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Backup Recommendations Required

Created: 29 Aug 2013 • Updated: 04 Oct 2013 | 3 comments
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Hi there, I'm a total rookie and conifugring and setting up backups and backup configurations and I'm looking for some help. Oh i should mention we curently have Backup Exec 2012.

Is there anything or anyone out there that can give recommedations based on what pr company currently uses in reagrds to servers we have (Exchange, AD's, SQL, etc), the amount of space we currently use, users etc?

I guess what I'm looking for is a solution to tell me what I need to be doing and what steps I need to take to make sure I am looking after everything.

Also to recommend that I use tape or disk or cloud, that I need 2, 4, or 8 TB of space based on my current files being backed up.

I there anything or anyone out there that offers this?

Thanks to everyone that reads this as well,


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CraigV's picture


You need to audit your environment as follows:

1. Do you have a server to act as a media server? Yes/No?

2. How many servers do you need to backup? How many of these servers have applications like Exchange or SQL? Post back with the numbers...this will determine what type of agents you need.

3. Do you know how much data will be backed up? You can calculate this yourself...

4. Do you want to run a GFS (Grandfather, Father, SOn) policy? Ie. Daily, Weekly, MOnthly. How long do you want to keep each backup for? This will determine your retention times and determine the amount of disk space/tapes required.

5. What operating systems do you have?

Where you backup to is your choice really...each has their own benefits. Get back with the information above and this can be taken further.


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Fisgard_Sonny's picture

Hi CraigV, thanks for your reply. I'll answer your questions as much as possible.

1. Sort of. We do not have one server (yet) dedictaed specifically for media. We do have a file server but it also runs a number of other bits and is not just dedicated to media only. 

2. We have 6 severs to backup. 1-SQL, 1-EXCHANGE, File Server, 1-DC and 1-DC Backup. We also have one that is dedicated to our VOIP phone system. Currently we have agents for all but the VOIP server.

3. This is the tricky part for me. Our exchange backups now are running on one off runs through Windows Server backup and those seem to come out at about 655GB per run. Now these are just doing full backups and over writing the last. Our SQL backups are running at approx 20gb on a daily schedule. Then the filer server fulls are at about 300GB. Then the other bits and peices AD's are running i think at 16gb.

4. I wish i new what a GFS policy was. On a schedule basis its daily for some weekly for some others. And the amount of time to keep backups is a great question. This is something I'm looking to find recommendations on. 

5. We run Windows Server 2008 Standard for all the servers. SQL 2008 (upgrade later this year to 2012), and Exchange 2007.

Where im backing up to is also in question as I'd like to put something in place that can look after all the backups. Currently I've been handcuffed into using external drives, old shared drives on old machines, local drives, etc. Not a very easy senario to work with.

Thank you again for your help.


CraigV's picture

1. The file server would work perfectly as a media server. Actually any server. I've used media servers on servers running Exchange/DC/file and print (all-in-one) and dedicated servers (ProLiant DL165 G5 - Virtual Center servers) and didn't have any performance issues as the backups ran from 6PM each night. So it is doable on this server.

2. If the VOIP server doesn't have an application like SQL etc, you can get the Remote Agent for Windows Servers to back it up.

3. You need to consider how long you want to hold your data for. We used tapes on the sites I looked after as we could retain data for longer. Some sites were backing up 650GB per night (Exchange, DC, file and print, SQL) and an LTO4 tape worked well. You need to do the math to see what is best for you. Disk is cheap, but you'd need a lot of it if you're backing up almost 1TB of data each night and you want to retain it for long.


5. aware that Windows 2012 is ONLY supported as a RAWS installation by BE can't run BE on it as a media server yet.


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