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Implementing a restore routine

Created: 21 Nov 2008 • Updated: 21 May 2010 | 2 comments

Our company is in the process of purchasing a new backup hardware and software solution.  Part of the software solution will be BE System Recovery for the purpose of restoring a downed critical machine to a cold spare.


We plan to have this on our domain controllers, firewalls, and SQL server (W2k3x32 and x64)


My question is, how best can I come up with a testable recovery scenario?  This would be something we would want to do quarterly or so.  Given that we dont have a test network, how could I restore (from tape or disc) a domain controller without having it's computer name/IP conflict with the live one.


Is this something I could leave the machine offline for, and then just reformat?


All suggestions welcome as I am still trying to come up with ideas.


Thanks for your time.

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AJT's picture

It's best to create a test network, testing disaster recovery on a production network is *not* recommend! 



Testing a disaster recovery plan, in a real world environment is risky at best. I would recommend that this client create a test network. That being said, it is a lot easier to setup a test network when using BESR, because BESR allows someone to "Retarget" an OS to completely different type of machine or to a virtual environment.

This test network could be comprised of workstations, they do not need to be server class machines, which are not being used and networked via a switch. In this environment one could retarget DC’s, Exchange, SQL, member servers, etc.

The other option is to convert the V2i images that BESR creates to either VMDK, or VHD formats, another feature that BESR handles very well. Once the VM’s are created and a virtual server is installed, say for instance, VMWare VMserver, VMware’s free version I might add, one could test the restore of the original machines in a true disaster recovery environment.


Hope this help :)


David F's picture

If cost is prohibiting a test network, consider going virtual on one of your higher ended systems. Create a virtual test network (i.e. host-only) and use BESR to create images of each of your physical machines and restore them to virtual guest OS containers.