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DFS backup

Posted on 2014-03-03
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Last Modified: 2014-03-14
We have DFS target servers in few locations and they are replicating the target to one location. This is in windows2008.
I noticed that each server has c:\dfsroot folder.
I am currently backing up \\server\folder at each locations.
Is it enough to restore the files or folders in case if there is any issue?
I will appreciate if you let me know the best practice for DFS backup or send me the link?
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Question by:sara2000
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9 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:arnold
ID: 39901339
Your question has several scenarios.
1) deals with erroneously deleted file which can only be obtained from a backup.
2) Total system faliure, you would need to restore the DFS link as well as the data to avoid having massive amount of data transmitted via the network.  
  a) deals with system failure and access to the HUB is unavaliable to reestablish the link.
3) Presumably in addition to the DFS server you have at least on local DC.

Make sure to restore file data from backup prior to reestablishing the DFS replication link or the data you restore will over-write data that may have been updated ......
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Author Comment

by:sara2000
ID: 39901348
Hey Arnold,
Excuse for my lack of knowledge in DFS.
Make sure to restore file data from backup prior to reestablishing the DFS replication link or the data you restore will over-write data that may have been updated ......

Do we have to stop the DFS before we restore the file ?
the start the dfs once we restored.
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Expert Comment

by:Jan Vojtech Vanicek
ID: 39901446
Hello Sara2000,
it depends on way you using it, but in my opinion the DFS backup is good for off-site style backup.
It is good-to-have if your primary location is completely flooded or fired. But DFS is not good for backing up in the way of backup meaning.
Another thing is that you cant backup active MS Access or Outlook pst files - DFS is suitable only for document and Picture like files.

For your information, there is nice document on MS:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc773238(v=ws.10).aspx
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Author Comment

by:sara2000
ID: 39901514
I am not using dfs as backup, I use third party sofwatre to backup the DFS shares.
My question is this.
Do we have to stop DFS when we restore a file in the shared folder?
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Expert Comment

by:Jan Vojtech Vanicek
ID: 39901575
Generally no, you dont need to stop DFS when you restore file. What backu software are you using?
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Author Comment

by:sara2000
ID: 39901584
BackExec
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Expert Comment

by:Jan Vojtech Vanicek
ID: 39901596
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Expert Comment

by:arnold
ID: 39902117
Usually when a backup is run on a DFS share, the DFS related services are often stopped to avoid the mass update because of an attribute change.

I.e. Listing files with attributes, you should see recently changed files having an A attribute.  Once you run a backup, the A attribute will be cleared.

If you are restoring an erroneously deleted/modify file (I would usually restore to a restore location and then copy the restored file into the share to avoid contention issues I.e. A user is working and modifying the file you are restoring), you would not want to disable any DFS. Upon the completion of the restore, replication/synchronization of the data will be triggered.
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Accepted Solution

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arnold earned 500 total points
ID: 39902124
The restore with DFS not established deals with recovery after a complete/total failure of the server on which DFS share resides.
The reason for the restore us to bring the DFS share to as valise as possible a state to avoid massive data transfer over the WAN when there are multiple locations.  This us often called pre-staging.  Also make sure when re establishing DFS-replication to select the correct system as the master (authoritative for the data in the share, thus must always be the system that did not experience HW failure.
I.e. if you have server a, b and c. And c is rebuilt from scratch, use a or b as the authoritative for the data within the share and not C even if prestaged. The wrong directional choice will result in files that do not exist on c being deleted from a and b.
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