[linux-lvm] Doc or definition of max_archives setting for lvm.conf?

Gary Eheman eheman at funsoft.com
Tue Feb 11 19:19:00 UTC 2014

On 02/11/2014 12:01 PM, Zdenek Kabelac wrote:
> Dne 11.2.2014 17:00, Gary Eheman napsal(a):
>> There is an example syntax reference to a variable named "max_archives" in the
>> man page for lvm.conf, but it does not provide a definition for the variable.
>> The actual lvm.conf on my distribution contains no references or comments to
>> enlighten me on the specifics for max_archives.  While the variable name
>> certainly gives me the clue that it is likely that not more than that many
>> archive files would exist in the archive directory, can someone provide a more
>> detailed description?
>> Since I can make no assumptions on this system, is it the case that if the
>> max_archives specified in lvm.conf is reached that the oldest archive is
>> automatically deleted as the newest one is created?
>> I have a lot of snapshot activity on the system where I want to implement
>> max_archives, and the number of archives keeps growing.  Naturally, I have not
>> yet reached the retain_days number of days, but would like to keep the number
>> of archives below a reasonable number before retain_days might be reached.
> # Configuration of metadata backups and archiving.  In LVM2 when we
> # talk about a 'backup' we mean making a copy of the metadata for the
> # *current* system.  The 'archive' contains old metadata configurations.
> # Backups are stored in a human readable text format.
> backup {
>      # Should we maintain a backup of the current metadata configuration ?
>      # Use 1 for Yes; 0 for No.
>      # Think very hard before turning this off!
>      backup = 1
>      # Where shall we keep it ?
>      # Remember to back up this directory regularly!
>      backup_dir = "/etc/lvm/backup"
>      # Should we maintain an archive of old metadata configurations.
>      # Use 1 for Yes; 0 for No.
>      # On by default.  Think very hard before turning this off.
>      archive = 1
>      # Where should archived files go ?
>      # Remember to back up this directory regularly!
>      archive_dir = "/etc/lvm/archive"
>      # What is the minimum number of archive files you wish to keep ?
>      retain_min = 10
>      # What is the minimum time you wish to keep an archive file for ?
>      retain_days = 30
> }
> Zdenek
> _______________________________________________

Yes, that section is precisely how my /etc/lvm/lvm.conf is coded.  But it still does 
not tell me the answers to my questions.

ls -ltr /etc/lvm/archive/ | wc -l

After 4 weeks of taking and deleting snapshots for the volumes that need to be backed 
up, I currently have 306 archive files.  What is going to make the number of archive 
files decrease (or cease increasing beyond a ceiling) on this system automatically?

Gary Eheman
Fundamental Software, Inc.

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