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EMC Avamar laptop backup

Posted on 2014-09-18
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We currently have EMC Avamar for backup of servers.  We want to start using it for laptop and desktop backups.  What is the best way to set this up?  I have some questions and would like your recommendations and challenges.

Full backup? - Since it is using deduplication it should be pretty efficient and not backup every users OS since it already has a copy to work off of.

Off-site backup?  How does that work?

Backup timing?  I don't think there is continuous backup... how do we set that up.  Once a day?  What if the user misses that time?  Will it start next time they are connected?  What if the laptop user is never connected at that time?

Should we backup the entire laptop or only the users profile?  Looks like if we want to backup only the users profile we have to manually select that with every laptop.  We have over 200 laptops to backup.

Thanks,
Chris
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Question by:cridog
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6 Comments
 
LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:Rodney Barnhardt
ID: 40332469
We do not use it for all laptops, only critical people. I informed all the users the only thing that we would be backing up is the "Documents" and "Favorites" directories. There are switches to set the profile so those are the only folders to back up. I did this for the simple reason that we still have users who put pictures, videos, etc that may not be work related on their systems. The users have also been informed that if they want to keep something protected, it must go in the "Documents" folder.

For those users who work mainly from the office, my schedule is to back up their system during lunch. This causes the least amount of interruption and since it dedups, there generally is not a huge amount of data or time for this process.

As far as remote users, I have a policy that runs 8pm EST. These users know they must be VPN'd during that time to get their system backed up. However, if the users misses the backup window, the agent shows a message once they connect and it sees the Avamar grid that the system has not been backed up in "X" hours. This message is built in and does not need to be configured. They are then presented with the option to backup at that time, or wait. This puts some of the responsibility on the users if they want their data protected.

I have been doing this for five years now and it seems to work well.
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:Rodney Barnhardt
ID: 40338049
I have been out of the office a few days, so when I connected I received the typical popup message a user will receive if they have missed a backup. Below is what this looks like.
Avamar Missed Backup Notification
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Author Comment

by:cridog
ID: 40342332
Cool.  Any other advice on setup?
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:Rodney Barnhardt
ID: 40349745
It all really depends on your company, the document\backup retention policies, and the user's expectations. I do not recommend backing up the entire C: drive. Use the #USERDOCS# setting (must be in caps) for you data set, and educate your users that those are the only files backed up, along with the times of day and processes.

Avamar Desktop Data Set Configuration
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Author Comment

by:cridog
ID: 40350914
Anyway I can backup only the Profile of the user that is logged in?  I don't want all the other profiles.  %Username% doesn't work.
Thanks
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LVL 32

Accepted Solution

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Rodney Barnhardt earned 2000 total points
ID: 40357631
Not that I am aware of. I just checked the admin guide and nothing about that is mentioned. Would there really be that much data? Are the systems shared that much? If you used a switch to limit it to something like the "Documents" folder, why would you not way to get everyone's.
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