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Active Directory Domain Controllers -What to backup?

I have 2 domain controllers, One DC1:

Schema Master
Domain Naming Master
Infrastructure Master
Operations Masters

Active Directory Domain Services
File Services
Print and Document Services
Multiple Group Policies

With all of this on it. The other Dc2:

Active Directory Domain Services
File Services
Remote Desktop Services

Both are running Windows 2008 r2 and the domain function level is at Windows Server 2003. Whats the best way to be backing these up? Frequency? Just system State?

Thanks in advance!
4 Solutions
Mike KlineCommented:
You are also going to want to backup your files too.  system state is a definite, good article by Matt with screenshots


You can backup your group policies using the gpmc scripts.   I'd also backup dhcp


Radhakrishnan RSenior Technical LeadCommented:

I would suggest you to go for any centralized backup solutions. Backup Exec would be one of the nice option. You can go for D2D (Disk to Disk) and D2T (Disk to Tape). If you install backup exec remote agent then you can add the remote server into the backup list.

Take all the drives backup along with AD - Configure this as a Daily Incremental and Weekly full backup.
yo_beeDirector of Information TechnologyCommented:
When it comes to any servers no matter what roll they are playing I would have a certain policy in place for your backups.

One of the standards is the link below.  This article talks about tapes, but you can apply it to whatever media of choice.

Grandfather, Parent, Child Model

What I do in my environment is run:
Daily Differentials Mon-Thurs of all my servers (35) (All data that changed from the last full)
Weekly Incrementals Week 2 - 4 Sundays of all my servers (35) (All data that changed since the last Full/or Diff)
Monthly Fulls First Weekend of every month of all my servers (35) (All data)

Your systemstate backup contains all those setting and data you are talking about when it comes to AD, but DHCP has it's own mdb file that needs to be backup so when backing up you should consider the system as a whole and not individual roles.

Here is a KB article from MS

From what you posted as your infrastructure I would not pick and choose what roles you want backed up and do full system backups.
You can backup your DNS as well. check this from mcpmag.com.

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