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Exchange 2010 RDB

Posted on 2011-09-22
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I used Exchange 2003 and it has a Recovery Storage Group, which allows an Admin to restore a DB to the RSG and from there use Exmerge to restore individual mailboxes or items.
However I have never had a chance to use, since we had CommVault backup solution, and the restore of individual mailboxes or even messages can be done staright from CommVault backup to the Exchange 2003 DB.
I have heard of Exchange 2010 RDB, it sounds like it is the same. But nowadays most companies have good backup solutions, I wonder if we need this RDB or it comes into play only if you don't have a backup solution such as CommVault, BackupExce, NetBackup...??

Thanks
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Question by:jskfan
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19 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:Akhater
ID: 36579319
in short yes, the recovery database is the "replacement" of recovery storage groups since there are no longer storage groups in exchange 2010

This will be needed when you want to do a restore of a Database and extract only a single mailbox to the live server, so, if your backup solution can do this without Recover databases then you will probably not needed unless you are to do a dial tone recovery
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Author Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 36579405
I don't think with Exchange 2010 DAG you will come to use dial tone.
unless if all DBs in the DAG are dead.
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Expert Comment

by:Akhater
ID: 36579444
that's a point :D
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Expert Comment

by:TheGeezer2010
ID: 36580071
The RDB also allows you to export to PST, to recover anything from individual items to whole mailboxes. It is relatively easy to set up and use and has saved my ass a couple of times !!
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Expert Comment

by:Auric1983
ID: 36580208
You can also setup your mailbox db to not purge the deleted items until a full backup has been completed so you always have that option to restore single items.

Recovery DB works well if you don't use a DAG. DAG's work really well, but for small companies the cost is pretty high because two enterprise server licenses and two exchange licenses are required.

Dial Tone DB is a life saver as well.  The Recovery DB / DTB recovery process is a little unnerving as you have to dismount and rename database files but it works. (I did this for a customer of over 250 users who had a raid array fail and cause db corruption)
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Expert Comment

by:TheGeezer2010
ID: 36580338
Note that for DAG, the exchange version CAN be standard - only the server version must be Enterprise (because of the Failover Cluster feature), but of course you have a maximum of five databases with the standard version of Exchange.
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Expert Comment

by:Auric1983
ID: 36580349
A simple DAG requires 3 servers.  Two actively taking part in the process and a third party "File system watcher" (This can be a DC or other server)
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Expert Comment

by:TheGeezer2010
ID: 36580514
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Expert Comment

by:Auric1983
ID: 36580521
You need a 3rd server to maintain the quorum?
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Assisted Solution

by:TheGeezer2010
TheGeezer2010 earned 664 total points
ID: 36580555
File share Witness - just needs to be on any server which is accessible via share to both servers in the DAG. In fact, by default it will install the FSW on a separate HT server if one is available. Be aware that if you have failover Cluster installed, you CANNOT also install WNLB, so if you have both CAS and MBX roles on the same server, to create a CAS array you will need to use a hardware LB solution.
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Expert Comment

by:Auric1983
ID: 36580562
ah yes, sorry I used the wrong term :P I knew it was "FSW" but couldn't remember the acronym.

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Author Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 36582741
This link talks about RDB
http://www.msexchange.org/articles_tutorials/exchange-server-2010/high-availability-recovery/uncovering-new-exchange-2010-volume-snapshot-vss-plug-in-part2.html

But I have understood what he meant in this:

<<< Remember that if you choose to restore one or more databases protected by DAG, you must restore to the active database copy and not one of the passive database copies.>>>

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Author Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 36582754
Does that mean go Dismount the active DB and overwrite it with the restore?
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Accepted Solution

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Auric1983 earned 668 total points
ID: 36582757
a DAG or Database access group is made up of a number of copies of the same database.  the primary database will be the active one and the replicated partners will be passive.  If you restore to a database that is a member of the DAG you must restore to the primary/active database and not one of the replicated partners.

Does that make sense?
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Author Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 36582881
I will still need to dismount the active DB before overwriting it with a restore.
Correct ??
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Assisted Solution

by:Akhater
Akhater earned 668 total points
ID: 36582895
yes the database will surely need to be dismounted before restoring
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Author Closing Comment

by:jskfan
ID: 36583046
thank you Guys!
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Expert Comment

by:TheGeezer2010
ID: 36585763
Not strictly true - see both of this series as they cover this topic perfectly and step by step. You must back up the Active Database in a DAG because the VSS plugin does not support the Exchange Replication VSS Writer. Similarly the restore also needs to be done to the Active database.

You have to make a backup first, THEN restore this backup to another location, create the Recovery DB at that location, ensure the database is in clean shutdown, then mount the Recovery DB. Once you have finished with this Datbase, you should dismouint then DELETE the database.

http://www.msexchange.org/articles_tutorials/exchange-server-2010/high-availability-recovery/uncovering-new-exchange-2010-volume-snapshot-vss-plug-in-part1.html
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Expert Comment

by:TheGeezer2010
ID: 36585787
What I mean is that the Databases will mount and dismount automatically during the restore process without your intervention. You do NOT need to manually dismount first.
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