smart sizing, the data stream is monitored to determine the compressibility of the data. This allows the VTL to determine the appropriate size to fit the virtual tape to the corresponding physical tape. There is no performance impact when using smart sizing. Note that smart sizing is completely different from disk compression. Smart sizing optimizes the utilization of physical tape media, while disk compression minimizes the space used on the disk by the VTL. With hardware compression, this is an extremely effective method of saving space on the disk. Smart sizing and disk compression can be used at the same time on the same NetApp VTL appliance. Easy to use: The existing backup and restore process need not be altered because the virtual tape libraries of the NetApp VTL function in the same way as physical tape libraries (including the way they are displayed to backup applications). Data can be backed up to the disk using the existing infrastructure and work procedures. Backup Workflow The following table lists the steps in the VTL backup workflow:
Step 1. 2. 3. Action The backup application determines which tape (identified by the barcode) is to be used for backup. The backup application controls the virtual robot to move a virtual tape from a virtual slot to a virtual tape drive. The backup application instructs a media server (also called storage node by some backup applications) to mount the tape, and starts streaming data. It continues until one of the following occurs: The virtual tape is full. Backup of the streaming data is completed. The backup application unmounts the virtual tape and controls the robot to move the tape from the virtual drive to a virtual slot.

3.1.1

4.

Note: This workflow is the same for a NetApp VTL or a standard physical tape library.

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3.2

Hardware Overview
The figures provided in this section illustrate the hardware overview of VTL300, 700, and 1400. Figure 3 is an example of VTL integration in a typical backup environment:

Example: NetApp VTL Backup Solution Setup

Figure 3 -

NetApp VTL backup solution setup example

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Figure 4 through Figure 7 display the hardware layout of VTL300/700/1400:

NetApp VTL300 Connectivity Diagram

Figure 4 -

NetApp VTL300 connectivity diagram

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NetApp VTL300 Port Locations Diagram

Figure 5 -

NetApp VTL300 locations diagram

NetApp VTL700 Connectivity Diagram

Figure 6 -

NetApp VTL700 connectivity diagram

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NetApp VTL700 Port Locations Diagram

Figure 7 -

NetApp VTL700 locations diagram

Note: VTL7700 supports different configurations (for example, the use of some of the disk ports for tape connections). Contact a NetApp Professional Service representative for details.

3.3

NetApp VTL Deduplication (VTL 6.0 and Later)


Deduplication is a VTL feature that enables the amount of data to be reduced by storing only unique data blocks inside one or more backup data set. VTL compares blocks inside data sets and stores unique blocks (that is, blocks that are not redundant inside the data set), and stores only a pointer for other replicas of those unique blocks. Deduplication can substantially increase virtual tape capacity, but the effectiveness is highly dependent on the data set. The deduplication process results in some reduction in read and write performance, so you might need to choose when and for which tapes and libraries deduplication is used. With VTL 6.0, virtual tapes can use hardware compression or deduplication with hardware compression. Like all compression techniques, deduplication works better on some types of data than others, and can use system resources in a way that reduces maximum read and write speeds. VTL 6.0 lets you monitor the effectiveness of deduplication, enable or disable deduplication for virtual libraries and tapes, and control the timing of the deduplication processing. VTL 6.0 implements postprocessing deduplication. In VTL 6.0 with deduplication enabled, data is written to the virtual tapes without being deduplicated. During a postprocessing window, the appliance compares the data on the original virtual tape to the existing copies of data within the storage pool, and creates a deduplicated copy of the tape. The comparison is across all data in a storage pool, including the data in any virtual tapes that is not deduplicated. Optionally, if cloning is configured, the data is cloned to the physical tape before starting the deduplication process. Separately, after the deduplication, the space used by redundant data is reclaimed. While data from a deduplicated tape is being written to a physical tape (for example, during
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tape export), the data is expanded back to the original data. Data might also need to be expanded if the virtual tape is moved from a virtual library with deduplication enabled to the one with deduplication disabled, or to a different storage pool. Postprocessing takes place during the postprocessing window. You can control the size and timing of the postprocessing window from the Configuration Tasks: Miscellaneous Dedupe Configuration screen. You can control a postprocess window so that it starts after the backups are complete, and is large enough to complete the tasks before the window closes. The default is 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Tasks that start, but have not completed before the window closes, continue to run, but are throttled to reduce impact on backup performance. Tasks that are in the queue but not started remain in the queue until the next window. Postprocessing tasks include the creation of the deduplicated copy of virtual tapes, migration of tapes from one library to another, virtual tape format conversion, and space reclamation (Free Space Build (FSB) tasks). You can enable or disable the automatic running of the postprocessing tasks from the Dedupe Configuration screen. From this screen, you can also manually trigger the deduplication tasks and the FSB tasks. You can monitor and control specific postprocessing tasks from the Daily Tasks: Monitoring Deduplication Tasks screen. This screen lists all the queued and recently completed tasks, their status, and provides an action field from which you can perform actions such as suspending or deleting tasks. You can monitor the deduplication status of individual tapes, including whether the tape is deduplicated, and what the deduplication compression ratio is, from the Configuration Tasks: Virtual Tapes Virtual Tape List screen. 3.3.1 Requirements for Effective Deduplication NetApp recommends using two compression cards per controller on all VTL models (300/700/1400) for effective deduplication. In VTL 6.0, the benefits of deduplication increase over time. Deduplication enables longer backup retention on disk. For this reason, deduplication does not necessarily reduce the number of disks required to store the data.

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Figure 8 shows an overview of the deduplication behavior over time:

Figure 8 -

Dedupe ratio

Note: The preceding figure is meant to illustrate deduplication concepts and is based on industry averages, not on specific tests run with NetApp VTL. The actual deduplication ratio is highly variable, depending on your backup environment and specific data sets. Figure 8 shows four consecutive full backups for different types of data. The deduplication ratio increases over time and gets higher, if more full backups are retained on the VTL. This example has four backups; however, you can get better ratios (such as, 20:1 and higher) with more backup copies retained on the VTL. Data on physical tapes is not deduplicated because the physical tapes must remain in the same format created by the backup application. Physical tapes can be read directly by the backup application if needed. Deduplication effectiveness depends on many factors (such as how much data redundancy is present in the data that is being backed up). The following data sets benefit the most from deduplication: Full backups Database backups

The following data sets generally do not benefit much from deduplication: Data that is multiplexed by the backup application (multiple backup streams sent to one virtual tape drive) Data that is compressed or encrypted on-the-fly by the backup application

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Note: It is possible to modify the backup application settings so that all of the data gets full benefits of deduplication. For details, see Chapter 4 General Best Practice Recommendations. 3.3.2 3.3.3 What is Different in VTL 6.0 The added features in VTL 6.0 versus VTL 5.x are as follows: VTL 6.0 supports data deduplication. Deduplication and non-deduplication can co-exist on the same VTL appliance. A per-virtual library option to deduplicate only shadow tapes is available. 5.x virtual tapes can be converted and deduplicated. Imported virtual tapes are immediately compressed and can be scheduled for deduplication as well. Overallocation is always enabled. This allows space to be made available after the deduplication process. Deduplication Configuration and Monitoring GUI Overview This section describes the NetApp VTL GUI changes in VTL 6.0. Refer to Chapter 5 VTL Monitoring for details about the VTL 5.x GUI. The features of deduplication configuration and monitoring GUI are as follows: With VTL 6.0, deduplication is enabled at the VTL appliance level (Figure 9):

Figure 9 - NetApp VTL options

You can enable deduplication at the virtual library level. Add or update virtual library pages support a new disk compression type called Deduplication. Deduplication scope can be limited to shadow tapes only. After deduplication is enabled on a virtual library, it cannot be turned off.
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Figure 10 highlights the possibility of selectively turning on deduplication on virtual libraries:

Figure 10 - Virtual library list

You can monitor deduplication tasks from the new Monitoring tab Deduplication Tasks (Figure 11).

Figure 11 - Deduplication tasks

The Virtual Tapes page now provides the following additional columns: Need to Dedupe: This indicates that backup data is appended to this virtual tape; therefore postprocess deduplication is needed.
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Disk Compression: This specifies either Hardware Compression or Deduplication.

See Figure 12:

Figure 12 - Virtual tape list

A new Dedupe Configuration page is added to the VTL GUI. This page also enables you to manually start the postprocess window or manually run an FSB task (Figure 13):

Figure 13 - Dedupe Configuration page

3.3.4

VTL 6.0 Workflow Example An example of a typical VTL 6.0 workflow is a virtual tape that is unloaded from a virtual drive after a backup.
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This causes a postprocess deduplication task to be scheduled. With the default settings (a postprocess window of 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.), the deduplication does not start until 6:00 a.m., the next day. If any data is added to the same or other virtual tapes, the deduplication task is updated (postprocess deduplication is now scheduled to occur on two or more virtual tapes). When the postprocess window starts (at 6:00 a.m.), the following steps are performed: a. A deduplication task is started. b. An FSB task is started after completing the postprocess task. You can explicitly abort or restart tasks from the Deduplication Tasks page (see Figure 11) by clicking the Action hyperlink. Volumes processed within a deduplication task can be removed by following the Task ID hyperlink. If the volume is removed from an active deduplication task, the task is implicitly aborted. VTL Duty Cycles

3.3.5

As mentioned earlier, the presence of a deduplication feature in VTL 6.0 introduces a new workload for the VTL so that the duty cycles are changed. The following steps are performed as part of duty cycles on VTL 5.x: 1. Backup is typically within a window, which is the primary cycle. 2. DTC (exports/clones) is performed outside the backup window. This is another cycle. 3. The VTL typically performs backups followed by a DTC. Figure 14 shows the duty cycles in VTL 5.x:

Figure 14 - Duty cycles in 5.x

The following steps are performed as part of duty cycles on VTL 6.0: 1. VTL 6.0 adds background tasks as a cycle. 2. Background tasks include postprocess deduplication and FSB process. There is a deduplication window in addition to the backup and clone/export window. Deduplication is a CPU and I/O intensive operation. As a general rule, the combined effect of backup, DTC (if any) and deduplication operations must not exceed the processing capabilities of a VTL controller over the 24hour time interval (that is, duty cycle). Figure 15 shows the duty cycles in VTL 6.0 with deduplication enabled:

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Figure 15 - Duty cycles in 6.0

Note: In practice, there might be an overlap between the different cycles. Overlapping cycles might impact performance. The important part is to monitor the amount of backup data sent to the VTL so that all the three cycles can complete in a 24-hour window for daily backups. Depending on your backup environment requirements, the window might be larger for weekend backups.

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4 General Best Practice Recommendations


4.1 NetApp VTL Compatibility List
Ensure that all the components of the backup environment appear on the NetApp VTL Compatibility List: http://now.netapp.com/NOW/products/osn/vtl/nearstore_vtl_compatibility.pdf If any component in your environment is not in this list, contact your NetApp sales representative.

4.2

AutoSupport
NetApp highly recommends enabling the AutoSupport feature of the VTL. AutoSupport can be configured to use HTTP, HTTPS, or e-mail. If e-mail size is a concern, see the AutoSupport section in the NetApp VTL Troubleshooting Guide. If sending information to NetApp is a concern (such as secured site), NetApp recommends enabling the following notifications: Configure internal VTL e-mail notifications: Enable network communications between the VTL and your e-mail server. Set up VTL to send short e-mail notifications in case of a warning or error message (using the Miscellaneous GUI page). Enable network communications between the VTL and your e-mail server. Set up AutoSupport to be sent to an internal e-mail address (using the Support Tool GUI page).

Configure internal VTL AutoSupport e-mails:

4.3

VTL Serial Console


VTL serial console is required for several maintenance and troubleshooting operations. NetApp highly recommends connecting the VTL serial console port on a permanent basis to either a host port or a remote serial console device. This is especially critical when a VTL is managed remotely. NetApp recommends the following as best practices: Option 1: Connect the serial ports of all NetApp VTL appliances to remote console devices. Option 2: Connect VTL serial console ports to UNIX or Window hosts for remote access: Use the serial cable shipped with the VTL or order a longer one if needed. Set up the serial port on the host (9600, 8, none, 1, none).

The serial ports settings (for both options) are defined in the following Knowledge Base article: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb15972

4.4

When to Reboot a VTL


NetApp recommends the following as best practices while rebooting a VTL appliance in the event of an issue: Do not reboot a VTL appliance unless needed. Before rebooting a VTL, attempt all possible steps to troubleshoot the issue. Before rebooting a VTL, collect all required diagnostics to diagnose the issue (the type of diagnostics varies widely as per the issue).
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Refer to the VTL Troubleshooting Guide for details.

4.5

Backup Application Multiplexing


This section provides information about using the backup application multiplexing feature. The backup application might send backup streams from multiple backup clients to one virtual tape drive. As far as VTL is concerned, this is one single data stream Figure 16):

Figure 16 - Multiplexing

Multiplexing is designed to allow a backup application to back up a large number of simultaneous clients to a small number of physical tape drives. With VTL, this feature is less useful as more virtual tape drives can be created. Reducing or eliminating multiplexing whenever possible is generally recommended when the backups are directed to a VTL, for the following reasons: While multiplexing improves backup performance when writing to physical tapes, it is not required to get high-backup performance from a VTL (unless backups are from a large number of slow network clients). Multiplexing negatively impacts the restore performance. If you are using VTL 6.0 or you plan to upgrade to VTL 6.0 in the future, NetApp highly recommends turning off multiplexing. Deduplication is generally not very effective if data is multiplexed. See section 4.6.3 VTL 6.0 for more specific recommendations about multiplexing.

Removing multiplexing in a VTL DTC environment has a downside, especially for incremental backups. It increases the number of virtual tapes and matching physical tapes required for backups. In some configurations, it might make sense to do nonmultiplexed full backups and database backups, while keeping the incremental or differential backups multiplexed.
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4.6

Stream Count Recommendations


Every simultaneous backup, restore, import, or export operation consumes resources on the VTL appliance, and the resources are limited. Improvements are incorporated at various release levels as indicated in the following sections. Note: Because backup application multiplexing is independent of the VTL (that is, a multiplexed data stream counts as one single I/O stream while hitting the VTL), any number of multiplexed streams can be supported. See section 4.5 Backup Application Multiplexing for recommendations regarding multiplexing with VTL. In this context, a stream is a stream of data from the backup application server to a VTL virtual tape drive. It is not a stream of data from a backup application client to a backup application server. A backup application server can multiplex streams of data from several backup clients and produce a single stream to the VTL.

4.6.1

VTL Releases Prior to 5.5 NetApp VTL appliances prior to VTL 5.5 support 64 simultaneous backup streams (note that a loaded virtual drive, even if inactive, is treated as a backup stream). Each simultaneous export/clone to tape reduces this by one. Each simultaneous import from tape reduces this by two.

4.6.2

VTL 5.5 and 5.6 VTL 5.5 and 5.6 support up to 90 concurrent streams. A virtual tape loaded in a drive for backup or restore purpose can be accounted as one stream. Each import, export, or clone operation uses one stream. If the backup application attempts to create backup streams in excess of the limit (90), the appliance issues the following event log message:

event 405, Library a: Tape 000 failed to load into drive Drive0: Total loaded drives and active import/export requests exceed the limit (90).

NetApp recommends testing a backup schedule for adequate performance before using it in a production environment. If loading a virtual drive is attempted and no streams are available, the virtual tape will be moved to the drive but the load will fail. From a backup application perspective, the virtual tape is in the drive but if I/O is done to the drive, it gets an error message stating that there is no media in the drive. DTC actions (clone, export, or import) become active only if a stream is available. If no streams are available, new export/import requests simply accumulate in the queue. A large number of streams are not required for maximum VTL performance; therefore, NetApp recommends between 16 and 64 concurrent streams. More than 64 virtual tape drives can be created and configured, if needed to be used by the backup/media servers. For example, a total of 100 virtual tape drives can be created in VTL and zoned to the backup/media servers. Depending on the backup schedule, the maximum number of drives used at a given time might be 50. If the VTL is configured to do cloning to 10 physical tape drives (and the cloning occurs during the backup window), the actual number of concurrent stream will not exceed 60. 4.6.3 VTL 6.0 VTL 6.0 introduces new postprocessing tasks so that the streams count and allocation changes slightly. The following concurrent tasks and streams are supported in VTL 6.0: Maximum stream count is 96 (this limit is enforced, like in VTL 5.5/5.6). The following workflows account for one stream: A virtual tape loaded in a drive for backup/restore operation A clone, export, or import operation
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The following workflows account for two streams: A format conversion (upgrade) task A migration task (migrates data to a different storage pool)

Up to 10 virtual tapes can be processed concurrently, counting as 20 streams. A deduplication task accounts for 2 to 16 streams: One single postprocess deduplication task (per storage pool) runs at a time. The deduplication task uses two streams per RAID group, up to a maximum of 16 streams. Only one FSB task (per storage pool) runs concurrently. FSB task does not contribute to the 96 streams.

FSB does not account for any stream:

Note: Postprocess deduplication and FSB tasks cannot run concurrently. NetApp recommends the following as best practices: The maximum number of concurrent streams for VTL 6.0 is similar to the ones for VTL 5.5/5.6 releases. If there is an overlap between the backup window, the clone/export window, and the postprocess window, the additional streams required by postprocess deduplication must be taken into account (up to 16 streams depending on the number of RAID groups). VTL 6.0 supports data deduplication. Data deduplication might be ineffective if the data is multiplexed by the backup application. Therefore, NetApp recommends turning off the backup application multiplexing when deduplication is used. Depending on the backup environment, some level of multiplexing might be needed to reduce the backup window. Incremental backups tend to generate less data on each client and multiplexing data from several clients might be required to obtain adequate backup performance. If this is the case, VTL is configured as follows: Enable deduplication on one virtual library and direct the following backups to this virtual library: Unmultiplexed full or incremental database backups Unmultiplexed file system full backups

Enable hardware compression on a second virtual library and direct the following backups to this virtual library: Multiplexed file system incremental backups

Having two virtual libraries with VTL 6.0 has another possible advantage. In case of DTC, shadow tape retention can be set to different values on the two virtual libraries. This is useful as an example in case you want to keep full backups longer than incrementals. Note: Other configurations are more appropriate for the specific backup environments. Work with a NetApp Professional Service representative to define the configuration most suitable for your environment.

4.7

Virtual Tape Drive Unload/Unmount Policy for VTL 6.0


Backup applications are designed to work with physical libraries. Some backup application might leave virtual tapes in drives for a while after a backup is complete. This is generally a configurable setting. With VTL, there is no benefit in leaving virtual tapes in drives. With VTL 6.0, there is one more reason to not leave virtual tapes in drives after a backup or restore operation: A virtual tape does not get scheduled for deduplication until it is unloaded from a drive.

4.8

Tivoli Storage Manager


This section is specific to backup environments using IBM Tivoli Storage Manager as a backup application.
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4.8.1

General Considerations 1. Barcode Naming Conventions Tivoli Storage Manager does not support upper case letters for tape barcodes. Ensure that you use lower case letters (and numbers) while creating virtual tapes. 2. Tivoli Storage Manager does not Support Multiplexing on Sequential Devices This is an architectural limitation of Tivoli Storage Manager aimed at improving restore speed from sequential devices (no data multiplexed, all data coming from a single stream and contiguous on tape). With a large number of client sessions running in parallel, there is normally a need for a disk-based pool (Tivoli Storage Manager cache or staging) before moving data to sequential devices. To improve performances and eventually get rid of Tivoli Storage Manager disk pools for data stored on VTL, you need to create a large number of virtual drives to handle all the sessions and avoid queuing. When doing this, keep in mind the VTL concurrent streams limitations discussed previously (90 or 96 depending on VTL versions). This aspect also impacts the choice of the virtual tape size that must be a compromise between the available space, the number of concurrent tapes to mount and the overall VTL configuration (that is, the maximum number of virtual tapes, currently set at 10000, deduplication, and so on).

Note: NetApp highly recommends Professional Service consulting for deploying VTL in a Tivoli Storage Manager environment. This document attempts to provide general guidelines, which might not apply to your specific environment. 3. Supported Emulations NetApp and IBM are supporting the following configurations for Tivoli Storage Manager:
Table 1 -

Tivoli Storage Manager configurations


TSM 5.5.1

Backup Server OS Library Type Tape Drive Type Requires the latest 5.5 patch (currently 5.5.0.3) Requires specific changer types.

All NetApp IBM LTO4 or STK T10000A


TSM 5.5

Note: This information is subject to change. For up-to-date information, refer to the NetApp VTL Compatibility List at http://now.netapp.com/NOW/products/osn/vtl/nearstore_vtl_compatibility.pdf. 4.8.2 Virtual Library Configuration Tivoli Storage Manager uses Element Addresses (also named Element IDs) to manage libraries (regardless of whether they are virtual or physical ones). Each element inside a library (library robot(s), tape drives, slots and I/O slots) has its own Element Address. Tivoli Storage Manager cannot manage the library properly if this value changes. For this reason, changes to a virtual library layout require Tivoli Storage Manager reconfiguration. To avoid reconfiguring at a later time, NetApp recommends sizing a virtual library to be used by Storage Manager for future growth. This implies creating more slots and drives in the virtual library than initially needed. Some of the drives can be initially hidden from the Tivoli Storage Manager server by using the VTL Port Assignment, the Host Access Control features, or both. The user must define the drives on the Tivoli Storage Manager server to access storage volumes, by using the DEFINE DRIVE and DEFINE PATH commands or through the management console. The following variables might be needed to define the drives: Library Name: the name of the library where the drives reside Drive Name: the name assigned to the drive
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World Wide Name: the Fibre Channel worldwide name for the device Serial Number: only applies to the drives in SCSI libraries and can be assigned manually, or a parameter AUTODETECT = YES can be defined to allow the server to manually correct the serial number entered. Element Address: the ELEMENT parameter represents the physical location of the drive within an automated library. The server can be allowed to pick up the element number from the drive itself or it can be specified while defining the drive. Element numbers for many libraries are available in the following link: www.ibm.com/software/sysmgmt/products/support/IBMTivoliStorageManager.html Some libraries might not support auto-detect of the element address by the Tivoli Storage Manager server. In these circumstances, an element address (number) must be specified during drive definition to a higher range to avoid conflicts from the existing devices or possible changes to the SAN infrastructure.

Note: Auto-detect is supported for virtual libraries of the type NetApp VTL. Each tape library vendor has an assigned offset for its libraries. So the element ID is made by the real element ID inside the library + the vendors own offset. For example, a Quantum library has an offset of 4092, so it can a have robot (address 0) with ID 4092, drives (addresses 1-4) with 4093-4095 and so on. 4.8.3 Tivoli Storage Manager Mount Retention Settings NetApp recommends setting Tivoli Storage Manager mount retention to 0 when backups are directed to VTL. This causes Tivoli Storage Manager to immediately unload a tape from virtual drives after a backup to this tape is completed. There is no benefit in leaving virtual tapes in drives, because the load/unload operation is instant with a VTL. Unloading a virtual tape from a drive after doing a backup to this virtual tape causes VTL to flush the data to disk immediately. For details, refer to the following Knowledge Base article: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb37488

4.9

Physical Library Sharing


One VTL appliance requires a dedicated physical library or partition (except if using ACSLS). Unless a physical library is managed by Sun ACSLS software, a VTL appliance is expected to control the entire physical library. The only way to share a non-ACSLS-managed physical library is to partition the library. Most physical library vendors support library partitioning through specific software. Each physical library partition appears as a separate physical library to VTL, effectively allowing library sharing by several VTL appliances, and/or sharing with other applications. See also the following Knowledge Base article: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb37435

4.10 Number of Initiators per VTL Port


While there is no hard limit on the number of backup or media server ports that can be connected to a VTL, NetApp recommends the following: Do not connect more than four initiator ports to each VTL port. Spread backup or media server connections to all VTL front-end ports (make port 0d a front-end port if needed). Each (initiator port, VTL port) pair must be in its own Fibre Channel zone.

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If several initiator ports are connected to a single VTL port, enable and configure VTL host access control.

4.11 Virtual Tape Record Size


VTL supports a maximum block size of 2-MB. Virtual tapes with 256-KB, 512-KB, and 1-MB block sizes have approximately the same level of efficiency. NetApp recommends the following as best practices: Some physical tape drives do not support a block size larger than 256K. As increasing the tape record size beyond 256K does not yield a significant performance gain, set the record size used by the backup application to 256K.

4.12 Enable VTL HTTP and SSH Ports


Some customer network environments have restrictions in using the HTTP port for security reasons. VTL uses the following HTTP ports: Port 80: This is the default web port that is used with a normal VTL GUI access. Port 8888: This is the VTL diagnostics web server that is required for troubleshooting. Port 9999: This is an alternate port for the regular VTL GUI. It is generally not required.

Note: SSH ports must also be enabled to use the VTL CLI from a host. Even if the VTL is primarily managed through the GUI, the CLI can be an important tool for troubleshooting. Therefore, NetApp recommends enabling SSH TCP/IP port as well. VTL uses the default SSH port.

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5 VTL Monitoring
Monitoring a NetApp VTL appliance and any attached devices involves viewing the amount of disk space used, the data transfer rates, physical tape drive information, import/export requests, event log information, and any actions required.

5.1

Administrator Overview
This section provides information about the current state of the NetApp VTL appliance. Figure 17 shows the main monitoring screen. It displays information about the amount of disk space allocated to and used by the NetApp VTL, actions required, the system event log, and so on. It also provides links to the Actions Required, Event Log screens, and Statistics and Import/Export requests.

Figure 17 - Administrator Overview screen

5.2

Actions Required
See the VTL Administration Guide for a full list of required actions. It also provides an interface for acknowledging and resolving required actions. See also the VTL Troubleshooting Guide for a list of the most frequent action codes, and more details on how to resolve them.

5.3

Notifications
Perform the following steps to enable VTL notifications:
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1. Enable VTL e-mail notifications. 2. Enable network communications between the VTL and your e-mail server. 3. Set up the VTL to send short e-mail notifications in case of a warning or error condition (using the Miscellaneous GUI page). 4. Enable VTL AutoSupport e-mails. 5. Set up AutoSupport to send e-mails to NetApp and to a customer-internal address (using the Support Tool GUI page). Alternatively, set up AutoSupport to send notifications only to NetApp HTTP or HTTPS. 6. If an SNMP-based management framework is used, set up the VTL to send SNMP traps in case of warnings or error messages. Traps can be filtered by the management framework. See the following Knowledge Base article for details: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb36204

5.4

Statistics
This section provides specific I/O statistics for each device used by the NetApp VTL. This includes both virtual and physical devices. Figure 18 shows the Statistics screen:

Figure 18 - Statistics screen

Use the Statistics screen to monitor specific I/O statistics for both the physical and virtual devices that are in use by the VTL appliance. For example, you can check the amount of disk space currently
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allocated to and used by a specific virtual library using the Statistics page. This screen also provides the type of virtual tape drives that are being used by the virtual library. This information is helpful in determining the state of the virtual library, including its compatibility with other virtual and physical media, based on the type of virtual tape drive being used. From the Daily Tasks menu, located on the left side of the screen, click Monitoring Statistics. The Statistics screen appears. This screen is divided into the following three sections: Virtual Library I/O Load RAID Group I/O Load

Physical Tape Device I/O Load You can find the VTL MIBs at http://now.netapp.com/NOW/download/tools/mib/#vtl 5.4.1 Virtual Library I/O Load The following items are listed on the Virtual Library I/O Load page: Library: provides the name of the virtual library. Allocated: specifies the amount of disk space that is allocated to the virtual library. Used: provides the total amount of user data stored on the virtual tapes associated with the virtual library. Data Written: provides the total amount of user data stored on the virtual tape. Drive: provides the number of virtual tape drives in the virtual library. Tape Label: if a virtual tape is currently loaded in the virtual tape drive, the VTL displays the label of the virtual tape. If no virtual tape is loaded, the VTL displays Empty. The label of a virtual tape is its barcode. Mode: specifies the mode of the virtual tape drive. The following are the valid modes: Write: the host is either currently writing to the drive or it has not sent any commands since it last wrote to the drive. Read: the host is either currently reading from the drive or it has not sent any commands since it last read from the drive. Idle: the drive is not currently being used. N/A: the library is not loaded in the drive.

IO/Sec: provides the total number of operations per second for the drive. MB/Sec: provides the data rate in megabytes per second for the drive. Load Factor: provides (in percentage) the I/O load of the virtual tape drive. A lower percentage indicates that the VTL is waiting more on I/O from the host side, while a higher percentage indicates that the VTL is waiting less on I/O from the host side. Used: provides the amount of user data stored on the virtual tape loaded in the virtual tape drive. Active Disk: specifies the disk from which the host is either reading or writing data. RAID Group I/O Load

5.4.2

The following items are listed on the RAID Group I/O Load page: Drive: provides the name of the back-end physical disks in the RAID group. Capacity: specifies the capacity of each disk. Used: gives the amount of disk space that is currently used. System Overhead: specifies the amount of disk space being used for system overhead. IO/Sec: provides the number of operations per second for the disk. MB/Sec: provides the data rate in megabytes per second for the disk.

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5.4.3

Physical Tape Device I/O Load The following items are listed on the Physical Tape Device I/O Load page: Drive: provides the name of the physical tape drive. Tape: provides the barcode of the physical tape that is currently loaded in the drive. MB/Sec: specifies the transfer rate of the physical tape drive.

5.5

Import/Export Requests
Import/export requests provide a list of all physical tapes that need to be mounted to physical tape drives. If a hard tape error occurs during an export/clone operation from the VTL to a physical library, the export/clone operation is failed and an action required request is generated. You have the option to retry or cancel the job. If the retry fails, put the same barcode on a new tape and retry again, or use the backup application to clone it to a different virtual tape.

5.6

Event Log
Event log provides a list of events for the NetApp VTL. Event log information includes the time and code of the specified event. The view is only a partial log. You can view additional logs by clicking the previous page link or clicking the Upload Complete event log.

5.7

Deduplication Tasks (VTL 6.0)


Deduplication tasks (also called background tasks as they are automatically scheduled by default) in VTL 6.0 appliances run daily.

5.7.1

Background Tasks VTL OS 6.0 introduces background tasks that are related to deduplication. Background tasks are used to perform regular postprocessing of data stored on disk. These tasks are initiated either automatically or manually. A window is configured so that the tasks run when other operations (such as backups or clones) are completed. The major background tasks include: Deduplication Verify Verify is a troubleshooting tool used only when directed by NetApp customer support. On-disk space saved during deduplication is made available for reuse. It runs by default after deduplication. Deduplication effect is visible after the FSB task through compression ratio. Free Space Build (FSB) Self deduplication (within and across volumes in the same deduplication request) Storage pool-wide deduplication

Note: Virtual tapes can be appended to or overwritten by the backup application during postprocessing. 5.7.2 Postprocessing Window You can define the postprocessing window settings when tasks are appended to the execute tasks list. When the window closes, if backgrounds tasks are running, an event is generated to notify the administrator and the task continues to execute until it is complete. Postprocessing window configuration is located under Configuration Tasks Miscellaneous Dedupe Configuration (Figure 19):

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Figure 19 - Dedupe Configuration screen

5.7.3

Deduplication Status You can check the status of deduplication tasks on the Deduplication Tasks screen. Deduplication Tasks are located under Daily Tasks Monitoring Deduplication Tasks. The Deduplication Tasks page shows the task with its description and status. Action includes a link for active and idle tasks, which allows tasks to be aborted or modified (Figure 20):

Figure 20 - Deduplication tasks

5.7.4

Task Management You can manage the deduplication tasks from the Monitoring page. You can perform the following task operations on the Monitoring page: Suspend, resume, delete, or abort deduplication tasks Remove virtual tapes from a postprocessing request

Completed tasks are removed from the VTL GUI after 24 hours. Failed tasks are kept on the GUI until they are successfully retried or deleted.

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5.7.5

Deduplication Task Scheduling A virtual tape is marked with a needs dedupe flag after data is appended, or overwritten, and unloaded from a drive. If cloning is enabled on the virtual library, the cloning operation is scheduled first. After it is cloned to a physical tape, this virtual tape is scheduled for postprocess deduplication. One single postprocess deduplication request includes many virtual tapes. A postprocess deduplication task, which is scheduled before the postprocess job window opens, is started during this postprocessing window (unless another deduplication task runs in the window). Tasks (of any type) scheduled during a postprocessing window can be started either during this window or the next postprocessing window. Postprocessing can also be started manually.

5.7.5.1 Manually Start Tasks To manually start background tasks, use the Dedupe Configuration tab. Click the here link to start all scheduled tasks (Figure 21):

Figure 21 - Dedupe Configuration screen

5.7.5.2 Scheduling Free Space Build (FSB) Task An FSB task is automatically started after the postprocessing task is complete. Only one FSB task per storage pool can run at a given time. For manually starting an FSB task, a link is available on the Dedupe Configuration page. An FSB task is automatically triggered when a storage pool is low on disk space. Free disk space is reclaimed only after the FSB task is complete.

5.8

Capacity Management
This section provides details about the capacity management of VTL appliances.

5.8.1

VTL 5.5/5.6 without DTC or Overallocation This section details the best practice recommendations for VTL setups without a back-end physical library. NetApp recommends the following as best practices in terms of VTL space allocation: Keep the compression enabled on the virtual library and keep the disk utilization around 90-92% (it is the best practice in any storage or backup device). Exceeding this limit can lead to performance slowdown due to the lack of free space available to write new data (this is not a pure VTL behavior but rather standard storage behavior, due to the way in which a storage subsystem writes data to RAID groups).
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Only a field test can evaluate the differences in disk utilization that can be achieved. As a general rule, there must be a 10% unused disk space to ensure good performance. This is also a best practice for having some contingency. An example of contingency is a degraded RAID group. If a RAID group goes into degraded mode because of a failed disk, the available disk space might be adversely affected. NetApp recommends that, for VTL to function properly, there must always be at least two RAID groups of disk space (or 10% of the total configured disk space) available. Allowing one or two RAID group to go offline without exceeding this free space is a good policy in environments with critical uptime considerations. VTL 5.5/5.6 with DTC and/or Overallocation

5.8.2

Overallocation is an optional VTL feature. If overallocation is not enabled, NetApp VTL automatically reserves enough disk space for any virtual tapes that you create. For example, if you create a virtual tape with a 40-GB capacity, NetApp VTL reserves 40 GB of space for that virtual tape from a storage pool. If you want to create 10 such tapes, you need 400 GB of available disk space. If you enable overallocation, NetApp VTL allocates disk space to virtual tapes as needed, regardless of how many volumes you initially create. This feature is sometimes called Capacity on Demand. Enabling overallocation provides the best disk and tape utilization, but increases the chance of running out of space. Although the VTL generates actions when available space is low (and if shadow tape is in use it will try to recover space), close monitoring is required to prevent low available space. If the disk capacity reaches 100%, an alert is generated, and any further attempts to write data will result in failures that impact the backup application. Also, note that if overallocation is used, problems such as a disk failure are more likely to cause the appliance to run out of available space. As a general rule, VTL disk usage must not exceed 85% of capacity. The recommendation here is a little more conservative because of the following considerations: Overallocation bypasses the normal capacity checks and lets the user create virtual tapes beyond the actual disk space available on the VTL. A temporary slowdown in VTL back-end activity (such as, a physical tape drive is down) might mean that more data needs to be stored on the VTL.

Note: After overallocation is enabled on a VTL appliance, do not change this setting. The following action required message is created when the VTL disk usage approaches the total available capacity:
VTL Action Code 1300: Disk usage is nearing capacity.

This Action Code indicates that the available disk space to save more user data is very low. The alert is triggered at 90% of total capacity. This condition does not cause any danger to the existing data that is stored inside the VTL. At this point, the VTL begins to purge shadow tapes if they exist. If the user continues to write data to the VTL without resolving this problem, VTL stops storing the new user data when it reaches its capacity and all the backups will fail. Use the following methods to resolve this: Export some of the virtual tapes to free up more space. When the export is complete, the virtual tape is deleted (or moved to the shadow pool if configured to do so and shadow tapes are automatically deleted when the VTL disk usage is nearing capacity). Backup applications only track and write to media, they do not delete the contents of media (physical or virtual tapes). Tapes expired or deleted in a backup application are marked as such in the backup application's media database (catalog) only. Use the backup application to zero out (label or quick erase) the expired media. If a backup application has a virtual tape that is previously

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full and now expired, this tape will be full in the VTL. The virtual tape remains full until it is either overwritten (truncated) by the backup application or until it is exported to the physical tape. 5.8.3 Add more physical disks to the VTL and create more RAID groups. Sizing the VTL to Avoid Running out of Disk Space VTL sizing needs to be readjusted periodically to account for additional backups directed to the VTL and size growth of the existing data sets. An example of sizing for a VTL environment with the following configuration is provided in Table 2: Three VTL700 appliances exist in a DTC environment. All backups are exported to physical tapes. Physical tapes are moved offsite daily.

The VTL appliances are currently too short in disk capacity. The following are suggestions to size the VTL appliances in order to keep one week of data on disk. Enabling shadow tape and keeping at least one full backup cycle (one week) of data on the VTL disk allows the following: Makes the restore process much faster. Simplifies the restore process. Reduces the need for active capacity management and everyday monitoring (because it allows taking full advantage of VTL shadow tape feature. If shadow tape is enabled, VTL automatically deletes the oldest shadow tapes to bring the capacity usage to 80%. However, after all the expired shadow tapes are deleted, VTL might still exceed 80% of capacity and delete shadow tapes that have not expired until the overall space usage is 80%).

Table 2 is a simple sizing table for three VTL appliances already in production and running out of disk space. It can be used to determine the number of disk shelves required:
Table 2 -

VTL sizing example


Current Backup Size Current VTL Capacity Additional Shelves Needed Data Growth Forecast Weekdays Weekend Backup window Friday 6:00 p.m. Monday 6:00 a.m. 52.5 TB 28 TB 22.5 TB 7 days Data backed up in a week 72.5 TB 36 TB 29.7 TB Current capacity with a compression ratio of 1.4:1 7 shelves - 51 TB 4 shelves - 29 TB 4 shelves - 29 TB To keep the data on disk for 7 days at 85% full +20% +40%

Notes

Backup window 7:00 p.m. 6:00 a.m. 5 TB 2 TB 1.8 TB

Total number of shelves required with the specified data growth 14* 8 6 17* 9 8

VTL1 VTL2 VTL3

5 more shelves 2 more shelves 1 more shelf

*Increasing the capacity on VTL2 and VTL3 first is recommended to spread the load across the three VTL appliances. 5.8.4 VTL 6.0 This section details the deduplication and compression ratio at different levels, space management, and additional capacity alerts for VTL 6.0.

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5.8.4.1 Deduplication and Compression Ratio Figure 22 shows the new GUI compression ratio of VTL 6.0 at the appliance level:

Figure 22 - Compression ratio at appliance level

The compression ratio shown is the combined effect of deduplication (if enabled) and compression for the whole VTL. If deduplication is enabled, data is deduplicated and compressed, and the final result of the two processes gives the overall space saving.

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Figure 23 shows the new GUI compression ratio of VTL 6.0 at the virtual library level:

Figure 23 - Compression ratio at virtual library level

Figure 24 shows the new GUI compression ratio of VTL 6.0 per virtual tape:

Figure 24 - Compression ratio per virtual tape

5.8.4.2 Space Management VTL6.0 deduplication is currently a postprocessing operation. This implies that the data for a backup session (typically the daily or weekend backup window) is first stored on disk in hardware compression format.

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The postprocessing deduplication task also implies that some additional space is needed as temporary cache. This space must be taken into consideration while managing VTL capacity (see the following sections for details). To save disk space, run the following operations: A postprocess deduplication task An FSB task

In addition, the space saving provided by deduplication increases over time (because there is more data to compare and deduplication is available the likelihood of having redundancies increases). Several full backups might be required to get the full benefits of deduplication. The type of data that is being backed up is key to how much capacity will be gained by deduplication. Note: Deduplication can occur within a virtual tape as well as between virtual tapes. Deduplication is for all data, and not just for successive backups. Very good deduplication ratios are generally expected for the following backups or files: Full backups Database backups Host backups with many similar operating system files (many systems running the same operating system)

Average deduplication ratios are generally expected for the following backups: Incremental backups

Poor deduplication ratios are generally expected for the following backups or files: Multiplexed backups Compressed or encrypted backups or files

NetApp recommends directing multiplexed, precompressed, or encrypted backups to a separate virtual library with deduplication disabled and keeping most of the processing power for the data, for which a good deduplication ratio is expected. NetApp also recommends the following as best practices: Do not exceed 70% of the total capacity of the VTL (after postprocessing and FSB tasks): Keep 10% of the total capacity of the VTL for deduplication databases and metadata. Keep an additional 20% of total disk capacity for storage of up to two full backups in undeduplicated format (not yet deduplicated) and for any contingencies (for example, a RAID group becomes degraded due to a defective disk).

5.8.4.3 Capacity Alerts This section describes the capacity alerts for VTL 6.0. The following error codes (as seen in the Action Required section of the VTL Monitoring page) require special attention with the VTL 6.0 release or later:
1300 Disk usage is nearing capacity. 3301 Disk usage is at its capacity.

The following message is also displayed in the event log:


2921 info FSB triggered as space usage crossed [PERCENT] % mark.

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This indicates that the overall VTL disk space utilization crossed a predefined threshold (the thresholds are currently at 60%, 70%, 80%, or 90%). An FSB task gets scheduled to free up disk space that is no longer needed. As a best practice, NetApp recommends not exceeding 70% of the overall disk space usage, after postprocessing and FSB tasks. An FSB task reclaims space by deleting redundant data that is identified during postprocessing tasks. To reduce the amount of disk space used, perform one or more of the following tasks: Manually start an FSB task. Delete shadow tapes. Export virtual tapes to physical tapes.

Delete and re-create the expired virtual tapes (as explained in section 5.8.2 VTL 5.5/5.6 with DTC and/or Overallocation). Contact NetApp customer support for more information.

5.9

VTL Maintenance Procedures


This section details the VTL maintenance procedures.

5.9.1

Configuration Management Upon major configuration changes or when updating the VTL software, NetApp recommends saving the VTL configuration to a file. To save the file, go to Miscellaneous Configuration Management, and then click the Save Configuration link. A dialog box appears prompting you to save the file.

Note: If AutoSupport is enabled, the configuration is automatically saved as part of the weekly AutoSupport, which is sent every Sunday. However, you might not want to wait until the end of the week to save this information. NetApp recommends saving the configuration as you make changes. 5.9.2 VTL Software Updates Newer versions of the VTL software are available periodically to provide additional features as well as software defect fixes. It is best to update to newer versions as the VTL software becomes available. Contact NetApp support team for advice on upgrading. For more information, see Appendix A: NetApp VTL Upgrade. 5.9.3 Disk Drive Replacement For detailed information about how to troubleshoot degraded RAID groups and how to identify and replace a defective disk, see the VTL Troubleshooting Guide. 5.9.4 VTL Troubleshooting The VTL has an event log that contains events which describe activities that occur on the VTL. You can access this log from Monitoring Event Log. Event log is the first log that is useful to review as part of the troubleshooting steps. If the event log does not provide enough information to resolve the issue while reviewing, contact NetApp customer support and open a support case. In most cases, the support engineer requires a recent diagnostic download from the system. You can download this diagnostic file from Support Tools Diagnostic Download. Select all the check boxes to include the highest level of detail in the diagnostic file. This file is compressible and you can reduce its size by zipping it prior to sending it to the support engineer. Note: For more information, see the VTL Troubleshooting Guide.

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6 Physical Tape Management Operations


6.1 Direct Tape Creation (DTC)
As mentioned in the earlier chapter, the VTL can create physical tapes that are 100% identical to the virtual tapes written by the backup host. This feature is called Direct Tape Creation (DTC). To support DTC, one or more physical tape drives within one or more physical libraries must be dedicated to the VTL appliance. DTC supports two basic modes: cloning and export. Note: All tapes that are to be cloned or exported must have a one-to-one relationship between barcodes in the virtual library and the physical library. In cloning mode, if a virtual tape is written to and then unloaded from a virtual tape drive, the virtual tape is copied to a physical tape. In export mode, if a virtual tape is ejected from a virtual library, the virtual tape is copied to a physical tape with the same barcode and then either deleted or moved to the shadow tape area. When shadow tape is enabled, the local virtual tape is retained; otherwise it is removed. Figure 25 and Figure 26 provide an overview of the two modes:

Option 1 - Export with Shadow Tapes

Figure 25 - Export with shadow tapes

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Option 2 - Cloning and Export

Figure 26 - Cloning and export

The main difference between the two modes is that in direct export a tape is no longer visible in the VTL from a backup software point of view. In cloning, the virtual tape is replicated to the physical tape but still present in the VTL and can be used by the backup software. In addition, for export, if shadow tape is used, the virtual tape is still somewhere inside the VTL and can be imported with a change in attributes. In case no shadow tape area is enabled, the tape is only on the physical library and needs to be imported into the VTL in case it is needed. This means that the VTL directly manages the creation of copied virtual tapes without the intervention of the backup software.

6.2

Physical Tape Caveats and Best Practices


This section provides the best practices for physical tapes. NetApp recommends using one single tape drive type in one VTL appliance. The virtual tape drive type and physical tape drive type must match exactly so that the data can be correctly replicated. For instance, the following are all different drives: IBM LTO3 IBM LTO4

HP LTO3 To ensure that barcodes are correctly created in the virtual tape, NetApp recommends using the option Create virtual tapes using barcodes. With this option, the VTL scans available tapes in the physical library and creates corresponding virtual tapes with same barcodes. This option is located in Daily Tasks Virtual Tapes Create virtual tapes using barcodes.

6.3

Shadow Tape Caveats and Best Practices


This section provides the best practices for shadow tapes. With shadow tape enabled, the data is kept on VTL disks after the physical tapes are created and ejected from the physical library. The data is kept on disk as long as the VTL total capacity does not exceed about 90% of the available disk space. The shadow tape pool and retention time can be enabled on a virtual library basis. When a tape enters the shadow tape pool, a countdown timer (starting from retention time) is started for that tape. When the timer reaches zero, it is marked as expired but is not automatically purged. If the used disk capacity reaches about 90% of the available disk capacity, VTL begins purging shadow tapes until 10% of the

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total capacity is freed (or all shadow tapes are deleted). The tapes that have expired first are deleted first. VTL allows setting different retentions for shadow tapes in different virtual libraries. For example, two virtual libraries can be created to back up data from two different NetBackupTM pools based on the restore frequency. One library can have shadow tape retention of three days, and the other one can have retention of 10 days. Note: The deletion process of shadow tapes in VTL 6.0 is slightly different. See the following section for details. 6.3.1 VTL 6.0 and Shadow Tapes Similar to VTL 5.x, the expired shadow tapes are not automatically deleted unless space is needed in the storage pool. When a storage pools usage reaches 80% of the total capacity (around 90% of the usable capacity, which excludes metadata and deduplication databases), the VTL deletes only the expired tapes from the shadow tape pool. If a storage pool exceeds 80% of the total capacity and has only unexpired shadow tapes, it needs a manual freeing up of space. Perform the following: Delete unexpired shadow tapes. Identify the oldest shadow tapes using the GUI, and from the CLI run stape show.

The following is an example of the output from stape show:


Console> stape help Shadow Tape Management help -- Help on Shadow Tape Management. list -- List name(s) of Volumes in Shadow Tape Pool. show -- Detailed listing of all Volumes in Shadow Tape Pool. lookup -- Display name if Shadow Tape exists. expire -- Expire a Shadow Tape. Console> stape show 1. Virtual Tape:Index: 1 Name: PA8101 Age: 38 Compression Ratio: 2.0 : 0 Source Library: VIRTUAL LIBRARY11_ConvertAll_Def #Files: 18 Need to Dedup: False Raw Capacity: 100000000000 Data Written: 104706502656 Disk Compression Type: DeDuplication Tape Smart Sizing: IBM LTO Remaining Time: 9 23:59

6.4

Cloning a Virtual Tape to a Physical Tape


To clone a virtual tape to a physical tape, perform the following steps:
Step 1. Action Enable the VTL Cloning feature from the Virtual Library page on the VTL GUI. Enabling cloning copies the data to physical tapes as soon as a backup is complete and a virtual tape is unloaded from a drive. The export operation that is triggered later by the eject command does not require any data copy. The export just deletes the on-disk copy and ejects the tape from the physical library. Optimize VTL cloning by enabling the VTL Smart Cloning feature. Use the Advanced Options page on the VTL GUI and ensure that smart cloning is not disabled. Smart cloning appends data to the end of the physical tape, instead of writing the physical tape from the beginning, each time data is appended to a virtual tape.

2.

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Step 3.

Action Enable Physical Tape Validation from the Advanced Options page on the VTL GUI. This option performs a safety check when using smart cloning. With this option enabled, the VTL performs a check sum verification process before appending to a tape to ensure that the data is appended to the right physical tape.

6.4.1

Deferred Cloning Use deferred cloning to reduce the backup window by increasing the backup performance (since the VTL bandwidth is not shared with cloning operations).

6.4.2

VTL 6.0 Specific Behavior If cloning is enabled, it is performed before deduplication. Therefore, the VTL operations occur in the following order: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. The backup application loads a tape in a virtual drive. The backup application writes backup data to this virtual tape. The backup application unloads the tape from the virtual drive. The VTL schedules a clone operation. The clone operation runs based on the schedule (if deferred cloning is enabled) or available physical tape drives. 6. When the clone operation is complete, the virtual tape is scheduled for postprocessing. 7. The postprocessing runs as per schedule (as set up in the postprocessing window). NetApp recommends the following as best practices: VTL 6.0 with DTC needs to perform three daily operations: backups, clone operation, and postprocessing. NetApp does not generally recommend using deferred cloning with VTL 6.0. Doing cloning during the backup window allows more time for postprocessing (see section 3.3.5 VTL Duty Cycles).

6.5

Exporting from a Virtual Library to a Physical Library


NetApp recommends that you enable cloning so that data is copied to physical tapes during the same time period as the backups, and the export or vaulting can be done instantly in the morning without data copy. The main trade-off to consider is a possible extension of the backup window, due to higher VTL load. In this case, enabling deferred cloning might be a better option. To export tapes from a virtual library to a physical library, perform the following steps:
Step 1. 2. Action Use the backup application to generate a list of tapes to be exported. Use the backup application to eject tapes in the list. Ejecting tapes cause the following actions to be performed within the VTL: The tape is removed from the virtual library and is added to the import/export queue. The tapes in the queue are processed, and the data on the virtual tape is written to the physical tape with a matching barcode. After successful creation of the physical tape, the virtual tape is moved to the shadow tape pool (if enabled) or deleted to free disk space. Perform inventory update from the backup application to move the tape back to offsite.

3.

6.5.1

VTL 6.0 Specific Behavior NetApp recommends that you enable the following options when using export with VTL 6.0: Cloning (not deferred cloning)
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Shadow tape. This way, the backup application might schedule virtual tape ejects, which trigger a VTL export operation, at any time without impacting the VTL operations schedule (defined in section 6.4 Cloning a Virtual Tape to a Physical Tape).

6.6

Tape Drive Cleaning


Tape drive cleaning must be handled through the physical robot. Generally, it can be managed from the physical robot management utility (Web-based), or the LCD display. While the robot is going through the cleaning process, it is best if there is no activity of the physical tape drive. This can be achieved from the VTL GUI. Perform the following steps:
Step 1. 2. Action Check the physical library for indications of a dirty drive. Continue only if a dirty drive is found. Disable the physical drive, or else ensure that no clone/exports can occur, as shown in the following screenshot:

3. 4.

Issue a drive cleaning request on the physical library. When complete, continue to the next step. Reenable the physical drive from the VTL GUI.

Note: Setting up automatic drive cleaning by the physical library is another option. During cleaning, the drive becomes unavailable to the VTL, which might cause the DTC operations to fail. To avoid this, NetApp recommends setting the cleaning schedule so that the cleaning occurs when the VTL is not performing any DTC operations.

6.7

Physical Tape Drives Maintenance Operations


Take the drive offline using the VTL GUI while it is being repaired or waiting for repair.

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7 Restore
7.1 Restore Operation with Tapes in the Virtual Library
For a VTL restore with tapes in a virtual library, perform the following steps:
Step 1. 2. 3. Action The backup application determines which tape(s) (identified by barcode) is/are required for restore. The backup application controls the virtual robot to move the virtual tape from a slot to a virtual drive. The backup application instructs the Media server or Storage Node to mount the tape, positions, and starts streaming the data. This continues until the required data is read. The backup application unmounts the virtual tape and controls the robot to move the virtual tape back from the drive to a slot.

4.

Note: This workflow is the same for a NetApp VTL or a standard physical tape library.

7.2

Restore Operation with Tapes not in the Virtual Library


For a VTL restore with the tapes not in the virtual library, perform the following steps:
Step 1. 2. 3. 4. Action The restore job starts and the backup application determines which tape (identified by barcode) is required for restore. The backup application creates a mount request for a tape not in an attached library. Check the location of the tape and start import. If the tape exists in the shadow pool, import it from the shadow tape pool, as shown in the following screenshot:

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Step 5.

Action If the tape exists in physical library, import it from the physical library, as shown in the following screenshot:

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Step 6.

Action If the tape exists offsite, perform all the following Steps: a. Retrieve it from the offsite and insert it into a physical library. b. Import it from the VTL and then rescan the physical library inventory, as shown in the following screenshot:

c. Import from the physical library, as shown in the following screenshot:

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Step

Action

7. 8. 9.

Perform an inventory update from the backup application. The restore job continues automatically, or you must acknowledge the mount request, depending on the backup application. After the restore is complete, eject the tape from the VTL and send the physical tape back to the offsite, if applicable.

Note specific to Symantec NetBackup: When using the NetApp VTL Shadow Tape Integration, no administrator intervention is required to import the ejected virtual tape. Upgrade NetBackup to at least NBU 6.0MP5 or NBU 6.5.1 and use NetApps latest version of the VTL integration script with NetBackup. This script provides transparent restore operations from disk, shadow tape, or physical tape directly from NetBackup, without any manual operation on the VTL. For details, refer to the following Knowledge Base article: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb31608 Tapes are imported as read-only. This prevents the tape from being appended with new data. After use, the physical tape is returned offsite or revaulted according to the offsite policy. Remember to remove the imported tape after a set number of days to reclaim space on the VTL.

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7.3
7.3.1

Manually Importing Tapes into a VTL Caveats and Best Practices


Manually Importing Shadow Tapes To manually import shadow tapes, perform the following steps:
Step 1. 2. Go to Daily Tasks Virtual Library. Virtual Tapes Action Import Virtual Tapes from Shadow Tapes Pool Select the Tape,

Select the Import Read-only check box, as shown in the following screenshot:

See the following Knowledge Base article for more information: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb32100 If the backup application is NetBackup, see also section 7.4 Automated Shadow Tape and Physical Tape Import. 7.3.2 Manually Importing Physical Tapes If the virtual tape to restore from is in the shadow tape pool, use the import virtual tape from shadow tape option (see the previous section). If the backup application is NetBackup, see also section 7.4 Automated Shadow Tape and Physical Tape Import. To manually import physical tapes, perform the following steps:
Step 1. 2. 3. Action Use the VTL GUI tab Import virtual tape from physical library. Use the read-only option. Start the restore (import on demand/pass-through restore). There is no need to wait for the import to complete.

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Step 4. 5.

Action If the physical tape must first be inserted in the physical library, insert the media into the entry/exit port (mailbox). Ensure that the entry/exit port (EEP) options are set correctly. Go to Configuration Tasks Advanced check Enable EEP and check Automatically Move Physical Tapes From EEP to Slots, as shown in the following screenshot:

6. 7.

Go to Daily Tasks media.

Physical Libraries

Rescan, and rescan the physical library to discover the new

Go to Daily Tasks Virtual Tapes Import Virtual Tapes from Physical Library Select the Tape, Virtual Library, Physical Library, and Special Instructions, as shown in the following screenshot:

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See the following Knowledge Base article for more information: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb32100

7.4

Automated Shadow Tape and Physical Tape Import


With the release of NetBackup 6.5 MP1, shadow tapes can be automatically imported using a custom tool kit developed by NetApp and Symantec. For detailed instructions and downloads, see http://now.netapp.com/NOW/knowledge/docs/vtl/shadowtape/v1.0/rnote/index.shtml.

7.4.1

VTL Integration Script with NetBackup The VTL integration script with NetBackup provides transparent restores from disk, shadow tape, or physical tape directly from NetBackup, without any manual operation on the VTL. Refer to the following Knowledge Base article for more information: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb31608

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8 Physical Tape Vaulting and Recycling


8.1 Moving Tapes from the Physical Library
The two ways to move tapes from the physical library are: 8.1.1 Opening the main door of the physical drives Using the entry/exit port or EEP Opening the Main Door on the Physical Drives To move tapes from the physical library by opening the main door of the physical drives, complete the following steps:
Step 1. Action From the VTL, disable the physical drives or ensure that no clone/exports are occurring. See the following screenshot:

2.

Complete the following steps: a. Open the door. b. Remove the tapes to transport them offsite c. Insert new or recyclable tapes for new backups d. Close the door.

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Step 3.

Action From the VTL, enable physical drives, if applicable, and rescan the inventory of the physical library, as shown in the following screenshot:

4.

Perform an inventory update from the backup application.

8.1.2

Using the Entry/Exit Port (EEP) To move tapes from the physical library using the entry/exit port or EEP, complete the following steps:

Step 1. 2.

Action Enable EEP from the Advanced Options page including relevant and situational Move physical tapes check boxes. Perform the following steps: a. Open the EEP. b. Remove the tapes to transport them offsite. c. Insert new or recyclable tapes for new backups. d. Close the EEP. Perform an inventory update from the backup application.

3.

8.1.3

Offsiting Policies You must create new backup application policies for backups that need to be sent offsite. These policies must meet the following objectives: Send data to the appropriate devices through your backup application policies. Ensure that the data is sent offsite through the VTL.

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For example, with Symantec NetBackup, the first point is directly configurable using storage unit configuration, and the NetBackup Vault instigates the replication of data using the DTC functionality.

8.2
8.2.1

Making New or Returning Tapes Available


Recycling You might need to add the physical tapes back to the VTL for recycling after the data is expired. You can perform physical tape recycling in one of the following ways: Create empty virtual tapes matching the physical tape barcodes. Create virtual tapes with matching physical tape barcodes and backup application labels (reading labels from the physical tapes are required, if a shadow tape is not present).

Method 1 - Creating empty virtual tapes matching the physical tape barcodes: Method 1 is generally recommended for the following backup applications: Symantec NetBackup ComVault Galaxy IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (if media is no longer in volume history).

This option does not require physical tape movement and you must use it if compatible with the backup application. Perform the following steps: If the physical tape to be recycled is in shadow tape, delete the shadow tape and create a blank virtual tape with the same barcode. If the physical tape to be recycled is not in shadow tape, use the VTL GUI tab Create Virtual Tape using barcode: This option creates new, blank tapes matching the barcodes in the physical library. When the backup application tries to recycle these tapes, it will find no media label. Some backup applications assume that this is a new tape and will continue relabeling. Set up the backup application to overwrite blank or scratch tapes.

If you are using a backup application that does not verify the on-tape media label prior to recycling or manual labeling, use the Create virtual tapes using barcodes option (see the following screenshot). In this option, virtual tapes are created that match the barcodes from the physical library and no physical tape mounts are required.

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Figure 27 - Create virtual tapes using the barcodes option

Perform an inventory update in the backup application. If you are manually labeling tapes into media pools, complete the task. Method 2 - Creating virtual tapes with matching physical tape barcodes and backup application labels: Use this method when you want to use the tape recycling ability of the backup software itself and the backup software recycles a tape only if it can verify the previous media label. Method 2 is generally recommended for the following backup applications: EMC Networker IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (if media is in volume history) HP Data Protector Syncsort Backup Express

Perform the following steps: If the physical tape to be recycled is in shadow tape, import from the shadow tape (in read/write mode). If the physical tape to be recycled is not in shadow tape, use a quick load import, which reads the first 1 MB of data from the physical tape. Then, do an inventory in the backup application. The backup application recognizes the tape labels. This process can be scripted. The script uses the virtual tape import VTL CLI command with the quick load option.

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If you are using a backup application that verifies the on-tape media label, use the Import virtual tapes from physical library with the quick load option (see the following screenshot). In this option, virtual tapes are created that match the barcodes from the physical library and the first few MBs (which contain the media label) are imported.

Figure 28 - Import virtual tapes from physical library with the quick-load option

Perform an inventory update in the backup application. If you are manually labeling tapes into media pools, complete the task.

8.3

Automating Physical Tape Vaulting and Recycling


Automation is done by VTL customers using one of the following methods: NetBackup Vault: The Symantec NetBackup Vault extension tracks offsite media with specialized reporting down to the slot location in the offsite storage vendors vault facility. In addition to locating tapes, Vault enables the efficient recall of expired tapes. Vault can be integrated with the NetApp fully supported DTC feature of the VTL for enterprise-class performance and media management. Scripts: Scripts based on a combination of backup application CLI and VTL CLI can be developed for automating physical tape vaulting and recycling.

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9 Using VTL with Other NetApp Products


9.1 Backup Data on a NetApp FAS system
Data located on a NetApp FAS system can be backed up to a NetApp VTL appliance. The VTL can be attached to the FAS system using a Fibre Channel connection, exactly the same way that a physical library is attached to a FAS system. Furthermore, the backup can be controlled by a backup application using Network Data Management Protocol (NDMP). NDMP is an open standard for centralized control of enterprise-wide data management. The NDMP architecture allows backup application vendors to control native backup and restore facilities in NetApp FAS systems and other network-attached servers. VTL supports the NDMP Fibre Channel (SAN)-attached model, as shown in the following figure:

Figure 29 - NDMP Fibre Channel (SAN)-attached model

In the Fibre Channel (FC) model, the backup server uses NDMP over the LAN to instruct the FAS system to start the backup. The FAS system then sends the data contained in the backup to a VTL, attached directly to the FAS system through Fibre Channel. During the backup, information about files and directories written to tape is transferred through NDMP over the LAN to the backup server where it is maintained in an index. For a restore operation, the backup server uses NDMP over the LAN to instruct the FAS system to start restoring files. Data is read from the FAS system's FC-attached VTL drives and stored by the FAS system. During backup and restore, the backup server does not receive the actual data being written or read from the tape. As a result, this model is commonly referred to as LAN-free backup. Note: A FAS system can connect to multiple VTL appliances. A VTL can be connected to multiple FAS systems. However, only one Fibre Channel connection from one given FAS system to one given VTL is supported. For more information about backing up data located on a NetApp FAS system, refer to the following document: http://www.netapp.com/library/tr/3131.pdf NetApp recommends using Data ONTAP 6.5 and later and VTL OS 5.5 and later. To configure NDMP on a FAS system, perform the following steps:
Step 1. 2. Action Check whether ndmpd is running or not. Use the ndmpd status or options ndmpd commands for this purpose. Set the authentication type (it can be either plain text, or challenge, or both). Use the options ndmpd command for this purpose.

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Step 3.

Action If you do not want to use the FAS login credentials to configure the NDMP host, add a new user and have NDMP generate a password. Use the ndmpd password <usrname> command for this purpose.

No special configuration needs to be done on the FAS system (or on the VTL) to hook up a VTL (when compared to a physical tape). Just like any other physical tape drive, you can connect the VTL directly to the FAS system or through an FC switch.

9.2

Using VTL with NetApp DataFort


NetApp supports DataFort between the backup host and the VTL, and between the VTL and a physical drive. Special configuration is required for both the VTL and DataFort and is detailed in the following Knowledge Base articles: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb27078 https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb26520

Select Use NetApp DataFort in the VTL Advanced Options page. You must select this check box only if you are using a DataFort between the VTL and the physical tape device. It is a global setting (that is, all physical tape devices must be DataFort devices if selected). The following figure illustrates the VTL with NetApp DataFort architecture:

Figure 30 - NetApp DataFort FC525 (2 port) architecture

The most common use case is to insert a NetApp DataFort box in the FC path between a VTL and physical tape libraries or drives to encrypt data on physical tapes. In VTL6.0, this is the recommended configuration if deduplication is enabled. A DataFort between the backup host and the VTL sends encrypted data to VTL, which prevents effective deduplication.
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10 Appendix A: NetApp VTL Upgrade


NetApp recommends all major upgrades of either the VTL operating system or shelf firmware to be performed by NetApp Professional Services. Note: If you are running a non-GA release, contact NetApp customer support before attempting any upgrade.

10.1 VTL OS Upgrade Process


Note: VTL firmware downgrade is not supported. For firmware upgrade process, see the following Knowledge Base article: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb40758

10.2 VTL Shelf Firmware Upgrade Process and Best Practices


10.2.1 Shelf Firmware Upgrade Process For the VTL shelf firmware upgrade process, see the following Knowledge Base article: https://now.netapp.com/Knowledgebase/solutionarea.asp?id=kb22530 10.2.2 Upgrading from VTL Release 5.2.2 or Earlier Starting with version 4.1.2, the VTL firmware updates also contain shelf firmware updates. If the shelf firmware in use is older than the version contained in the VTL firmware, the following message is generated:
1460 - Shelf firmware needs upgrade. New firmware is available for upgrade.

Note: Do not upgrade shelf firmware while running the 5.2.2 release due to Bug ID 256293. This bug is fixed in the 5.2.3 release. The upgrade process does not need to be performed immediately and can be scheduled for a maintenance window. Upgrading shelf firmware takes approximately 10 minutes per shelf. Shelves are upgraded sequentially. For example, on a VTL with four shelves, the process can take up to 40 minutes. Before the upgrade, perform the following steps:
Step 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Action Ensure that the VTL is idle. There must be no backups, imports, exports, clones, or VTL 6.0 background tasks. Ensure that the backup application does not initiate communications with the VTL by shutting down the application. Make a backup copy of the VTL configuration. Unload all virtual tapes from the drives. After any activity on the VTL, wait for 10 minutes before proceeding with the upgrade.

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11 Appendix B: References
The following documents and reference materials can be used in connection with this document:
Table 3 -

Reference documents.
Location or URL To be published on now.netapp.com. http://now.netapp.com/NOW/knowledge/docs/vtl/5.6/pdfs/vtl/admin.pdf http://now.netapp.com/NOW/knowledge/docs/vtl/5.6/pdfs/vtl/cmdref.pdf http://now.netapp.com/NOW/products/osn/vtl/nearstore_vtl_compatibility.pdf

Document Title VTL Troubleshooting Guide VTL Administration Guide VTL CLI Guide NetApp VTL Compatibility List

NetApp University organizes frequent NetApp VTL Administration and Troubleshooting trainings. For details, go to http://now.netapp.com.

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