Volume Collections

Volume collections are sets of volumes that share data protection characteristics, such as protection schedules for snapshots and replication.

Snapshots for all volumes in a collection are captured simultaneously to ensure that the data across these volumes is mutually consistent. All the volumes in a volume collection use that collection's protection schedules. Each schedule specifies the downstream partner, when snapshots are taken, and the retention policies for the snapshots.

For disaster recovery, all volumes in a volume collection can simultaneously fail over to a replication partner. You can also manually switch to a replication partner.

Volume collections can have up to two replication partners when you select the replication type Periodic Snapshot in the protection template.. These can be two on-site, downstream replication partners or one on-site downstream replication partner and one HPE Cloud Volume partner.

You can create a volume collection for each application. Each volume collection can contain up to ten schedules. These schedules are additive, so when schedules overlap, snapshots and replicas are created for every schedule. You can create volume collection schedules that are specific to some Microsoft applications or VMware virtual machines to ensure consistency.

When configuring protection schedules, be sure that you allow enough time for one schedule to complete before another starts. For example, if Exchange protection schedule 1 has DB verification and replication enabled and runs every hour, and Exchange protection schedule 2 has DB verification turned off and no replication and runs every five minutes, it is possible that, without enough time between snapshots in schedule 2, schedule 1 will not be able to start.

Careful planning can enhance a backup strategy. For example, you might want to set the retention period for hourly snapshots to a few days so you can back up quickly and precisely if necessary. Then you might want to retain daily snapshots for longer periods, such as several weeks. You can define retention periods for snapshots. The protection schedule templates provided by storage arrays have default values that keep volumes in the normal retention range, which is 150 snapshots or fewer, retained either locally or on the replication partner. Although you can configure volumes with a high snapshot retention schedule, it is not recommended. As you define protection schedules, a meter identifies when you reach the high retention range. A mouse-over tooltip identifies the issues with defining protection schedules that exceed the normal retention range.

NOTE: Volumes that have a high snapshot retention schedule count in the snapshot limits for the volume, group, and pool.