Our nightly backups are performed on our HA partitions leaving the primary
partitions free to do their work. We are using a 3576 (aka TS3310). We
have the standard 5U main box with two drives and one 9U expansion with 4
drives. The 5U comes with a 6 slot I/O door and the 9U adds an additional
12 slot I/O door. There's 109 storage slots in the box. At this moment
we have 98 tapes loaded into it. Monday afternoon is the only time we
fill it to the brim. We have it partitioned into two logical libraries.
Call one TAPMLB01. That has three of the drives and is reserved for one
Linux lpar running TSM (Tivoli Storage Manager) to back up all PC's and
servers. The other logical library, TAPKVL01, has the other three drives.
It is shared with four lpars of i. Three out of four can be saving
simultaneously via a fiber SAN switch. (Each of the 6 drives have their
own fiber port.) You never know which drive you're using and don't care.
Well, unless you're getting an abnormally high tape failure and it's time
to replace the drive but there's ways to figure that out. It appears on
each of the i lpars as
WRKMLBSTS
Device/
Resource Status
TAPKVL01 VARIED ON
TAP11 OPERATIONAL
TAP12 OPERATIONAL
TAP10 OPERATIONAL
You only address it as TAPKVL01 and ignore the items below.

Our primary partitions are only physically backed up once per quarter on
their own 3573 (aka TS3100). These are scsi. Each has one drive except
one with two drives partitioned into two libraries.

All saves on all partitions of i are completed with BRMS. We have the
network feature so that each machine can tell you who has what saved on
what tape volume. For instance, you want the item master restored? No
problem, it can tell you what days are on what tape volume and at what
sequence number and whether that tape is in the drive, on the shelf or at
Iron Mountain. And if you really want to get detailed if you have slots
on your storage shelf it will tell you that also. Saving something on
LPAR ONE and it ran out of tapes assigned to it, it can use the network
feature and borrow an expired tape from another lpar and carry on. Now,
if you're doing a full system save in restricted state that pretty much
kills the network feature (but by golly it really tries). So it's better
to balance available tapes beforehand with STRBALBRM.

You should have seen the mess we had made of things before we finally
started using BRMS.


Rob Berendt

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