Video Screencast Help

Backing up windows 2008 2-node cluster and SQL Server 2008

Created: 01 Oct 2010 | 4 comments

Hi all,

I've been doing some research on how to back up Windows clusters. We have a windows 2008 2-node failover cluster that uses shared storage and quorum disks (NetApp NFS disks). We also run SQL server on this cluster, with the databases and msdtc also stored on shared disks.

I have found documents regarding backing up windows clusters (both native windows backup and netbackup) and sql backups and restores (netbackup) however, i haven't found anything about how to back up an environment such as ours, and restore as is, either to another cluster or to another separate single server.

I have set up the following:

back up the system drive and system state using the native windows backup facility (to enable BMR and cluster restoration) on each node
back up the system drive using netbackup on each node
back up the shared storage drives using netbackup using the windows cluster name (as this sees the disks on the active node)
back up SQL using netbackup using the sql cluster name (as this sees the database on the active node)

i have tried to cover all angles regarding backups, however I am at a loss as to how to restore this all and whether this backup plan is actually entirely correct.

is anyone running the same environment as this? and how have you arranged your backups? is your backup plan more simple than this, and is your restore plan straightforward?

any help would be appreciated.



Comments 4 CommentsJump to latest comment

Marianne's picture

That is exactly how we are backing up our clusters. For some or reason this is not very well documented...

Restores are normally treated as Alternate Client or 'Redirected' restores. If you are using the SQL agent, this process is documented in the SQL agent guide. Source client will be virtual name, destination client will be physical host name. It works well if the steps in the manual are followed.

Filesystem restores are straight forward. Backups of shared data using virtual name can be restored to physical name or to virtual name if the cluster is up and running.

Supporting Storage Foundation and VCS on Unix and Windows as well as NetBackup on Unix and Windows
Handy NBU Links

J.H Is gone's picture

I don't do sql agent backups but,

As my C drive, system state and shadow copy components are backed up via the physical server name,  If I need a restore for the C drive I choose the physical name for both source and destination.

As for backup from the resources, they are backed up via the  virtual name, and I use the virtual name for both the source and destination.  As it is going back the resource and I want to make sure it gets it.  Most restores are items on the resource any way.

Not sure if that makes a difference when restoring via sql agent.

I don't have to know how to spell....I work on Unix.
NetBackup 7.0.1 - AIX & Windows

Andoni's picture

Hi Marianne,

Thanks for the information. I am successfully backing up the Windows Server Backup and this backs up the system state, BMR information, and C drive. Is there any point in using Symantec NetBackup to back up the same items?

I am also backing up the SQL cluster disks E F and G as well as the SQL databases using SQL backup. Are there any restoration documents on this?

Do you have a restoration document or DR document for your cluster or any information that could help me write ours?

Sorry to be a pain


Riaan.Badenhorst's picture


Using NetBackup to backup C and System state means that you can use NetBackup i.e only one application to restore the complete environment (cluster). And you dont have to worry about who or what application did what, backed up what, stored it where etc, etc.

Configure BMR in NetBackup to protect the cluster nodes and keep with the process of backing up SQL as you stated using the agent.

Restore information is in the guide


Riaan Badenhorst

ITs easy :)