IT Center Blog

Information event on the backup changeover

February 23rd, 2022 | by
Post-It note with Change

Source: Own illustration

Not only harmful attacks or external circumstances can lead to data loss, but also malfunctions or failures pose a great danger to business-relevant data. This makes it all the more important to back up data reliably and to be able to restore it quickly in the event of damage. Only in this way can operations be resumed as quickly as possible.

As of June 30, 2022, we at the IT Center and RWTH Aachen University now have a new common goal: the transition to our new platform, the backup software “Commvault Backup & Recovery“, which will replace the current IBM Spectrum Protect (formerly Tivoli Storage Manager, known as TSM)  at RWTH.

Already on December 09, 2021, the changeover in the area of backup was presented at the admin roundtable. In order to inform our administrators at RWTH early and extensively, a virtual information event on the backup changeover took place on February 11, 2022. All backup administrators and all participants in the regular admin round were invited.

The information event was organized by the backup conversion project team of the Systems and Operations department, which will also implement the upcoming changes together with the state-wide consortium. In the DH-NRW project, RWTH will also be the first service provider center to start making the basic IT service for backup and restore available to other state universities in NRW.

The backup transition to a new infrastructure

For RWTH Aachen, this means that after many years we will be saying goodbye to IBM’s Spectrum Protect software (known as TSM)  and will soon be using Commvault’s software for data backup and restore. The goal is to have made the transition by June 30, 2022, and no longer receive backups via TSM. This also means that the storage infrastructure, the hardware, will change as well. The IT Center was equipped with a new and state-of-the-art storage infrastructure from Hitachi Vantara for RWTH. At a total of six RWTH locations, data will soon be backed up in a location-redundant manner via s3 protocol on the object storage system. The site redundancy protects against catastrophes at individual sites, such as outages due to storm damage, fires or other damaging events.

Large conversion – large Friendly User Group

The experience and expertise of our administrators at the RWTH is large and varied, as are their requirements. Especially in the area of backup, many colleagues look back on a wealth of experience. Due to the diversity of data-holding systems and, in some cases, specific requirements, we have also called for support from users in this conversion project. As part of the admin round and the information event, a group of pilot users was put together, which will receive a good deal of information, especially in the initial phase of the changeover, but will also provide feedback. Together with the project team, processes are tested, frequently asked questions (FAQ) are collected and much more in order to also implement the changeover RWTH-wide from April 01, 2022.

On February 15, 2022, the kick-off of the Friendly User Group took place. After a warm-up and getting to know the more than 30 pilot users, the next steps of the changeover planning were explained and an outlook on the next workshops was given.

On behalf of the project team, we would like to take this opportunity to thank all colleagues for their willingness to participate and for their active support during this changeover.
Information and updates about the backup transition 2022 will continue to be posted here on the IT Center blog and on our social media channels.


Responsible for the content of this article is Nicole Filla.

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