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Help with backups of very large database

I need help backing up a very large database. We are generating too many archive logs.

I was wondering if you have any advice in backing up a very large 10T database. I have RMAN experience and have written my own scripts for hot backups. Part of my problem is this database has over 4,200 datafiles. We have used business copy recently for a level 0. Part of the problem is it takes more than three hours to put all the tablespaces in hot backup in order to sync the disks. I am doing level 0 once a week and level 1 every day with exports on two of my large critical partitioned tables. I am not backing up any of my other partitioned tables because it's easier to re-run the data load. I am not backing up my archive logs, I compress them and move them off to another volume. Our SA said we are generating too many archive logs for them to back them up. 1+ TB a day. Your advice is very much appreciated. This is for one of the largest cable companies in the U.S.

There are a couple of options at your disposal.

If you are running Oracle 10g, look into the new Incrementally Updated Backups. This may help you shorten your backup (and recovery) times.

You can set RMAN to back up to multiple channels at the same time (disk or tape). In this way, RMAN backs up the database in parallel. If you get two channels going simultaneously, the backup should complete in roughly half the time.

Another great option is to employ hardware snapshots of your disk. This involves a third mirror of the disk drives. You tell Oracle to suspend I/O for a second. The system then unplugs the third mirror. Oracle is then instructed to resume I/O operations. This only takes seconds. Once the third mirror is unplugged, the contents of it can be copied to the backup location. Some time later, the third mirror is sync'ed up before the next backup.

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