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Windows Server 2008 R2 Thread, 2008r2 backup strategy for a primary school in Technical; Just after a little advice. We backup our 2008r2 server to our LA. They take a system state and DATA ...
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    2008r2 backup strategy for a primary school

    Just after a little advice.

    We backup our 2008r2 server to our LA. They take a system state and DATA drive backup each night and hold the data for one month.

    I have been using robocopy (which I really like) to make my own internal backup of the DATA drive on the server to a 1tb USB drive. The data on this drive never gets deleted, only added too, so I can go back further than one month.

    Not that I do not trust our LA (cough) but I also want to back up the roles and services on the server just in case, so have purchased a 2tb USB drive to replace the 1tb drive.

    Using the built in 2008r2 backup software should I,

    do a full bare metal backup?

    do a system state backup and also do a DATA drive backup?

    do a system state backup but use robocopy to do the DATA drive backup?

    Thanks
    Last edited by edutech4schools; 24th April 2014 at 12:47 PM.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    If you download/install Backup Assist, this uses the tools/services in 2008 R2, but offers a really easy to use interface. It basically offers what Microsoft should be offering out the box. Education licensing is 」80 per server/instance and is a one off payment.

    You can optionally do data volumes and/or system state using any combination you can think of. Backing up to the LA is going to be less attractive and less of a requirement, bearing in mind you can place a NAS anywhere within the building and not necessarily next to the server. This is why I avoid USB type backups.

    I would recommend bare metal backups and yes, you should do both system state and data regularly. System state is less of an issue if you have multiple DCs, but backing up of data should occur Mon-Fri. Robocopy will also no longer be required.

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    Thanks for the info but the school want to continue using the offsite LA backup solution and are very happy using / paying for that.

    The original post questions still stand as I want something just for my own peace of mind and this must not cost any extra for the primary school.

    I need to work out first if I should do nightly system state backups or nightly mare metal backups + DATA

    In addition to the questions in my OP I have a few more,

    I am a bit confused by 2008 r2 bare metal backups as one forum poster said the server needs to go offline in order to do a bare metal backup, is this true?
    Can I still extract individual files from a bare metal backup as I would from a standard DATA backup.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    It is common knowledge that the 2008 R2 tools that Microsoft offers aren't brilliant, but this is what Backup Assist capitalises on. Sure it's an additional cost, but it's a one off. You can trial it for 30 days without any limitations to make your mind up

    You can do bare metal backups on the fly when I've used Backup Assist. If you had to take it offline, that would be illogical as the server would be unavailable x amount of hours per day/evening.

    Consider the bare metal just like the system state - you can only restore the whole system state and not components of it. The bare metal option simply means you could restore the whole system to a completely different server if required.

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    In server 2008r2 backup if I manually select bare metal backup it automatically selects system state and some of the volumes. Does that mean I can have separate access to those backed up volumes and files if I need to restore a text file for a teacher or are they mangled into the bare metal backup and can only be restored as part of the bare metal restore.

    This is why I am trying to decide if I should do bare metal or system state or data backup. To me it looks like bare metal does all the rest as separate jobs but all within the same task.

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    Did some testing during the night and you can take a bare metal backup along with system state and the data and get at the files / data separately.

    Last thing I need to work out is how the items listed under 'Optimize backup performance' effect things.

    Normal backup or faster backup are the two options given.

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    Got it all worked out. Normal backup does still gives you the ability to step back through previous backups and retrieve a file from the past even though it appears not the case from the GUI info.

    Windows backup does seem to do more than looks apparent at first use. You can also make a lot of changes to the backup in the task scheduler.



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