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Backup hardware for windows server 2011

Posted on 2013-01-16
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Any advice on a low cost backup stategie for my windows server 2011 standard?
Tape seems a bit expensive. I only have 3 accounts on the server so bringing down the server in case of troubles isn't an issue. Bare metal recovery is a must.  Preferably I'd use the windows backup software or any other low cost backup software.
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Question by:Felipe911
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by:smckeown777
smckeown777 earned 332 total points
ID: 38782551
Simplest way(and also lowest cost) is external USB drive, I have a number of clients using this method with the builtin Windows backup software and no issues

Next level up is a NAS unit, benefit of that is you can have mirrored drives where if one fails you still have another copy, apart from that there's no other real benefit...
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by:Felipe911
ID: 38782628
The only remark I have with external usb drives is that I'm afraid that as the  3 drives getting connected and disconnected every week to the server  the hardware connection "interface" will die on me. Expierenced any issues on that?
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by:smckeown777
ID: 38782651
3 drives getting disconnected? Not sure what you mean here sorry?

As for the interface dying, if you are referring to the USB interface then no, haven't had that issue before, but like I said, the other option is a NAS which is ethernet connected and less prone to interface issues...

As for the external drives themselves, no i'm not a huge fan either, obviously they are basically regular HD's, but if you went with 2 which you could cycle each week/month just for that extra safety feature I suppose...
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by:Felipe911
ID: 38782676
I' d do a cycly with 3 drives. Monday wednesday, saturday. So the external drive needs to be connected and disconnected to the usb cable once a week. So I'm afraid this hardware connection would cause issues after a while. I just need backups that are  not connected to the server all the time ( in case of virus that alters or erases the backup or server )
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by:smckeown777
smckeown777 earned 332 total points
ID: 38782697
Ah ok, yes with you now...

Well if you think about it all you're doing is removing the USB cable from the HD interface, so I've never seen those drop, main issues with the USB is the cable itself which sometimes gets dodgy...

In fairness I don't cycle the ones I use, but you are correct in a way that the interface constant connect/disconnect could over time wear out - but since you have 3 to cycle the chances of all 3 dropping the same time are fairly low I'd think...

If you want to cycle the NAS is no addition, one thing one of our clients does is standard backup to NAS onsite all the time - then once a month takes in an external drive and runs a full to it, so worst case you have 1 full backup offsite all the time - might work
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by:D_Vante
ID: 38787527
How much data are you talking about?
For small business' google does email and space for free, I think something like 7gb per user.
Google drive it is called and you can install a client on their PC and have it sync the data with the drive online.  Now if someone steals your server you have the files online.

I would also recommend getting a couple more drives (RAID 1) for your server and setting up Volume Shadowing from your data drive to that drive.  This will allow you to have version copies of your data.

Then get something like ioSafe and do your backups to it.   Now in a flood or fire your backups would be safe on it.
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by:Felipe911
ID: 38796002
How much data? About 18 Gb of mail and 2GB of data.
I might as wel do an online backup to my own server  at home per ftp?
2 drives will be enough I guess? Why do I need volume shadowing if I have image backups?
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D_Vante earned 168 total points
ID: 38796670
Online backup I think will work for you.
Volume shadowing will add another way to recover files plus it offers the possibility of recoverying a file that has changed between backups.
I have it running 3 times a day.
I have had users do work on a spreadsheet all day and they forget to save it before closing the file or their computer crashes or a power outage
 I can recover most of their work.
or
They delete a file and want it back days later
or
They do several changes and would like to go back to an earlier version
I also have auto save and auto backup setup inside excel and word but sometimes the users change the settings
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