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How do you set Computer Priority for HP Media Smart Home Server RRS feed

  • Question

  • How do you set priority to specific computers for the backup.

    I have 4 computers set up to back up each night between 12 and 7 am.

    The one Computer which has 2.5 Gig takes 6 hours 45 minutes on average each night to preform its backup. The second computer has 1.2 Gig of data and takes 3 hours 39 minutes and the 2 remaining computers each have 1 gig of data both taking just short of 3 hours.

    These times are true even if there are no changes to the data on the machines even over weekends when there is no one around working on the systems it still takes just a long as a day when they are being accessed. These times vary but not to any great degree.

    As you can easily see There are not enough hours in the night to back up all the systems and I do not want them running past 7 Am because it causes a significant slow down on the computer doing the backup during the day. So what I need to know is how set a different machine as the starting machine so on Monday it starts with a different machine than on Tuesday and so on so that once a week each of the 4 machines have had at least one backup done.  As it is now It always starts with the 2.5 Gig machine causing all the other machines to not be backed up. The only way I have found to get around this is to Manually turn off backups for each machine turning a different one on each night. This is a royal pain and if I am not around or get tied up and forget we eventually get the usual warning messages when a specific computer has not been backed up over 5 days. There must be a way to automatically switch which computer gets backed up each night or to significantly speed up the time it takes to check the data automatically and backup only the changed data automatically.

     

    Thank you for getting back to me on this very significant problem.

     

    Friday, January 29, 2010 1:54 PM

Answers

  • Take a look at upgrading your network. It sounds like you either have a very slow wireless network, or you have an even slower (proportionally) wired network. As a point of reference, I have 7 computers which back up at least occasionally to my production server. If I queue all of them up manually so backups run back to back, it takes a little over 3 hours for all of them to back up.

    As for scheduling computer A to back up one night, and computer B to back up another night, there is no supported way to do that. If you want the computers to back up automatically during the nightly backup window, they will do so every night. If you want to control backups, you can either manually back them up at a time of your choosing (supported) or come up with some scheme which is able to boot one computer a night for a backup, then turn them off each night.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, January 29, 2010 3:39 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Take a look at upgrading your network. It sounds like you either have a very slow wireless network, or you have an even slower (proportionally) wired network. As a point of reference, I have 7 computers which back up at least occasionally to my production server. If I queue all of them up manually so backups run back to back, it takes a little over 3 hours for all of them to back up.

    As for scheduling computer A to back up one night, and computer B to back up another night, there is no supported way to do that. If you want the computers to back up automatically during the nightly backup window, they will do so every night. If you want to control backups, you can either manually back them up at a time of your choosing (supported) or come up with some scheme which is able to boot one computer a night for a backup, then turn them off each night.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, January 29, 2010 3:39 PM
    Moderator
  • The network is running off of a wired linksys wrt600n which is a gigabyte bandwith router and the transferswitch connected to it is a 3com gigabyte transfer switch. All of the cards in the machines are 10/100/1000. I am not sure how much better I can do with the network as far as upgrading it more when I purchase the bakup we did upgrade to this level so its a good suggestion just not, I believe, relevent in this case.  You mention you are backing up 7 machines but don't mention the amount of data it is compairing and backing up. Thats what seems to take the time the one drive has 500 gig of data on it and it goes into its "checking to see what has changed" statement on the screen and stays there for 2 hours. Just that one drive in one  machine. Unless it is the hp media center that is running slow it is a EX475 HP Media Smart Server with three external mybook WDC usb hard drives as well as 2 internal 500 and 2 wdc 1.5 Tb drives. What really drives me crazy is it took me less time to do a complete first time copy (meaning it  was a brand new purchased usb external hard drive)  using a segate 1.5 tb with its free agent software then it takes to do a compare and copy only what is different using my automatic home server software. Is there a setting I am missing in the software or is the current storage unit too old and only a 10/100?

    I am open to suggestions as I mentioned this is a problem for me and I have tried all the easy solutions like router,transferswitch and card speeds. Again that is a relevant and excellent suggestion but one we have already tackled.

    Thanks for your assistance
    Saturday, January 30, 2010 5:01 AM
  • My workstations vary from a low of around 70 GB to a high of nearly 800 GB.

    Those external USB drives are likely to have something to do with performance issues. I can't tell you exactly how much, though. How long does it take to transfer a large file (say 1 GB or larger) to one of the server's shares?

    Also, I still think you have performance issues on your network. Just because you've upgraded hardware to gigabit ethernet doesn't mean you'll get gigabit speeds. Also, if you have cabling problems, Windows will slow down to 100 Mbit or even 10 Mbit speeds to compensate. And if you have bad or conflicting settings on your various network components, you could easily see the kind of performance you're describing. You could also have a hardware or configuration issue on one or more of your computers. It's kind of tough to pin down from a distance, unfortunately.
    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Saturday, January 30, 2010 5:18 AM
    Moderator
  • The network is running off of a wired linksys wrt600n which is a gigabyte bandwith router and the transferswitch connected to it is a 3com gigabyte transfer switch. All of the cards in the machines are 10/100/1000. I am not sure how much better I can do with the network as far as upgrading it more when I purchase the bakup we did upgrade to this level so its a good suggestion just not, I believe, relevent in this case.  You mention you are backing up 7 machines but don't mention the amount of data it is compairing and backing up. Thats what seems to take the time the one drive has 500 gig of data on it and it goes into its "checking to see what has changed" statement on the screen and stays there for 2 hours. Just that one drive in one  machine. Unless it is the hp media center that is running slow it is a EX475 HP Media Smart Server with three external mybook WDC usb hard drives as well as 2 internal 500 and 2 wdc 1.5 Tb drives. What really drives me crazy is it took me less time to do a complete first time copy (meaning it  was a brand new purchased usb external hard drive)  using a segate 1.5 tb with its free agent software then it takes to do a compare and copy only what is different using my automatic home server software. Is there a setting I am missing in the software or is the current storage unit too old and only a 10/100?

    I believe it's Gb, but it doesn't actually say on the HP website...

    I am open to suggestions as I mentioned this is a problem for me and I have tried all the easy solutions like router,transferswitch and card speeds. Again that is a relevant and excellent suggestion but one we have already tackled.

    Thanks for your assistance
    Some possibilities that come to mind:  A) failing hard drive in your server or B) USB drives in the storage pool (are they 2.0?).

    What speeds do you get when you copy data between a client and the server shares?
    Saturday, January 30, 2010 5:29 AM
    Moderator
  •  

    An interesting test and one I am embarrassed to admit I had not thought to attempt.

    Transfering the one gig file (actually 1.023 Gig) from one the one computer to the other took 2 Min 16 sec. Transfering from one of the computers to the shared hp media center storage took 2 min 26 sec. But that included the spin up of the usb drives. They are Power savers so they spin down when not in use I heard them spin up which would account for the 10 sec difference.

    I do not have a bench mark to compare this to what is the proper transfer rate for a 1 gig file across a Ethernet system. Basically what speed am I running at the 10, 100 or the 1000 that my system is suppose to be rated at? Any one have comparable data for a transfer of a 1 gig file? Would appreciate the feed back on any transfer rate you folks have in order to compare and see if it an error with my network.

     Thanks for the help so far hoping to get this cleared up.

    An Additional thought one that just came to mind and may not have any bearing on my problem. However I did hear and see the usb drive spin up and working during the transfer. Now I am assuming that the usb 2.0 drives I am using do not work as quickly as internal sata hard drives. Could the added storage be a limiting factor to the transfer speed? I am shying against that only because the transfer between the computers was very close to the transfer to the hub. But would be interesting to know does the design of the hp unit allow for the data to be dumped first to the internal drives and then evenly distributed between the external drives or is it attempting to send it directly evenly between the internal and external drives and therefor running at the external rate of the usb drives.

    Has anyone attempted this? Running a file directly to the hp storage device with no external usb drive attached and then doing it again with one attached as a storage expansion (Not rather then as a secondary backup drive since that would not be being assessed at the same time like a storage expansion would) and seeing if there is any difference in the transfer time?
    I would attempt it myself but the amount of data I have stored on the hp exceeds my internal limit so I can not actually remove all 3 of the external drives. 2 yes all 3 no.

    Would be interested if anyone has attempted this just as a comparison.

    Sorry again this may and probably, does not have any bearing in my problem because of the comparable times. But still a curiosity.

    • Edited by JohnAC2001 Sunday, January 31, 2010 1:48 AM Additional thought
    Sunday, January 31, 2010 1:26 AM
  • An interesting test and one I am embarrassed to admit I had not thought to attempt.

    Transfering the one gig file (actually 1.023 Gig) from one the one computer to the other took 2 Min 16 sec. Transfering from one of the computers to the shared hp media center storage took 2 min 26 sec. But that included the spin up of the usb drives. They are Power savers so they spin down when not in use I heard them spin up which would account for the 10 sec difference.

    Based on those numbers, it comes out to 7.17 MB/s (or 57.4 Mb/s).  While not spectacular (I get 88 Mb/s and my LAN is only 100Mb), I would say it's not that bad either (especially if you're doing some other network function at the same time).
    I do not have a bench mark to compare this to what is the proper transfer rate for a 1 gig file across a Ethernet system.

    In theory, it should take 8 seconds to transfer a 1 GB file through a Gb LAN network.  However, due to other bottlenecks (write speeds of the hard drives, for example), I doubt you'll ever see that.  One other thought though:  are you sure every NIC, router, and switch is Gb LAN?

    Basically what speed am I running at the 10, 100 or the 1000 that my system is suppose to be rated at? Any one have comparable data for a transfer of a 1 gig file? Would appreciate the feed back on any transfer rate you folks have in order to compare and see if it an error with my network.

    Thanks for the help so far hoping to get this cleared up.

    An Additional thought one that just came to mind and may not have any bearing on my problem. However I did hear and see the usb drive spin up and working during the transfer. Now I am assuming that the usb 2.0 drives I am using do not work as quickly as internal sata hard drives. Could the added storage be a limiting factor to the transfer speed? I am shying against that only because the transfer between the computers was very close to the transfer to the hub. But would be interesting to know does the design of the hp unit allow for the data to be dumped first to the internal drives and then evenly distributed between the external drives or is it attempting to send it directly evenly between the internal and external drives and therefor running at the external rate of the usb drives.

    WHS stores new data on the secondary drive with the least free space on it.
    Has anyone attempted this? Running a file directly to the hp storage device with no external usb drive attached and then doing it again with one attached as a storage expansion (Not rather then as a secondary backup drive since that would not be being assessed at the same time like a storage expansion would) and seeing if there is any difference in the transfer time?
    I would attempt it myself but the amount of data I have stored on the hp exceeds my internal limit so I can not actually remove all 3 of the external drives. 2 yes all 3 no.

    Would be interested if anyone has attempted this just as a comparison.

    Sorry again this may and probably, does not have any bearing in my problem because of the comparable times. But still a curiosity.
    I would still try running chkdsk /r on each drive in the server.
    Sunday, January 31, 2010 2:28 AM
    Moderator