Chapter 1. HBase Snapshots

Prior to version HBase version 0.94.6, in order to perform backup or clone a table involved only two mechanisms - either perform CopyTable/ExportTable operations or copy all the hfiles in HDFS after disabling the table. These methods to backup or clone tables either degraded RegionServer performance (Copy/Export Table) or users were required to disable the table (which means no further read or write operations could occur on the disabled table).

HBase Snapshots lets you take a snapshot of a table without impacting RegionServers adversely. Snapshot, Clone, and restore operations do not involve data copying. Also, Exporting the snapshot to another cluster does not impact the Region Servers.

Use this document to configure and use HBase snapshots for performing backups or cloning HBase tables: