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Server Upgrade

Last response: in Business Computing
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June 24, 2011 5:11:14 PM

At my company we are currently using an IBM 133mhz Server for our database management. We have been discussing options for upgrading in the future when this machine fails. As part of the discussion we have been trying to figure out what is the best means of backup when we do upgrade to prepare for that. We currently do inhouse tape backup and the owner takes the most recent day's tape home each day with him. We are wondering what options there are now to continue inhouse backups. Is tape the best option currently for daily backups.

More about : server upgrade

June 25, 2011 12:30:16 AM

Judging by your server, you seem to be working for a small IT shop. Can you give me some stats about your environment and budget.
June 27, 2011 3:34:36 PM

Currently we are running AIX, and using a database system created by Activant. We have been told that an upgrade would be approx. $80,000 that's what the owners are planning on.
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June 27, 2011 9:03:51 PM

cec174 said:
Currently we are running AIX, and using a database system created by Activant. We have been told that an upgrade would be approx. $80,000 that's what the owners are planning on.



Let me know if I can be of some help.
I can access about 90% of the tech products in the martket.

It helps me a lot if you know what you are looking for, but I have plenty of channel partners that can assist if needed.
July 8, 2011 10:24:29 PM

Personally, I would look into a cloud based backup solution that would offer all the space necessary. I would look into a SMB Server with a RAID 1 setup that backs up nightly to an off-site source. This should fall well under the $80,000 mark but, I may be misunderstanding what you are looking to do.

I work with Enterprise solutions and we can discuss your needs if you provide more in-depth information as to what you are attempting to accomplish. Unlike others in this topic, I will not try and sell you on anything. I work with my own company that services a small area so am glad to point you to Dell or HP offerings that have always available tech support for enterprise customers.

Let us know more of your needs and we will continue. Also, in this day and age, Tape backups are not nearly the most efficient or economical solution however, I understand if you do not want to mess with something that works for you already.
July 9, 2011 4:03:10 AM

I must be missing something. You currently have a "IBM 133mhz Server", which seems to be failing/might fail soon? And you need a replacement? Typing "IBM 133mhz Server" in yahoo I don't see any particular model, but they seem to lead to OLD machines. And you want to spend $80K to replace it? Even an old P4 for $50 that you buy off of your local Craig's list will be faster then what you have now. To spend this much on a server that can by filled by something much cheaper is, and I'm sorry for saying this, dumb.

I'd like to add that knowing the number of users would help, as would other requirements. Backups are probably better served by using an external drive.
Anonymous
July 9, 2011 10:47:25 AM

The OP is running AIX with a database system from Activant (now Epicor). Unless Epicor has a migration path from AIX to Windows Server a $50 P4 is not going to cut it. The OP needs to contact Epicor to find his options.
July 9, 2011 11:40:27 AM

So I have vastly misunderstood what the current server is then.

AIX's wiki page does state that IBM made an x86 version, no clue if Epicor supports it or not.
July 11, 2011 3:17:40 PM

I guess my main question is what options are out there which are similar to Epicor (Activant). Activant does have an option which upgrades to Windows Server however the price we last heard was in the $80,000 range. We have been very pleased with the support which has come from Epicor however we were wondering what other options preferably in a cheaper price range.
Anonymous
July 11, 2011 10:25:34 PM

Epicor covers 13 different industries with 46 different products. How would we even have a clue about a replacement server without additional details about your application?
July 12, 2011 5:50:42 PM

It would help if you could tell us exactly what the model of the IBM server is, what operating system it's using (what version of AIX), and exactly what Database software you are using. If you have a relational database you might be able to put it into something more mainstream like MySQL, MSSQL, or (blah) Oracle.

As far as backup I don't thing trusting one person with the most recent daily backup tape is the best thing but that's up to you guys. A more practical approach would be to do a daily incremental backup (assuming your solution allows this), along with a regularly scheduled monthly or weekly full backup. I'm guessing it's not a huge amount of data so you might be able to transition to DVDs or something. I'm not a big fan of tape myself, but they hold alot of data and do last a long time if taken care of.
July 13, 2011 9:31:19 AM

What exactly are you trying to accomplish? How much data and what is the retention period of that data? There isn't anything wrong with tape backup, provided it's done and then put somewhere very safe, preferably not at the same location as the servers themselves.

You need to determine if you want to stay with the same vendor or move to another. Your using a very specialized system, there aren't many options available. And to everyone else, the hardware isn't he major costing factor, its the specialized software. So even if they went out and built their own mega smasher server, it would be a paperweight as they wouldn't have the special software required, nor the engineering / configuration services provided by their vender. And then you have the warrantee's and support contracts to consider.
July 13, 2011 10:01:34 PM

Okay, our application is Wholesale Distribution, the current system which we have works well for now. The software from Epicore works very well and so far we are very pleased with the warranty and service given from them however we wanted to make sure there wasn't anything with additional features which would be more helpful before upgrading but have had a very difficult time finding information on the options.

Thanks for the advice on the backup we have been discussing ways to protect our system better and the feedback has been most appreciated.
Anonymous
July 13, 2011 10:06:07 PM

There's an old saying, if it's not broken, don't fix it!
July 14, 2011 7:14:13 AM

Well depending on how geeky your guys are there are several options. Obviously tape backups are a good idea, namely as an emergency recovery method (fire / water damage / disaster). Talk to your vendor about an onsite disk based backup system, preferably with snapshot based storage, this will let you restore to any previously point in time incase your data becomes corrupted.

If your comfortable with your current vender's service they I'd suggest staying with them. We're talking about some serious cash riding on this system, you want that warrantee and service plan.
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