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DBAs do you BURP?

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Ok so NOT that BURP. BURP is Backup Recovery Practices…. Right?

Review of webinar: Backup and Recovery Best Practices by Michael Wall. Wall is a SR Database Administrator and local SQL Server User Group Leader.

Pragmatic Works Inc is the sponsor and in their words: “Backups are the NUMBER ONE responsibility for database administrators… we will cover SQL Server backup types and ways to communicate with your team and business… also discuss recovery ideas and recommended schedules.”

These are some of the points discussed by Wall.

  • Business owners need to know all options and be informed of all changes.
  • The entire IT staff needs to know the plan for time and responsibilities.
  • Backups can save cost in time as well as infrastructure savings.
  • Restores to a point in time is critical.
  • Make sure a junior staff associate is not the ONLY person involved with total responsibilities.
  • Recovery Time Objective (RTO): What is the acceptable time or data that can be lost?
  • Recovery Point Objective (RPO): How long to restore data so business can function again?
  • Team effort is needed to execute the plan especially the DBAs, Sysadmin, and data storage teams.
  • VM snapshots, full database, differential database, transactional database, and table level backups should be in your plan.
  • Azure SQL databases have a guaranteed number of backups.
  • SQL Server on Azure VM backups are the DBA job and space and network utilization must be considered.
  • Business RTO / RPO agreement and testing the backup / recovery of all databases is critical for success.
  • Best to backup to local drives then copy the backups offsite.
  • SAN/NAS backups will cause these nasty waits: backupbuffer, async_io_completion and backupio.
  • Basic backup schedule: full backup daily and hourly logs, but why not a log every minute.
  • Add alerts for backup failure.
  • Set SQL Server properties to use compressed backups, backup verification, tail log backups.
  • Automate the backup / restore process to reduce stress and maintain continuity.

DBA Teams, IT staff and all the business owners must be on the same page for RTO / RPO agreements before the next disaster occurs.

The webinar by Wall offers a review of the best practices that should already be in place for your SQL Server backup and recovery strategy. I give the webinar “Backup and Recovery Best Practices” a thumbs up! Right?

Note the last ten minutes of the webinar is worth listening to several interesting questions and answers.


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