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ARCserveIT v6.61 Advanced Edition for Linux Print E-mail
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Features ARCServeIT, the Computer Associates Backup Software Solution for Linux, Helps Linux Users Stay on Top of Storage Issues/Disaster Recovery

Introduction:

Data backup and recovery is one of the most essential parts in administering computer networks. Up to this point, many system administrators have relied on a combination of shell scripts and dump to backup their system. Many administrators have already found from experience that this combination has limited functionality and often requires custom scripting to fit the needs of each individual.

Last month, Computer Associates, Inc. asked us to review ARCserveIT v6.61 Advanced Edition for Linux. The initial installation was not complicated and each function executed as documented. The Advanced Edition for Linux has many interesting features. Perhaps the most interesting one is the Java interface. ARCserveIT requires apache and installs the Java control panel at ( http://localhost/as6 ) It can be accessed locally or via a network. This makes ARCserveIT administration easy. ARCserveIT also can be access and controlled from the command line.

The appearance, ease of use, and functionality of ARCserveIT were all excellent. In the two week testing period, ARCserveIT remained stable, executed all jobs, and logged all events. If you are looking for a better Linux backup solution, ARCserveIT may be what you need.

ImageTo the left: A screen shot of ARCServeIT's Java based user interface. After apache is configured, this interface can be called from any remote location with WWW access.

Overall Grade: A



Features of ARCserveIT v6.61:
  • Integrated Client Support
  • Multiple Server Support (Deploy ARCserveIT to backup unlimited servers throughout the network.)
  • Integrated Tape and Optical Library Support
  • Extensive Device Support
  • Advanced Scheduling
  • Data Verification (CRC - byte by byte verification)
  • Parallel Streaming (Back up/restore data simultaneously, to or from up to 32 devices)
  • Automatic Alerts
  • ARCserveIT writes data to tape using the Universal Tape Format (UTF).

Functions of ARCserveIT v6.61:

Backup:
(Backup Manager) This section is used to configure which computer(s) on the network you wish to back up, path, destination media, and backup schedule.
Restore:
(Restore Manager) This section is obviously for restoring previous backups. It can be used to restore local or networked machines.
Job Status:
(Job Status Manager) This section displays the current jobs to be executed. It can also be used to configure more advanced backup schedules. Backup schedules can be extremely complex. (ie. M-W-F full backup, T-H incremental, every 6 days regardless, full backup, etc. )
Devices:
(Device Manager) This section gives a detailed summary of the backup devices installed. Other commands such as format, erase, compress, clean, can be executed.
Database:
(Database Manager) This section gives a more detailed view of the hard drive, network, and ARCserveIT configuration.
Merge:
(Merge Manager) This section is used to determine/choose how a particular media source is merged.
Scan:
(Scan Manager) This section is used to configure backup scans.
Reports:
(Report Manager) This section is used to organize log messages, and to gatherbackup job reports.
Profiles:
(Profile Manage) This section is used to add, remove, and configure backup managers. *NOTE: It is extremely important that you set a password for the arcroot user. The default password is blank.

Evaluation Platform:

Pentium 466 mhz, 64 mb Ram, SyQuest Syjet 1.5GB Portable SCSI tape Backup, Red Hat Linux v6.1, Apache 1.3.12 System


Software Requirements:

  • Apache Web Server and pdksh need to be preinstalled. pd-ksh is a clone of the Korn Shell. The ksh shell is a command interpreter intended for both interactive and shell script use. Ksh's command language is a superset of the sh shell language.
  • Browser With Java Support, and at least 800x600 resolution to view httpd interface frames correctly.
  • Supported Distributions: Red Hat 6.1, SuSE 6.3, Caldera OpenLinux 2.3, Turbo Linux 6.0

Hardware Requirements:(server)

  • Pentium class processor with minimum 64 mb RAM, although it did not seem to be RAM intensive
  • Minimum of 30 mb Hard Disk space.
  • You must have at least one tape drive. ARCserveIT supports any drive that is supported under Linux.

Restore Basics:

ARCserveIT can restore entire hosts, drives, file systems, and volumes. The restore capabilities are flexible enough to backup/restore the data from Linux, Unix, Netware, and Windows servers. In order to restore a host back its original filestate, ARCserveIT must be reinstalled on the system. To perform the restore, pull up the administrative menus (http://localhost/as6), and follow the restore wizard menus.

General ARCserveIT Security:

ARCserveIT has built-in data encryption functionality to better secure critical data against malicious activities. ARCserveIT also has its own methods of data verification to help ensure data integrity and minimize errors.

The security of ARCserveIT is comparable to other backup packages. The http administrative menus have password protection by default. If you are planning to use the http administrative menus remotely, I would suggest adding password protection to the general web directory. This can be done by adding a .htaccess file to the default web directory. ( ie. /opt/ARCservIT/httpd)

- Use htpasswd to generate a password file:


# htpasswd .password_file_name username

- A general .htaccess file ( located in /opt/ARCservIT/httpd ) should look like:


AuthUserFile /path/to/.password_file_name
AuthName "ARCserveIT Backup"
AuthType Basic

deny from all
allow from 123.123.123.123 <------- Your Workstations IP Address
require user username

Installation: (Quick & Easy )

The packages used during installation include calicens.rpm, as6mgr.rpm, as6svr.rpm, and turbofix.rpm, which is required for Turbo Linux 6.0 installs.

When logged in as root, mount the cdrom drive:


# mount /dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom
Change into install directory:

# cd /mnt/cdrom/opt/linux/ARCserve.IT
Make sure the files as6mgr.rpm, as6svr.rpm, and install exist. Then run install script:
[root@cry0phi]# ./install
Now installing the ARCserveIT packages ...
Installing ARCserveIT Base (as6svr.rpm) ...
Congratulations! The ARCserveIT package has been installed and your
/etc/profile has been updated to include the ARCserveIT home directory
(/opt/ARCserveIT) and executables paths. You will need to finish up
installation by running asetup. Before you do, though, please source
/etc/profile to get those new settings into your environment. Thank you!
Installing ARCserveIT Management (as6mgr.rpm) ...
Congratulations! as6mgr package has been installed. It will be configured
when you run asetup. After that, in your Web browser, please go to the
following URL: cry0phi/as6/
Done! Thank you
Once the installation is successfully done, a directory /opt/ARCserveIT will be created on your system if you have decided to install on the default (/opt) directory. Also /ca_lic directory will be created for CA License. Next you need to execute:


# . /etc/profile
to set the $ARCH_HOME variable set to the ARCserveIT Home directory. Next run asetup to configure the ARCserveIT system. (default: /opt/ARCserveIT/sbin/asetup) During asetup you will be asked a series of questions such as host name, domain name, logging information, etc. I chose all default values and did not have any trouble. Start ARCserveIT with astart.

Other System Commands:

To stop ARCserveIT:astop

To check software Status:astatus

To Remove ARCserveIT:


# rpm -e as6mgr as6svr calicense



Vendor: Computer Associates, Inc.

Homepage: ARCserveITHomepage

Review for: LinuxSecurity.com

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