Friday, July 22, 2011

BackupExec Logs Using Too Much Space? Poor Domino

This is for a friend but an excellent reminder to everyone else.

If you happen to notice your C drive rapidly losing disk space even though nothing is there, no temp files, no swap files, etc.., this may be your problem.

When you installed Symantec's BackupExec, did you install it to the C drive?
And if this was an older server, did C not have too many Gigabytes, like say 25?

Well slowly over time you may experience disk space evaporation. Not as nice as the Angel's Share of Scotch Whisky because this can and will impact your Domino server.

How you might ask? A small list of reasons:

File compaction or any utilities need SPACE to do their dirty work to make your server feel like a teenager every morning or weekend, depending on when you run these. As a rough estimate I like to have at least 2.5 times the disk space free as the LARGEST .NSF file. This ensures we have growth capabilities and some time before we come to a screeching halt.
Server stops processing. The console looks frozen. Well what do you do when you run out of energy...sleep! So does your server. It can hang on with swap file RAM and such but wait too long and it says hello to the fishes and goes quiet.
Mail stops routing. If there is not enough space to temporary store attachments and such conversions, no mail flows.
Replication errors and conflicts. I know you figured this one out already.
FTI or Full Text Index stops indexing or gets corrupted, and thus searches do not work properly. Help desk calls ensue and if you are not running a monitoring program (DDM/GSX Monitor/Vitalsigns)you lose! You get no chocolates, good day sir!

I could go on but you get the idea.

So how do you 1) know if this is happening? 2) Prevent the logs from gobbling up space like Pac-Man?

DDM, Domino Domain Monitoring the last few years I have been pushing on Admins to make even simple usage of DDM. It will help you in so many ways even if you set up the basic warnings. You can listen to it or get the slides from my Slide tab above or this link. At a minimum set up a disk space warning so when the server gets below, 10GB, or whatever is 2.5x the largest database, you know about it and can start planning.

Now to prevent the problem from happening to begin with from Symantec.
There is a utility installed in your Program files\Symantec\Backup Exec\ folder called Beutility.exe.
This program acts like a super administrator to the BackupExec settings.
You see you can not just change the location of the logs by clicking on Tools-Options from the menu bar, go down to Job Defaults and find Job Logs and edit it. The field is not editable.

So open up the BEutility file and click on All Media Servers and then right click on your server and select Set job log and catalog location. Then click on the check box to change the locations and enter the new location. Save and it will prompt you to restart the services and handle it all for you.
Screen shots and more details from this Symantec Technote Article: TECH50241

You can verify it worked by clicking on Tools-Options from the menu bar, go down to Job Defaults and find Job Logs and you will now see it changed.

Hope this helps my friend, and you, if you ever see this happening.

1 comment:

  1. good point. Additionally, the catalog files are text, so they compress very very nicely as well. I'd set the folder they live to be compressed. No use wasting all that space.