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Taikun OCP Guide

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Back up Block Storage service disks

While you can use the LVM snapshot to create snapshots, you can also
use it to back up your volumes. By using LVM snapshot, you reduce the
size of the backup; only existing data is backed up instead of the
entire volume.

To back up a volume, you must create a snapshot of it. An LVM
snapshot is the exact copy of a logical volume, which contains data in a
frozen state. This prevents data corruption because data cannot be
manipulated during the volume creation process. Remember that the
volumes created through an openstack volume create command exist in an LVM
logical volume.

You must also make sure that the operating system is not using the
volume and that all data has been flushed on the guest file systems.
This usually means that those file systems have to be unmounted during
the snapshot creation. They can be mounted again as soon as the logical
volume snapshot has been created.

Before you create the snapshot you must have enough space to save it.
As a precaution, you should have at least twice as much space as the
potential snapshot size. If insufficient space is available, the
snapshot might become corrupted.

For this example assume that a 100 GB volume named
volume-00000001 was created for an instance while only 4 GB
are used. This example uses these commands to back up only those 4

  • lvm2 command.
    Directly manipulates the volumes.
  • kpartx command.
    Discovers the partition table created inside the instance.
  • tar command.
    Creates a minimum-sized backup.
  • sha1sum
    command. Calculates the backup checksum to check its consistency.

You can apply this process to volumes of any size.

To back up Block Storage service disks

  1. Create a snapshot of a used volume

    • Use this command to list all volumes

      # lvdisplay
    • Create the snapshot; you can do this while the volume is attached
      to an instance:

      # lvcreate --size 10G --snapshot --name volume-00000001-snapshot \

      Use the --snapshot configuration option to tell LVM that
      you want a snapshot of an already existing volume. The command includes
      the size of the space reserved for the snapshot volume, the name of the
      snapshot, and the path of an already existing volume. Generally, this
      path is /dev/cinder-volumes/VOLUME_NAME.

      The size does not have to be the same as the volume of the snapshot.
      The --size parameter defines the space that LVM reserves
      for the snapshot volume. As a precaution, the size should be the same as
      that of the original volume, even if the whole space is not currently
      used by the snapshot.

    • Run the lvdisplay command again to verify the

      --- Logical volume ---
      LV Name                /dev/cinder-volumes/volume-00000001
      VG Name                cinder-volumes
      LV UUID                gI8hta-p21U-IW2q-hRN1-nTzN-UC2G-dKbdKr
      LV Write Access        read/write
      LV snapshot status     source of
                             /dev/cinder-volumes/volume-00000026-snap [active]
      LV Status              available
      # open                 1
      LV Size                15,00 GiB
      Current LE             3840
      Segments               1
      Allocation             inherit
      Read ahead sectors     auto
      - currently set to     256
      Block device           251:13
      --- Logical volume ---
      LV Name                /dev/cinder-volumes/volume-00000001-snap
      VG Name                cinder-volumes
      LV UUID                HlW3Ep-g5I8-KGQb-IRvi-IRYU-lIKe-wE9zYr
      LV Write Access        read/write
      LV snapshot status     active destination for /dev/cinder-volumes/volume-00000026
      LV Status              available
      # open                 0
      LV Size                15,00 GiB
      Current LE             3840
      COW-table size         10,00 GiB
      COW-table LE           2560
      Allocated to snapshot  0,00%
      Snapshot chunk size    4,00 KiB
      Segments               1
      Allocation             inherit
      Read ahead sectors     auto
      - currently set to     256
      Block device           251:14
  2. Partition table discovery

    • To exploit the snapshot with the tar command, mount your partition on the Block
      Storage service server.

      The kpartx
      utility discovers and maps table partitions. You can use it to view
      partitions that are created inside the instance. Without using the
      partitions created inside instances, you cannot see its content and
      create efficient backups.

      # kpartx -av /dev/cinder-volumes/volume-00000001-snapshot


      On a Debian-based distribution, you can use the apt-get install kpartx
      command to install kpartx.

      If the tools successfully find and map the partition table, no errors
      are returned.

    • To check the partition table map, run this command:

      $ ls /dev/mapper/nova*

      You can see the
      cinder--volumes-volume--00000001--snapshot1 partition.

      If you created more than one partition on that volume, you see
      several partitions; for example:
      cinder--volumes-volume--00000001--snapshot3, and so

    • Mount your partition

      # mount /dev/mapper/cinder--volumes-volume--volume--00000001--snapshot1 /mnt

      If the partition mounts successfully, no errors are returned.

      You can directly access the data inside the instance. If a message
      prompts you for a partition or you cannot mount it, determine whether
      enough space was allocated for the snapshot or the kpartx command failed to
      discover the partition table.

      Allocate more space to the snapshot and try the process

  3. Use the tar
    command to create archives

    Create a backup of the volume:

    $ tar --exclude="lost+found" --exclude="some/data/to/exclude" -czf \
      volume-00000001.tar.gz -C /mnt/ /backup/destination

    This command creates a tar.gz file that contains the
    data, and data only. This ensures that you do not waste space
    by backing up empty sectors.

  4. Checksum calculation

    You should always have the checksum for your backup files. When you
    transfer the same file over the network, you can run a checksum
    calculation to ensure that your file was not corrupted during its
    transfer. The checksum is a unique ID for a file. If the checksums are
    different, the file is corrupted.

    Run this command to run a checksum for your file and save the result
    to a file:

    $ sha1sum volume-00000001.tar.gz > volume-00000001.checksum


    Use the sha1sum
    command carefully because the time it takes to complete the calculation
    is directly proportional to the size of the file.

    Depending on your CPU, the process might take a long time for files
    larger than around 4 to 6 GB.

  5. After work cleaning

    Now that you have an efficient and consistent backup, use this
    command to clean up the file system:

    • Unmount the volume.

      $ umount /mnt
    • Delete the partition table.

      $ kpartx -dv /dev/cinder-volumes/volume-00000001-snapshot
    • Remove the snapshot.

      $ lvremove -f /dev/cinder-volumes/volume-00000001-snapshot

    Repeat these steps for all your volumes.

  6. Automate your backups

    Because more and more volumes might be allocated to your Block
    Storage service, you might want to automate your backups. The SCR_5005_V01_NUAC-OPENSTACK-EBS-volumes-backup.sh
    script assists you with this task. The script performs the operations
    from the previous example, but also provides a mail report and runs the
    backup based on the backups_retention_days setting.

    Launch this script from the server that runs the Block Storage

    This example shows a mail report:

    Backup Start Time - 07/10 at 01:00:01
    Current retention - 7 days
    The backup volume is mounted. Proceed...
    Removing old backups...  : /BACKUPS/EBS-VOL/volume-00000019/volume-00000019_28_09_2011.tar.gz
         /BACKUPS/EBS-VOL/volume-00000019 - 0 h 1 m and 21 seconds. Size - 3,5G
    The backup volume is mounted. Proceed...
    Removing old backups...  : /BACKUPS/EBS-VOL/volume-0000001a/volume-0000001a_28_09_2011.tar.gz
         /BACKUPS/EBS-VOL/volume-0000001a - 0 h 4 m and 15 seconds. Size - 6,9G
    Total backups size - 267G - Used space : 35%
    Total execution time - 1 h 75 m and 35 seconds

    The script also enables you to SSH to your instances and run a mysqldump command into
    them. To make this work, enable the connection to the Compute project
    keys. If you do not want to run the mysqldump command, you can add
    enable_mysql_dump=0 to the script to turn off this