Archive:Drives 3.4

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User Manual
Media Pools


Drives are devices saving data onto media within, i.e. Disk - Platter, Tape - Tape cartridge. They can be connected either to a Sesam computer (local drive) or to other computers that can be accessed through the network (remote drive). These are normally tape devices, with removable tape cartridges. It is also possible to back up data to disk or other directory oriented devices.

According to the grouping principle of Sesam the organization in drive groups is required here as well. Even standalone drives must belong to a group.

Large auto loaders can have several internal drives which are loaded from one magazine. It is recommended that these drives are organised into one group. A backup is delegated only to this group. Sesam searches for the particular drive to be used for the backup.

Virtual Drives

In addition to offering backup to standard tape drives, SEP sesam allows the full utilization of high capacity disk drives to fully complement and support growing bandwidth availability. These are noted as Virtual Drives. SEP sesam simulates media on these drives to fully utilize the directory and file structure to enhance backup performance. For the user there is no difference, except during configuration and setup, between virtual and physical tape loaders.

Shared Drives

By using the Shared Drives option drives are designated for sharing to fully utilize newer Network technologies, e.g. SAN's, which allows the disks to be available to multiple servers at any time. A physical drive can be seen by any number of servers and can likewise be used by the relevant systems to store data. In this example, Shared Drives can only be written to by one client at a time as opposed to standard drive configurations. Parallel backups from separate clients are not possible. SEP sesam Shared Drives uses specific drive identifiers to monitor and track the drives and the attached servers. This means that multiple drives will be labeled similarly and various backup clients will be apportioned to them. The SEPuler will perform sequential backups from the outstanding event list.

Most often large Tape Loaders and Libraries have multiple drives installed to operate media cassettes. It is recommended to organize these multiple drives into a single group. A backup will then be delegated to only this Group. SEP sesam will select which drive to use for the backup task. Scheduled backup tasks will thus be distributed to the available drives within the Drive Group. These allow the optimal resource management in the event of a drive failure. In this case SEP sesam moves the backup tasks to the remaining drives within the Group.

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Button Properties

Here the parameters of the selected element are shown and changed if necessary (Group or Drive).

Select New Drive Group

New Drive Group is used to configure a new group.

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An arbitrary name of the drive group
  • Please select a description/name that is easily recognizable by all administrators, support personnel and user. This can and should be part of a general design that can be referred to and expanded at any time.
additional information for the user
  • e.g. Input of the loader's location and the relevant employee contact for assistance.

New Drive

Here the new drives are configured. Each drive must be assigned to a drive group; the drive group must have been previously created.

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The Sesam-internal number of the drive drive-number is pre-set.

Field Loader specifies whether the drive is served by a loader or not. The loaders configured and accepted in Sesam appear in a drop down menu. When selecting "'no Loader"' sesam configures a manually operated standalone drive.

In the drop down Drive Type the type of the drive is set ( DISK-Types see below ).

In the field Device Server the client to which the drive is connected is entered. The drop down shows all clients configured in SEP sesam. The selection of the local computer creates a local connection, a remote device can also be specified.

   Configuration Example

Drive 1 and 2 are local drives

Drive 11 through 21 are remote Devices at various locations

Drive 1:

 08:00:18  I001-START   Start on Drive 1 finished
 08:00:18  Retrieves BACKUP Tasks from the SEPuler Event Calender

Drive 2:

 09:08:58  Automatic Backup TEST_BACKUP finished

Drive 11:

 09:05:57  Automatic Backup TEST_BACKUP finished

Drive 21:

 10:32:47  Automatic Backup elektrik_orcl finished

In the event an expansion of one drive at location 1, Drive 12 will entered into the backup scheme.

Drive Name

   Freely selected or specified and if it is a shared drive within a SAN it must be the same for all client shared drives
   e.g. SAN-Drive-LUN-0. 


   This specifies whether the drive is controlled by a a loader or not. 
   Loaders configured allowed as devices within SEP sesam appear in the drop-down menu. 
   'No Loader' simply means that it is a single drive and must be handled manually. 

Drive Type

   Choice of drive technology (e.g. DISK, DISK_HARD, DLT, LTO,...).
   You can specify DISK_HARD und DISK_CHNG for hard disk drives. 
   Hard drives in NAS or DAS architecture are treated as DISK_HARD. 
   DISK_CHNG is used for all backups to USP hard drives removable drives. 
   Using this configuration, e.g. a daily update is made and a new, initiated drive is used for backup. 
   (This is similar to a tape drive with daily inserted tape). 


The utilization of Removable Devices requires the insertion of the device path (Direct Option)!

Tape Server

   In the field Tape Server you need to enter the backup server or remote device server where the drive is located/connected.
   The Drop down Menu shows everything on the configured clients.
   The selection of the local/remote server either creates a local or remote device. 

Drive Group

   Every drive must be assigned to a drive group;
   the assignment of multiple drives to a similar Drive Type is possible,
   e.g. in the same auto loader with multiple drives.

Drive Number in Loader

   shows the sequence within in the Loader how drives will be used.
   The order is dependent upon the hardware vendor's numbering scheme for all installed drives.
   If the order is entered improperly SEP will not be able to access the correct drive or cassette.
   If there is only one drive in the Loader, '0' is automatically entered. 

Device (non-rewinding)

   Device Label, where the device has been configured.
   For Tape Drives the Operating System specific SCSI designation is selected, e.g. /dev/nst0 or Tape0 (see the description below) 


   Status log for the drive. e.g. Read/Write Error 

Operating System Specific Designation

   * Windows: 

If the drive has been installed properly you can determine (output) the SCSI ID using the "sesam loader utility" (slu).

<SESAM_BIN>\sesam\slu.exe scan

You will now see a list all SCSI connected devices.

Example output:

ID=0000 other: WDC WD3000JD-55KLB0 (HardDisk) ID=3000 other: TSSTcorp DVD-ROM SH-D162C (CdRom0) ID=4030 Tape: Quantum DLT4000 D67E (Tape0) ID=4031 Loader: Quantum 1x8 E456 (Changer)

The visible ID must now be entered under "Device (SCSI-ID)".

   * Linux: 

You can use the same command to determine the necessary device files:

<SESAM_BIN>/sesam/slu scan

Example output:

ID=0000 other: ATA ST380013AS ID=1000 other: TOSHIBA ODD-DVD SD-M1802 ID=7040 Tape: Quantum DLT4000 D67E (/dev/nst0) ID=7050 Tape: Quantum DLT4000 D67E (/dev/nst1) ID=7060 Loader: HP C1194F 1.04 (/dev/sg4) STATUS=SUCCESS MSG="OK"

In addition to the SCSI-ID the Device File used will also be entered under "Device (SCSI-ID)" (you can test this wit the mt command).

Disk Type are automatically entered with the disk{Drive Number} (see below).

Properties - Options

   Path for Removable media 
       for Type DISK_CHNG you just enter the Device Description/Label, e.g. /dev/media/USB or F: 
   Block Size  
       for Type DISK_CHNG you need to enter the Block Size
   SMS Number  
       Shows the internally assiged SMS Number 
   SMS Channel  
       Sets the maximum number of parallel streams that can be used during backup to the backup drive

The number of data streams available for backup have also been assigned pre-determined limits based on the type of Server License in use, e.g ONE (1), Standard (5) or Advanced (unlim.)

Example of SMS Stream Limitation

   SEP sesam ONE Server License

The system has a drive and a tape drive connected. Multiple backup tasks will be started simultaneously for execution after the close of business.

   Result: The backups one after another to either the disk or tape drive, whichever has been specified.
   Only one backup stream is active.
   SEP sesam Standard Server License

The system has one disk drive and two tape drives attached. The SMS channels are connected to all drives. Multiple jobs (e.g. 10) have been set to start in one Backup Series.

   Result: Backups run parallel to either one of the drives or to both using 5 data streams depending on the desired backup path scheme.
   Either one or both tape drives can be used simultaneously but only 5 data streams are open for data transfer. 

   SEP sesam Advanced Server License

The system has one disk drive and three tape drives available for backup. The SMS channel is set to 8 datastreams per tape drive. Multiple tasks (e.g.) are started after close of business and within multiple Task Groups.

   Result: The backups run in parallel on all three drives.
   There is no limitation to the number of data streams that may be used or the SMS channels.
   The configuration and number of streams used for backup is dependent upon the system capability and throughput (pipe) available. 

In Device the operating system specific SCSI-identification of the storage device is inserted. With the command ID/bin/sesam/sm_slu scan a list of the connected SCSI-devices can be created.

On Windows-Systems the identification to be entered is displayed in brackets at the end of the row - Tape\Number\ ( from the registry ). On UNIX- and LINUX-Systems the device representation is /dev/n ( test with the mt-command suggested ).

DISK-Types are automatically entered with disk{Drive Nr} ( see below ).

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Drive Number
number automatically assigned by Sesam for a new drive can be changed
selection of loader which serves this drive (it is possible without loader)
Drive Type
selection of type (e.g. DISK, DISK_HARD or Types of tape devices )
Tape Server
configured Sesam client the drive is connected to
Drive Group
selection of drive group (since every drive must be assigned to a drive group)
SCSI-Identification, under which the device is configured at system level
max. number of parallel backups on Sesam Multiplex Stream Tape (0 = no SMS-Drive)
for type DISK_CHNG, the device directory and the block size must be entered
statistics about backups and restores on that drive

A special case are the virtual drives already mentioned above where no physical drives and moveable media (tapes) exist.

Type DISK_HARD Configuration by selection of drive type DISK_HARD and loader 0 . The device is not editable, it is automatically disk + drive-number.

The assignment of directories to virtual media is performed through the media-pool which also specifies the maximum capacity (in KB) for this pool. This later prevents the unsupervised writing to the disk.

Type DISK_CHNG Configuration by selection of drive type DISK_CHNG and no loader or physical loader if available. The device is not editable, it is automatically named "'disk"' + drive number. In Options the path for the virtual media is defined.

Select Drive Action

Selecting this option from the drive-group window shows following screen.

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From the GUI, the following 7 actions may be taken for the selected drive. The execution and progress of the activity is shown in the lower, cyclically updated information window.

Get label
shows the label of media, currently in the drive
Mount media
the MOUNT Status is reserved for the tape media to prevent unnecessary spooling.
Dismount media
cancels the MOUNT Status.
Unload media
cancels the MOUNT Status and ejects the cassette

CAUTION After manual changes to the drive ( tapes removal or insertion), the drive must be dismounted.

Unload Media should not be confused with unloading from an Auto Loader. It means, in this case, that the tape in the drive should be released and ejected. The loader can re-acquire the tape and re-enter it into its cassette ( = Unload via Loader ).

Release Drive

   All activities will be halted 

Reconfigure Drive

   Used after a change in the drive parameters 

Release Drive Group

   All jobs running on the Drive Group are canceled.