May 2014

Orion Backup and Recovery
“Best Practices”

Orion backup procedures are compatible with most backup hardware and software products. The process is very easy to perform and extremely reliable. In this article, we will look at the recommended methods and procedures used to backup Orion databases and review an alternative backup solution.

Topics Include:
Software Options
Methods and Procedures
Alternative Backup Solutions

Software Options

The brand and version of your chosen backup software is rarely a factor in backing up Orion. Orion is
compatible with virtually any backup product that supports conventional backup technologies. The exclusion to this is any product solution that provides for backing up files while they are in use. This type of solution cannot ensure database integrity or consistency and is not supported. Pervasive’s Backup Agent is the only product designed to facilitate backups in this mode.

Methods and Procedures

The recommended method to perform a safe and reliable backup of Orion data files is to provide the backup software exclusive access during its operation. This is done simply by disabling connections and isolating the files.

This is the recommended method for preparing Orion data files for backup:

Disconnect Access to Orion Files and Resources – All client apps and network connections to Orion resources on the server should be terminated. Keep in mind that Windows workstations will automatically attempt to
reconnect disconnected sessions. You can ensure disconnection by disabling the network Share or using
policies to forcibly log-off and disconnect the users.

Stop and Disable Orion and Pervasive Services –
1) Stop and disable Orion services or scheduled tasks for the backup duration.
2) Stop the Pervasive Transactional and Relational Database engines.
3) Stop an other third party software that uses Pervasive.

These steps can be scripted and scheduled to run prior to backup or executed by the backup software itself.

Alternative Backup Solutions

The need for mission critical applications to be available at all times is becoming increasingly important to many organizations. This requires the ability to backup files while they are still open and in use by Orion users. The only solution that can safely do this is Pervasive’s Backup Agent running in conjunction with your chosen backup software. Be cautious of any other solution that claims to have this capability unless it is certified and endorsed by Pervasive Software, Inc.

Pervasive Backup Agent works closely with the Database Server Engines utilizing a feature called “Continuous Operations” mode. Please
consider the following implications before deciding on this type of backup solution.

Disk Space – Changes during backup are written to replicas of the data and therefore it is not prudent to have enough disk space for at least 2 copies of each file. It’s not uncommon for the combined file sizes of an Orion database to exceed 2-4 GB. In other-words, the minimum available disk space must equal twice the combined file size of the Orion database.

Performance – Backup Agent merges replica data with the live data in increments and only after access to data has resumed. The result is a potentially serious performance hit to the Orion server. The severity of
performance degradation depends on the size and number of replicas maintained by the database engine.

Reliability – The potential for database integrity and consistency problems is much greater when “Continuous Operations” mode is enabled.

This solution is no more difficult to implement than the recommended backup procedures. However, the technology adds a certain amount of complexity behind-the-scenes and risk elements that should be carefully considered before using.

Orion provides consultation and implementation services to assist you in designing the backup solution that best suits your needs. Please contact us at 1.800.305.5867 or email