IBM TSM FastBack: Possible production data loss when FastBack Client and FastBack Server are on the same machine.

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Abstract

There is a possibility for production data loss with IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) FastBack when the FastBack Client and FastBack Server are installed on the same machine and a new disk is subsequently added to that production machine. The newly added disk becomes write-protected and all production data written to that disk can be lost.

Content

Data loss will occur when all of the following conditions are met:

  1. FastBack Client and FastBack Server are installed on the same production machine

    a. For 64-bit Operating systems: The default installation will cause FastBack Client and FastBack Server to be installed on the same production machine, unless the installation box for the appropriate component is unchecked.

    b. For 32-bit Operating systems: FastBack Client and FastBack Server will be installed on the same production machine if the non-default “full” installation path is used to install all FastBack components on the same machine or if both FastBack Client and FastBack Server are installed through the “custom” installation path.
  2. A disk is added to the production machine after both the FastBack Client and FastBack Server are installed on the same machine, and the “DiskOpen” utility is not used to allow write operations to the newly added disk.
  3. Data is written to the newly added disk.

The newly added disk becomes write-protected and all data written to the disk is not physically written to disk due to the FastBack Server protection mechanism. The newly added data is written to the File System cache, until the machine is rebooted or shut down, which results in loss of that data. APAR IC83214 describes this problem.
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Affected Products:
Tivoli Storage Manager FastBack versions 5.5.x and versions 6.1.0.0 - 6.1.6.0

How to Determine Whether Your Environment is Affected:
In order to determine if both FastBack Client and FastBack Server are installed on the same production machine, use the Windows Task Manager to look at the services tab and see if both FastBack Client and FastBack Server services are listed in the service table.

If both services are listed, and you have added a disk to the production machine since the FastBack Server was installed on the same production machine as the FastBack Client, without using the DiskOpen utility to allow write operations, you are affected.

Workarounds:
There are three options to avoid this problem:
  1. Do not install FastBack Server and FastBack Client on the same production machine if not necessary.
  2. If FastBack Client and FastBack Server are already installed on the same production machine but FastBack Server is not required for the production machine, uninstall it, leaving only the FastBack Client.
  3. If you have chosen to install FastBack Server & FastBack Client on the same machine, use the DiskOpen utility on any newly added disks. Refer to IBM TSM FastBack user’s guide for usage instructions.

Note: Installing Fastback Server and Client on the same machine is not recommended.

Solution:
Starting with IBM TSM FastBack release 6.1.6.1, the default installation path was changed and does not install the FastBack Client and Server on the same production machine, so that a conscientious decision must be made to do so.

During installation, it is still possible to choose manually to do so. In that case, the user will be presented with a warning about a potential data loss which might occur with that scenario.

Availability of Installation Changes:
Release Affected levels First level that includes the installation change and warning message
Tivoli Storage Manager FastBack 6.1 6.1.0.0 through 6.1.6.0 Version 6.1.6.1
Available in Fix Central
Tivoli Storage Manager FastBack 5.5 All 5.5 levels Customers that use FastBack version 5.5.x need to upgrade to FastBack version 6.1.6.1 or higher for these changes

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Document information


More support for:

Tivoli Storage Manager FastBack

Software version:

6.1

Operating system(s):

Linux, Windows

Reference #:

1613925

Modified date:

2012-10-15

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