Netapp Snapshots -> Can I restore files from it ?

Hi Experts,

I have a NETAPP Storage running in my data center.
Snapshots are created each 4 hours.
Is it also possible to restore singles files from such a snapshot ?
Eprs_AdminSystem ArchitectAsked:
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Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
It depends.  If it is NFS or CIFS then yes (block based LUNs can also work with more work) , just browse the volume and you'll see a ".snapshot diretory".  You can browse and pull the file and paste it back into the production volume.

I see that you have VMware mentioned, in that case you'll need to do some extra steps.  You will need to have flex clone to make this easier.  If you're using SMVI mount the backup.  Once mounted you can use a utility VM to browse to the VMDK you want to mount and pull the file from there. Once completed dismount VMDK and unmount backup
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Are you using iSCSI or CIFS/NFS ?

if you are using an iSCSI LUN you will need to clone the lun, with the snapshots, and present to the server.

If using Windows CIFS, you can right click and select Previous Versions
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Eprs_AdminSystem ArchitectAuthor Commented:
I use cifs and nfs
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Right Click the Windows folder, and select Previous Versions, and you will see the Data and Time of Snapshot, open that folder, and you can browse and copy the files. (the snapshot is read only)
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Eprs_AdminSystem ArchitectAuthor Commented:
When I connect to my cifs from my WIN7 machine, then I click Restore previous versions, but there is no choice.
Do I have to configure something extra ?
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Eprs_AdminSystem ArchitectAuthor Commented:
ok I found something, when I right click directly the share.
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Eprs_AdminSystem ArchitectAuthor Commented:
what do you recommend, can I stopp my backup job which runs all 6 hours at Symantec ?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
There is no reason to use a Symantec Backup application, if you are also using snapshots.

But that's up to you.
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Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
For off SAN backups you can use Symantec Backup Exec at any time, it will create a backup using a Netapp snapshot.  Just make sure you have the NDMP agent and enable history on the NDMP job.  You can also do incremental backups so you can set your schedule for weekends to do less Netapp snapshots for a full NDMP backup
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Thomas RushCommented:
> There is no reason to use a Symantec Backup application, if you are also using snapshots.
> But that's up to you.

DO NOT rely on snapshots as a backup.

1) If your array goes AWOL for any reason (HW failure, etc), you've got nothing to restore from
2) The snapshots point back to your original data.  If something happens to corrupt the original blocks or the snapshot manager, you also won't be able to do a restore... and you won't know it until you need it most (i.e., after it's too late to run a 'real' backup)
3) Ever heard of CryptoLocker and its progeny ( Link if you haven't)?  There are increasingly nasty programs out there that encrypt your whole storage system, offering to give you the unlock key only after you've paid a ransom.  How are you going to restore from a snapshot if your whole file system is encrypted and you don't have the key?

Backups are a known and proven technology for being able to get up and running after the shirt hits the flan.  Yes, they're a pain in the rear, but there are benefits to storing a copy of your data on a second medium that is not accessible by your normal production processes.

Perhaps you're having specific problems with your backups -- if so, let us know the problems, and we can work with you to explore the best way to avoid or mitigate those problems.  But I would *never* suggest someone rely only on snapshots and get rid of a traditional backup process.
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Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
Andrew was referring to Netapp snapshots which use ROW (redirect on write) and not VMware snapshots.  I would still prefer to have the data offsite (snapmirror/snapvault) or NDMP backups to disk offsite (hole in the ground scenario) but if done properly there are no issues with Netapp snapshots compared to VMware snapshots.
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Eprs_AdminSystem ArchitectAuthor Commented:
ok I understand.
My goal is to eliminate the cifs backups just during the day.
I have incremental backups all two hours, but this takes now too much time.
With your recommendation I can change this and I make just one incremental backup of cifs per day and on the weekend the full. And during the day I can use the netapp snapshots.
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Eprs_AdminSystem ArchitectAuthor Commented:
Is it possible for each user to restore files when I have snapshots enabled ?
Or can I set some security on the netapp ?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Yes, any users that has mapped to a CIFS share, can use Previous Versions!
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Eprs_AdminSystem ArchitectAuthor Commented:
Ok I see.
Is it possible to set some security ?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
I assume you mean set security to stop people seeing the Previous Versions ?

You could disabling the tab, as shown here

http://en.kioskea.net/faq/1670-disabling-the-previous-version-tab
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