Data Backup Services
It is imperative to have reliable backups for any computer system. In the event of a system failure, or a document being deleted by accident, the backups will be used to rebuild the system or retrieve the document. All IT offered backup solutions outlined below, are offered at a nominal fee. For detailed fee information, contact the IT Help Desk at x8940. In order to participate in the IT backup solution, due to computing policy requirements, IT must install LANDesk - Desktop Management Suite on the PC/Mac computer. IT is offering the following options for departments and labs to back up their systems.
E-mail and file (data) restore requests may incur additional charges depending on the nature and complexity of the restore.
- Windows PC
Connected is a PC-only backup system which will copy your entire hard drive
nightly, with the exception of the files on the IT exemption list. This happens
between midnight and 7 am, through client software that IT must install on
your PC. Laptops may also be included and are backed up during normal
business hours, as they are not typically connected to the campus network at
Files backed up via Connected are retained for 90 days. Users may retrieve
copies of their own files on demand through their Connected client. There is a file size limit of 20GB per file. Files larger than 20GB will not be backed up.
Retrospect is a backup system that is used for Mac desktops and servers.
Retrospect backs up your entire hard drive, with the exception of files on
the IT exemption list, nightly to a central server. File retrieval and restorations are done on a per request basis by the user. Retrospect backups occur after hours between 6:30 pm to 8:30 am. Laptops can be included too and are backed up during normal business hours. Files backed up are retained for 90 days before being overwritten.
- Unix/Linux and Windows Servers
Legato Networker is used for Unix and Linux machines and Windows Servers. Legato Networker backups done to a central server. File retrieval and restorations are done on a per request basis by the user. Legato backups occur nightly from midnight - 7 am. Due to technical differences between how the systems work, files backed up are retained depending on when the file(s) was backed up.
Files backup up are retained for 90 days before being overwritten.
Tips for Retrospect and Connected Backups
To ensure proper backups, there are several steps that need to be taken:
- Do not shut down your computer overnight—even if you're away for an extended period of time. Instead, Lock your computer or Log Off your profile (you can also shut off your monitor if you prefer). Backups are conducted during off hours. When the system encounters a shutdown computer, it will generate errors messages. Please contact our Help Desk at x8940 if you need assistance.
- Do not leave applications (e.g., Word, Excel, PowerPoint,) or E-mail (e.g., Outlook Express, Mozilla Thunderbird, etc.) open for they will not be backed up. All open data will not be backed up.
- Disable Standby and Hibernate mode.
- Do not backup system files and folders. Directories such as c:\Windows (PC) and System folder (Mac). For assistance on excluding these, contact the Help Desk. IT cannot exclude these globally, as some users have stored data files in these directories and these exceptions need to be done on the local client on a case by case basis.
- If you receive error messages from the Retrospect and Connected clients please
report them to our Help Desk immediately.
For backup rates, see the Rates Page.
Data Backup Policy
In order to assure our clients of continued, effective backup service for Desktop machines, Information Technology is excluding certain files from network backups. Our backup policy and servers are periodically reviewed and adjusted to accommodate increased network volume and ensure timely disaster recovery of entire computers.
Users are responsible for reviewing backup client notification messages and alerting Information Technology when backups are not occurring in an error-free, timely and recurring fashion.
For PC users using Connected backup service, if IT excempts a file(s) from being backed up, the first time Connected DataProtector will run it will still state that the file(s) was attempted to be backed up. This is to be expected and when Connected will run again, the file(s) will not be attempted to be backed up. After three to four backup attempts, if the file(s) are still being attempted to back up, contact the IT Help Desk at x8940.
The following are NOT included in network backups:
- Files With Extensions Ending In .Ogg, .Wma, .Wmv or .Asf
These files are the "new .mp3”, i.e. very large music or "entertainment" files whose size creates a large drag on the backups and are not related to University work. If your work does generate important files ending in one of these extensions and you need to have those files backed up, please contact the IT Help Desk at ext. 8940.
- .Mp3 Sound (Music) Files
There has been tremendous growth in the number of these typically large files stored on users’ systems. Their size and compressed file format delay backup of vital documents and other data on campus computers. Therefore, all files with an .mp3 extension will be excluded from network backups.
- Temp or Temporary Directories
The Windows operating system, as well as some PC and Mac programs, create TEMP folders (i.e., C:\TEMP, C:\WINNT\TEMP, C:\WINDOWS\Temporary Internet Files\ etc.), which are directories for storing non-essential and temporary Files. TEMP directories may be kept perpetually active by the OS and slow down backup. Due to this, all TEMP or otherwise marked "Temporary" directories will be excluded from nightly backups. We ask that you please do not store any important files in a TEMP directory. Your Documents folder is suggested as an alternative.
- Cache folders
The Windows and Macintosh operating systems, as well as some PC and Mac programs, maintain cache folders (i.e., C:\Windows\Cache, a "Netscape Cache" folder in the Netscape folder, many other folders with "cache" in the name generated by other programs, etc.), which are directories for caching non-essential and temporary Files. Cache directories may be kept perpetually active by the OS and slow down backup. Due to this, all cache directories will be excluded from nightly backups. We ask that you please do not store any important files in a cache directory. Your Documents folder is suggested as an alternative.
E-mail Backup Retention Policy (for
Centrally Stored E-mail)
Backup copies of all e-mail folders and messages on The Rockefeller University
central e-mail server are stored such that they can be retreived for the user for a maximum of 30 days. This policy refers
only to backup copies of your messages. No messages will be deleted from
your e-mail account on the server. E-mail backups are performed nightly.
If you require assistance, or have questions or concerns, contact the Help Desk at x8940.
- For users who access e-mail directly on the server (IMAP users), the policy
means that any message that is lost or deleted by you can be restored from
a backup tape to its original location within three months of having been
- For users who access e-mail by downloading and saving it locally (POP users):
- The policy applies to any messages stored on the server, and not to
messages that have been downloaded and saved to your local computer.
- Messages saved to your local computer are included with the regularly
scheduled backup of your computer if you subscribe to one of Information
- Recuring Calendar Entries: Do not frequently change recurring meetings. Because of the way different e-mail programs process meeting requests, meetings can easily become lost, misscheduled, or duplicated within a client program after repeated updates. If a recurring meeting regularly changes time or location, cancel the meeting for all attendees and create a new meeting per occasion. IT cannot successfuly recover from backup recurring meetings that change information, such as attachments, dates/times or notes.