The purpose of backup is to enable recovery. Backup and recovery are always risky; here are some steps that minimize the chance recovery is necessary:
Store everything on a fault-tolerant disk array (RAID 1 or 5 or better).
Use battery backup.
Use more reliable hardware, such as SCSI instead of IDE.
These steps improve the chances of successful recovery:
Store backups on a third disk on another controller
Store backups on a different computer on a different network in a different physical location. (Compared to off-line backup such as tapes and CDRs, on-line backup is faster and more likely to succeed, but requires maintenance of another machine.)
Plan and configure for recovery from the beginning.
Test your recovery strategy from time to time.
Make it easy to maintain and test your recovery strategy, so that you are more likely to do it.
OpenACS installations comprise files and database contents. If you follow the reference install and put all files, including configuration files, in
/var/lib/aolserver/$OPENACS_SERVICE_NAME/, and back up the database nightly to a file in
/var/lib/aolserver/$OPENACS_SERVICE_NAME/database-backup, then you can apply standard file-based backup strategies to