Jun 282011

After I wrote about Maildir replication, using ChironFS and DRBD, this time I will write how to make maildir replication, using a very well known program utility called rsync. basically, rsync itself, does not do realtime replication process. rsync only perform the synchronization/copy process when needed or scheduled by using the crontab. like cp, rsync is used to copy files from one directory to another directory in one system, or to a directory on another system. and vice versa.

How do we make the process of replication/copy that is almost realtime by using rsync?

we will use the inotify-tools (inotifywait) to monitor changes to system files or directories, in this case is the postfix maildir. Inotify has been included in the mainline Linux kernel from release 2.6.13 (June 18, 2005), and could be compiled into 2.6.12 and possibly earlier releases by use of a patch.

What is inotify?

Inotify is a Linux kernel subsystem that acts to extend filesystems to notice changes to the filesystem, and report those changes to applications. It replaces an earlier facility, dnotify, which had similar goals.

OK, without further ado, let’s continue with the first step, install inotify-tools. on my centos machine, it can be done in the following way.

$ sudo yum -y install inotify-tools

Assume that we have two servers, first server contains a postfix + maildir. second servers is used to backup maildir from the first server. using inotifywait, any changes in the maildir on first server will trigger rsync to update the maildir on the backup server. However, first we will make rsync can do the login automatically to the backup server via ssh using Public Key Based Authentication.

On First server

[first_server] $ ssh-keygen -t dsa -f ~/.ssh/identity && cat ~/.ssh/identity.pub | ssh -l postfix second_server -p 12345 'sh -c "cat - >>~/.ssh/authorized_keys && chmod 600 ~/.ssh/authorized_keys"'

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Jun 192011

As I’ve been written on my previous post about Maildir Replication using ChironFS in postfix, I will explain step by step it can also be done by using drbd and ocfs2.

Compiling & Installing

note: if your Linux distribution is shipped with a kernel older than 2.6.33 you have to install a kernel module package and packages for the user land code. If your distribution contains a Linux-2.6.33 kernel or newer you only need to install the user land code.

In my case i have my linux distribution older than 2.6.33, so i will also compile drbd kernel module.

Download drbd source and create Binary RPMS packages

$ wget http://oss.linbit.com/drbd/8.3/drbd-8.3.10.tar.gz
$ tar xvzf drbd-8.3.10.tar.gz
$ cd drbd-8.3.10
$ ./configure --enable-spec --with-km
$ cp ../drbd*.tar.gz `rpm -E %_sourcedir`
$ rpmbuild -bb drbd.spec
$ rpmbuild -bb drbd-km.spec
$ sudo rpm -ivh /path/to/RPMS/drbd-*

I’ll be using loop files for this setup since I don’t have access to raw partitions. but if you have raw block device available you can subtitute this part:

resource r0 {
	meta-disk internal;
	device /dev/drbd0;
	disk /dev/loop0;


resource r0 {
	meta-disk internal;
	device /dev/drbd0;
	disk /dev/sdxx;

sdxx can be sda1, sdb1 sdb2 or what ever your raw disk device called

# dd if=/dev/zero of=/drbd-postfix.img bs=1M count=5000
# losetup /dev/loop0 /drbd-postfix.img

Place this DRBD resource file in /etc/drbd.d/r0.res. Be sure to adjust the server names and IP addresses for your servers.

resource r0 {
	meta-disk internal;
	device /dev/drbd0;
	disk /dev/loop0;

	syncer { rate 1000M; }
        net {
                after-sb-0pri discard-zero-changes;
                after-sb-1pri discard-secondary;
                after-sb-2pri disconnect;
	startup { become-primary-on both; }

	on postfix1 { address; }
	on postfix2 { address; }

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