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BESR 2010 Backup Strategies/Plan

Posted on 2010-01-04
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We just purchased 3 copies of Backup Exec System Recovery 2010 to backup the following servers:

Domain Controller
Exchange 2007 Server
Financial Application with an SQL backend

I am trying to develop a formal schedule for backing up these servers.  I've thought of the following methods thus far:

1.  Perform complete full backups of each server nightly.

2.  Perform complete full backups on Monday and Fridays with incrementals on Tues, Weds, Thurs, Sat,  & Sun

3.  Peform weekly full backups on each server and do standard data backups with NTbackup the remaining days.

I want to make sure I haven't missed any gottchas for timing around Active Directory during a recovery for example.

Thanks,
Eric
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Question by:seag33k
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Expert Comment

by:Patmac951
ID: 26174026
If time permits on a nightly basis I think performing full backups on each server is the way to go.  I normally do this with most of my smaller clients and make sure to have at least a two week media rotation.  A month rotation is ideal.  Where you do not overwrite any backup data on media unless it is at least two weeks old

I normally only do incremental backups if the time window for nightly full backups too small or if I am passing the data to a remote storage network.  In these cases I am doing a full backup weekly on Sundays then incremental nightly backups.
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by:seag33k
ID: 26174112
I guess I'll have to see how long the first full server backup image takes and also the size.  Currently my backups are written to a network file server.  We just purchased a High-Rely disc based system where I can store weekly backups offsite.  I just want to make sure I keep AD in mind so a recovery doesn't cause a problem.
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by:Patmac951
ID: 26174266
Backup Exec works well with AD.  I have yet to have a problem doing a restore to a Domain Controller using Backup Exec.  Just make sure you are backing up the "System State" on the DC.
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by:seag33k
ID: 26174372
We are using Backup Exec System Restore 2010 which creates an image of the whole server so the system state should be included if that make sense.
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Paul Solovyovsky earned 1000 total points
ID: 26197303
I have done more than my share of BESR installed (ever since they were Powerquest V2I Protector which is why they're using v2i files).  Here's what I normally do:

New Set over the weekend
Incrementals Daily (once per day or multiple times per day)
If storage is an issue you can consolidate the incrementals every 4 or 12 hours
The method works well because it gives you granularity and saves space.  BESR 2010 has GRT included so you can browse into the information store from the image and pull emails/mailboxes into a PST file and import back in to Exchange.  You should still do NTBackups to clear the transaction logs on Exchange and SQL.

Anoter note is that you can test restores very easily.  If you have a spare server install vmware esx or vmware server 2.0 and use vmware converter to convert a dc, exchange, sql either one at a time or all together and have a DR lab configured.

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Author Comment

by:seag33k
ID: 26211048
Thanks for the great suggestion and reminding me about the transaction logs!!  Until we get our new larger network storage server, I'll probably run a full image on Mon and then incrementals Tues - Fri with another full image on Sat for off site storage.  Any problem with that scheme? Once we have our larger storage server, I'll probably run full images everyday as long as the backup time permits.
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by:Paul Solovyovsky
ID: 26211354
that will work just fine.
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by:phrontiste
ID: 27635705
Hi Paulsolov,

Just confirming : In BESR 2010 we can flush transaction logs if we do vssfull backup when setting up the backup job in BESR 2010?

Thanks
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Author Comment

by:seag33k
ID: 27637572
I am not Paulsolov, but when I contacted Symantec tech support they assured me that choosing that setting would flush the transaction logs.

Here is their response to my question regarding that setting:

For VSS-aware applications, such as Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 or Microsoft SQL, this option does two things. It
performs a full backup on the VSS storage. And, after the backup, it sends a request for VSS to review its own transaction
log. VSS determines what transactions are already committed to the database and then truncates those transactions. Among
other things, truncated transaction logs help keep the file size manageable and limits the amount of hard drive
space that the file uses.
If you do not select this option, back ups still occur on the VSS storage(i.e VSS is enabled for the backups of system state).
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Expert Comment

by:Paul Solovyovsky
ID: 27637854
I have never seen BESR flush Exchange logs, even though they tell you it will do this I have never seen it work (manual states that it will do this for full backups only).  I have been using this product for 8 years in every itteration and been on several beta tests and it has never flushed the TL
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Author Comment

by:seag33k
ID: 27637947
So in this case do you do two backups? One with BESR? and another traditional Ntbackup?  We are planning on doing full backups of our Exchange 2007 server as long as space allows.  We just purchased a new file server with over 3TB of storage for our daily backups with portable storage for off-site weekly backups.
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Expert Comment

by:Paul Solovyovsky
ID: 27638083
I normally do two backups, one is image and one for the information store.  This way I can have more flexbility
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