Results of Amanda Users Survey 2003

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Contents

Introduction

AMANDA (Advanced Maryland Automatic Network Disk Archiver) is the most popular open source network backup program. For more information about Amanda visit the website http://amanda.zmanda.com/ or http://sf.net/projects/amanda/ or this wiki http://wiki.zmanda.com/

Readers of the amanda-users mailing list (approximately 1100 subscribers) were asked in April of 2003 to describe their use of the backup system by filling out a survey questionnaire that was posted to the mailing list weekly. Seventy two (72) surveys were submitted during the month-long collection period.

In several postings that follow, I will report summaries of the collected data. In some cases I've included comments (Surveyor's Notes) of my own reaction to the data.

Later, I plan to recast these results in the form of questions and answers to add to the FOM (FAQ-O-Matic) at amanda.org. Should you have any thoughts on this please let me know via the list or personal email.

Jon LaBadie

[Surveyor's Note] While the number of submitted surveys neither surprised me, nor disappointed me, what did  
greatly disappoint me personally was this fact: Of the twenty five (25) individuals most active on the list 
(based  on number of postings for 12 months), only seven (7) bothered to respond to the survey.

Organizations

What follows is a summarization of the responses describing the organizations using Amanda.

Types of organizations using Amanda

CategoryNumType
University Department20-
Research Organizations10
Internet Service Providers5-
Data Processing Services11software, graphics, integration, consulting
Manufacturers (DP)5computers, electronics, semiconductors
Manufacturers (non-DP)4rubber, chemical, turbine, videoBoris
Service Organizations4publishing, power utility, forestry, money management
Small Office/Home Office6-
Others3natural history museum, education charity, national opera and ballet
[Surveyor's Note] The `Categories' were my grouping, they were not on the survey. I expected more in the SOHO  category.
[Surveyor's Note] Extent of Amanda usage was asked on the survey. Few indicated that their entire firm based 
their  backups on Amanda, and then only relatively small companies (like JG Computing :). Thus the category 
is `University Department' not `University'. Similarly, Amanda is used by a groups within organizations like 
the chemical manufacturer or computer manufacturer or federal government noted above, not the entire entity. 
But Amanda may have helped produce the tires you are riding on, the workstation you are typing on, or to 
collect the taxes you pay :))

Location of organizations using Amanda

CountryNum
Belguim1
Japan1
Poland1
Canada1
Mexico1
Switzerland2
Estonia1
Norway1
Sweden3
Finland1
Portugal1
Germany5
France1
United Arab Emirates1
United Kingdom5
Italy1
Netherlands2
United States45


[Surveyor's Note] The totals are greater than number of submitted surveys as some respondents described 
multi-national installations.
[Surveyor's Note] Americans must be procrastinators. For a while, the number of non-US submitted surveys 
exceeded the ones from the US.

Length of Amanda usage at organization

Usage in yearsNum
0-125
1-28
2-313
3-410
4-58
5-62
7-82
8-92
9+1

Summary

10% of responders > 5 years use
33% of responders > 3 years use
50% of responders > 2 years use
33% of responders < 1 year use

Mean and Median are ~29 months (2.5 years)

[Surveyor's Note] Some really long time users of Amanda. It must do the job.

Servers and Clients

Amanda servers

Number of servers in organisationNum
153
211
35
51
61
71

Operating Systems Running on Amanda Server Hosts

Operating system (version)Num
FreeBSDTotal 10, including
4-STABLE2
4.71
4x1
HP-UXTotal 2, including
10.201
11.001
IRIXTotal 2, including
6.51
SCO OpenserverTotal 1, including
5.0.61
SolarisTotal 14, including
85
8 x86 1
93
Tru64Total 4, including
5.13
LinuxTotal 48, including
DebianTotal 13
2.41
3.02
Woody3
RedhatTotal 14
6.21
7.12
7.21
7.36
8.03
8.0 with RHnet kernel1
SlackwareTotal 1
71
SusETotal 3
8.12

Amanda Versions Run on Server Hosts

Amanda VersionNum
2.4.1Total 2, including
2.4.1p11
2.4.2Total 33, including
2.4.2p11
2.4.2p228
2.4.3Total 21, including
2.4.3b21
2.4.3b31
2.4.3b42
2.4.4Total 21, including
2.4.4-200304152
2.4.4-200304261
[Surveyor's Note] The percentage of older versions surprised me. Shouldn't have as I just upgraded 2 months ago. If it works why fix it?

Amanda CLIENTS

Number of Amanda Clients

Number of ClientsHost sites
14a6-1012
25b11-2013
3621-3012
4631-505
5761-704

Operating Systems Run on Amanda Clients

(mentions, not number of hosts)

Operating systemnum
AIXtotal 4,
Linux (all variants)total 86 including
14
Debiantotal 17
2.21
Darwintotal 1
2.41
3.02
FreeBSDtotal 17, including
potato1
2.2.51
sarge2
3.21
sid1
3.31
stable1
3.41
woody2
4-STABLE2
Mandraketotal 1
4.11
81
4.71
RedHattotal 26
5.01
6.01
6.22
6.2 Alpha1
6.2 sparc2
7.13
7.22
7.34
8.05
91
HP-UXtotal 8, including
101
10.202
113
Irixtotal 8, including
6.53
6.5 MIPS1
Slackwaretotal 3, including
7.02
8.11
MacOS Xtotal 6, including
10.11
10.21
SuSEtotal 4
NetBSDtotal 1, including Yellowdog
OpenBSDtotal 1
Tru64total 8, including
3.21
4.0 Alpha1
5.11
Snaptotal 1
Windowstotal 22
951
982
NT4
NT 4 server1
20007
XP3
Solaristotal 39, including
2.52
2.62
75
811
94
8 x863
9 x861
SunOStotal 1 including
4.1.41

Amanda Versions of Run on Client Hosts

Versionnum
2.4.1total 4, including
2.4.1p13
2.4.2total 42, including
2.4.2p11
2.4.2p233
2.4.3total 30, including
2.4.3b21
2.4.3b31
2.4.3b41
2.4.4total 25, including
2.4.4-200304152
2.4.4-200304261
2.4.4b11

Installation Properties

Total Disk Capacity of Clients

smallest: 20 GB

largest: 5000 GB

Capacitynum
20 to 100 GB13
101 to 200 GB22
201 to 500 GB16
501 to 1000 GB12
1001 to 2000 GB5
2001 to 5000 GB6

Total Data Currently Stored on Clients Disks

smallest: 3 GB

largest: 4000 GB

Capacitynum
3 to 50 GB22
51 to 100 GB14
101 to 200 GB15
201 to 500 GB10
501 to 1000 GB7
1001 to 4000 GB5

Average Size of a Single Backup

smallest: 0.3 GB

largest: 700 GB

Backup average sizenum
0.3 to 10 GB22
11 to 20 GB11
21 to 50 GB22
51 to 100 GB13
101 to 200 GB8
350 GB1
700 GB1

Backup Program Used

ProgramNum
gnutar or some tar variant72 (hfstar:3, nttar:1, smbtar:1)
dump or some dump variant50 (e2fsdump:1, ext2dump:2, ufsdump:12, vdump:2, vfsdump:1, vxdump:2, xfsdump:5)

Dumpcycle

DumpcycleNum
0 days5
1 days3
2 days1
3 days6
5 days5
7 days34
8 days - 2 weeks17
15 days - 4 weeks10
30 days - 75 days5
4 months1
6 months1
1 year1
1000 days1

Frequency of Backups

FrequencyNum
1/week6
2/week4
4 3/week4
4/week5
5/week36
6 6/week6
7/week31
1/month2

Type of Compression Used

Compression methodNum
gpg1
none15
hw17
sw - server31
sw - client46

Tape Hardware

Brand and Model of Tape Drive Used at Amanda Installations

The number of mentions of each brand is shown followed by specific models where reported.

NumBrand/Model
3Archive, including: 2 Qualstar TLS-4200 Python 04106 Python 06408
10Quantum, including: DLT-VS80
5Compaq, including: DLT-4000 AIT-2 DLT-7000 DLT-90 DLT-8000 MSL5126-S2 SDLT320
10Seagate, including: DAT
1Dell DLT-IV 12/24G 20/40G
5Ecrix, including: CTL-96/4586N VXA-1 DDS4 DDS3 Scorpion-24/STD124000N
5Exabyte
13Sony, including: 8500 AIT-1 Eliant 820 AIT-2 VXA-2 AIT-3 DLT-IV
15HP, including: DLT-9000 A4845A SDX-500C C1533A Sony SDX-700C C1557 C6280-7000
3Sun, including: DDS-4 DDS3 DLT vs80 7000 ESL9595 Python SureStor DAT-24 SureStor DAT-8
7Tandberg, including: Surestore Ultrium 230e DLT vs80 Ultrium 1 SDLT 220 SDLT-320
1IBM DDS4 SLR5 SLR7
1Mammoth
2Wang, including: DAT 3400DX
3None, backup to disk only
2Overland Data, including: Loaderexpress DLT8000

Native Tape Capacity of the Above Drives

Capacity4 GB7 GB10 GB12 GB15 GB17 GB20 GB22 GB25 GB30 GB35 GB40 GB50 GB60 GB80 GB100 GB110 GB160 GB500GB
Num7121111101428138117131

Preferred Brand of Tape

BrandNum
Compaq2
Dell1
Exabyte4
Fujifilm3
HP5
Imation1
Maxell2
Quantum2
Sony11
Verbatim1
No Preference16

Tape Format

4mm8mmAITAIT-1AIT-2AIT-3DDS-2DDS-3DDS-4DLTDLT-80DLT-IVEXALTOMammothsDLTsDLT320SLRSLR25SLR7Travan-20VXAVXA V-23VXA-2
14217381261517131411111111

Tape Changers/Libraries Used at Amanda Installations

[Surveyor's Note] A total of 28 of 72 respondents reported having using tape changer or library. Several of those 
reported having more than one.  Surprisingly, the 28 respondents reported 26 distinct models of changer/library.

The table below shows the models reported by 28 respondents. Where multiple reports for the same model existed, only one entry is show. Where the multiple reports showed different configurations (eg. 1 drive vs 2 drive), only the larger configuration is shown.

BRAND MODELnum of drivestapesCapacity
ADIC ??14200 GB
ADIC FastStor DLT17245 GB
Compaq MSL51261254000 GB
Compaq SSL20202201000 GB
Dell Powervault 122T18320 GB
Hewlett-Packard A4845A558820000 GB
Hewlett-Packard C1557A1672 GB
Hewlett-Packard ESL9595259570000 GB
Hewlett-Packard MSL5026S22264160 GB
Hewlett-Packard SureStore 6x4016120 GB
Hewlett-Packard SureStore 6x241672 GB
Overland Data LXB 4120110150 GB
Overland Data Library Pro1191900 GB
Overland Data LoaderXpress115525 GB
Qualstar 6220220700 GB
Qualstar TLS-42002202000 GB
Quantum DLT7000 256018320 GB
Segate CTL-96/4586N1414 GB
Sony TSL-90001896 GB
SpectraLogic Bullfrog 1000034010000 GB
SpectraLogic Treefrog 2000115750 GB
StorageTek Timberwolf 97302301000 GB
Straightline Harrier/8302301500 GB
Sun L202202000 GB
Sun L402401600 GB
Sun Storedge L919360 GB

Special Feature Usage

What follows is a summarization of the responses describing the use of two special features of recent versions of Amanda, the "file:driver" to use a hard disk drive as a backup device and RAIT (Redundant Array of 'Inexpensive' Tapedrives) to allow mirroring or striping of backups across multiple drives.

The file:driver

Do you use the <file:driver>?

  • 53 no
  • 11 yes
  • 5 what is the <file:driver>

If not, do you expect to?

  • 32 no
  • 14 yes
  • 8 maybe

RAIT

Do you use RAIT?

  • 68 no
  • 0 yes

If not, do you expect to?

  • 40 no
  • 8 yes
  • 3 maybe
[Surveyor's Note] I was mildly surprised, and amused, by the 5 "what is the
<file:driver> responses. And considering those responses, but the lack of
similar responses to the RAIT question. No respondent uses RAIT! Disappointing. I wonder if any
site is currently using this feature.

Non UNIX Clients

What follows is a summarization of the responses describing the various methods to backup 'non-unix' clients, mostly PC's running versions of Windows.

PC's Backed Up Using SAMBA Connections to Amanda Clients

A total of 22 survey respondents (out of 72) report they use amanda and samba to backup PC clients.

  • 10 have 1 PC client
  • 10 have 2 - 5 PC clients
  • 1 has 15 PC clients
  • 1 has 40 PC clients
[Surveyor's Note] From these results it seems to me that amanda/samba is seldom a first choice for backing up PC's. 
Instead it seems to be used when a site has an existing amanda installation and would like to implement some form 
of PC backup.

The respondents mentioned the following Operating Systems were being run on the PC clients. The number is the number of mentions, not number of PC's.

  • 1 Windows 95 2 Windows 2000 Server
  • 1 Windows 98 5 Windows XP
  • 3 Windows NT 1 Windows XP Pro
  • 2 Windows NT 4 1 Snap Server
  • 9 Windows 2000
[Surveyor's Note] Of interest to users running Lotus Domino:  One respondent reported using "The Open File Manager"
from http://www.stbernard.com to create online backups of their Lotus Domino database files which then could be
backed up to their amanda host using samba.

PC's Backed Up Using Cygwin/Amanda Client Software

A total of 4 survey respondents (out of 72) report they use a cygwin/amanda client to backup PC clients.

  • 2 have 1 PC client
  • 1 has 3 PC clients
  • 1 has 15 PC clients

The only PC operating systems mentioned were Windows 2000 and Windows 2000 Server.

PC's Backed Up by Amanda Using Other Techniques

A variety of techniques, other than samba or cygwin, were described by respondents to backup PC's

  • Two respondents installed an NFS server on Windows 2000 and then NFS mounted the PC disks on the amanda host

and backed them up as local file systems.

  • Similarly, two respondents mounted PC shares of Windows 95, Windows NT, and Windows 2000 on the amanda host

using 'smbmount' and backed them up as local 'smbfs' file systems.

  • Several respondents reported they first backed up their PC's (Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows XP,

Windows 2000 Server) to disk files on the PC's and then backed that file up using amanda; presumably using samba or some file transfer technique.

  • One mentioned that the backup stream was sent directly to a Linux host and backed up there as a local file.
  • The backup programs the respondents mentioned included:
    • 'Windows backup program'
    • 'BackupPC', a Linux opensource program
    • 'Win2000 Backup Tool'
    • 'Backup Exec'
  • One respondent noted their firewall was a PC running linux. That system was mirrored using rsync and the mirror

was backed up.

Other Backup Techniques Mentioned

Five respondents described backing up systems using "non-traditional" methods. These methods were used to backup systems running either MacOS or Windows. They included:

  • MacOS 9, mounted (NFS?) onto a Linux host and backing up the mounts as

local filesystems.

  • Backing up 37 MacOS 8 and MacOS 9 systems using the program Retrospect. The output of Retrospect

was transferred to a Linux host using ftp and preserved with amanda.

  • Build a native amanda client on MacOS X and use hfstar instead of gnutar.
  • Backup 6 Windows XP hosts using a native windows amanda client.
  • Backup 12 Windows 2000 Server hosts using a native windows amanda client. This respondent also noted

their intention to switch to a cygwin/amanda client in the near future.

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