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Best method for Backup & Restore of SBS 2003 w/ Exchange

Hi there,

I have a running SBS 2003 server which I need to backup and restore off site. The server is in an inaccessible building due to earthquake (but the internet and power are still on). I've taken individual NTBackup's of System State and Exchange Backup.
The server I'm restoring to is in another location I can't get to. Therefore i'll have to provide instructions to the engineers regarding making changes obviously the restore requires work during boot time.

Is it best for me to bundle both the system state and the exchange backup into one file or should I keep them separate. Is it best to setup SBS2003 at all before the restore. Currently its quite Vanilla.

Also, does anyone have some information on this because I've never done this restore before and would like to give some good instruction to the guys in the datacentre.

Thanks
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lemonville
Asked:
lemonville
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1 Solution
 
MichaelVHCommented:
Hi there,

you could try doing a bare metal backup & restore of your SBS2003, but that will probably require you to have the same hardware to restore to.
At all, that seems to be the easiest option to me.

Michael
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lemonvilleAuthor Commented:
What do you mean Bare Metal?
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MichaelVHCommented:
Sorry,

with a bare-metal I actually refer to some sort of "snapshot"/"copy image" of the source system so you can clone it to the other server.
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lemonvilleAuthor Commented:
And how would I achieve that, with a tool of some kind?
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MichaelVHCommented:
There are different software-bundles which allow to do that. E.g. Acronis (True Image)... and so on...
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lemonvilleAuthor Commented:
If I were to use Acronis, take a backup then upload it to the new server then restore. Would this work?
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MichaelVHCommented:
Sort of.

The backup you'll take is quite large. I understood that you had no physical access to the server; so backing it up through a WAN might take a very long time (unless you've got a 100meg-line or so). Make sure that you have an identical server to restore to, or you might run into some AD-issues.

Michael
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lemonvilleAuthor Commented:
The restore server is very similar.
We have a 100Mbit connection.
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MichaelVHCommented:
lemonville, than that's definitely worth a shot. if it succeeds it's by far the easiest way to get up and running again (certainly for single-server setups like sbs).

Michael
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lemonvilleAuthor Commented:
I ended up converting the Server to VMware Workstation VM. Then running the VM off site (before pulling the VMDK into another ESXi system.
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lemonvilleAuthor Commented:
My solution is unfortunately the method that was used, and is a good idea for any people in similar situation.
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