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NetWorker 7.5.1 Released

Posted by Preston on 2009-03-31

NetWorker 7.5.1 oops sorry, SP1 has been released.

Previously we’ve seen scenarios where documentation has been updated on PowerLink for up to a couple of weeks before the release of the accompanying product. At the moment though instead we’ve got the reverse; 7.5.1 oops, sorry, SP1 software is available for download, but no notes … yet.

I’m downloading now for testing – I’ve currently held off recommending 7.5 to any customer as yet, preferring to have them stick to 7.4.4 wherever possible. Hopefully the release notes won’t be too far behind, as testing a new service pack without the release notes is a bit hit and miss.

Important edit – added later but top

Important! Covered in the release notes, which I know you read, right? If you use scripts that use mminfo, you really, really need to be across this. Look at the output from mminfo:

$ mminfo -s nox -q "client=archon,name=/Users/preston/tmp/"
 volume        client       date      size   level  name
Staging-03     archon    31/03/2009  45 MB  manual  /Users/preston/tmp/
Staging-03.RO  archon    31/03/2009  45 MB  manual  /Users/preston/tmp/

That’s right – if you do a manual backup, it doesn’t show up as a ‘blank’ level any more.

Edit

Things that drive me nuts:

  • Changes that don’t appear in the release notes.

Look at this in change to the ‘Sessions’ output in nsrwatch:

Sessions:
 50 MB are saved to pool 'Staging' (Staging-01) of aralathan:/
 nox:/d/03 saving to pool 'Staging' (Staging-03) 768 MB

Now, tell me where in the Release Notes that this is mentioned. I’ll give you a hint: nowhere.

I know some things get forgotten, but it is very frustrating when release notes have a “what’s new” section that doesn’t include everything that’s new!

Next Edit

Definitely mentioned in the release notes as a fixed bug, as a long-term nsradmin user, I’m relieved to see that the bug I logged last year has been fixed – that being nsradmin crashes when you resize the window. If you live in nsradmin like I do, this is a handy fix.

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10 Responses to “NetWorker 7.5.1 Released”

  1. Dave Vaillancourt said

    Wow, we are upgrading to 7.4.4 today from 7.4.2 and thought that was the latest – 7.4.2 was CRAP, lots of problems

    • Preston said

      The thing to remember with NetWorker is there’s always at least two versions under active development and support at all times. While 7.5.1 was released more recently, 7.4.4 is still “new” (having been released at the end of December); more so, unless there’s features you particularly want in the 7.5.x tree, you may find more luck with 7.4.4. The 7.4.4 release has been a particularly good/stable one.

  2. vijaysys said

    Hi Preston

    I use NW 7.4.4 on the production with RHEL as OS for NetWorker Server. During client configuration for backup, I used to add all solaris/linux clients as Unix with compression directives and windows servers as “Windows NT with compression directive”.

    please guide me whether this one is a proper config for client interms of neat backup and restoration concerned, because the client where i am working is very demanding with lot of client data restoration requests and retention of data for 3 years.

    thanks

    VJ

    • Preston said

      Client side compression is something that you typically shouldn’t be relying on, which is something that I cover in performance tuning in my book, Enterprise Systems Backup and Recovery: A Corporate Insurance Policy. Normally you’d only use client side compression in one of the following scenarios:

      Very slow links between client and server
      Firewall between client and server (and then, not always)
      If you’re doing client-side encryption as well (in which case you compress, then encrypt)
      If you’re backing up to disk and want to minimise the amount of disk you have to deploy (not something I’d recommend, by the way)

      The problems with client side compression is that it can slow down non-backup processing on the clients during the backup process, and additionally as soon as you’ve got client-side compression enabled, you can throw out any chance of getting hardware compression at the tape level.

      As far as the retention requirements are concerned, using client side compression has no tangible effect outside of standard backup and recovery requirements, so the question really is whether client-side compression is actually appropriate for the environment that you’re backing up in.

  3. Paul D said

    Hi,

    During my setup of 7.5.1 I have been running some cloning tests that clone savesets from disk to tape. During the clone, I see the following in the log for each saveset:

    Source= cloning session
    Category = media
    “0 KB are saved to pool ‘Tape Clone’ (CloneTape-001) of Server1:cloning session”

    This is logged whether I clone manually or automatically clone with a scheduled savegroup.

    I read that NW only allows one clone of a saveset to a volume. So, is this log entry telling me that it didn’t find a previous entry so it is going to proceed with the clone or is it telling me that it did not write anything to tape? Everything else reports that the cloning was successful.

    Thanks,

    PD

  4. Preston said

    Hi Paul,

    While I haven’t actually looked for that log entry with cloning – I will now – based on my experience with this “…are saved to pool…”, message, my first reaction is that it’s logging that at the start of the cloning session, and that it’s nothing to worry about.

    Indeed, just doing a quick test on my lab server, I got, at the start of a cloning session:

    nsrd 0 KB are saved to pool ‘Staged Clone’ (Clone.001)

    However, the clone did go on to run. Therefore I’d suggest this is just another occurrence of the “…are saved to…” message that appears to be a new/undocumented feature.

    Cheers,

    Preston.

  5. Alec said

    How’s 7.5.1 now that you’ve had some time to kick the tires? I’m going to need the ability to license VMWare sooner then later, so I don’t really have a choice anyhow…

    Running Solaris 10 on a T5240…

    Alec

    • Preston said

      I think 7.5.1 is maturing – I’d suggest if you’re going to install to request the cumulative patch cluster for 7.5.1, which brings the version up to 7.5.1.2. My testing under Solaris has mainly been limited to specific lab-test requirements, but under Linux (which is comparatively usually the least stable NetWorker platform), it’s proved to be very stable for me, and my colleagues have been reasonably happy with the Windows version as well.

      Overall, I’d say that if you’re needing that VMware functionality then it should be stable enough to go to for many sites.

  6. Donovan said

    Hey are any of you guys experiencing the 7.4.4 bugs we are?

    1) nsrd hang, NMC totally inoperative for at least 10 minutes about 3 times daily if not more
    2) nsrck and nsrim never complete and hang indefinitely?

    Going for 7.4.5 tomorrow, sure hope it does not introduce bugs as 7.4.4 did….that did fix bugs but introduced the above

    • Preston said

      Donovan, it looks like you’re experiencing a few different bugs there. While nsrck and nsrim hanging indefinitely are usually indicative of media database errors, when timed with NMC hangs, it could also be symptomatic of odd name resolution issues. Or, given these were introduced with 7.4.4, could genuinely be encountering bugs. Overall most sites have found 7.4.4 to be a reasonably stable release, though obviously some sites haven’t fared so well. Given the new features (0) in 7.4.5 and the number of bug fixes (150+), I’d hope that version will be a bit more stable for you. Whether it fixes the issues you’ve cited, offhand I can’t be sure as I don’t have direct access to the release notes from where I’m replying.

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