Restore from a .bkf

Posted on 2010-09-21
Last Modified: 2012-08-13
I have a client who, because of cash flow problems, decided to cancel their service and maintenance contract a few months ago, and have been trying to maintain it themselves.

Since then, they have had a hard drive crash, and have come crawling back.

It is a Win2k3 SBS server.

The main system drive has catastrophically failed.
They somehow deleted the image backup of the system, so that's toast.
They somehow deleted the system state backup. Bravo!
They have also lost their recovery discs I made them. Fail.
They have misplaced the base image of the server that was on an external hard drive (I think someone stole the external drive, but that is neither here nor there).

All I have are full backups, and I am not even sure if these are full / complete because the hard drive where all the backups was being saved to was completely full. ( am worried the backup saved the first 83 GB, then said: "Out of disk space!" but I'll never know because that is in the event log of the failed hard drive. Que sera sera.

I have 5 full backups: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday. So, hopefully one of them will work.

Question: how do I restore from this .bkf file with the least amount of headache? I really don't want to have to re-install SBS only to create a restore disc, so I can restore from the backup.
Question by:DrDamnit
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LVL 14

Expert Comment

ID: 33730164
Sorry, but you've got to put a base install on the server before you can restore it.
LVL 14

Expert Comment

ID: 33730187
P.S.  After you get their server back up, you might try explaining to them why a critical server should always, always, always, always (never any exception) have hardware RAID.

If their server had been properly designed in the first place they would not be in this mess because of a simple drive crash, which of course we all know will happen at least once in the life of most servers.  But now that they have been cheap they get to pay you more to make the server work again than they saved in the first place by not investing in RAID!

Even if they had managed to keep all of their backups in place, this would still be the case.  Maybe now that they are paying the piper they will see that hardware RAID is something they should pop for.

Expert Comment

ID: 33730204

this is the Microsoft documentation on restoring

long story shorter I m almost positive that is you do not have the asr disks you will need to install the same OS and get it updated to the Same SP  on the exact same hardware  and do a restore from with in the OS and boot up in active directory restore mode if you want that to be the main  and latest updated DC (active directory)

but read the document listed above i
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LVL 32

Author Comment

ID: 33731269
Re: RAID... You can only tell someone until you are blue in the face: buy hardware RAID 5, but nooooooo....

that's what I was afraid of. So, I have to install the system, just to get the ASR made, then I can restore the full backup, and everything should be fine.

It's just been a very long time since I've done this. I normally rely on imaging as backups because I never have to worry about this stuff that way.

Using ASR, I shouldn't have to boot into AD restore mode because the full backup (which should include a system state) should just restore, and after I restart, it should just come up. Right? That is... afterall... the purpose of a full backup.

Expert Comment

ID: 33731370
but  im not sure if ASR is specific tot the install or if it's specific to the hardware  the thing is once you have installed it you are in it already you may as well just restore it all including the system state with out going through the whole asr steps just to find out it may or may not work  and you should not need directory restore mode as you are the only Dc in the domain

Raid well I hope you Bill the crap out of the client for being to greedy and not wanting to listen to your advice on RAID will teach them to listen next time
LVL 14

Expert Comment

ID: 33731597
I agree, just follow the Microsoft restore steps and do the whole thing from your backup files.
LVL 32

Accepted Solution

DrDamnit earned 0 total points
ID: 34502818
We ended up using a 3rd party tool to get the information out of the bkf.

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