Backup improvements

Company News/ 22nd Sep 2009/Chris James

This work isn’t quite complete yet and will be detailed via the announcements system at a later date. I couldn’t resist posting about some of the improvements made here recently…

Thankfully, we don’t need to call on backups for total server restores all that often. However, it remains a critical element of any hosting service because at the very minimum, clients should be able to expect to have their files backed up regularly and stored in a safe and secure environment so if the worst should happen (either single file restore, whole account or entire server) backup archives can be called upon.? Depending on how far one wants to go, it can get pretty expensive!

We have recently moved our big NAS server to a facility outside of London and are in the process of setting up a private GigE link back to our kit in Docklands to run our bare metal backups to.? This is a nice bit of software allowing servers to be backed up more regularly, without major server load with data restore available on a per file/dir basis or on a bare metal basis (whole partition or drive). The benefits of this are huge as should we require it, a whole server filesystem can be restored in just a few steps with no hastle associated with software installs, compiles, settings, etc that used to go with server restores. In case anyone is interested, the software we’ ve been using for some years on all shared/reseller servers (soon available on managed dedicated servers) can be read about at

In addition to the bare metal backup level, we have recently put a new local backup unit online. This is used with all blade servers which don’t have space for a secondary drive purely for backups and after a while of using regular NAS servers with NFS, we’re now going for a long term and much more stable solution. We have just completed the config of our new EqualLogic SAN unit which will live on the backup LAN in LHC and store all the backups for blade servers (included as standard on blade dedicated servers).? The cost of this thing is enormous but it’s darn good! iSCSI mounts in place on all servers are working at much nicer IO speeds which is combined with the much greater security and stability for all local backups. With this in place hopefully that will be the end of all backup storage problems for a long while to come! Info here on the SAN:

Hailing from Preston, Chris is the company founder and has always had an interest in computers, particularly internet technology. When not working he spends time with his family which is never quiet with a 3 year old running around!
We have a very strong team here at Clook and we build on everyone's strengths and weaknesses, you have to be able to make a good brew too!

Chris James

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