Backing up Oracle in AWS with Veritas CloudPoint

From manual Amazon EBS snapshots to single dashboard simplicity

Migrating your applications and databases to the cloud means that everything is taken care off. Data protection stops being your problem because the cloud automatically backs itself up and recovers magically.

51 percent out of the 1,200 global organizations that we interviewed for our Truth in Cloud survey believe just that

Sadly, nothing can be further from the truth.

In reality, the cloud opens up new opportunities, but it also comes with its challenges, especially when it comes to implementing a reliable and consistent backup and recovery strategy.

The most considerable challenge I think organizations face when moving existing or deploying new applications in the cloud is getting to grips with data protection fragmentation. Organizations tend to change their backup approach when they adopt the cloud. Only 21 percent retrofit the same backup solution as in the data center.

cookie-cutter-backup-tools.pngWhat tools does your organization use to backup the data for applications running in the cloud?

Taking into account the fact that organization use on average three different cloud service providers, there is a fair chance that organizations work with three or even more backup approaches just for their workloads in the cloud.  The result is an IT management nightmare that can put the organization and also your career at risk because with multiple isolated backup tools there is no visibility or central management control over backup and recovery operations across your multi-cloud environment.

Let's explore the options we have to, for example, deploy an Oracle database on Amazon Web Services (AWS).

AWS users are widely utilizing Oracle. They can consume Oracle via the Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS), but many also run Oracle on EC2 instances.

AWS recommends Amazon RDS first because it takes care of most of the tasks involved in operating your Oracle environment in the cloud; from deployment, management to maintenance and even backup. Using Amazon RDS enables you to focus on tuning and optimizing your Oracle databases and the applications they serve. However, the backup feature that it provides is basic and limited to picking the daily 30-minute backup window and setting the retention period.

If you need more control over your Orale environment, then Oracle on EC2 is the way to go. It gives you all the flexibility and control over your Oracle environment. You also have more options for backup, the Oracle Secure Cloud Backup module, switching log files, creating checkpoints and what else is there.

However, why use these methods if you can use EBS snapshots? EBS snapshots – depending on the size of the storage volume – take a few minutes to complete, are stored and replicated in Amazon S3 (although snapshots are not visible to you in S3) and are recoverable near-instantly.

amazon-ebs-snapshots-explained.pngAmazon EBS snapshots explained

Of course, EBS snapshots are perfect for fast backup and recovery of your Oracle databases, but there are limitations you need to know about too.

  • An EBS snapshot is not application-aware, which means that you must complete a series of manual steps and procedures to create an application-consistent snapshot of your Oracle database instance. You can perform these steps via the AWS Command Line Interface (CLI) or your Amazon Console and SQL *Plus for your Oracle commands.
  • Snapshot scheduling and retention are not built-in features, but via a workaround, it is doable. I recommend scripting and scheduling this because it is essential that you keep your recovery-points up-to-date and at the same time manage storage consumption and cost by deleting older expired snapshots.
  • And because an EBS snapshot is a straightforward block-level copy of the EBS storage volume, there is no knowledge of the data it stores which makes it impossible to search and perform a granular recovery directly from a snapshot.

Imagine managing and orchestrating manual EBS snapshots not only for your Oracle environments but your other applications such as SAP and Microsoft SQL too. The number of manual steps can quickly become overwhelming and complicated.

It does not have to be complex.

Veritas CloudPoint taps into the native snapshot capabilities that already exist in the AWS while it gives you a single dashboard to efficiently manage, orchestrate and automate backup and recovery operations not only for your applications in AWS but also for Microsoft Azure and the Google Cloud Platform – all from the same place.

If you want to learn more, then make sure to check out our webinar on Backing up Oracle in AWS which also features a comprehensive live-demo of CloudPoint.

live-demo-in-AWS.pngLive demo environment in AWS

Watch it now.

 

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