[Box Backup] Feedback and issues with boxbackup-0.10 on OpenSolaris/ZFS

Chris Wilson boxbackup@fluffy.co.uk
Sun, 21 Oct 2007 16:52:56 +0100 (BST)

Hi Lesinigo,

On Fri, 19 Oct 2007, Lesinigo Luca wrote:

> Hello there. Hope this is the right place for this stuff. I'm used to run 
> boxbackup-0.10 in linux, but I'm moving it on a solaris box. Solaris express 
> community edition, svn_67, on good old 32bit x86.
> 1) I more or less followed 
> http://bbdev.fluffy.co.uk/trac/wiki/CompilingOnSolaris and it compiled well, 
> but "make install-backup-server" did not work. You can read the exact 
> commands I used at http://www.semlug.net/moin/OpenSolaris/BoxBackup - sorry 
> for the Italian comments, but the commands should be pretty clear. "make 
> install-backup-server" gives me [1], repeated once for every binary in the 
> server parcel.
> [1] partial output of make install-backup-server:
> (cd parcels/boxbackup-0.10-backup-server-solaris2.11; 
> ./install-backup-server)
> find:  stat() error /opt/boxbackup/bin: No such file or directory
> find:  cycle detected for /lib/32/
> find:  cycle detected for /lib/secure/32/
> find:  cannot follow symbolic link /usr/lib/lu/lu_activate_sync: No such file 
> find:  or directory
> find:  cannot follow symbolic link /usr/lib/lu/lu_init_sync_start: No such 
> find:  file or directory

I'm afraid I don't know what that means, but the install script should 
only reference the install program, which should be a Unix standard 
command and should have nothing to do with "find". Perhaps you have a 
broken install script in your PATH?

> 2) I manually installed boxbackup server on the system (as you can read
>    on the semlug.net wiki) and it seems to be working without problems
>    on my SXCE install. It's happily running inside a solaris container
>    living on a ZFS filesystem, hope this feedback sounds good to you as
>    it does to me :)

Yes, that's excellent. You might like to disable Box Backup's own feature 
that keeps old version of files, and use ZFS to do that instead (by being 
able to take the repository back in time).

> 2b) zfs with compression=on (uses lzjb, a really light algorithm, much 
> faster than gzip) reports a 1.07 compression factor on a 50GB boxbackup 
> store. Maybe this means you can squeeze something more off the bbackup 
> compression?

We deliberately compress quite small blocks in order to make it possible 
to use an rsync-like algorithm on them. Perhaps we could do additional 
compression on the server, but for 7% gain it doesn't sound that useful.

> 3) I kept getting errors like "while housekeeping account 00040001,
>    exception Common OSFileError (Error accessing a file. Check
>    permissions.) (1/9) -- aborting" [from bbstored] and "Exception:
>    RaidFile RaidFileDoesntExist (2/11)" [from bbstoreaccounts info],
>    when the real problem was that I put the 'account directories'
>    directly under the raidfile directory (like $dir/$accountsdir), while
>    bbstored expected $dir/backup/$accountsdir.  Mine was just a stupid
>    error transferring the data from a server to another, but the error
>    messages weren't useful at all, they were misleading!

The error messages have been improved a lot in the current development 
version, which I hope we will release soon. Did you get an exception 
logged just before that, and if so what was the file and line number?

You could help us a lot by testing the latest trunk rather than using 
0.10 which is very old. Have you read about the known problems with 0.10 
at [http://bbdev.fluffy.co.uk/trac/wiki/Installation]?

> 4) This is more of a feature request, but having a solaris smf(5)
>    manifest for boxbackup would be great. I tried to look into it but it
>    proved to be a more challenging task than what I expected, having
>    never wrote a manifest. I must say I'm more or less a beginner with
>    solaris.

Sorry, I know less about SMF files than you do, I have no idea how I would 
do it or what I would want one for. If you do write one, please tell us 
about it and we'll add it to the distribution of you agree.

> I hope this mail is useful to you. I'll keep my subscription to the m.l. 
> for a while so I'll read any reply to this. If boxbackup-0.10 on solaris 
> proves to be stable as it seems to be, I'll convert my production 
> servers (I offer an internet boxbackup server service to my customers) 
> to solaris on ZFS.
> Meanwhile, thanks for boxbackup and keep up with the good work! :)

Cheers, Chis.
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