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Basic Question About Organizational Architecture For Backups


Just Checking

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Just Checking

I am looking for suggestions, general concepts, previous experiences, and approaches to this that I can evaluate and implement for my needs.

 

I started to write this whole treatise on this but almost noone would read it and I need Ideas.

 

My network consists of the following:

I have a server with 4 - 3TB HDD's set up in 2 -  raid 1 mirror arrays (OS Drives are seperate).  I have 1 - 4TB external HDD, and 1 or 2 - 3TB external HDD's connected through USB 3.0 ports.  The OS is Windows 7 with VPN, Remote Access, Remote Turn On/OFF, and Acronis 2013 Backup.

 

I currently have 4 workstations, 2 tablets, and several smartphones that I need to connect into the network.  The workstations have Acronis 2013 Backup Software.

 

I previously did backups by attaching an external HDD to each workstation and doing a manual backup of each to a seperate HDD.  This was time consuming and difficult to implement.   That is why I got the server to do this as automatically as possible.

 

My questions are innumerable but, the key ones now are:

1. What is the best way to set up the raid 1 mirrors and external HDD's to allow for bare metal backups of the workstations?

2. How do I implement automatic backups of the data files on the Tablets ( one is android, one is Apple)?

3. What is the best approach to do backups of the data files on the smartphones?

 

Regarding 1. I thought about partitioning the raid 1 mirror (is this possible) into seperate partitions (2 partitions on each mirrored raid 1 array). This seemed straight forward and something that would not confuse the Acronis software.  It would give plenty of room for multiple previous versions.   A bare metal backup of largest workstation would be less than 250GB. 

 

If I used the Acronis software to do a second backup to the 3TB external HDD, it would allow me to take those drives offsite.  

 

I could use the 4TB external HDD as a shared drive and just put in Folders?  Would partitions work better?

 

Regarding 2. I have no clue - I personally do not use android systems and they seem truely clunky to me.  Maybe Windows 8 works better with it but I have only tried it a few times.  I really need help here.

 

Regarding 3.  Can I do it by Bluetooth?   The workstations have Bluetooth that might sync and communicate with the phones which info could go into the partitions of the workstation owners?   Again, I have no basis for this just a shot in the dark.   I could use help here too.

 

Any help on this would be appreciated.

 

 

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jmwills

Why aren't you using WHS 2011?  Everything you wanted to do, WHS can do.

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Agree. for $50 WHS 2011 will satisfy your backup needs. Just back up the phones and tablets to a workstation and let WHS backup the workstation and you are good to go.

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I am looking for suggestions, general concepts, previous experiences, and approaches to this that I can evaluate and implement for my needs.

 

I started to write this whole treatise on this but almost noone would read it and I need Ideas.

 

My network consists of the following:

I have a server with 4 - 3TB HDD's set up in 2 -  raid 1 mirror arrays (OS Drives are seperate).  I have 1 - 4TB external HDD, and 1 or 2 - 3TB external HDD's connected through USB 3.0 ports.  The OS is Windows 7 with VPN, Remote Access, Remote Turn On/OFF, and Acronis 2013 Backup.

 

I currently have 4 workstations, 2 tablets, and several smartphones that I need to connect into the network.  The workstations have Acronis 2013 Backup Software.

 

I previously did backups by attaching an external HDD to each workstation and doing a manual backup of each to a seperate HDD.  This was time consuming and difficult to implement.   That is why I got the server to do this as automatically as possible.

 

My questions are innumerable but, the key ones now are:

1. What is the best way to set up the raid 1 mirrors and external HDD's to allow for bare metal backups of the workstations?

2. How do I implement automatic backups of the data files on the Tablets ( one is android, one is Apple)?

3. What is the best approach to do backups of the data files on the smartphones?

 

Regarding 1. I thought about partitioning the raid 1 mirror (is this possible) into seperate partitions (2 partitions on each mirrored raid 1 array). This seemed straight forward and something that would not confuse the Acronis software.  It would give plenty of room for multiple previous versions.   A bare metal backup of largest workstation would be less than 250GB. 

 

If I used the Acronis software to do a second backup to the 3TB external HDD, it would allow me to take those drives offsite.  

 

I could use the 4TB external HDD as a shared drive and just put in Folders?  Would partitions work better?

 

Regarding 2. I have no clue - I personally do not use android systems and they seem truely clunky to me.  Maybe Windows 8 works better with it but I have only tried it a few times.  I really need help here.

 

Regarding 3.  Can I do it by Bluetooth?   The workstations have Bluetooth that might sync and communicate with the phones which info could go into the partitions of the workstation owners?   Again, I have no basis for this just a shot in the dark.   I could use help here too.

 

Any help on this would be appreciated.

 

1.  First off I agree with the others, for what you are describing WHS is almost the only way to go and back up the server to an internal or external drive.  The WHS backup would handle the bare metal backup

2.  Tablet should not need backup unless you have not configured your cloud access.  IOS, Android and W8 all have ways to backup to the could.  That is a much better approach.

3.  Same answer as #2.

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Just Checking

Ok, I hear you.  I do have a copy of WHS 2011 that I can install.

 

I just spent a very significant amount of time setting up this server with Windows7 OS and a bunch of Software.   I also invested a lot of time to figure out how to do the backups, and other stuff through Windows 7.  I am fairly comfortable with Windows7 and there is a LOT of detailed information and support available and really good stuff available for Windows7.   I find new software all the time (for free) that allows me to do most anything I desire.   I never used WHS 2011 and I have misgivings about starting over from scratch with another OS.  If people in this forum would tell me that I can do everything with WHS2011 that I can do with Windows7 Pro 64-bit, I would switch over.

 

I spent quite a bit of effort, time, and money to get hardware that works in the server, talks to other components, and that Windows7 recognizes and likes.   I have 16Gb of expensive Kingston Server Memory  that the N54L recognizes and utilizes with no problems (After trying 3 other kinds of memory sticks that wouldn't even allow the server to post).  WHS 2011 will only recognize 8GB of RAM where Windows 7 recognizes all 16GB.  WHS 2011 would like to have more than a 160GB drive for the OS.  My 120GB SSD comfortably houses the Windows7 OS and all the peripheral programs without problems.  

 

Other than some recent unforeseen hardware issues, the network is ready to go now.  I would prefer to implement with what I have rather than start over.   Yes, I realize that switching to WHS 2011 now would be easier and less painful than at a later date.  From the, admittedly, small amount of information I have gathered, I believe that, if I was going to switch to a server OS, it should be to Server 2012 standard instead of WHS 2011.

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jmwills

You nailed your issue in a nutshell:

 

I just spent a very significant amount of time setting up this server with Windows7 OS

 

WHS 2011 can be up and running in about two hours.  Can Win7 perform a bare metal restore?  Server 2012 cannot perform bare metal backup of the clients.

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I agree about WHS2011. And jmwills is correct, Server 2012 does not have the Client Computer Backup that WHS2011 has.

 

There are some options you have. For example, if data is your real concern, you can use automatic scripting to copy data from your client computers to shared folders on your Win7 'server'. In fact, this is almost what I do, except that I do use WHS2011 in order to have Bare Metal Restore capability for my client computers. However, my data is backed up using Task Scheduler to run CMD files that contain RoboCopy commands.

 

I've posted the following links elsewhere in the forums, but to save you time I'll post them here:

 

PHOTOS

http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/1899-whs-2011-storage-strategy/page__st__140#entry47628

 

BACKUP STRATEGY
http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/4788-what-i-hope-to-acheive-with-your-help/page__p__51373#entry51373

 

BACKUP SCRIPTS
http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/5197-robocopy-backup-scripts/

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I can appreciate the time you invested as it was actually more painful setting what you have, and we are certainly not suggesting you scrap your hardware.  On the contrary, if you plan it out right you can just install a fresh OS.  I really think you will be happy with the backup scenario and if you want real time on top of the backup you can use a variety of utilities such as acronis which you already own, and configure it to monitor your folders and immediately make a copy in a real time basis.  Other programs such as AllwaySync, or Crashplan will also do that and all three have an online backup feature so you can real time to the cloud.  Here is what I would do,

 

1. Make sure all my data (files, backup sets, etc.) are moved off the system drive.

2. Plug in a fresh system drive and install WHS 2011

3. Configure WHS with the folder shares and users.

4. Move your data to these new shares.

5. Install the client on all you machines

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