How can I backup a large db?

I need to do a quick and dirty backup of a database 130 GB in size...

What I plan is:

use master
alter database BigDB
set single_user with rollback immediate

sp_detach_db 'BigDB'

copy the db files to another server....400 GB free (RAID-5)

then, on the original server:

use master
sp_attach_db 'BigDB','d:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL\Data\BigDB_Data.mdf'

restore database 'BigDB' with recovery

Will this work?
 I have most of the weekend to do it.
Is there minimal risk of loss to my data?
Is there a way to do this while the db is online?

Any other suggestions? (BTW, I dont have a tape drive large enough...)

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is it all data or is some of the 130GB the transaction log?
have you considered transactional replication... your going to take the network traffic hit anyway?

how are you backing this up at the moment ?
Scott PletcherSenior DBACommented:
Excellent point:

What are the data and log sizes respectively?

Also, note that you should *NOT* issue the RESTORE command:

restore database 'BigDB' with recovery  -- *don't* issue this

The attach will put the db back the way it was before the detach.

Finally, note that you have to copy only the data file to another drive/server; if necessary, you could attach only the data file and get a new log file created from scratch.  This could save you significant time is the log file is large.
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TARJrAuthor Commented:

Recovery model: Simple

so we don't care about the trans log...right?

log file size shows: 1.78 GB  (oops...I don't have Auto Shrink checked..can I check it now?)

Scott PletcherSenior DBACommented:
Yep, don't have to worry about, but if it's that relatively small, might as well copy it also.

It will probably be worth the time to make the copy locally, then attach the original db (if you need to get running again asap), then zip the copy, then ship the zipped copy to another location.
TARJrAuthor Commented:

So, I can detach....copy only the .mdf file to another location...(delete the .ldf log)

then attach the original again (with recovery)...will it "look" just like it was when
I detached it?

Scott PletcherSenior DBACommented:
Yes, you can attach just the data file and a new log file will be built, and the db tables, etc., will be exactly the same.

The sp_attach_db is implicitly (automatically) "with recovery".  You will not need to issue an actual RESTORE command, only the attach.

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Look at SQLLitespeed--cheap product.  Backed up 300gig in about 30minutes and compressed it to about 50gig....


TARJrAuthor Commented:
I looked at SQL LiteSpeed and the GUI doesn't support backup over the network...The next version may.

The proc does:

EXEC xp_backup_database @database = 'hwmf_db_idea'
                      ,@filename = '\\dhwidea\c$\backup.bak'
                      ,@init = 1

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