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Speed up Backup Operations with CRON

Novell Cool Solutions: Trench
By Paul Jamieson

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Posted: 4 Nov 1999

Paul Jamieson, a senior administrator for the Bank of Montreal and a frequent contributor on the NDS Cool Solutions site, is back this week with a tip to speed up JD Nyland's tip about using DSRepair to back up NDS. So...check out JD's tip in the vault, and then read on to rev up the process with Paul's idea.

JD Nyland wrote a tip about using DSRepair to backup NDS. It's a great tip, but if you have multiple servers that need NDS backed up, this can become quite a chore, and you might find yourself working on this till the cows come home. So...I've found a way to speed up the process using CRON. CRON is a free Novell scheduler tool that can automate tedious jobs that need to be run from the server console.

Our tree at the Bank of Montreal contains 94 servers that need to be backed up, and I use CRON to backup NDS on each server nightly. The syntax is simple, and you can change it to match your every need (almost). I backup our NDS at 8:00 p.m. each and every night. This way I will always have the latest version, in case disaster should strike. You can find the CRON software on Novell's support site on the Minimum patch list under tools.

The software comes with a great Readme file (really) that'll explain how to use the syntax commands. I have created a sys:%5Cetc%5Ccrontab file that goes like this:

0 20 * * * load dsrepair /rc

The line above tells CRON that I want my NDS backed up at 8:00 p.m. daily, but you can change the time to whatever suits you. The DIB file is saved in the sys:%5Csystem directory, which I also backup daily. As I mentioned above, the Readme gives you great examples. And last but not least, CRON works with NetWare 4.1x and NetWare 5.

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