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Good backup strategy for InterBase (and other DBMS)

I administer an InterBase server which is accessed by a few offices from around the globe. The server runs on a Windows 2000 Server box and we use Retrospect in our company to do a file backup.

This means that the *.gdb file gets backed up probably every day. As we recently learned from an oracle server crash, this is not enough. In the case of Oracle, the backed up database files could not be used because the Oracle server was running while the files were being backed up and the db could not be restored.

(Luckily I'm not responsible for the Oracle db)

For the InterBase database, I set up a windows scheduled task to run a perl script every evening to do a backup using gbak. Then the perl script runs zip to archive the *.gbak file.
The ZIP gets every day a unique file name including the full date so that the backup directory has files like this:

While the GDB (database image file) is about 300 or 400 MB in size, and the *.gbak backup file is of similar dimension, the ZIP files measure only 30 MB.

Every now and then I go in there, burn those ZIP files to a CDROM and delete them then.

This strategy allows me to go back to any database version as it was during the past couple of years. And of course, since the backups are done with gbak, they will always be clean. I've had the pleasure to do a few restores and it works fine.

Generated 20:00:23 on Dec 6, 2019