Best Practices for backup Email (Exchange 2003 Server environment

Posted on 2007-10-17
Last Modified: 2012-08-14
I am reevaluating my schools email backup solutions and was wondering what other postmasters do to tame this ever dynamic beast.

My backup solution consists of doing a full system backup every week with Symantec Veratis BackUp Exe software.

I was just curious to what others are doing, especially if the government makes it official that we have to keep years worth of email backed up for years to come.

Thank you for your time.

Question by:dgriffit55
    LVL 9

    Accepted Solution

    I used the Exchange function of Backup Exec, which allows you to backup individual mailboxes and the Information Store itself.  It definitely makes me feel better that I can restore a single mailbox, or even single email.  

    This does require another license for Backup Exec, but I would highly encourage you to use it.  This gives you another method of assuring your email data is safe.
    LVL 3

    Assisted Solution

    The software your using is a good backup utility.
    If you need to start keeping the backups for years and you don't need to keep your other backups as long, you may want to look at getting a tape drive just for your mail server and let it back itself up seperately from your other servers.
    LVL 104

    Assisted Solution

    If the Exchange server is dedicated to Exchange then I only do the information store - nothing else. And that is done full every night. You don't need anything else on the Exchange server.
    Elsewhere (looking at this from a pure Exchange point of view) you need the system state of a domain controller to allow recovery of the domain.

    If you need to start retaining email then I would look at another utility to do that. There are plenty of them around, something GFI Mail Archiver would be good as it is SQL backed making it easy to work with.

    I don't do mailbox backup of Exchange for any reason whatsoever. It is slow, inefficient and close to useless for most scenarios. With a properly planned Exchange deployment they are not required - the information store backup is enough. You don't even have to use third party tools - ntbackup does the job very well, just without the bells and whistles.


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