Windows 2008 Server recovery

I want to take nightly Windows 2008 Server snapshots.  If system fails I want to have an easy way to bring the previous night's exact server state back up (OS, Applications, Data, etc.).  The snapshot should be able to be used on new hardware or on the existing hardware.  I'm most concerned with the time it takes to rebuild.  Being down for an hour is fine.  Being down for 3 hours is not.  I don't want to use virtualization.

What is the recommended fastest most reasonably priced method?
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smckeown777Connect With a Mentor Commented:
I'd go for ShadowProtect, you aren't  going to be able to do this for free, not with the time limits you are quoting...

It will take 15 minute snapshots, will also restore to different hardware if necessary...
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Since you don't want to use virtualization... WHY NOT??? This is going to be expensive.  

Hyper-V Replica is free if the server is virtualized.

BUT, VM or not, you CANNOT do exactly what you want if the OS came with the server - OEM licenses are non-transferrable, even in an emergency.
WhahAuthor Commented:
@leew - Does the OEM issue only apply to new hardware or will it be a problem if I restore a snapshot to the original hardware too?
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Not to answer for @leew...but restoring to the same hardware is fine - the OEM license is tied to the hardware it came on, its restoring to new hardware that isn't supported...
Go for Acronis it has all the features you are looking for and the recovery process does not take much time
there are lots of useful features like incremental backup , full backup and differential backup

It comes with an add-on called Universal Restore which helps you in restoring image of one machine to another. You can even use any workstation for that purpose
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
OEM only applies to new hardware as smckeown777 stated.

OEM is very restricted... maybe you save $100 for buying it, but you lose MUCH in terms of disaster recovery and preserving your software investment.
WhahAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the insight, all.

We took a look at our product activation key today, and noticed that there is a physical key and a virtual key. We were wondering if these can be run concurrently? If we were to make a system backup, and then convert it to a VM, would we be able to activate it with that virtual key, even though it is technically on a different physical server? Also, does anyone know how many virtual activations are allowed with this type of license?

Thanks again,

Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
You CANNOT move the VM of an OEM edition off the physical server.

You can run BOTH the physical and virtual install on the same box PROVIDED the physical install does NOTHING other than Hyper-V and DIRECTLY related management of Hyper-V and it's VMs.
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