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Question regarding backup best practices RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi,  

    I am looking for some best practices to backup / Restore a full blown Application Server (web / exchange / sharepoint / ...) using DPM 2010. 

    For example:  
    There is only one Win 2008 R2 Exchange Server (don't care Virtual or physical) 

    C:\ ==> windows 
    D:\ ==> Exchange / other program files 

    E:\ ==> Exchange DATA Files  
    L:\ ==> Exchange Log Files 


    The server is totally broken. The server blue screens all the time.  
    The purpose is to be as quick as possible back up and running. 

    What should I back up to have an efficient use of backup disks?  

    System state?  
    Full C, D, E, L disk? 
    Bare Metal? 
    Exchange database using DPM exchange application protection?  

    If I need to restore what do I have to do? 

    Install new Operating system on the server (don't care virtual of physical) ? 
    Restore all drives and my disk comes back?  
    Restore System State? 


    How to backup your Virtual Machine? Questions (Ex: Exchange 2010) 
    What is de difference between a bare metal backup and a virtual machine backup? 

    My questions above are may be a beginning to start a discussion about backup / restore procedures. 

    Thanks in advance. 

    GRTZ 

    Arne 
    Friday, January 21, 2011 3:51 PM

Answers

  • Hi Arne,

    Long time no see :-)

    First, a bit of advertising... Make sure you come to my session on MMS and you will get the full blown deal over there :-)

    Second, to complete the list a bit more:

    Exchange 

    OS ==> BMR or VM guest entirely

    Application program files ==> D:\     (This because BMR backup only backups Critical drives and my application drive is not considered to be critical by DPM)

    Exchange Data ==> The different exchange storage groups

     But BuchaTech recommends to also backup the drives where the exchange Data and Exchange logs are located.

    I agree with BuchaTech.  Reason: --> You would have a starting exchange, even before you have recovered the latest exchange data, giving you an online restore and a possible failback when the exchange data protection went wrong (whatever reason)

    Hyper-v

    OS: Do you backup the os of every hyper-v server in the cluster? or only from 2 servers in the hyper-v cluster?

    It is possible to do a BMR of a hyper-v host server.  But why?  If you have a good documentated server, it might be quicker to rebuild a clean hyper-v cluster and then start restoring.  If that's not an option, then yes, take BMR's of all hosts.  Reason: each host will have different IP's etc...

    Application: ==> Dependant.  Is there an application installed on the host server?  (not advised ofcourse). 

     

    Web-Servers

    OS ==> BMR or System State.  BMR is easy to recover the entire server (don't forget the additional drives if applicable) but a system state + IIS customizations are also enough to recover an entire web server

     

    SQL - Server

     Again, what is the idea here?  Are you going to rebuild the server first and then recover data, or do you want to recover it with BMR or VM restore.  In that case, rebuild the server (BMR / manual / VM restore) and then restore the latest SQL backup data

    Sharepoint

    A bit different here... Here it depends on what kind of farm you have, do you work with separate front-ends, customizations, load balancers...

    Start shooting.... completing the list

    Just my short 2 cents

    Mike


    Visit System Center User Group Belgium @ http://scug.be and http://scug.be/blogs/scdpm
    Tuesday, January 25, 2011 8:54 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Hi Apelem,

    What should I back up to have an efficient use of backup disks?  

    To answer your scenario I would do a bare metal backup and then protect the Exchange data both the drives and natively with DPM. You would be able to restore mailboxes if you need to or the entire server if it dies. You would restore the bare metal and then restore your data back to the appropriate locations. BMR will bring back the OS and your applications. Note that when you are doing BMR protection through DPM System state is automatically added as a part of the BMR protection.

     

     

    What is de difference between a bare metal backup and a virtual machine backup? 

    Virtual Machine backup is essentially backing up the entire VHD of that VM. You can take that and turn it up on another Hyper-V host and your server will be up and going. Bare Metal Recovery is like taking an image of your server. You use Bare Metal Recovery to recovery a full server the OS and everything. You also can restore to dissimilar hardware with Bare Metal Recovery.  The main difference is with VM backup you can move the VHD and settings around on different physical hardware BMR is like imaging a server and restoring that image back onto physical hardware.

     

    In regards to backup best practices every server will be slightly different in what you actually need to backup. SharePoint, Exchange, web servers and Hyper-V all differ in what should be backed up to have a successful restore. In my opinion it is a best practice to determine what the critical applications in your environment are and then research those applications to learn what components of these applications should be backed up.

     

    Thanks for starting this topic. I think this is a good discussion to have.

     

    Saturday, January 22, 2011 1:17 AM
    Moderator
  • Some Remarks, questions, start of a list.

    quote: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff634208.aspx

    DPM does not calculate the size of BMR data source, but assumes 30 GB for all servers. Admins should change the value as per the size of BMR backups expected on their environments.
    
    Size of BMR backup can be roughly calculated sum of used space on all critical volumes. 
    
    Critical volumes = Boot Volume + System Volume + Volume hosting system state data such as AD DIT/log volumes.

    ==> This means that DPM Will not backup my program files on the D:\

     

    Lets build a master List.

    Exchange 

    OS ==> MBR

    Application program files ==> D:\     (This because MBR backup only backups Critical drives and my application drive is not considered to be critical by DPM)

    Exchange Data ==> The different exchange storage groups

     

    But BuchaTech recommends to also backup the drives where the exchange Data and Exchange logs are located. ==> Why ?

    The way I proposed to backup does not backup data twice. Or am I missing something?

     

    Hyper-v

    OS: Do you backup the os of every hyper-v server in the cluster? or only from 2 servers in the hyper-v cluster?

    Application: ==> ???

     

    Web-Servers

    OS ==> MBR

     

    SQL - Server

     

    Sharepoint

     

    Start shooting.... completing the list

    Monday, January 24, 2011 11:51 AM
  • Hi Arne,

    Long time no see :-)

    First, a bit of advertising... Make sure you come to my session on MMS and you will get the full blown deal over there :-)

    Second, to complete the list a bit more:

    Exchange 

    OS ==> BMR or VM guest entirely

    Application program files ==> D:\     (This because BMR backup only backups Critical drives and my application drive is not considered to be critical by DPM)

    Exchange Data ==> The different exchange storage groups

     But BuchaTech recommends to also backup the drives where the exchange Data and Exchange logs are located.

    I agree with BuchaTech.  Reason: --> You would have a starting exchange, even before you have recovered the latest exchange data, giving you an online restore and a possible failback when the exchange data protection went wrong (whatever reason)

    Hyper-v

    OS: Do you backup the os of every hyper-v server in the cluster? or only from 2 servers in the hyper-v cluster?

    It is possible to do a BMR of a hyper-v host server.  But why?  If you have a good documentated server, it might be quicker to rebuild a clean hyper-v cluster and then start restoring.  If that's not an option, then yes, take BMR's of all hosts.  Reason: each host will have different IP's etc...

    Application: ==> Dependant.  Is there an application installed on the host server?  (not advised ofcourse). 

     

    Web-Servers

    OS ==> BMR or System State.  BMR is easy to recover the entire server (don't forget the additional drives if applicable) but a system state + IIS customizations are also enough to recover an entire web server

     

    SQL - Server

     Again, what is the idea here?  Are you going to rebuild the server first and then recover data, or do you want to recover it with BMR or VM restore.  In that case, rebuild the server (BMR / manual / VM restore) and then restore the latest SQL backup data

    Sharepoint

    A bit different here... Here it depends on what kind of farm you have, do you work with separate front-ends, customizations, load balancers...

    Start shooting.... completing the list

    Just my short 2 cents

    Mike


    Visit System Center User Group Belgium @ http://scug.be and http://scug.be/blogs/scdpm
    Tuesday, January 25, 2011 8:54 AM
    Moderator