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Online Backup for PC servers

Posted on 2006-10-22
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Last Modified: 2010-04-03
Hi All,

I am searching for a solution to backup my PC servers with MS Window 2000 installed.

Each PC server has 2 system disks with size 18.3 GB.

I don't want to use tape as the backup media as the failure rate of the tape is quite high.

I want to do backup with minimal interruption to the users (i.e. ideally, I don't want to shutdown the PC servers for backup).

Is there any solution for my problem? Please advise. Thanks.
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Question by:iecu
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Yuray earned 63 total points
ID: 17786963
hmm, there are a lot of good solutions for your problem.

i'd recomend true image server for windows. it's creates the exact disk image of your live server for complete backup without shutting down a server and interrupting server operations. There is a snapshot technology which allows you to stop server services only for seconds. read more here:

http://www.acronis.com/enterprise/products/ATISWin/
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Expert Comment

by:Metropoliten
ID: 17787730
Yeap, Yuray is right.
besides u won't have to use tape for backups, using ATI u can directly backup to external or any other removable disk (say, DVD, USB)
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Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 62 total points
ID: 17788906
Windows 2000 server comes with ntbackup included. This software will backup to tape or HD, so you could use and external disk for backing up to. Something you should keep in mind is that if you need to keep your backups for archiving for longer periods of time, then tape is still the best option. Tapes are reliable if you don't over use them and if they are kept according to the specifications.

For your backup requirements you might also consider using REV's from Iomega. They are disk cartridges you can change, the drives aren't expensive, but the disks are more expensive than tapes. They will last longer though. They come in 35 and 70 GB sizes.

http://www.iomega.com
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Author Comment

by:iecu
ID: 17793028
Hi All,

Is it possible to do a disk cloning of the system disks with minimal downtime?

I hope the server can be restored immediaely once the system disk is crashed. i.e I can take out the crashed disk and inserted a backup disk to restore the service immeidately.

Please advise.

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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 17793623
For that you can use the software suggested by yuray, but the server version is pretty expensive. This will work best if you only have one DC running AD directory in your network. If there are more servers which are DC's, you'd get problems with the AD database integrity. In such a case you'll have to restore the AD database to the server after restoring the image using m$'s AD replication.
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Author Comment

by:iecu
ID: 17816613
Hi rindi,

I have only one Domain controller in my system.

For the tools Acronis True Image , I wonder whether I can have a disk-to-disk cloning of my system disks.

When there is a disk failure, I hope I can stop my server, take out the failed disk and reinsert my back up disk only to recover my system.

Can the Acronis True Image do this exactly?
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 17817341
Trueimage only makes image files, but it doesn't "clone" disks. To clone disks you'd need acronis disk director suite.

bootit-ng from terrabyte unlimited can do both, but when you are cloning the disk the server needs to be down.

http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/
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Expert Comment

by:Yuray
ID: 17817649
"Trueimage only makes image files, but it doesn't "clone" disks. To clone disks you'd need acronis disk director suite."

wrong it can clone disks, and you don't need to have disk director. Also disk director suite won't work on server os's(what i guess iecu has).

For true image you can make an image of the system disk and then restore it on the new one.
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 17817911
With trueimage you first have to make an image then restore that image to the other HD. with diskdirector suite you can clone directly, and there is a server version. The problem with acronis is that it is quite expensive, although the symantec products are even more expensive. Bootit-ng on the other hand is less than $100.-- and works on servers or whatever you like, and you can use it for everything, like create image files or clone HD's, resize partitions etc.
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Expert Comment

by:Yuray
ID: 17818177
"with diskdirector suite you can clone directly, and there is a server version."

i agree with you that disk drector has a server version, but i can't agree with you that it can clone disks and make images. it's only 3d party partition software, also it has additional utilities like os selector(boot manager) and recovery expert (help to recover lost or accidentally deleted partitions), but i've never heard about disk director is imaging prog. I've searched their site and also couldn't find any info concerning this.
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 17830462
It isn't imaging software, but it can clone disks. There is an option where you can copy a partition to another. It can't make image files though. Trueimage makes image files and doesn't directly clone the partition.
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Expert Comment

by:Yuray
ID: 17832113
hmm, yes disk director can copy partitions, but not clone! and true image can clone the whole disks. that's the difference (also there is another utility from acronis for cloning disks - migrate easy, but its' functions are included in TI).
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