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Is there a tool to measure level of data change on a File Server?

Posted on 2009-05-12
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Last Modified: 2012-06-22
I'm looking for a way to measure the about of data changed in a week on a standard Windows 2003 file server?

I'd like to see not only the amount and size of files changed (I guess looking at a daily differential backup after a full could tell you me this) but I'd also like to see how much of the file has been changed. Example. A 30MB spreadsheet is updated 3 times a week and I'd like to know how much of that 30MB was changed as it may be only a few KB at a time rather than blindly thinking it's always 30MB.

I'm looking to replicate the changed data to another location and the method I'm using will replicate only the delta information changed so if I measure in that out of a 500GB file system, 10GB of files are changed per week, I need to know how much of those 10Gbs of files are changed as the transfer will only replicate the actual delta changes, not the entire file.

Hope this makes sense and someone knows about this?

Thanks,

h.
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Question by:hotsox
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10 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:Macros82
ID: 24363250
Do you do incremental backups? That would be a good measure.
Otherwise you might need to install some sort of third party data management software
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Expert Comment

by:Macros82
ID: 24363256
Shit didnt read the question. Disregard
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Expert Comment

by:vikasjus
ID: 24363396
It is very difficult to know these kind of changes. there might be tools available which can give you these kind of small change in information or file.
As far as replication is concern and if you have data on storage device that is SAN or NAS then changes happen to it will be in block form. That is if i change 30mb file with one word delete and save it then it will affect entire block in which this file is store. At the time of replication it will replicate that perticuler bock as incremental or delata change to destination. Replication works in this form only.
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Expert Comment

by:Callandor
ID: 24367335
I don't think what you are trying to do will work - if a 10MB spreadsheet is changed only in one cell, how can you send just one cell of information across?  Whoever is using the spreadsheet needs the entire spreadsheet, and you would have to have intimate knowledge of spreadsheets in order to know where to make the change.  Multiply this by the number of different file formats and you will be bogged down by the details.  The only practical solution is detecting what file changed and sending the entire file across.
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Author Comment

by:hotsox
ID: 24373284
Delta replcation will work and we have been using it for DR purposes for some time. Of course there has to be an initial mirror when all the exisiting data is copied over to the target location but following that when a file is updated in the source site, only the delta changes to the file are replicated over and the target file is updated thus not requiring the whole file to be sent each time it is updated. The target files aren't to be used as a 'live' copy so users will never be accessing them unless a failover is manaully initiated.
This occasion requires sending the data over limited links which is why I need an accruate way to measure how much of the files are being modified not just the files being updated.  
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Expert Comment

by:Callandor
ID: 24374827
I guess you want a binary diff program.  JojoDiff http://jojodiff.sourceforge.net/ is open source and may work, though I haven't used it.
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:OriNetworks
ID: 24404709
Windwos server 2003 starting with R2 includes a reporting tool called File Server Resource Management which can be installed through add/remove windows components. It has a reporting tool that can tell you which files have changed, largest files, etc that can run on an automatic schedule that you set. This may be of use to you!!
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Assisted Solution

by:OriNetworks
OriNetworks earned 600 total points
ID: 24943853
While my suggestion is a good way of reporting overall files changes, it doesnt include reporting of delta changes.

I think Callandor offers the best recommendation of binary diff which would be necessary to complete the objective. The offered link from callandor does not exactly accomplish the goal but it comes closest. Using the open source code, an application can be created.
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Accepted Solution

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hotsox earned 0 total points
ID: 24949856
Thanks all but there seems no way to do this easily so will have to use differential and incremental backups to see the size changes.
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