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Best Way to Test Exchange 2007 Backup

Posted on 2008-10-17
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Hello all, I have a question about testing our exchange server mail recovery. We are using Backup Exec 12.5, the exchange server is a windows 2008 standard 64 bit with exchange 2007. What I would like to do is install exchange on a test machine and see if we can restore to that test machine with backups from Backup exec. Symantec is very vague about this procedure. I assume the test machine would need to be on our domain for backup exec to see it to restore to but how to go about this without having a conflict with our production server as the test machine(I believe) will need to have the same name for the clients to connect to. Symantecs solution is to have the test machine on a different subnet but this would not be a true test as (God forbid) this would  ever really need to be done.
Thank you in advance for your help!
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Question by:signaltelcom
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by:Interserv
ID: 22740733
All you need to do is create a restore job and choose your selection/backups that you want to restore.

Under destination choose Microsoft Exchange Redirection.

Choose Redirect Exchange sets check box and add the server name that you want to restore to

Then Check Redirect to Storage Group and Database (Exchange 2007 only) and enter the names of the storage group and database that you created on the test server.
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by:signaltelcom
ID: 22742223
Some more questions:

If (God forbid) the production server go down, is redirecting clients as simple as updating DNS? or is anything locked to the GUID of the Exchane server?
What are the caveats to bringing the test Exchange server onto the same domain as the production server?

Thanks
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by:Interserv
ID: 22742282
I wouldn't add a test exchange server to the same domain.  There are a lot of possible issues with having the test exchange server on the same domain.  when you restore you will have two mailboxes for one AD users and who knows how Exchange and AD will respond to that.

As for redirecting the client, are you using Outlook 2007?  If so, then autodiscovery would redirect the clients.
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by:signaltelcom
ID: 22742573
So would you create a test domain, totally separate from production domain on a different subnet?
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Interserv earned 250 total points
ID: 22742828
If you want to go as far as a different subnet, yes, but that isn't necessary.  Creating the test domain allows you to do more tests on top of the backup.  We don't have a test exchange server setup, but we do have one with our SQL and Web Apps and it really helps for testing backups and updates.

Symantec also has a system recovery feature that you might want to invest in.  It allows for an entire system to be backed up and you can restore to another bare bones server.  
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