About Lotus Domino Transaction Log

One of the feature  of Lotus Domino that I can’t live without (as Lotus Domino administrator) is Transaction Log. Transaction Log help me a lot when the server crash (very rarely) and backup time.

Without the transaction log, when the server crash, it will take hours for the server to recovery. It will check every databases one at a time and try to check and fix if it found any problem. And when the database if being fix, the user can’t access it. If the database is big, more than 10 GB, it will take hours to complete it.

With transaction log, after the server crash, the server will ready in less than 15 minutes.

Without the transaction log, the backup procedure will become a problem. In my case the total databases size is more that 1 TB, and it will take almost 24 hours to complete the full backup. And it’s almost impossible to me to run full backup everyday.

With the transaction log, I only to run the full backup every week, and I only need to backup the transaction log  for daily backup. Yes the full backup will take up to 24 hours for 1 TB data, for for daily backup, it take less than 1 hour backup.

So, if you have a medium size or large lotus domino server, I highly recommend that you to run it with transaction log enable.

Before that, these are a few tips.

  1. Use the fastest and dedicated hard drive that you can use for transaction log. I’m using IBM SAS drive with 15000 RPM, and that still too slow to me.
  2. Use raid 1 for transaction log, it recommended by IBM. So if one drive is failed, you still have one to run the transaction log.
  3. Backup, backup, backup. Transaction log rely on good backup that support transaction log, it will only clear up the old TXN files after the backup is complete. Without a good backup, your hard drive will filled up by the TXN files.
  4. If possible, use the latest Lotus Domino version. I have problem with Lotus Domino 8.5.2 FP1 that crash because the size of the transaction log, even the hard disk still have many free space. After consult with IBM support, they suggested me to upgrade the fixed pacth to FP2, after that the problem is gone.
I will keep on update the tips for the transaction log, and hope that you can added one or two tips.

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