Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science

FAQ: Archival Backup Service

SCS Computing Facilities provides data backup and restore solutions for registered computers in our environment. Our community handles valuable data on a daily basis and having backup software adds a tier of protection for issues that may occur in the future. We offer backup solutions to meet different computing scenarios. Our Archival Backup Service is one such solution. Using TiBS (Terydactyl) we can provide wired, archival level backups for servers, desktops and select laptops. 

How do I register for Archival Backup Service?  To subscribe, register your computer for Data Protection via our Equipment Registration form.

Is my laptop eligible for this service? Yes. However, we highly recommend enrolling laptops in the Data Protection Service which can work from anywhere on any internet connection. However, any laptop that is running one of the operating systems supported by SCS Computing Facilities is eligible for this service. We leverage TiBS (Teradactyl) to perform this service. Archival Backup Service requires network and software support. Also, it requires the laptop be connected to the SCS wired network during the 6pm to 6am backup polling window to backup. Visit our Archival Backup Service page for more information on using TiBS on laptops.

How can I determine if my data is being protected? If enrolled in the service, we provide access to a Backup Status Dashboard. This dashboard will provide insight into the last backup attempt and result. There is also a local computer program called LastBackup which reports on the computer's backup success. Visit the Archival Backup Service page for more information.

Which files are protected by this service? In Windows operating systems, any lettered (mounted, formatted and accessible) drive, can be protected. On Unix based systems, only /usrN/ (where N is a number) are protected by default. Other partitions may not be protected. Visit our Archival Backup Service page for more information.

If you require more partitions be captured in backup, have special requests or unique configurations, please complete the Backup Routine Modification form. We are happy to work with special requirements on a case by case basis.

Is there a limit on the amount of data that can be protected? Currently, there is no limit of data per person. TiBS does have a 1 TB (terabyte) partition limit. 

How does Archival Backup Service differ from the Data Protection Service? This archival backup solution will capture system files in the backup process unlike data protection, which will only sync data in your user profile. The Archival Backup Service is ideal for workstations or servers (and select laptop computers) which will connected to the wired network, on-campus.

Feature

Data Protection (CrashPlan)

Archiving (TiBS)

Available from any network?

Yes

No

Self service restore?

Yes

No

Restore to other system?

Yes

Yes

Data retention period?

6 months

Indefinite

Data limit?

No

No

Customize backup files?

No

No

System restore possible?

No

Yes

Data written to tape?

No

Yes

Other support charges required?

None

Network

 

Can I limit how much network and CPU is used by this service? No. The TiBS service is automated.

How do I restore my data? Submit a Backup Data Restore Request form

How long will my data be protected? Currently, retention is on-going so there is no limit. Please contact us if you have any concerns about retention as this policy can change.

If my computer crashes, can I use this service to restore my operating system? While this backup solution captures system files, please contact us for assistance in case of system failure. SCS Supported computers benefit from Apple, Dell and Lenovo certified technicians who can quickly diagnose the failure and determine a correct course of action for system restoration.