Subject RE: [firebird-support] Firebird Backups on Google Compute Engine
Author Leyne, Sean
> We are considering moving our systems to GCE and trying to figure the best
> approach to backup our many firebird databases.
> Firebird is not VSS aware so we can't use shadow copying.

Not completely true.

1- Firebird uses careful write order, so a VSS snapshot should be a valid database image -- though with pages containing uncommitted data. So, which FB is not VSS aware, it co-exists with VSS quite nicely.

2- You can use nbackup to create a logical DB snapshot, which would be equivalent of a VSS snapshot.

> On our current
> host, we create backups of every single database with gbak daily - which
> consumes a lot of time and disk. We would like to improve that.
> Would the following procedure be enough to guarantee a safe differential
> backup? We are on windows :
> 1. connect to all databases and set them to backup mode (or offline mode)
> 2. stop the firebird service
> 3. unmount the drive containing the dbs
> 4. create a snapshot with gcloud
> 5. remount, restart service, put dbs online

Please clarify.

1- Are you moving your databases to run on GCE?
2- Looking to store backups on gcloud?
3- Both?

If 1 or 3 you need to perform some disk benchmarking.

Unlike some databases, Firebird performance is significantly influenced by IO _latency_.

All clouds talk about provisioning IOPS, but few talk about what the latency is of each IOP. You can get 10,000 IOPS if you have 10,000 processes each generated 1 IOPS, Firebird is (largely) a single process. I know that there are differences between cloud provider (don't have first hand experience with GCE -- hoping soon)