Can I do a SQL backup to a tape drive on another server?

A. A. No, not with built-in SQL tools. SQL will only dump to local tape devices. If you could find an NT driver that would make a remote tape drive look local then this would work as SQL just uses standard i/o calls. I don't know of such a driver at the moment.

You can always dump the SQL database to disk locally (or across the network with some provisos) and then back that up to tape.

Finally, you CAN do what you want with a 3rd party backup tool that has a SQL agent. Examples are BEI Ultrabac, Cheyenne Arcserve, Seagate BackupExec, Legato Networker and IBM ADSM - I'm sure there are others. These put SQL dumps (via a standard named-pipe interface) onto a standard dump tape, potentially as part of a complete server backup and not just SQL. Obviously if the named-pipe connection is made across the network then the dump will usually be a lot slower than doing it locally.

Contributed by Neil Pike


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