How to: Direct upgrade path from Backup Exec 11d or 12.0 for Windows Servers to Backup Exec 12.5.

Article:TECH69285  |  Created: 2009-01-31  |  Updated: 2014-05-12  |  Article URL
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Technical Solution




How to upgrade from Backup Exec 11d or 12.0 for Windows Servers to Backup Exec 12.5.


Backup Exec for Windows Servers versions 11d and 12.0 can be directly upgraded to version 12.5.  A fresh installation of Backup Exec 12.5 can also be performed, if it is not necessary to retain the existing version's configuration information.

Please Note:  Before either performing a direct upgrade or fresh install of Backup Exec 12.5, the following is strongly recommended:

1. Run a full backup of the local media server.

2. Reboot the machine to confirm all Windows and other third party patches or updates have completed.

3. Make sure all the latest firmware and driver updates have been applied to the machine's hardware (i.e.:  SCSI/Raid, Network Card(s), Motherboard, Video Card, etc...).  Updates for machines that are proprietary models (not a custom built clone) should be obtained from the hardware manufacturer.  For example, if the media server is an HP Model, all the latest SofPaqs and RomPaqs for that machine should be applied.

4. Review the Backup Exec for Windows Servers 12.5 SCL (Software Compatibility List) and HCL (Hardware Compatibility List) to confirm the applications and tape hardware being used with version 11d or 12.0 are also compatible with version 12.5.

Symantec Backup Exec for Windows Servers 12.5 Software Compatibility List (SCL)
Symantec Backup Exec for Windows Servers (tm) 12.5 Hardware Compatibility List (HCL)

5. Document the existing serial numbers (Product Activation Keys) from the existing version.  These keys are located in a file named besernum.xml at the root of the C:\Windows or C:\Winnt directory.

6. Stop the SQL Service (MSSQL$BKUPExec or BKUPEXEC) that Backup Exec uses.  Copy the catalogs and data folders from the X:\Program Files\Symantec\Backup Exec directory to an alternate, safe location.  

7. Confirm there is a valid System Account at Network > Logon Accounts in the Backup Exec User Interface (Figure 1).  Logon to the media server as this account.  Make sure the Backup Exec Services are also running under this account (except for the Remote Agent which logs on as Local System) in the Windows Services Applet.

Figure 1

Note: If the services are running under a different account and/or if the System Account/credentials are no longer valid, perform the steps in the following document:

How to resynchronize the Backup Exec for Windows Servers System Logon/Service account and installation to potentially resolve functional issues with the application


When not to upgrade, when to upgrade, and how to perform a direct upgrade:

I. When not to upgrade

In stand-alone instances of Backup Exec, when there are a limited number of jobs, selection lists, policies, media sets, etc... , there may not be a benefit to performing an upgrade.  

If it is not necessary to retain the settings from the existing version, then a fresh installation of Backup Exec 12.5 can be performed.  Uninstall the existing version, reboot, and then run the Backup Exec 12.5 installation.  After the installation completes, the catalogs from the previous installation can be copied into the new catalogs directory to retain the previous restore selections, so the previous backup media do not have to be cataloged.  For more information on this, review the following document:

How to import Catalogs into a Backup Exec 12.x for Windows Servers installation

II. When to upgrade

When there are a large number of selection lists, jobs, policies, media sets, etc... that would take a considerable amount of time to recreate, it may be desirable to perform an upgrade to retain this information.  

It also may be necessary to upgrade a CASO (Central Administrator Server Option) or SSO (San Shared Storage Option) Primary Machine, so that all the managed media servers can still properly communicate with the main media server once it is running version 12.5.  These managed machines will need to be upgraded too, once the CASO or SSO Primary machine is at version 12.5.  For more information, review the "Upgrading a CASO Environment" Section in the following document:

Managing Backup Exec <CASO> (Central Administration Server Option) in a Large Scale Environment

III.  How to perform a direct upgrade


1. If it is not readily available, download the Backup Exec 12.5 Installation Software.


2. In the Backup Exec Graphical User Interface (GUI), cleanup all unnecessary data
(delete any jobs, selection lists, policies, media sets, job histories, catalogs, alerts, logon accounts, etc... which will not be used and are obsolete).


3. Make sure no jobs are scheduled to run and stop all the Backup Exec Services on any other media servers that are being managed by this media server.


4. Launch BEUtility and perform the steps in the following Technote:

How to run a extensive database repair and cleanup of the Backup Exec database when it is found to be inconsistent
Please note:  There may not be any inconsistencies at all in the database.  Performing the steps in the Technote above is the best way to confirm this and to optimize the database.  If all of the tasks in this document complete successfully and without errors, proceed with the upgrade.  If there are any failures, contact Symantec Technical Support for further assistance.

5. Make sure no other third party applications, such as a realtime virus scanner, are enabled or running (stop all third party, non-Windows Services if necessary), then launch the Backup Exec 12.5 Installation.  Select the same options for the installation that are listed in the besernum.xml file and for which licensing (Product Activation Keys for version 12.5) is available.  Continue to click Next and accept the defaults until the installation completes.  Run LiveUpdate to install all patches/updates when prompted. Reboot.

6. Review the following documents from the Backup Exec 12.5 Admin Guide:

Upgrading Backup Exec options on remote computers

Post-installation tasks




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