Bare Metal Restore

In order to do a Bare Metal restore of a windows 2008 R2 machine the system state and system volumes need to be backed up.  What would be the backup selections when choosing System Volumes for backup?
GorapsI.T. ManagerAsked:
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Well, this is a UEFI (GPT) system and the first 100MB must be imaged as well if you plan a bare metal recovery in future. Moreover, if you do not image this small partition - after restore the server will not boot.
Does Barracuda backup wizard show it? I can't see it on your screenshots.
Imho Barracuda is more file level backup approach here. I would use Windows Server Backup to take bare metal backup image of the system just for any case.
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Manojkumar RaneCommented:
Refer below blog for configuring windows server backup for bare metal restore :
http://blogs.technet.com/b/askcore/archive/2011/05/12/bare-metal-restore.aspx
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GorapsI.T. ManagerAuthor Commented:
I'm not using windows backup so I don't get the Bare Metal Recovery option.. I would need to pick these items to backup manually... That's my question.  I am using a Barracuda 390 backup device.
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Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
You haven't said what software you're using to accomplish the backups.  The Barracuda is the medium for the backups, right.  But which software?  

And, re: Windows backup, why not if there's a way to do what you want?

And, re: backup software, what others are available that will do the job?  (I don't know).

Bottom line is that you probably shouldn't be thinking that you're stuck with the current backup software if it won't readily do what you need.
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GorapsI.T. ManagerAuthor Commented:
I guessing it is a barracuda backup software designed for the backup unit.  this is what I have:  https://www.barracuda.com/products/backup

I guess I could use the windows backup and put the backup file to the server that's backup by barracuda unit... How often should a bare metal restore backup be done?  Is it something you do daily as well?
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
For Windows 2008 R2 to be able to perform bare metal recovery you need to select MSR partition, C: partition plus MBR and First Track. If you have there a choice for System State selection then select it as well.
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GorapsI.T. ManagerAuthor Commented:
All I get is the system state as a section option.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Can you post a screen shot?
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GorapsI.T. ManagerAuthor Commented:
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Thanks. Seems to me that the software includes MBR and first track automatically when you select System State.
So for Bare Metal recovery you need either select All Items or System State plus MSR and C: partitions.
And somehow it does not show MSR partition. Do you have it at all? See in Windows Disk Management what kind of partitions you have.
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GorapsI.T. ManagerAuthor Commented:
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GorapsI.T. ManagerAuthor Commented:
They advertise that you can - and you can download their bare metal bootup disk from there website.  That's what I've done since I couldnt figure out the barracuda way.. and that was to run the windows server backup and have the barracuda backup that folder. How often should you do a bare metal recovery backup?  once a month?
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Yep. Once a month is enough.
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GorapsI.T. ManagerAuthor Commented:
what's the best way to test the bare metal restore? If I dont have a similar test server?
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Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
Here is how I would test it.

Take out the existing hard drive from the server.
Install a new hard drive in the server.
Restore the image.
Test the result.

Then, if you like, you can leave the new hard drive in the server and proceed from there.

If it's RAID then you'll have to deal with that and will need to be well prepared for the evolution.

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Somehow my post about frequency of backups seems to have gotten lost.  Here's what I said:

- One approach is to image the hard drive infrequently and backup the data daily.  Then a restore would restore the image first and add the newest data second.
- Another approach is to image the hard drive as frequently as you would the data and then it's a one-step restore.  If you have the clock time and resources for doing this then it may well be preferable.

The span of time between image generation depends on what's going on with the server and its OS.  Perhaps it's OK to allow OS updates to take place that have been done but aren't on the image.  I would think this carries a level of risk.
Application installs would fit in this same category.  So, really, only you can decide what's a best interval.  
Perhaps others have experience with the sort of system you have and in doing this.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
If you have a similar server with similar hardware where you can perform restore to then it is the best way to test it.
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Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
I agree with the idea that a "similar server with similar hardware" may be a good vehicle.
Your concern should be:
"Are the machine drivers for the motherboard, etc. the same?"  If not then you may not be able to readily test or you may be forced to perturb the test somewhat.
Did the failure occur because of the process or did the failure occur because of dissimilarity?
If you "fix" the dissimilarity to complete the test, what did you actually prove?

But, if it works then the confidence level would be high.
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GorapsI.T. ManagerAuthor Commented:
@Fred: What do you mean by:  If it's RAID then you'll have to deal with that and will need to be well prepared for the evolution.
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Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
Goraps:  Simply that if it's RAID then introducing a new hard drive can be a little different than just bolting in a new single hard drive.  It may be nothing more than starting with (say) 3 blank hard drives and restoring the image.  In that case, it may not be any different at all.  But I'd rather warn you than assume.  I'm not an expert in doing this on a RAID machine but I've certainly done it with both good and disastrous results (well, one time).
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GorapsI.T. ManagerAuthor Commented:
Yes.. If its a Raid 1 mirror and I remove both drives I basically put myself in a real life crash situation, as the data is now lost - and better hope that the bare metal restore works.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Then go on.
Note, compared to third party backp tools Windows Server Backup is not the most flexible and useful tool, because it wont restore to smaller drives, it would fail after restore over dissimilar hardware and it ps backup retention is not as clear as from other backup tools such as Paragon, Symantec, Acronis or Shadow Protect.
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Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
Well, the RAID 1 is essentially a bare metal backup of sorts.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
I wouldn't name it bare metal, it is failover solution. As we know RAID controllers die as well. So real backup is the only bare metal solution.
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Fred MarshallPrincipalCommented:
noxcho:  you are correct.  That's why I said "of sorts" - as it's the hard drives that fail more frequently.  
A pure bare metal solution may not work if the motherboard dies ( and it may with some effort).  Same sort of thing.
In some cases I've set up a "metal" backup that includes an entire proven computer.
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