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Server 2003 System State Backups are huge

Posted on 2010-11-08
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
We have a windows Server 2003 (SBS) on which, the windows Backup Utility is creating a System State backup.  This system state backup is now huge (Just reached 300GB).

I have tried doing a manual backup to another filename to see if it was something to do with retention.. but the new one was looking to be a similar size.  Im not too sure what is making the file so big.  I had a look around google for some information but i cant find much about how i might shrink this.

This is a small company with 14 users.  The server is running exchange, Active Directory and DHCP and is the only server in the office.
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Question by:NetMatters
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9 Comments
 
LVL 7

Expert Comment

by:jakirkhan
ID: 34083485
 
You may be taking the backup of local drive of server .

Pls give as detail, what are the component you have selected in backup job selection list.??????
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LVL 5

Accepted Solution

by:
sabk earned 900 total points
ID: 34083710
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Author Comment

by:NetMatters
ID: 34084038
Hi guys,

Thanks for the replies..

The only item in the backup was  "System State".  None of the drives or any other files / folders etc were selected.  I have since found that it was appending the new backup to the old file so i was wrong about retention.

It is still approx 7GB though.  Is this too large or is this about average?

When the ntbackup starts it estimates 2990 files to be backed up.  The first file processed takes a while to back up and is over 6.5GB is this something we can shrink down somehow?
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LVL 27

Expert Comment

by:KenMcF
ID: 34084079
How large is your ntds.dit file? c:\windows\ntds
How large is your sysvol folder? C:\Windows\SYSVOL\sysvol
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LVL 7

Assisted Solution

by:jakirkhan
jakirkhan earned 600 total points
ID: 34084209
 
Yes it is normal if system state also contain IIS / DFS / Event Logs / Remote Storage Database etc.


You may also ref : http://documentation.commvault.com/commvault/release_7_0_0/books_online_1/english_us/features/system_state/system_state_how_to.htm 

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LVL 20

Expert Comment

by:Iain MacMillan
ID: 34084512
sounds about right for a server with AD, Exch and DHCP/DNS - my std 2003 member servers are roughly 480 - 690MB for their System State only backups.  My only 2003 DC just has AD and DNS running, and is currently running @ 698MB.
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Author Comment

by:NetMatters
ID: 34091907
ntds.dit is 25MB  
sysvol is 11.1MB

It seems that although the Windows Backup software states that the backup media will be overwritten it is still "Appending" the data when it runs the automated backup.  I thnk i will need to use the batch file method as mentioned by sabk and the further information from jakirkhan.

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LVL 20

Expert Comment

by:Iain MacMillan
ID: 34091965
you can choose a different name when running the backup, usually with the date in it, so it creates a fresh file each time, rather than appending all the time.
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Author Closing Comment

by:NetMatters
ID: 34218714
I was unable to use the method where the different names would be created as these are to be backed up remotely over night.  I have set a batch file to remove the old version of the file and create a new one once a week.  the remote backup software then uploads this new version to the backup server.

I would like to thank everyone for their help and information.
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