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Backup Exec Backup server image, including truecrypt drive

Created: 21 Aug 2013 • Updated: 22 Aug 2013 | 11 comments

I need to backup the whole image, somehow, I wish to backup C:,G:,EFI partition, system state

E:(NTFS) is when the truecrypt is unmounted,

G:(NTFS) is when the truecrypt is mounted and unencrypted

I am still unable to get the .DR file out, even if I get the .DR file and restore, do I get the image that I want?

EDIT: Using SSR, still unable to backup

Operating Systems:

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lmosla's picture

Hello newsym_user,

I am not sure what you are asking.  Backup Exec does file level (volume) backups and restores.  For a image (block) level back up you would want to use something like Symantec System Recovery. http://www.symantec.com/system-recovery-server-edi...    and see the discussion in this post http://www.symantec.com/connect/forums/image-level-backup-physical-server-windows-linux-backup-exec-2012-netbackup-75

newsym_user's picture

so using the disaster recovery disk in symantec backup exec only does file level backups?

again disaster recovery for just file backups are unacceptable for most definitions of DR

newsym_user's picture

would like to ask whether symantec ghost solution suite can also do a image backup and restore

Colin Weaver's picture

If you don't own Ghost already then I believe that Symantec System Recovery is likely to be the better option.

RLeon's picture

Backup Exec does not go below file level operations, period. (Note: It does support higher application level backups...)

That automatically implies that, to backup a file, Backup Exec would have to "understand" its underlying file system, such as NTFS or FAT32. If it is not a supported file system, then Backup Exec would not be able to backup its files.
Also, the partition has to be mounted to a drive letter for Backup Exec to even pick up.

The other thing implied, is that Backup Exec cannot do "sector-by-sector" backups. Some people refer to this as "image backup", but the term "image" has many definitions in the storage world, so I will stick with "sector-by-sector" backup to describe what you want to do.

Since what you are trying to do is to backup partitions that:
- Probably do not contain a Backup Exec supported file system (Example: Some vendor recovery partitions)
- Probably are not mounted to drive letters. (Example: The EFI System Partition/ESP, truecrypt encrypted partitions)
- Probably contain encrypted data, so that even if a partition is mounted to a drive letter, Backup Exec couldn't even "see" the file system inside, and even if it is actually a supported file system.

... you will need to backup the disk or partitions in sector-by-sector mode, which Backup Exec does not support.

Interestingly, Symantec System Recovery also does not support this sector-by-sector backup feature, not even in SSR 2013:
https://www.symantec.com/connect/forums/ssr-and-ra...
https://www.symantec.com/connect/forums/ssr-2013-s...

Symantec Ghost (7.5 or later) does support sector-by-sector backups. Refer to Method 2 in this technote on how to backup encrypted data:
http://www.symantec.com/docs/TECH105685

However, as we know, the Symantec Ghost Solution Suite has not seen an update for a long time. Even the "home" version Norton Ghost is gone now. So it would seem SSR is Symantec's current answer:
https://www.symantec.com/connect/forums/when-will-...

newsym_user's picture

Replying to the comment that Symantec Backup Exec only provides file backups

If I have a NTFS C: and D: , that are partitioned using disk management(no truecrypt involved), and I install some programs on C: and D:, then I use Symantec Backup Exec to create a backup and a .dr file

When I restore to the same computer using the dr file, do I have to reinstall my programs, or my programs will work perfectly?

Can I restore to a different computer with the same model and same harddisk? Will the programs that was previously installed work properly after restore?

newsym_user's picture

Hi All,

This is the error I got in SSR:

Error EC8F17B7 Cannot create recovery points for job :Backup of xx.xxx.xxx.xxx Error E4F3000E:Snapshot failure while using Volume Shadow Copy Service, Check Application event log for VSS errors:

Error code:VSS_E_PROVIDER_VETO

lmosla's picture

Does the backup complete?  This error can be generated after a backup under the following conditions and can be resolved after correcting the issues:

  • A drive (partition) on the system is not formatted with NTFS.
  • A drive (partition) on the system is formatted with NTFS but has at least 100MB of free space for each drive (partition) being backed up.
  • Too much disk activity when the backup started and the Windows Snapshot Provider could not reliably determine a cutoff point for snapshot creation

also see SSR 2013: General VSS errors and workarounds

Microsoft has put out a hotfix to fix this VSS issue please take a look at their explanation and determine if you want to open a case with them to get this fixed : http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2582068

newsym_user's picture
  • A drive (partition) on the system is not formatted with NTFS.

It is formatted with NTFS.

  • A drive (partition) on the system is formatted with NTFS but has at least 100MB of free space for each drive (partition) being backed up.

It definitely has enough space

  • Too much disk activity when the backup started and the Windows Snapshot Provider could not reliably determine a cutoff point for snapshot creation

Do  not think is that issue

Basically  I have a E: truecrypt partition before mounting and after mounting I have a G: truecrypt partition(unencrypted), which I went to install some programs on G:

Has anyone successfully backup before a truecrypt drive(not system drive)using SSR2013?

I just want to create a image as a whole so that I can restore the computer based on the image file, and do not need to reinstall again

pkh's picture

You should be asking this question on the SSR forum.

RLeon's picture

When I restore to the same computer using the dr file, do I have to reinstall my programs, or my programs will work perfectly?

If your SDR backup completed successfully (which should generate a DR file), then yes, you can bare-metal-restore to an empty harddrive that doesn't even have to contain partitions or an OS.
The restore would put the OS and all your files/programs back to the state they were in at the time they were backed up.
That's the whole point of the Backup Exec SDR feature. It can do this while being completely file based; as opposed to blocks, sectors or "image" based.

Can I restore to a different computer with the same model and same harddisk? Will the programs that was previously installed work properly after restore?

Yes and yes.
Backup Exec's SDR feature would even allow you to restore to dissimilar hardware. (That generally means different harddrive and network adapter models.)

There is one exception to getting the "programs" to work after an SDR restore. If they are applications that are supposed to be backed up by BE application agents, such as MS SQL, Exchange, Sharepoint, etc., then you will still have to restore them after the SDR restore.
I.e., First do SDR restore to bring OS back, then perform application restores.

If your "programs" are not the ones mentioned above, then there is no need to do the second step (application level restore). You wouldn't be able to anyway, if BE does not even have application agents for them.

Please refer to the SDR (Simplified Disaster Recovery) sections in the BE2012 admin guide for more details.

If you feel your original query has been answered, please create new threads for your new queries on BE SDR usage, application level restores, and SSR troubleshooting.

Side note: If you re-read my first reply, you will see that SSR (even version 2013) does not support sector-by-sector backup mode. (Ghost supports it, strangely.)

Even if you managed to fix your SSR errors, your backups will not include the following partitions (I.e., they will not be protected):
1. Vendor hidden partitions that which the file system cannot be recognized
2. UEFI Microsoft MSR partitions
3. Partitions with unsupported file systems.
4. Truecrypt encrypted partitions (They appear to Windows as "Unallocated", that's probably why SSR skips them)