Hi Andy,

As a customer who has been in this position recently (the shame!) I would be happy to allow backups to fail past 100%, and an alert sent to point me at a control panel feature which allows me to crudely admin my backups ie delete one, several or all backups. If you would send a weekly reminder until the problem is resolved, then I couldn't expect you to do very much more.

I don't expect you to have to manually intervene with this service. It's low tech and low cost. And I appreciate the service.

This also sounds reasonably straight forward to implement. It is certainly straight forward to explain in the FAQs.



On Monday, December 30, 2013, Nigel Barker wrote:
Hi Andy

Personally I'm send a warn at 80%, a critical at 90% and fail any backups
taking use beyond 100%.

If you could give users the ability to delete either an entire backup, or
all backups of a specific file/directory, then it is their problem.

I'm not personally fond of the idea of billing people whose backups grow
beyond their limit, might require a check of the t&c's they agree to, but
whatever it certainly shouldn't load you with work when a customer uses
more than they've paid for!


> Hi Rodrigo,
> On Mon, Dec 30, 2013 at 12:44:59PM -0200, Rodrigo Campos wrote:
>> On Monday, December 30, 2013, Andy Smith wrote:
>> > - Nagios sends warnings when that usage goes above 95%, sends
>> >   critical alerts if it goes above 100%
>> Critical on 100% is maybe too late?
> Having just checked it is actually 95% for warning and 99% for
> critical.
>> I would say maybe ~90% can be critical, as you are clearly running out
>> of
>> space and won't be able to backup anymore.
> That is a fair point although the words "warning" and "critical" are
> at the moment just words used in template text in the alert and
> there is therefore no significance between them except what the
> recipient reads.
> Also doubtless different people will consider different percentages
> to be what they want.
> There isn't a concept of "running out of space" at the moment - if
> you go above 100% then your backups still work. You just eventually
> get asked by me to pay for more space or have some stuff deleted.
> Perhaps it is best if the critical alerts stay at 99% and I allow
> the warning percentage to be configurable.
>> Or if the size of the last backup times 7 (like in a week you won't be
>> able
>> to backup anymore) is more than x%, then critical. But maybe is a pita
>> to
>> get the size of the last backup?
> It doesn't really work like this as there isn't a concept of "size
> of last backup" - only files that change are backed up, so if you
> had ten 1GB files that did not change since last time then the usage
> would be 10GB even though there are two sets of backups.
> If one file changed then both versions would be stored, so the usage
> across both sets of backups would be 11GB. So, there is a
> *differential* of 1GB per backup run, and it is true that I could
> take note of this and compare it to how much space is left then
> guess how many of these backup runs would fit given the same amount
> of diffs every time.
> That is really complicated though and I'm not convinced there'd be
> very much value in this compared to just the used percentage.
>> If you have the size of the last backup, is it possible to add a check
>> to
>> see if the current backup is X% more than the last one?
>> This seems to me, that I'm totally inexperienced and never dealt with
>> this,
>> that can detect early when something got backed up when it shouldn't?
> While possible, these just sound like more alerts that people are not
> going to be very interested in. For those who do use the backups
> service, do you feel that a simple percent used alert isn't good
> enough and you need to know about rates of change?
>> But in any case, the most reasonable thing to do for me is to abort the
>> next backups until there is free space.
> I'm not sure that is reasonable, and I will explain why below..
>> > Note that although "just suspend the customer's backups as soon as
>> > they go past 100%" initially sounds like a good idea, it may not be
>> > as it prevents the customer from removing whatever it was they
>> > backed up that they didn't mean to, i.e. fixing it themselves.
>> Sorry, don't follow you here :-S
> The backups are incremental. They aren't just X amount of files
> times Y backup points. It's X amount of files plus the amount of
> changes over a configurable time period that in the default case is
> 6 months but some people have it set to 12 months or more.
> The default backup schedule looks like this:
> - Once every four hours, keep 6.
> - Once every day, keep 7.
> - Once every week, keep 4.
> - Once every month, keep 6.
> This means that (without you contacting support to ask for stuff to
> be deleted out of backups), once a file is backed up, it isn't going
> away for 6 months. Even if you delete it off your disk.
> e.g., you create:
> /var/tmp/dvd_rip
> of 8GB or whatever and it gets backed up, so it's now accessible
> via:
> /srv/backups/hourly.0/var/tmp/dvd_rip
> Noticing your backup space usage wen> _______________________________________________
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