Cloning a Web Server and Database Server

Posted on 2005-05-17
Last Modified: 2010-04-26
We have an existing Windows 2000 Web Server and another box for the Database Server. They both use SCSI drives 18GB. We are building two new boxes, with 36GB SATA drives. We want to copy the entire setup of both existing boxes to the new boxes so that we don't have to rebuild everything from scratch.

What is the best way to do this?

We own Ghost, but haven't tried it. We also tried this:

To test if it was possible, we used Windows Backup to create a system state backup, thinking we'd only have to change a few drivers and be up again. But we restored this to the new box and Windows wouldn't open, even in safe mode.

We'd like to be able to do this remotely if possible, but do have USB maxtor drives we could attach to the boxes.

Any suggestions of the best way to do this without taking the existing boxes down? They are live websites and database and we can't have them down. Maybe in the wee hours of the morning but that would require it be done remotely, as we don't have wee hour access to the boxes.


Question by:BobCSD
    LVL 69

    Expert Comment

    Previous versions of Ghost required rebooting into DOS mode, but Ghost 9 works in a Windows environment.  You can also use Acronis True Image.
    LVL 1

    Accepted Solution

    If you have a Web Server and Database install on one machine and want to put that install on another machine with the same hardware, just bigger drives, you may be in some trouble.  Here is why I say that:

    1.  Last I checked, MSFT doesn't really support server installs done from ghost and especially don't with database installs.  This may have changed over the last couple of years so I am not certain.

    2.  The HAL on the machines is different so taking a snapshot on one machine and then imaging another machine could leave you with serious problems later on.  This can even be problematic on machines with the exact same computer make/model.  Reason is that most computer manufacturers use parts from LOTS they buy.  One LOT can differ from another making the exact some components different from one machine to the next depending on when they were built.  The often times substitute components as well as they come and go.

    3.  If you have 2 different machines and just want to get the config and data the same, you really should build the machines from scratch and migrate the data.  In which case, ghost may not be the best way to do that.  If you head to MSFT site, I am sure they run into this all the time with their Servers and I know they run into this with their DB Servers.  <- I didn't spend too much time looking for it but I found this link.

    Hope this helps a little.

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