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Backup exec 8.6 back and restoration of Exchange

Posted on 2007-12-05
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I've recently taken control of a Windows 2000 box, running Exchange 2000 and Veritas Backup Exec 8.6

When looking at the backup configuration, although the exchange tab of the job is set to Full, the "Microsoft Exchange Mailboxes" tickbox on the selections tab is not ticked.

My predecessor seems to believe that this means the Exchange DB/store is being backed up, but individual mailboxes are not (ie Id have to restore the entire thing to pull out a mailbox).

I have a feeling it's not backing up anything to do with Exchange.

Can anyone confirm either way?  The job log doesnt mention anything about Exchange!
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Question by:EffEffTee
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by:SteveH_UK
ID: 20410881
If you are backing up the Information Store (Storage Groups, Mailbox Store, Public Folder Store) then you are backing up the whole data.

The Mailboxes and Public Folders nodes are for so-called brick-level backup.  Your predecessor is correct.
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by:SteveH_UK
ID: 20410894
The brick-level backup can take a really long time to complete (often 8 or more hours on a relatively small database), so the store restore is a viable alternative.  BE 11d does not require mailbox backups to do invidual item restores, btw.

Also, if deleted item and deleted mailbox retention has been configured then you can recover items and mailboxes without using BE at all.
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by:SteveH_UK
ID: 20410896
The BE 11d comment only relates to Exchange 2003 on Windows 2003, sorry.
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Author Comment

by:EffEffTee
ID: 20410911
A user has deleted his sent items.  I have the tape with the "good" backup on it, however I cannot work out how to restore off.  When I use the restore Wizard it only gives me the option to restore the boxes ticked in the selections tab of the job setup

How do I get it to restore the Exchange information store?  I assume I'll have to restore it to another server, somehow mount the data, setup the users mailbox and export the folder into a PST?

thanks for your help guys!
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Author Comment

by:EffEffTee
ID: 20410930
Also, if there is no need to tick that box "Exchange Mailboxes" - then how would the system know which information store to backup?  As without it, it's only a selection from the drop down box on the Exchange tab  (saying Full etc)

In my case, the exchange and backup exec are running on the same box, however in my "new" setup, they are running on seperate servers..
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SteveH_UK earned 500 total points
ID: 20410950
First, check if you have deleted item retention.

http://www.msexchange.org/tutorials/MF022.html

Otherwise, you will have to restore the whole store, and yes, in Exchange 2000, this is quite hard.  Exchange 2003 made this simpler.

You need to configure a new server to which you can recover the store.  Then you can use ExMerge to extract the data.  This is not trivial.  The new server has to appear like the original server, and you need to be able to get your backups to restore to it.

Have a look at http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/exchange/2000/library/mrfme2ks.mspx
and
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/exchange/2000/support/dbrecovr.mspx

So, you have two further alternatives:

1.  If the user is important, it may be worth stopping Exchange, extracting all new data, restoring over the existing store, and finally importing the new data.  You won't make friends this way, though.
2.  Ignore the user.  Sometimes, this is the best bet.  Make a business case for doing things differently in the future, even if it costs more.
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by:SteveH_UK
ID: 20410957
You should have a separate entry for Microsoft Information Store, or something similar.  This says to backup the database as a whole, not by mailbox, so it doesn't need to know which mailboxes.  In any case, the information is in Active Directory, which is where BE is getting its information from in the first place.
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Author Closing Comment

by:EffEffTee
ID: 31412829
thanks very much.  sounds quite painfil and I think im going to ignore the user.

I now have Exchange 2003 and Backup Exec 11d putting the data on LTO3 tapes.  The timing of this problem is bad as it was the day before the new system went live and migration started!

thanks again
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Expert Comment

by:SteveH_UK
ID: 20410983
Do a search on Granular backup/restore in BE 11d help.  It should tell you how to configure full backups without the lengthy brick-level backup.

Sorry I couldn't just do the restore for you ;)
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Author Comment

by:EffEffTee
ID: 20411006
I have my backup exec 11d configured, tested and working well (for granular restore) - it's great!

It's only 8.6 giving me a headache.  Even if I wanted to restore the entire Mailbox store I have no idea how.  There is no entry for it when I try to restore it!
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Expert Comment

by:SteveH_UK
ID: 20411146
Sounds like it wasn't backed up, as you say.
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