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How to use NTBackup with Exchange 2003 Server?

Hi,
My backup admin has tried several times to backup Exchange 2003 Server-Enterprise Edition using Symantec BackUp Exec 11d.  It saids it backed up properly, but does not clear the transaction logs and only backs up about 15GB, but a full backup is nearly 100GB.  

I have tried a couple of NTBackups of my Exchange 2003 Server-Enterprise Edition, which resides on Windows 2003 Server-Standard Edition.  The backups were successful, but the transaction logs were not deleted.  I used the wizard to perform a normal backup, which I thought was a full backup.  I looked at the reports and it backed up everything as type: Normal except the System State, which type: Copy.  

So, after digging around on the web, I decided to ask the gurus here how to properly configure NTBackup to perform a full backup of Exchange 2003 Server that deletes the transaction logs.

Right now, I just want to get a good working backup of my Exchange server with NTBackup then I will assist my Backup Admin setting up Backup Exec 11d to perform correctly, because of all the times it would fail would be right now.

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

Bob
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dgriffit55
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dgriffit55
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1 Solution
 
LeeDerbyshireCommented:
The logs files you see remaining may be orphaned.  A successful full or incremental backup will only delete the log files that are actually in use.  If this ever fails, then no attempt will be made to delete them in future.  I would suggest checking how many log files there are, and the file names of the most recent ones, and then see if the recent ones, at least, get deleted.  If the ones that remain are very old, you will need to delete them manually.  If you are sure that no log files whatsoever are being deleted, then leave them for now.
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dgriffit55Author Commented:
A few weeks ago, I turned on circular logging, because the log files had filled up the HDD.  After a few moments & I think a reboot it cleared the logs.  Then after doing some investigation on this site about circular logging, I decided to disable circular logging again.  The logs starting filling up the HDD again as normal.  However, the backups did not flush the logs.  So, now I am back to the same situation as before, except I am trying to fix the issue before the logs fill up the HDD again.  

So, is NTBackup working correctly even if it says Type: Normal for all the drives & System State Type: Copy?

I just feel it is a setting I am missing somewhere.

Thanks again.

Bob
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LeeDerbyshireCommented:
Are you sure that you are backing up the Exchange Information Stores?  This is not done as part of a file backup or system state backup.  When you install Exchange on a server, it adds a 'special' version of NTBackup which reveals the IS's as a separate item in the backup source tree.  This also means that you can't do it from a different server.
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dgriffit55Author Commented:
I was using the wizard for NTBackup and was sure I did a full backup.  I just kicked off another backup, this time I made sure to include Information Stores.

Time will tell if that makes the difference.

I will let you know.

Thanks again.

Bob
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dgriffit55Author Commented:
Ok, the backup is nearing completion, I think, over 5 hours and it is much bigger than my last backup attempt.  In fact, I see where it is backing up the Information Stores, right now.

I was wondering, if I only wanted to backup the Exchange 2003 Server part of the server, would I just do a backup of the Information Stores or would I need to include other areas of the Exchange Server as well?

Just wondering.

Thanks.
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LeeDerbyshireCommented:
The information store backup will contain all your mailboxes and public folders.  A file-based backup would include the Exchange program files and server operating system, but I'm not sure what use they would be if something went wrong.  Probably useful if a system file was accidentally deleted, but not much use if you need to reinstall the server.  A System State backup would include the OWA Virtual Directories. But again - if you had to reinstall the server, these would be created when you reinstalled Exchange.  I guess it all depends how much capacity and time you can give to the backup.
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dgriffit55Author Commented:
Ok, the NTBackup worked.  It flushed the logs.  I had to manually select the areas to backup.  Apparently, a full backup does not include the Information Stores.  FYI.  If you plan to do a NTBackup make sure to manually select the areas you want to backup & include the Information Stores which will flush the logs.  Do not use the wizard, because it will say it is doing a full backup, but that full backup will not include the Information Stores.

Thanks again for all the help.

Bob
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