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Using tapes in DPM 2010 – Part III


In this third post we will discuss how to work with backup policies “long-term” to help choose the most appropriate one for your needs.

As discussed in the first post is necessary to choose some options when creating the protection group and use the option “long-term”.

Backup Tape

The first option Retention range indicates that the retention time or expiration of the backup. This option is important to be planned because if this time is high indicates the number of tapes that need to be used, since as discussed in part II the tape can only be reused when this period ends.

The option Frequency of backup Backup schedule and clearly indicate when the backup will run retention window.

How many tapes (tapes) are necessary?

Using the above as an example, backup precisariamos of 6 tapes. The reason is that the backup is diary conducted from Monday to Friday (Saturday and Sunday is as deleted) which would form a set of 5 tapes. The 6th tape archiving is, since the rodizio tapes would only be possible to complete a week.

I.e. will always be necessary a tape more than the period stated to be possible to perform the rotation.

Using the Co-location not I decline the number of tapes?

Yes, and much, especially if the protection groups are less than 400/800 GB LTO-3 tape, for example, since multiple backups can be contained in a single tape.

The problem of co-location is the fact that management be manual. In the example of previous question may be a backup routine where the operator at a given time will change the tape.

Regarding the co-location is connected you need to be manually looking at how much of the tape is free to make the Exchange, besides the co-location end up mixing up different protection groups on the same tape, which makes it more complex arquivamente in safe or otherwise persistent.

Retention policy with examples in safe

Let’s make an example of a company with 3 protection groups, which is common. We will take into account that the monthly archiving is permanent:

  • Group 1 – File Server with daily backup (Mon-Fri), weekly and monthly archive retention
  • Group 2 – Exchange with daily backup (every day), weekly retention and archiving weekly/monthly
  • Group 3 – SQL Server with daily backup (every day), weekly retention and archiving weekly/monthly

For the Group 1 precisariamos annually from 12 permanent rotating tapes more 6:

  • 5 tape for daily backups
  • 1 tape to close the weekly cycle
  • 12 monthly backups to tapes that are the last week of the month, which will be filed

As the Group 2 and 3 are similar would be required annually 56 permanent rotating tapes and 7 that over

  • 7 tape for daily backups
  • The last daily backup tape in the week will be the weekly tape, so 4 tapes per month will be archived
  • The monthly tape backup is the last tape of the weekly, which will be filed

If the same group 2 and 3 do not require that the backup of the previous weeks to be saved at the end we would have monthly reduction 3 tapes to mes what sum 12 permanent rotating tapes, 7 3 weekly and daily rotating:

  • 7 tape for daily backups
  • The last daily backup tape in the week will be the weekly tape, so 4 tapes per month will be archived
  • The monthly tape backup is the last tape of the weekly, which will be filed by exempting the previous 3 to rotation


I hope I have clarified the main questions about tape backup with DPM and feel free to comment or send questions and suggestions.

Part I – Creating protection groups including tapes Permanent Link to Using tapes (Tape Drive) in DPM 2010 – Part I

Part II – Managing tapes Permanent Link to Using tapes (Tape Drives) in DPM 2010 – Part II

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  1. Maqsood permalink

    Hello Marcelo,

    Your articles on Using Tapes in DPM2010 and it was really helpful thanks for your efforts.

    however i am confused how to set the Backup Policies in my environment.

    1 – Physical DC (Win2008R2)
    2 – Physical VMM (Win2008R2)
    3 – HyperV Host x 3 (Win2008R2 Core) Hyperv Cluster
    4 – Physical SQL Server (Win2008R2) SQL Ent 2008 R2
    5 – VM x 5 (Win2008R2) one of the VM is file server

    Server number 2 in the above list is also a DPM2010 Server and there is IBM Tape Lib attached to it with 2 drives (LTO5).

    I want to use Tapes for both Short Term & Long Term Backup.
    Short Term – Daily Incrementatl & Weekly Full
    Long Term – Montly Full (For Offsite Store)

    How many Protection groups should i create for my requirement?
    How should i configure the backup policy?

    Please suggest…

    Thanks & Regars,

    • Hi Mqsood,

      My suggested is create a group for phisical machines, one group to VMs, one group to SQL Server and other group do File Server.
      For example, groups 1 and 2 backup are 8:00 PM, groups 3 and 4 are 02:00 AM. If you enable co-location is possible combine differents backups in one tape (Backup 1 + 3 / Backup 2 + 4)..
      Your tape is LTO-5, probably capacity is sufficient to this policy. Help you?

  2. Mike permalink

    Great article thanks!

    I have DPM 2010 with a Dell PV 124T. At first we had 11 tapes and they all were working fine. I then added 3 more tapes and DPM sees them as Tape Available and Free with a good bar code. However DPM never uses the 3 new tapes. Is there something I need to do for DPM to start using the new tapes?


    • Hi Mike,

      Yes, you need mark tape as “Free” and/or format tape.
      After this, run the Inventory to DPM “see” the new tapes.


  3. Slobodan Polic permalink

    Hi Marcelo,

    I have a situation that I have a drive on my server which is 2 TB in size, and I am using single tape drive to backup.

    My problem is that two protection groups can’t be created with files from the same drive, and aff files from that 2 TB drive won’t fit to LTO3 800GB tape.

    Is there a way to make 2 protection groups with files and folders from the same drive?

    • Hi Slobodan,

      DPM dont permit two groups for the same data, how you see…

      You activated compress data in protection group and tape drive?

      Alternative: Divide in two drives and map the second drive for a mount point directory in principal drive.


  4. calvin permalink

    Hi Marcelo,

    I have three protection group in the DPM, apparently I have added few tape, and mark as free.
    How do I know which protection group will be assign to?

    • Hi Calvin,

      You can right click in the tape or view in protection group lower panel.


      • calvin permalink


        The panel information for protection group is empty. However, I have realised I am using DPM 2007 only.

      • In this case right click in tape show informations of backups in each unit.

  5. Hani permalink

    Hello Marcello.

    I like your article it is helpful. Good job.

    Our company needs the following policy for backup:

    Daily: Full backup (D-D-T) retention 10 days.
    Monthly: Full Backup, retention 12 Months (last day on the month)
    Monthly: VM, full backup collocate on the same Monthly backup. (3 TB capacity on Tapes)
    Yearly: Archive for 10 years.

    I have 2 groups:

    one for VM lets call it G2
    another one for the rest: (Domino, SQL, File sharing) let s call it G4
    so we have G2 and G4 group.

    Before I used 2 sets: SET A and SET B. but I had a problem when rotating back SET A, the tape is not expire on time. So to overcome that issue, I used 3 sets instead.

    since I need daily full backup for 2 weeks retention so I am using 3 SETS to make sure the tape expire once put it back.

    SET A Week 1
    SET B Week2
    SET C Week 3
    SET A Week 4
    SET B week 5
    SET C week

    I think it will simplify operation jobs since the guy only need to put tape and remove tapes.

    Is there a better way to accomplish thisi? how many sets do I need?
    In my case I have 5 *3 =15 tapes for daily
    12 tapes for Monthly
    1 for yearly

    Any suggestions?



    • Sorry Hani, I see your post today…

      Your calculation is correct, but if you enable “co-location” reduce number of tapes, but grow retention.
      This feature is not simple in your case, with “co-location” enable you not know free or available tape without console, and you say have a “guy only change tapes”.
      My opinion to you is buy tapes and test solution with “co-location” for test size of backups first.


  6. Ravi permalink

    Excellent article!!

    I have a (hopefully) simple question. How can I specify certain backups to certain tapes?

    I am using a Dell PV124T, and an autoloader of 7 tapes. Let’s say, for SQL backups, how can I specify to only write backups to tape 1/slot 1?

    Any ideas?


    • Hi Ravi,

      You not have a tape affinity in DPM, only slots ;-(


      • Ravi permalink


        ok next question, i have an 8 slot autoloader, but when i run the inventory scan, it is only detecting the 7 tapes. the 8th slot is a cleaning tape. does DPM not recognize this type of media?

        is there any way to set up an auto clean type of job?

      • Hi Ravi,

        Clean tape not detected, not have a valid for backup.
        Clean operations is not automatic, only manual using menus.


  7. Adriano Oliveira permalink

    Hi Marcelo, nice information found here but I would like to get more information, I´m deploying the DPM 2012R2 from my side in Curitiba and I have some doubts related to tape retention data, in the the moment that you have an expired data on the tape, it´s a rule, you can´t recover data from it? I read several blogs that it can be recovered , but it is not a simple task, from another side in Technet I read that this is a simple task (, this introdution is for you help me understand the about the following scenario:
    if I have a long-term with a recovery goal with backup every 1 week, with retention range for 4 weeks, after first week, can I remove the first tape from the library and store it in a external place without any risk on future of lose data in a recovery process?


  8. Raul permalink

    Hi Marcelo,

    Good article.

    Is there a way in DPM 2012 to specify a specific tape to be used for weekly backups from a specific group?

    For example let’s say i have 3 protection groups and 8 tapes. I would like Protection group one to backup to tape 1 only, appending to it weekly until it is full. Protection groups 2 and 3 can back up to any available free tapes.

    Thanks in advance!


    • DPM not have tape affinity.
      This is a old question, but DPM not designed to advanced tape management :(

      DPM use same tape to protection group, but if this tape fill, DPM use any other tape, include tape with PG 2 or 3…

  9. Hi Raul,

    DPM not have tape affinity.
    This is a old question, but DPM not designed to advanced tape management :(

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Using tapes (Tape Drive) in DPM 2010 – Part I « Marcelo Sincic [MVP]
  2. Using tapes (Tape Drives) in DPM 2010 – Part II « Marcelo Sincic [MVP]

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