We have a production database and our present line of activities are as follows.
Every day at 12:35 a.m., an online hot backup is taken using Netapp snapshot technology, and it is done in five minutes. Once the hot backup is done by 12:40 a.m., we start nightly batch jobs which run until morning. Again at 6 a.m., we take another online hot backup with snapshot and it takes less than five minutes.
We are using the snapshot backup taken at 12:35 for creating a clone database of production. And the project is getting moved to a new data center where they wanted to implement RMAN backups.
So how can we accomplish the same online hot backup with snapshot process which takes less than five minutes for each backup with RMAN backups and clone creation?
We need to complete the process in less than 10 minutes as we cannot start the nightly batch stream unless the backup is done. That is a business requirement. They need a copy of the backups before batch starts and after batch is done.
Have you ever tested a restore from this snapshot backup? Are you sure that this works? Using snapshot technology to back up your Oracle database in this manner results in an inconsistent backup. Unless you put the tablespaces in BACKUP mode or use RMAN, you have no method to resolve those inconsistencies.
I do not believe in the business requirement that a backup must be done before and after the batch job. The business requirement is most likely that you must be able to restore the database to the point in time right before the batch job started and right after the batch job completed. Some individuals might think that the best method to achieve that requirement is to take a backup right before and right after the batch job, but they would be incorrect. I can take a backup five weeks before the batch job and with all of my archived redo logs since that backup, I can still meet the requirement of being able to perform a point-in-time restore.
I fully embrace using RMAN for your backup and recovery needs. You will have many more options for both backups and recovery than ever before. I would revisit the business requirement. Businesses never really care when the database was backed up. They do care about restoring data ... and restoring data to a particular point in time. How that is accomplished is not a business requirement but a implementation of that requirement.
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