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Scheduled VCS Config backups

Hi,

     We have a requirement to automate Telepresence Management Suite Systems Configuration backups.

I found this older thread: https://supportforums.cisco.com/message/3615153#3615153

But it doesn't really help. In particular Eric Byrd's replies...

     "But by the time you set up all that automated programming you might be just as well to do a manual backup."

I don't follow this logic. http://xkcd.com/1205

Saving 5 minutes a day is worth spending 6 days automating over a 5 year span. Even for 1 year it's worth spending a day on it.

And then...

     "Remember you don't want to backup the VCS if something has changed that you don't want to keep!"

This is also faulty logic. Unless you overwrite your previous backup, which is just dumb. It is a pretty common situation that you know when the last good config backup was so you restore from then. Or if you don't, you have a set of daily backups you can work back through until you find the last one that is ok.

Why does the UI have an option for daily scheduled restores, but not backups? Relying on someone to take a manual backup when they change the configuration is asking for trouble. Especially in a larger environment where there may be many administrators with access to make changes.

So I need to automate this, but there must be a better option than using something like Python Mechanize to drive the web page. Also, we want to take the backup files and store them on another separate server, so I need to know when the backup has finished and where the files are stored locally to copy them off. All I can find in the admin guide is instructions on using the web page and it assumes the backup files will just be left where they are.

Any help or pointers gratefully accepted.

1 Accepted Solution

Accepted Solutions

I have found what I was looking for!

The TMS server has a SOAP interface which seems to be provided for exactly this sort of thing. In particular there is an API called 'PerformSystemBackupAsBackgroundActivity' which takes a list of managed systems and a couple of boolean flags for whether to send notifications when it's finished or not.

You can get a full list of the exposed interface by pointing a browser to http://your_tms_server/tms/external/management/managementservice.asmx

From what I can tell you can do everything you could in the console using this SOAP interface for automation. I'm using Python and the Suds module which seems to be working fine.

View solution in original post

7 Replies 7

thobonho
Level 1
Level 1

Hi Malcolm,

I might have a very simple solution for you: just retrieve the content of https://VCS_IP/configuration.xml (use admin account for login). It's not the complete backup, but you'll get the VCS configuration.

Hope that helps!

Thomas

Hi Thomas,

     Thanks for that. That looks perfect for the VCS config.

I also need to automate the TMS backup. The one you get to in the web page from menu options Systems / Configuration Backup / Perform Backup. Sorry if I'm not clear, I'm not a TMS admin, I've just been asked to automate the process.

It looks like that backup actually goes to each of the configured systems to retrieve the config files, and then stores them somewhere locally, but I don't know where. I would also like to be able to kick off and monitor the process without having to hack around with sending commands to the web interface. Do you know if that's possible?

Regards,

Malcolm

It looks like that backup actually goes to each of the configured systems to retrieve the config files, and then stores them somewhere locally, but I don't know where. I would also like to be able to kick off and monitor the process without having to hack around with sending commands to the web interface. Do you know if that's possible?

Hi Malcolm,

The backup/restore feature of TMS is very simple. It has no advanced features and resources which you are needing. TMS has no option to save many backup files with different dates and then allow you to select the backup file you want to restore. You only have the last backup available to restore! Furthermore, as far as I know, backup files are not stored locally on Windows directories, they are stored on SQL data base.

Resuming, if you want something sophisticated, I guess you will need to create your own backup/restore application as Martin and anothers did.

Regards

Paulo Souza

Please rate replies and mark question as "answered" if applicable.

Paulo Souza Was my response helpful? Please rate useful replies and remember to mark any solved questions as "answered".

Btw, most will find it more easy handle the xconfig style format rather than the xml file, especially if

you need to restore the config afterwards! :-)

A problem I see is that more and more things are hiding from the xconf/xml file,

the complete b2bua config, user config and so on. This is a not good trend and should be reverted!

On the other hand I can not really understand why it must be so difficult to generate

thing like the snapshot or just the config backup from the VCS.

In general it could be a simple uri which a web-grabbing tool connect & fetch the file.

As I wrote me a script to backup the VCS I never really looked into the TMS way, but I

wonder it if stores more than the configuration.xml, so if a full restore would be possible with it.

The backdraw I see on the TMS is that you do not have revisions of the config.

Please remember to rate helpful responses and identify

I have found what I was looking for!

The TMS server has a SOAP interface which seems to be provided for exactly this sort of thing. In particular there is an API called 'PerformSystemBackupAsBackgroundActivity' which takes a list of managed systems and a couple of boolean flags for whether to send notifications when it's finished or not.

You can get a full list of the exposed interface by pointing a browser to http://your_tms_server/tms/external/management/managementservice.asmx

From what I can tell you can do everything you could in the console using this SOAP interface for automation. I'm using Python and the Suds module which seems to be working fine.

Hi Malcolm, thank you for the feedback.

Feel free to share some python sample code if you like, just attach them to a new message!

I prefer my way to do the scripted full system backup and additional xconfig and xstatus of the VCS,

so I can easily see the differences, but yea, there are many ways to solve one problem :-)

Please remember to rate helpful responses and identify

Thank you so much for this!