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  • May 31, 2018

Introducing Volume Groups: Enabling Coordinated Backups and Clones for Application Protection and Lifecycle Management

Max Verun
Principal Product Manager

We are excited to introduce a new feature in the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Block Volume service: volume groups! Volume groups enable you to group together multiple block storage volumes and boot volumes (i.e., system boot disks that are backed by Block Volume service), and perform crash-consistent, point-in-time, coordinated backups and clones across all the volumes in the group.

Enterprise applications typically require multiple volumes across multiple compute instances in order to function: boot volumes that power the system disks of the compute instances, block volumes for the web tier, app tier, and database tier. Each of these volumes will have different capacities and deployments. For example, application tiers that require multi-disk RAID configurations for high availability and scale, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure services such as Database, and Oracle enterprise applications such as E-Business Suite provide customers with the ability to run large-scale deployments that require multiple block storage volumes.

It is a chore and a challenge to manage data protection and management across a single application, let alone multiple applications and instances with boot disks and storage across your enterprise. There are a few on-premises storage solutions that address this, such as NetApp consistency groups. We at Oracle Cloud Infrastructure are introducing an innovative new solution and data management capability among the public cloud providers to help.

With volume groups, you can create point-in-time consistent and coordinated backups and clones of running enterprise applications that span multiple boot volumes and storage volumes across one or more compute instances. These capabilities combined with our upcoming enhancements bring data management and protection capabilities to the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure that up until now have only existed in on-premises storage solutions.

Coordinated backups provide a solution for creating, managing, and restoring backups for applications by leveraging and extending the existing single-volume backup and restore features that are already available for block storage and boot volumes. Similarly, the existing capabilities of deep disk-to-disk clones feature we announced earlier are now extended across multiple volumes via the volume groups. A deep disk-to-disk and fully isolated clone of a volume group becomes available for use within a matter of seconds, making it trivial and fast to spin off new environments for development, QA, UAT, and troubleshooting.

These new capabilities are provided at no additional cost to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure customers beyond the cost of the amount of consumed block and object storage.

Volume groups and coordinated backups and clones are generally available now via CLI and SDK, with Console support coming soon.

Following are a few sample commands for creating and managing volume groups and coordinated backups, restores, and clones:

 

##### get supported operations #### 
oci bv volume-group --help
oci bv volume-group-backup --help
 
##### get specific operation help #### 
oci bv volume-group <operation_name> --help
-- example : oci bv volume-group list --help
oci bv volume-group-backup <operation_name> --help
-- example : oci bv volume-group-backup create --help
 
##### list volume groups #####
oci bv volume-group list --compartment-id <compartment_ID>
-- example :
oci bv volume-group list --compartment-id ocid1.compartment.oc1..exampleaakjghfkjahdfkhadkfjhakdfhkjashfkja
 
#### create volume group from existing volumes ####
oci bv volume-group create --compartment-id <compartment_ID> --availability-domain <external_AD> --source-details <JSON_input_specifying_source_details>
-- example : 
oci bv volume-group create --compartment-id ocid1.compartment.oc1..exampleaakjghfkjahdfkhadkfjhakdfhkjashfkja --availability-domain ABbv:PHX-AD-1 --source-details '{"type": "volumeIds", "volumeIds":["ocid1.volume.oc1.phx.exampler6wero24cdyx5bia36ikdo6w2wxmsylqkytpj37wwud3iyt43ud4q", "ocid1.volume.oc1.phx.exampler4uzq4v2pq6tm3vc4aaaerp5a2qml4iebhar4l3glprbc52awcmtq"]}'
 
#### create volume group from another volume group (clone) ####
oci bv volume-group create --compartment-id <compartment_ID> --availability-domain <external_AD> --source-details <JSON_input_specifying_source_details>
-- example : 
oci bv volume-group create --compartment-id ocid1.compartment.oc1..exampleaakjghfkjahdfkhadkfjhakdfhkjashfkja --availability-domain ABbv:PHX-AD-1 --source-details '{"type": "volumeGroupId", "volumeGroupId": "ocid1.volumegroup.oc1.phx.examplerypkk7wjmkpzufhuohong2um6unl6cplq2mrfnnanja3fsam2i3ra"}' 
 
#### create volume group from a volume group backup (restore) ####
oci bv volume-group create --compartment-id <compartment_ID> --availability-domain <external_AD> --source-details <JSON_input_specifying_source_details>
-- example : 
oci bv volume-group create --compartment-id ocid1.compartment.oc1..exampleaakjghfkjahdfkhadkfjhakdfhkjashfkja --availability-domain ABbv:PHX-AD-1 --source-details '{"type": "volumeGroupBackupId", "volumeGroupBackupId": "ocid1.volumegroup.oc1.sea.examplerqxknyke4gwwobd5rny65dwshwwbzht5wididrqhlkrqs2w2m2llq"}' 
 
#### get volume group ####
oci bv volume-group get --volume-group-id <volume_group_ID>
-- example :
oci bv volume-group get --volume-group-id ocid1.volumegroup.oc1.phx.examplerypkk7wjmkpzufhuohong2um6unl6cplq2mrfnnanja3fsam2i3ra
 
#### update volume group (for example, to add a new volume) ####
oci bv volume-group update --volume-group-id <volume_group_ID> --volume-ids <JSON_document_representing_volume_IDs> --display-name <new_display_name> (optional)
-- example:
oci bv volume-group update --volume-group-id ocid1.volumegroup.oc1.phx.examplerypkk7wjmkpzufhuohong2um6unl6cplq2mrfnnanja3fsam2i3ra --volume-ids '["ocid1.volume.oc1.phx.exampler2tnxuof4j5nuumcaz4r7ngndya4qxknw7tdlrnhlz4b2wg2syihq","ocid1.volume.oc1.phx.examplerdln3yob366mra5a3rnu3trfcqj45uuzeaarybswlcpbdcp3ko5ra"]' --display-name "new display name"
 
#### delete volume group ####
oci bv volume-group delete --volume-group-id <volume_group_ID>
-- example:
oci bv volume-group delete --volume-group-id ocid1.volumegroup.oc1.phx.examplerypkk7wjmkpzufhuohong2um6unl6cplq2mrfnnanja3fsam2i3ra
 
##### list volume group backups #####
oci bv volume-group-backup list --compartment-id <compartment_ID>
-- example :
oci bv volume-group-backup list --compartment-id ocid1.compartment.oc1..exampleaakjghfkjahdfkhadkfjhakdfhkjashfkja

 

##### create volume group backup #####
oci bv volume-group-backup create --volume-group-id <volume_group_ID>
-- example :
oci bv volume-group-backup create --volume-group-id ocid1.volumegroup.oc1.phx.examplerypkk7wjmkpzufhuohong2um6unl6cplq2mrfnnanja3fsam2i3ra
 
#### get volume group backup ####
oci bv volume-group-backup get --volume-group-backup-id <volume_group_backup_ID>
-- example :
oci bv volume-group-backup get --volume-group-backup-id ocid1.volumegroupbackup.oc1.phx.examplerqleqyex626sbvc5v7ccpfcjzivkcoytkigzqycmc6deasmnmlypa
 
#### update volume group backup (change display name) ####
oci bv volume-group-backup update --volume-group-backup-id <volume_group_backup_ID> --display-name <new_display_name>
-- example:
oci bv volume-group-backup update --volume-group-backup-id ocid1.volumegroupbackup.oc1.phx.examplerqleqyex626sbvc5v7ccpfcjzivkcoytkigzqycmc6deasmnmlypa --display-name "new display name"
 
#### delete volume group backup ####
oci bv volume-group-backup delete --volume-group-backup-id <volume_group_backup_ID>
-- example :
oci bv volume-group-backup delete --volume-group-backup-id ocid1.volumegroupbackup.oc1.phx.examplerqleqyex626sbvc5v7ccpfcjzivkcoytkigzqycmc6deasmnmlypa

 

We want you to experience these new block storage volume features and all the enterprise-grade capabilities that Oracle Cloud Infrastructure offers. It’s easy to take advantage of these capabilities with $300 free credit at the Oracle Store. For more information, see the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Getting Started guide, Block Volume service overview, and FAQ.

Watch for announcements about additional features and capabilities in this space. We value your feedback as we continue to make our service the best in the industry. Send me your thoughts on how we can continue to improve or if you want more details on any topic.

Max Verun

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