NetWorker: Troubleshooting Pool Attributes

Environment:

EMC NetWorker

 

Description:

Understanding Pool attributes and how they limit a volumes use.

 

In order for NetWorker to determine the volume to use, the pool criteria has to be an exact match. If a value is placed in one or more of the Pool criteria fields (Groups, Devices, Clients, Savesets, or Levels), then the Pool is limited to only permit use when all of the selected criteria are correct.

 

Whenever NetWorker cannot find a pool that meets the criteria, NetWorker will always try to use a volume from the Default pool.

 

How to recycle tapes to a different pool?
Cannot modify default pool.

How to configure Pool attributes?
How to configure NetWorker so different types of backups go to different tapes (pools of volumes)?
How to configure group schedules and pools for daily, weekly, monthly backup scenarios?
How to configure full and daily backups to use different pools?
How to associate daily and weekly schedules with different groups and pools?
How to separate backups to go to different tapes?
How to separate backups to go to different pools?
How to split backups to use different pools?
How to partition backups to different drives or pools?


NetWorker does not load the volume when requested.
Savesets added to the pool do not get backed up.
Autochanger would do a label verification and hang.
NetWorker waiting for media to be loaded.
NetWorker fills up the disk space during staging.
NetWorker hung during staging.
Archiving waits for a writable volume.
Volumes belonging to the Default pool cannot recycle to and from other pools.


Resolution:

The media pool attributes can be classified as selection criteria attributes and regular attributes. The first section below discusses the selection criteria attributes. The next section highlights some of the other attributes.

Selection Criteria Attributes: These attributes are used to determine which volume to use for the different types of backups.

The following examples provide different scenarios and the necessary change in order to ensure the Pool configuration is correct. This is not an exhaustive list, however should provide sufficient guidance for many different scenarios.

1) Limiting a pool to only selected clients

  • If the NetWorker server is not included to the client list, then the indexes/bootstraps cannot be backed up to the volume, since the indexes are considered as savesets of the NetWorker server
  • If a new client is added but the Pool was not updated to add this new client

Fix: Update the Client attribute of the Pool resource to include the NetWorker Server or the new client, or remove all Clients from this list, so the pool does not limit clients.

 

2) Limiting a pool to only selected levels (e.g. incremental)

The bootstrap and index backups are always considered as full (or Level 9 during incremental when using NetWorker 5.x and lower) backups, therefore the volume cannot be used if 'Full' (or Level 9) is not one of the levels specified.

Fix: Update the Level attribute of the Pool resource to include Level 'Full' (or 'Level 9' for NetWorker 5.x and lower) or remove any other levels from this Level attribute.


Client belongs to a group that performs incremental backups, however the Pool only permits Full backups.

 

Fix 1: Remove 'Full' from the Level attribute of the Pool resource. The Level can be obtained from the group resource.

Fix 2: Setup backups so that Daily (Incremental) backups go to one pool and Weekend (Full) backups go to a different pool as follows:

 

3) Limiting a pool to only specified savesets

Savesets are not getting backed up.

Fix: Remove savesets from the Savesets attribute of the Pool resource and add savesets to the Savesets attribute of the Client resource. The savesets attribute of a Client resource is the correct location to specify what savesets to backup of a Client.

 

4) Limiting a pool to only specified devices

A volume cannot be mounted for backups, recoveries, archiving (staging).

Fix: If the volume belongs to a pool that will only allow the volume to be mounted on specific devices, and if the device is disabled or not available (such as a hardware problem), then do one of the following:
1.     Remove the devices limitation
2.     Enable the device
3.     Make one of the selected devices available


The devices specified in the Devices attribute of the Pool resource are all located on a remote Storage Node. The index backups are going to the Default pool.

Fix: Remove the restriction of only Storage Node devices in the Devices attribute. Identifying the Storage Nodes in the Storage Nodes attribute of the Client Resource (Storage Node affinity list) should be sufficient to identify which machine a Clients data will be saved to.

 

5) Limiting a pool to only specified Groups

The Savegroup does not start -
Remove the restriction of only Storage Node devices in the Devices attribute. Identifying the Storage Nodes in the Storage Nodes attribute of the Client Resource (Storage Node affinity list) should be sufficient to identify which machine a Clients data will be saved to.

Fix: Check to see if there is a pool of volumes available for the Group. If all Pools have Groups specified and if the Group running is not one, then the Savegroup will not start. Then do one of the following:

1.     Add the missing group to one of the pools
2.     Create a new pool for this group
3.     Remove the Group limitation from one or more of the pools.

 

6) Regular Pool Attributes:

Recycling volumes to a different pool
Volumes belonging to the Default pool cannot recycle to and from other pools.

Fix: Predefined NetWorker pools cannot be altered. These pools include: Archive, Archive Clone, Default, Default Clone, Indexed Archive, Indexed Archive Clone, PC Archive, PC Archive Clone This is expected behavior. Currently the Default pool configuration cannot be modified.

 

7) How to recycle tapes to and from a different pool

Fix: Recycling of volumes from one pool to another can be achieved by modifying the Pool resource attributes 'Recycle to other pools' and 'Recycle from other pools' to 'Yes'

 

8) Other possible configuration items that could cause a 'Media waiting event' are:

Check the Storage Node attribute of the Client resource.
A client backup is not going to the correct Storage Node.

 

Add the preferred Storage Node to the Storage Node attribute of the Client Resource, before the 'nsrserverhost' entry.
(Note: The NetWorker server is referenced by 'nsrserverhost'. Client saves will always be directed to the first Storage node in the list that has an enabled device with an active nsrmmd daemon/process.)

 

9) Pools with libraries

If the backup strategy includes both full and nonfull backups, estimate the number of volumes needed for the full backups and assign them to the Full pool. This ensures that the full backups are located in a consecutive range of slots in the library. This allows all of the volumes to be removed at the same time.

Setting up a pool to sort backup data
A backup pool is a collection of volumes to which backup data is written. Use pools to
sort backup volumes so that the volumes are easy to locate when they are needed.

 

Procedure:
1. From the Administration window, click Media.
2. In the expanded left pane, select Media Pools.
3. From the File menu, select New.
4. In the Name attribute, type a name for the pool. A pool is associated with a label template. Use a name that clearly associates the pool with the corresponding label template.
5. In the Comment attribute, type a description of the pool.
6. Select the Enabled attribute.
7. For the Pool Type attribute, select Backup.
8. In the Label Template attribute, select the matching label template.
9. Modify the attribute to use to direct specific backup data to the volumes belonging to this pool. Data can be sorted by group, backup clients, save sets, and backup levels.
10.Click OK.

 

10) Directing data from a synthetic full backup to a dedicated pool

You can direct consolidated save sets to a specific set of media.

 

Procedure
1. Create a Group for consolidation backups.
2. Create a Pool for consolidation backups.
3. In the Pool resource, select the group that was created for the consolidated backup as the value for the Groups attribute.
4. Edit the Group attribute in each Client resource that is to have consolidated backups, and assign to the group that you created for the consolidated backup.


11) Media pools

Backup data is sorted onto backup media volumes by using media pools and volume labels. A media pool is a specific collection of volumes to which the NetWorker server writes data. The server uses media pools to sort and store data. A volume is identified with a unique label based on configurable label templates. Media pools act as filters that tell the server which backup volumes should receive specific data. The NetWorker server uses media pools in conjunction with label templates (if the Match Bar Code Labels attribute is not used for the library resource) to keep track of what data is on which specific volume.

 

Note: Media pools do not apply when de-duplication is used.

For more info please see: EMC NetWorker 8.2 SP1 Administration Guide Page 266

 

12) Save the Index to a Separate Pool

For saving Index to a separate pool see Article Number  000205156 - How To Save the Index to a Separate Pool


Reference:

EMC Support Solution Number: 205106