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Rapid Recovery 6.0.2 - User Guide

*** Legend Introduction to Dell Data Protection | Rapid Recovery Understanding the Rapid Recovery Core Console Working with repositories Managing Rapid Recovery Core settings Using custom groups Working with encryption keys Protecting machines using the Rapid Recovery Core Working with Microsoft Exchange and SQL Servers Protecting server clusters Exporting protected data to virtual machines Managing protected machines Understanding replication Managing events Generating and viewing reports Restoring data Understanding bare metal restore for Windows machines Retention and archiving Managing cloud accounts Working with Linux machines Understanding the Local Mount Utility Central Management Console Understanding the Rapid Recovery Command Line Management utility Understanding the Rapid Recovery PowerShell module
Prerequisites for using PowerShell Working with commands and cmdlets Rapid Recovery PowerShell module cmdlets Localization Qualifiers
Extending Rapid Recovery jobs using scripting Rapid Recovery APIs Glossary

Retention and archiving

This section describes how to manage aging data with retention policies and then archive it for long-term storage.


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About Rapid Recovery data retention and archiving

Each time your Core captures a snapshot, the data is saved as a recovery point to your repository. Recovery points naturally accumulate over time. The Core uses a retention policy to determine how long snapshot data is retained in the repository. During the rollup portion of the nightly job, the Core enforces the retention policy to reduce the amount of storage space consumed. During rollup, the date of each recovery point is compared to the date of the most recent recovery point. The Core then combines or "rolls up" older recovery points. Over time, older recovery points are eventually replaced with newer ones as the oldest recovery points "age out" beyond the oldest retention period.

To keep recovery points that would otherwise be combined and eventually deleted, you can create an archive from the Core Console. An archive is a file containing the full set of recovery points for machines protected on your Core at the point in time in which it was created.

You can store an archive in a file system, or on a storage account in the cloud.

If you need to access the data in a recovery point, you can later attach (for Rapid Recovery 6.x and later) or import the archive, restoring those recovery points to your repository. You can then take the same actions on that data as with any other recovery points currently in your Core.

Note: Since the Core recognizes the original dates of recovery points in an archive, imported recovery points may again be rolled up or deleted during the next nightly job period. If you want to retain older recovery points, you can disable rollup for the relevant machines, or you can extend the retention period.

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Managing retention policies

A retention policy is a set of rules that dictates the length of time for the Core to retain recovery points before starting to roll them up. Retention policies can be set to roll up based on hours, days, weeks, months and years. You can set up to six rules (the default policy sets five rules).

Since you can back up as frequently as every 5 minutes, the first rule in the retention policy typically sets how long to retain all recovery points. For example, if you back up a machine every quarter hour, 96 recovery points are saved to the repository for that machine per day, until rollup begins. Without managing your retention policy, that amount of data can quickly fill a repository.

Note: Administrators should note that frequent backups can have an impact on network traffic. Other factors affecting network traffic include other transfers (such as replication), the change rate of your data, and your network hardware, cables and switches.

The Core comes preset with a default retention policy. The default policy works retains:

  • All recovery points for three days
  • One recovery point per hour for two days
  • One recovery point per day for four days
  • One recovery point per week for three weeks
  • One recovery point per month for two months
  • One recovery point per year for X years (disabled in default policy).

Following this default policy, the oldest recovery point is typically 92 days old. Data past that origination date for a default policy is deleted.

Setting the retention policy at the Core level applies automatically to all machines that the Core protects. You can change the default policy to suit your needs.

For any machine, you can also create a custom retention policy. Setting the policy at the machine level lets you specify a different retention policy than the default Core policy. For more information about configuring retention policies, see Configuring Core default retention policy settings and Customizing retention policy settings for a protected machine.


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Configuring Core default retention policy settings

The retention policy for the Core specifies how long the recovery points for a protected machine are stored in the repository.

The Core retention policy is enforced by a rollup process which is performed as one component of running nightly jobs. Then, recovery points beyond the age specified in the retention policy are “rolled up” (combined) into fewer recovery points that cover a less granular period of time. Applying the retention policy on a nightly basis results in the ongoing rollup of aging backups. This eventually results in the deletion of the oldest recovery points, based on the requirements specified in that retention policy.

Different retention settings can be configured for source and target Cores.

Note: This topic is specific to customizing retention policy settings on the Rapid Recovery Core. When you save customized retention policy settings on the Core, you establish the default retention policy settings which can be applied to all machines protected by this Core. For more information on customizing retention policy settings for individual protected machines, see Customizing retention policy settings for a protected machine.
  1. Navigate to the Rapid Recovery Core Console.
  2. On the icon bar, click [Settings] (Settings), and then do one of the following:
    • From the list of Core settings on the left side of the Settings page, click Nightly Jobs.
    • Scroll down on the right side of the Settings page until you can see the Nightly Jobs heading.

    The Nightly Jobs core settings appear.

  3. Under Nightly Jobs, click [Change] Change.

    The Nightly Jobs dialog box appears.

  4. To specify the time intervals for retaining the backup data as needed, in the Nightly Jobs pane, select Rollup, and then click Settings.

    The Configuration dialog box for the Core default retention policy appears.

  5. To restore Core retention policy settings to the default values at any time, at the bottom of the Configuration dialog box, click Restore Defaults and then click Yes to confirm.

    All settings are restored to the default values described in the table in Step 6.

  6. To define a retention policy, first specify the primary setting that determines how long initial backup snapshots are retained. Then proceed to define a cascading set of rollup requirements that determines the intervals between when recovery points should be rolled up.

    The retention policy options are described in the following table.

    Table 1. Schedule options for default retention policy
    Text Box Description
    Keep all recovery points for n [retention time period] Specifies the retention period for the recovery points.

    Enter a number to represent the retention period and then select the time period. The default is 3 days.

    You can choose from: Days, Weeks, Months, or Years

    …and then keep one recovery point per hour for n [retention time period] Provides a more granular level of retention. It is used as a building block with the primary setting to further define how long recovery points are maintained.

    Enter a number to represent the retention period and then select the time period. The default is 2 days.

    You can choose from: Days, Weeks, Months, or Years

    …and then keep one recovery point per day for n [retention time period] Provides a more granular level of retention. It is used as a building block to further define how long recovery points are maintained.

    Enter a number to represent the retention period and then select the time period. The default is 4 days.

    You can choose from: Days, Weeks, Months, or Years

    …and then keep one recovery point per week for n [retention time period] Provides a more granular level of retention. It is used as a building block to further define how long recovery points are maintained.

    Enter a number to represent the retention period and then select the time period. The default is 3 weeks.

    You can choose from: Weeks, Months, or Years

    …and then keep one recovery point per month for n [retention time period] Provides a more granular level of retention. It is used as a building block to further define how long recovery points are maintained.

    Enter a number to represent the retention period and then select the time period. The default is 2 months.

    You can choose from: Months or Years

    …and then keep one recovery point per year for n [retention time period] Enter a number to represent the retention period and then select the time period.

    You can choose from: Years

    The oldest recovery point is determined by the retention policy settings.

    The following is an example of how the retention period is calculated.

    Keep all recovery points for three days.

    …and then keep one recovery point per hour for three days

    …and then keep one recovery point per day for four days

    …and then keep one recovery point per week for three weeks

    …and then keep one recovery point per month for two months

    …and then keep one recovery point per month for one year

    In this example, the oldest recovery point would be one year, 4 months, and 6 days old.

  7. When satisfied with your retention policy settings, click Save.

    The Configuration dialog box closes.

  8. In the Nightly Jobs dialog box, click OK.

    The Nightly Jobs dialog box closes. The retention policy you defined is applied during the nightly rollup.

    You can also to apply these settings when specifying the retention policy for any individual protected machine. For more information about setting retention policies for a protected machine, see Customizing retention policy settings for a protected machine.


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