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Backup Exec 2010 R3 & SQL Server Q

Created: 09 Jul 2011 | 5 comments

New to Symantec Backup Exec, have to do a fresh install tomorrow.  Looks like I have a couple of options for the database backend... what do you think about the following:

1. Use the SQL Server Express 2005 instance (installed automatically). My only concern with this is database size and the fact that I can't use SQL server agent (can you think of any downsides to this?) 

2.  Install SQL Server Express 2008 R2.   Just grab the latest version, create a Backup Exec instance, and tell the installer to refer to this instance. 

3.  Install SQL Server Standard 2008 R2.  Larger database size, SQL agent (maintenance plans, scheduled tasks, etc.)...

Further, knowing almost nothing about Backup Exec, I assume you can (and should) backup the media catalog/database.   Does Backup Exec 2010 R3 server include a license to backup the local SQL instance?  If not, how does one backup this database?  

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AmolB's picture

1) SQL express 2005, the most common & recommended option used while installing BE.

    It can grow upto 4GB, BE database (BEDB) does not grow to that extent so don't worry about

    the size limitation.

2) Manually installing SQL express 2008R2 instance and then selecting the same instance while 

   installing BE will work fine as SQL 2008R2 is supported by BE2010 R3.

3) Hosting BE database on full blown SQL server sounds like an expensive option.

BE does not include any license to backup local SQL instance, however BE runs a database 

maintenance everyday and create a backup of the database (BEDB.bak located at X;\Program File\

Symantec\BackupExec\Data\  You can backup this file along with the catalogs.

pkh's picture

Regardless of the version of SQL that you use for the BEDB, it is recommended that you use a separate instance for the BEDB.  Do not use an existing production instance.

JGillTech's picture

Is there any reason why I would want to do SQL Express 2008 R2 on a Windows Server 2008 R2 server for the BE database?  Is it best practice to allow the installation wizard to place a SQL Server 2005 express instance on the server? 

On a separate, but related note, what information is stored wihin the BE database?  There is no way I will run into a database size issue (4GB limit per db in express)?  Is the express instance installed by the symantec installer configured in such a way that it won't use all available system memory (like I have observed on another MS SQL server)?  I know there is a registry key to prevent this from happening.  Also, does symantec handle db mainteance... indexing, etc... which I would normally do with SQL agent and maintenance plans?  Seems like I should apply KISS here and let the install do its thing. 

Also, while we are on the installation topic.  I read that the service should run as a user with domain admin rights.  Seems excessive... why does it need this?  How are other people handling this?  Just create a user account with domain admin rights with password set to not expire?

Thanks everyone!

pkh's picture

It is recommended that you let the installer install the SQL 2005 Express BEDB.  If you have some good reason to use other SQL versions, then go ahead.

The BEDB keeps information like job definitions, selection lists, job history, device definitions, media set information among others.  By default, there is a daily maintenance task at 4 a.m.  The operation of the BEDB is meant to be transparent to the user.

BE does not use a lot of memory other then when it is doing backups or restores.

The BESA requires domain admin rights because it is need to backup and restore things like AD.  There may be other tasks which requires domain admin rights.

Colin Weaver's picture

A media server configured as a CAS (CASO environment primary server) might need a full SQL BEDB instance (depending on number of MMS servers and number of jobs etc being managed)

If you want to install a 2008 SQL Express instance called BKUPEXEC before you install Backup Exec instaed of using the default 2005 Express instance then you can do and will still be supported.