Schedule two full backups on the same server followed by either incremental or differential backups

Posted on 2008-11-12
Last Modified: 2012-05-05
This may seem to be an ameture question. We have a Small Business Server 2003. Currently two backups are scheduled as full backups on a daily basis. One is done on tape using BackupExec 11d and the other is on an external HD. Additionally, Small Business Server 2003 also does weekly backups on the same external HD.

Recently, due to the increasing size of user data, the external HD can no longer hold two sets of backups and we started looking into using incremental or differential backup strategies.

My concern is, with both BackupExec and NTBackup running full backups, will incremental or differential backups work? The tape can hold full backups daily without problem so we'd like to keep it this way. We wanted to schedule NTBackup using full+incremental. For instance, on Monday, NTBackup runs a full backup at 8:00PM and BackupExec runs a full backup at 11:00PM. On the following day, if we schedule an incremental backup, which full backup would it recoginze? BackupExec or NTBackup? Since both will reset the the archive bits, I am afraid that it may cause confusion when it comes to restore.

Currently, no plans to purchase additional hardware.

Thanks in advance for any comments.
Question by:clarinetjun
    LVL 6

    Expert Comment

    I think you should better try Full backup + Decremental backup  and make sure you check option to Verify backup so that you do not run into any issues later..

    Please let me know,
    Hardeep Saluja
    LVL 3

    Accepted Solution

    What is the reason you use 2 backup softwares? Why not just use Backup Exec. You've paid for it, so why use the free (=less features) NTBackup?
    Backup Exec has the possibility to duplicate a backup to another destination (Job Setup -> Backup Task -> New job to duplicate backup sets.
    If your external HD isn't large enough to hold 2 full backups, then you have a problem. Because even if you use incremental/differential, when it's time to make a new full backup to the external HD, you normally make the new full backup first and only delete the old full backup afterward. If you would start with deleting the old full backup first and then the new full backup fails, you don't have any full backup left. Because disk space is cheap these days, I think it would be better to buy a extra disk space.
    For your question on the incremental/differential backup with mixed full backups (backup exec and NTbackup): Backup Exec has the option to make full, incremental and differential backups not with the usual archive bit, but based on modified time. This way, you can use NTbackup with the archive bit and Backup Exec with the "modified time" option. So there is no mix or confusion between the different jobs.

    Author Closing Comment

    Thanks for your input. I will investigate the options that you recomended. I also see BackupExec has copy file option, I may try that as well. Generally, at the company I am working for, everything must have redundancy. Unfortunately, I wasn't given the option to purchase additional hardware. That's why I used both tools. Thanks again for your comments.

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