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Backup strategies for dealing with LPARs

This user has just upgraded to a new I5., and will be running two LPARs on the one system -- one production side and one test/development side. He wonders what backup strategies or procedures are suggest ed when dealing with LPARs. Backup & recovery expert Dan Reusche offers some advice.

We have just finished upgrading to a new I5. We are going to be running two LPARs on the one system. We are going to have a production side and a test/development side. What backup strategies or procedures do you suggest when dealing with LPARs? We have one tape drive to use for both sides. Essentially, the test/development side is a mirror image of production with the only differences being objects that are in development or testing before being moved to production, the actual data in the data files will be copied over from production periodically and possibly won't need to be backed up on the test/development side.

For instance, do we switch the tape drive resources back and forth between the two LPARs, or is there a way we can backup the test/development side to a save file and transfer it over to the production side for backup?

You don't say if you are using a backup and recovery product such as BRMS, so I will answer only in general terms. I would recommend switching the tape drive at least once in a while, to get a full system save of the development/test partition, and save the production partition regularly. Depending on how much the development partition changes, I would still do the full save -- maybe once a quarter. Unless you have a very good change control system in place, things will change on the development system and it will make recovery easier if you have a periodic full save.

You can also make incremental saves on the test/development system to save file, as you suggest, and ship them to the production partition. Look into the SAVSAVF command. I always try to keep in mind that the key to a successful backup and recovery strategy is the recovery part. Consequently, I try to make that part of the equation as simple as possible. Periodic full saves of the development partition will help as it gives you a base from which to start the recovery.

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