LBackup is extremely flexible with regards backup report presentation and error reporting.
Although a report saying the backup was successful is very reassuring. It is still a very good idea to preform regular test restores and also to continually run check sums in order to verify the backup integrity. If you have time, please consider contributing to the LBackup system by implementing a secondary checksum system.
You can never be too sure that a backup is successful!
There is currently a more advanced LBackup log monitoring system being developed. This system is capable of scaning multiple backup servers, each of which may perform multiple backups with logs which need to be checked for errors. This information may then be displayed in a variety of ways or sent to a third party monitoring system which you may already have deployed.
If you are dealing with thousands of backups scattered across the world then this system is a great way to consolidate and interpret LBackup reports. In addition, distributing the log processing to multiple backup servers also means that resource usage on any single log consultation systems is able to be minimized.
Lucid also has a variety of RSS push technologies available for reporting via RSS feeds. These systems allow any log data to be published to a server and then consolidated into reports or simply displayed as RSS feeds.
With open source backup technology there are generally various approaches when it comes to modifying or plugging into the backup system. This means it is easy to customize your backup reports and how this information is presented. Should you require any assistance with backup report customization then simply contact Lucid Information Systems to arrange a quotation.
It is possible to configure LBackup to deliver the backup log file via email. Log delivery by email is quick and easy to configure. LBackup includes built in support for backup report delivery via email.
The log file email delivery is handled by the 'lmail' tool. The example directory bundled with LBackup contains an example mail configuration file. If you edit the configuration file then you run 'lmail' and specify the configuration file as the first argument on the command line the log file will be emailed to the recipient who is specified within the configuration file.
In order for backup reports to be delivered via email. A sendmail compliant mail server will either need to be configured on the machine which Lbackup is running from, or on a machine which is accessible via SSH.
If you plan to enable SMTP services on any machine, it is a good idea to restrict who is able to send email via the server. You do not want to become a spam relay system. It is very easy to configure a mail server so that it will act as a mail relay for anyone on the internet. Please do your bit to ensure that your mail server is configured in a responsible manner. The more challanging sending unsolisted email is for spammers, the less spam you will have in your inbox.
A good site to visit if you are interested in an introduction to configuring a PostFix mail server is jennings.homelinux.net. Alternatively, the offical PostFix home page is also very useful.
Many flavors of *NIX will almost automatically configure SMTP services after a fresh install.
Mac OS X box running 10.4.x or greater, shipps with PostFix pre-installed. If you want to quickly setup a sendmail complient mail server and do not want to configure PostFix via the command line. There are a number of GUI PostFix configuration utilities availible for Mac OS X:
- RapidoSMTP (App4Mac) : extreamlly limited set of PostFix options
- PostFix Enabler (Cutedge Systems)
- MailServe (Cutedge System)
- Mac OS X Server (Apple)
The mail configuration file specifies how the backup log is sent and composed. For an example mail configuration file, refer to the example configuration files which are installed into the root directory during the installation process.
Delivery may be manually initiated by executing the 'maillog_script' component, by entering the following command on the terminal :
'/usr/local/libexec/lbackup/maillog_script.bash' followed by the mail configuration file as the first argument.
It is important that any meta data required by your backup policy is successfully retained by the backed system which you deploy into production. Regular test restores are a good way to verify this data is being successfully retained. Ensure that you check your institutes data retention requirements have been meet.
There are a variety of tools which may help with the verification of your backups.
- Backup Bouncer is a tool which may be used to check the kind of meta data which has or not been copied.
- SHA1 is also often used to check that files are identical.