Using Proxmox as snapshot ZFS backup target?

Discussion in 'SSDs & Data Storage' started by iroc409, Nov 25, 2018.

  1. iroc409

    iroc409 [H]ard|Gawd

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    I have a ZFS file server that's strictly storage. It's a Dell T110ii running plain FreeBSD, and I've been using a variant of this setup for quite a few years. I have a lot of stuff that is irreplaceable, photography, files, etc. so I sort of prefer to keep it just file serving (for no other reason than it makes me feel better). I have all the config files and stuff on cron backups so if I have to reinstall or something it's relatively trivial to setup a new machine and get running (as long as the array survives).

    I have a set of external USB drives doing backup, single ZFS volumes in 3 sets with 2 kept off site. I've always preferred to have a second ZFS machine running but haven't wanted to invest in the hardware. I was eyeing the Black Friday T30, but decided I would rather spend money on drives instead.

    I have a Dell T20 running Proxmox, and am wondering about running a 3-drive RAIDz1 array on the system, not assigned to Proxmox, that I can send zfs snapshots to over the network. As long as I can get away with a single drive for Proxmox, would this be a viable backup system? I would still keep my USB drives for backup/offsite, but I might go down to just off site my irreplaceable stuff on the 2.5" drive or something instead of everything (not sure yet). I know with FreeBSD you can do zfs send over SSH so the machine doesn't have to have anything really exposed on the network (which I assume Debian can be done as well).

    Are there any negatives to this setup? Can I use this to send the file system to Proxmox, and then back to re-configure my existing array without any concern? It's a mirror set and I'd like to change it to RAIDz2. If I do this, should I avoid setting up a DMZ on my Proxmox system so it can't expose the machine to the internet?
     
  2. spankit

    spankit Limp Gawd

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    Just to recap, you currently have two systems.

    1x Dell T110ii running FreeBSD used for storage
    1x Dell T20 running Proxmox used for Virtualization

    You're wanting to backup the FreeBSD system to the Proxmox system? Are both systems in the same physical location or are you wanting to do this over the internet? While I'm not particularly familiar with Proxmox, you could use something like ZnapZend or Syncoid to back things up automatically from one system to another. The only thing that might cause some snags is if you're using a feature flag in ZFS on the FreeBSD system that isn't available on the target Proxmox system.
     
  3. iroc409

    iroc409 [H]ard|Gawd

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    Your recap is accurate. The machines sit side by side at the moment. Whenever I buy a house again I'd like to have a separate shop that I'd put the backup server in, but this works for now (with USB off site). I'll look into the two software packages you mention, though I was hoping both systems would support the zfs send|receive functions. I use rsync currently for the USB drives since they are not large enough to support snapshots. I haven't specifically set any flags to the storage system, but it's likely it's using a different revision of ZFS than Debian.

    ETA: Would I be better off leaving the virtualization system alone and just running something like an external SAS enclosure? Larger single-volume externals? Overthinking it?
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2018
  4. Hakaba

    Hakaba I Think I am Funny, but I'm Not

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    I run two promox systems, a dual Xeon and a c2558f? The dual Xeon is the major work horse that runs samba in a container, with zfs mount points passed through as mp0, mp1 etc...

    The second server really doesn’t do much, used to have pfsense VM as a CARP secondary. Now just runs a secondary pihole, but I rsync my main NAS to this one with no issues.
     
  5. rsq

    rsq Limp Gawd

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    I really don't see why you would raidz1 your backup machine. Seems like losing a drive for nothing. Sure use raidz2 on your main server to reduce downtime, but losing everything if the backup array craps out seems like no big deal since you can restore it from the primary. Better to use the drive you gain and extend your offsite backups because these give you better disaster recovery.
     
  6. iroc409

    iroc409 [H]ard|Gawd

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    Good to know, glad it is working! I think I'm going to try and run everything from a single server though, and this means I need more drives so I'm not sure this is going to be the solution I was looking for.

    I understand your point, and it makes sense. I was just thinking maybe I do want redundancy in my backups. If I'm not running some sort of ZFS RAID then there's not really any use of a second server... unless it's in another location (someday). I'll probably just upgrade my external drives, or maybe even just "do nothing" and keep using my existing strategy. Although one of my external drives is already over 70% full so I need to start thinking about upgrading them anyway.