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Backing Up and Restoring Data for Windows Server 2003

Published: August 28, 2004

On This Page

Introduction
Before You Begin
Before You Begin Using Shadow Copies of Shared Folders
Backing Up Your Servers
Enabling Shadow Copies of Shared Folders on a File Server
Restoring Data from Backup
Restoring Previous Versions of Files and Folders
Related Information

Introduction

This document will explain how to protect your servers from losing data using Backup.

Backup helps to protect data from accidental loss if your server's hardware or storage media fails. If the original data on your hard disk is accidentally erased or overwritten, or becomes inaccessible because of a hard disk malfunction, you can easily restore the data from the archived copy.

The tasks that are covered in this document are:

  • Creating an Automated System Recovery (ASR) set. The estimated time to complete this task is 15 minutes or longer.

  • Backing up your file and print servers. The estimated time to complete this task is 10 minutes. It will take longer if you have a large amount of data you are backing up.

  • Restoring files from Backup. The estimated time to complete this task is 5 minutes.

  • Restoring your computer using an ASR set. The estimated time to complete this task is 5 minutes.

When the tasks listed above are performed, your server is better protected from accidental data loss or hardware malfunction.

IMPORTANT: All the step-by-step instructions included in this document were developed by using the Start menu that appears by default when you install your operating system. If you have modified your Start menu, the steps might differ slightly.

Before You Begin

The recommendations in this document are only for file and print servers running Microsoft Windows Server 2003. The following sections cover the options that you should consider before creating backups of your servers.

Select a Type of Backup Storage

The backup storage can be a hard disk drive, a separate storage device such as a tape drive, or an entire library of tapes organized and controlled by a robotic changer.

Backing up to a tape is preferable because you can create a backup and store the tape in a different location from the computer. This protects against hard disk failure as well as loss from a fire or other catastrophic event.

If you choose to back up to a hard disk, make sure that it is a hard disk separate from your primary hard disk in case your primary hard disk fails. Backing up to a hard disk drive is convenient, but does not protect against a catastrophic event.

For more information on selecting a type of backup storage, see "Backing up and recovering data" on the Microsoft TechNet Web site at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=22347.

Select a Schedule

It is best to perform backups late at night, on weekends, or whenever the server is not being used. You can back up files that are open or in use; however, Backup may skip over some files that are held open by other processes. It is a good practice to close your applications while Backup is running to minimize the number of files that are not backed up.

You should schedule a weekly normal backup of all of your data, including the system state data for the server. A normal backup will copy all the files you select and mark each file as having been backed up. In addition, we recommend you schedule a weekly differential backup that is run on the days of the week the normal backup is not run. A differential backup copies files that have been created or changed since the last normal backup (the "differences"). It does not mark files as having been backed up so the changed file will also be backed up as part of the next normal backup. If you are performing a combination of normal and differential backups, restoring data requires that you have the last normal as well as the last differential backup. The system state data for the server includes a collection of system-specific data maintained by the operating system that must be backed up as a unit. It is not a backup of the entire system. The system state data includes the registry, COM+ Class Registration database, system files, boot files, and files under Windows File Protection. Also, you should make sure to backup any encryption keys that you have. For information on encryption keys, see the Microsoft Web site at http://technet2.microsoft.com/windowsserver/en/library/2E0186BA-1A09-42B5-81C8-3ECCA4DDDE5E1033.mspx?mfr=true. On the left pane of the Web site, click Security and then click Encrypting File System.

Backup Permissions

Certain permissions and user rights are required to back up files and folders. As part of scheduling backups, you will be asked for information about who is running the backup. If you are a member of the Administrators or Backup Operators group on the local computer, you can back up any file and folder on the local computer to which the local group applies. If you are a member of the Administrators or Backup Operators group on a domain controller, you can only back up data on the domain controller and cannot backup data on other computers in the domain unless the Built-in Administrators group is added to the Domain Admins group or the Built-in Backup Operators group is added to the local Backup Operators group of a computer joining the domain.

If you are not a member of the Backup Operators group for the domain, and you want to back up files, then you must be the owner of the files and folders that you want to back up, or you must have one or more of the following permissions for the files and folders you want to back up: Read, Read & Execute, Modify, or Full Control.

Creating an Automated System Recovery (ASR) Set

In addition to regular backups of your data, you should use Backup to create an Automated System Recovery (ASR) set when you first place your server into production and again before and after any major changes to the system such as software and hardware upgrades. An ASR set contains a backup of your operating system files and a bootable floppy disk that can be used to start your computer if it will not start normally. Before creating an ASR set, make sure that you have a 3.5-inch floppy disk available to make the boot disk. If your server does not have a floppy drive, you can still perform an ASR backup by copying the asr.sif and asrpnp.sif files located in the systemroot\repair directory to another computer with a floppy drive, then copy those files onto a floppy disk. However, before running the ASR restore procedure, you must attach a floppy drive to your server.

Note: In Windows Server 2003, the ASR set replaces the Emergency Repair Disk (ERD) which is available in Windows 2000.

Before You Begin Using Shadow Copies of Shared Folders

Shadow Copies of Shared Folders should be used in conjunction with a regular backup plan on file servers that use shared folders to provide users access to files. Shadow Copies for Shared Folders will allow users to recover their own files without costly intervention from a backup administrator. It is not a replacement for regular backups - shadow copies cannot be used for permanent archives and may be deleted depending on the storage limits and the number of shadow copies that exist on the server.

Default Schedule

When you enable Shadow Copies of Shared Folders, a default schedule is created. If you keep the default settings, shadow copies of the volume will be taken at 7:00 A.M. and noon, Monday through Friday. This schedule might work for your users, but it is important to consider the particular work habits of your users before using this default schedule. You might want to consider the following questions:

  • Do most of your users work from 9 A.M. to 5 P.M., Monday through Friday, in the same time zone?

  • Are users spread out across time zones? Does this mean that you need more copies throughout the day to cover all of the work hours?

  • How much work time can your users afford to lose? Will the default schedule of copies twice a day (7:00 A.M. and noon, Monday through Friday) provide adequate coverage?

  • How often can copies be taken without needing to add additional storage?

  • How many days of history can be retained before reaching the limit of 64 shadow copies?

You might want to create an initial schedule and deploy to a small group to test whether your scheduled shadow copies stay within the storage limits you set. Also, consider polling your users to find out their work habits and when they think that a shadow copy would be beneficial. This kind of information can help you determine the best schedule for your specific users.

Default Storage Settings

You can only enable Shadow Copies of Shared Folders on a per-volume basis; that is, you cannot select specific shared folders and files on a volume to be copied or not copied. By default, the shadow copies will be stored on the volume that is being copied (the source volume). If you have more than one drive available on your server, you should use a separate volume on another disk to store the shadow copies. This eliminates the possibility that high input/output (I/O) load will cause shadow copies to be deleted. This is the recommended configuration for heavily used file servers.

The default storage size is 10 percent of the source volume (the volume being copied). The minimum amount of storage space that you can specify is 100 megabytes (MB). If the shadow copies are stored on a separate volume, change the default to reflect the space available on the storage volume instead of the source volume. Remember that when the storage limit is reached, older versions of the shadow copies will be deleted and cannot be restored.

When determining the amount of space to allocate for storing shadow copies, you must consider both the number and size of files that are being copied, as well as the frequency of changes between copies. For example, 100 files that only change monthly require less storage space than 10 files that change daily.

There is a limit of 64 shadow copies that can be stored on a volume. When this limit is reached, the oldest shadow copy is deleted and cannot be retrieved.

Installing Client Software

In order for client computers to use Shadow Copies of Shared Folders, the Previous Versions client software must be installed on the client computers in your organization. Previous Versions is a new feature that is available for employees who use shared folders for corporate documents. If you work with files that are located in shared folders on your network, you may be able to access previous versions of your files. It is recommended that you download and place the installation package on a shared resource and send an e-mail to users about what the client does and how to install it. See "Sample E-mail" later in this section.

If your organization only has client computers running Windows XP, the Previous Versions client software can be found on a computer running Windows Server 2003 in the following location:

%systemroot%\system32\clients\twclient directory

If your organization has client computers running Windows 2000 and Windows XP, download the installation package (ShadowCopyClient.msi) from the Microsoft Web site at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=22346. In addition, you will need to run the same installation package on Windows Server 2003. This sets a registry setting that allows access to the server from client computers running Windows 2000.

Sample E-mail

Organization members:

There is a new feature called Shadow Copies of Shared Folders that is available for employees who use shared folders for documents. If you work with files that are located in shared folders on your network, you may be able to access previous versions of your files. Accessing previous versions of your files is useful because you can:

  • Recover files that were accidentally deleted. If you accidentally delete a file, you can open a previous version and copy it to a safe location.

  • Recover from accidentally overwriting a file. If you accidentally overwrite a file, you can recover a previous version of the file.

  • Compare versions of files while working. You can use previous versions when you want to check what has changed between two versions of a file.

This feature has been enabled on the following file server: \\NameOfServer\SharedResource. Copies are scheduled to be taken at 7:00 A.M. and noon, Monday through Friday. Remember that these are copies of the files that were taken at these times. If you have worked on the file since the copy was taken and you need to revert or recover a previous version, you will lose all the work you have done since the copy was taken. Saving your work frequently is still the best way to ensure your work is not lost.

To install the software for accessing previous versions on your desktop, go to: \\NameOfServer\InstallationFolder and double-click ShadowCopyClient.msi.

Backing Up Your Servers

The following section describes the step-by-step procedures for:

  • Creating an Automated System Recovery (ASR) set

  • Backing up your file and print servers

Creating an ASR Set

You should use Backup to create an ASR set when you first place your server into production and again before and after any major changes to the system such as software and hardware upgrades. An ASR set is used as a last resort in system recovery, only after you have exhausted other options such as the startup options Safe Mode and Last Known Good Configuration.

Requirements
  • Credentials: To perform this procedure, you must be a member of either the Administrators or Backup Operators group on the local computer, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group will be able to perform this procedure.

  • Tools: Backup. This procedure is only for file and print servers running Microsoft Windows Server 2003

    Note: Screenshots in this document reflect a test environment. The domain and server names in your environment might differ slightly from the ones shown in these screenshots.

To create an ASR set

  1. Click Start, click Run, type ntbackup, and then click OK.

  2. The Backup or Restore Wizard will appear.

    If you are an advanced user, you have the option to change backup and restore settings in Advanced Mode. Otherwise, click Next, to perform this procedure using the wizard.

  3. On the Backup or Restore wizard page, ensure Back up files and settings is selected, and then click Next.

  4. On the What to Back Up page, ensure All information on this computer is selected, and then click Next.

  5. On the Backup Type, Destination, and Name page, in Select the backup type, choose File if you want to back up files and folders to a file, or, if you want to back up files and folders to a tape, choose a tape device. In Choose a place to save your backup, click the drop-down menu or click Browse to choose a location to save your backup. In Type a name for this backup, type a descriptive name for the backup, and then click Next.

    NTback01.gif
  6. On the Completing the Backup or Restore Wizard page, verify that all of the information is correct, and then click Finish to start creating the ASR set. The process of creating the ASR set may take at least 15 minutes.

  7. When the Backup Utility message appears, follow the directions and insert a 1.44 megabyte (MB) floppy disk into drive A, and then click OK. If your server does not have a floppy drive, you can still perform an ASR backup by copying the asr.sif and asrpnp.sif files located in the systemroot\repair directory to another computer with a floppy drive, then copy those files onto a floppy disk. However, before running the ASR restore procedure, you must attach a floppy drive to your server.

  8. When the Backup Utility message appears letting you know you can remove the floppy disk, make sure you label the disk with the information given.

    NTback02_big.gif

  9. When the backup is complete, the Backup Progress dialog box will indicate that the backup is finished. To view additional information about what happened during the backup process, click Report to open the backup report in Notepad. When you are finished, click Close.

    NTback03.gif
  10. After creating the ASR set, label this floppy disk and backup media carefully and keep them together. To use the backup media, you must have the floppy disk that you created with that set of media. You cannot use a floppy disk created at a different time or with a different set of media. You must also have your installation CD available at the time you perform Automated System Recovery.

    Keep the ASR set in a secure location. The ASR set contains information about your system's configuration that could be used to do harm to your system.

Backing Up Your File and Print Servers

To protect your servers, you should schedule regular backups of all of the data. We recommend that you schedule a weekly normal backup of all of your data, including the system state data for the server. A normal backup will copy all the files you select and mark each file as having been backed up. In addition, we recommend you schedule a weekly differential backup. A differential backup copies files that have been created or changed since the last normal backup (the "differences").

Requirements
  • Credentials: To perform this procedure, you must be a member of either the Administrators or Backup Operators group on the local computer, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group will be able to perform this procedure.

  • Tools: Backup.

To schedule a weekly normal backup

  1. Click Start, click Run, type ntbackup, and then click OK.

  2. The Backup or Restore Wizard will appear. Click Next.

  3. On the Backup or Restore wizard page, ensure Back up files and settings is selected, and then click Next.

  4. On the What to Back Up page, click Let me choose what to back up, and then click Next.

    To include all data on your computer in the scheduled backup, click All information on this computer.

  5. On the Items to Back Up page, click the items to expand their contents. Select the check boxes for any drives or folders that contain data that should be backed up on a regular basis, and then click Next.

    NTback04.gif
  6. On the Backup Type, Destination, and Name page, in Choose a place to save your backup, click the drop-down menu or click Browse to choose a location to save your backup. In Type a name for this backup, type a descriptive name for the backup, and then click Next.

    NTback05.gif
  7. On the Completing the Backup or Restore Wizard page, click Advanced.

  8. On the Type of Backup page, in the drop-down menu, click Normal, and then click Next.

    NTback06.gif
  9. On the How to Back Up page, select the Verify data after backup check box, and then click Next.

  10. On the Backup Options page, ensure the Append this backup to the existing backups option is selected, and then click Next.

    NTback07.gif
  11. On the When to Back Up page, under When do you want to run the backup, click Later.

  12. Under Schedule entry, type a descriptive name in Job name, and then click Set Schedule.

    NTback08.gif
  13. In the Schedule Job dialog box, in Schedule Task, click Weekly in the drop-down menu.

  14. In Start time, use the up and down arrows to select the appropriate time for the backup to start. Click Advanced to specify a start date and an end date for the scheduled task or to specify whether the scheduled task runs repeatedly at a particular interval.

  15. Under Schedule Task Weekly, select one or more days when you would like to have a backup created, and then click OK.

    NTback09.gif
  16. In the Set Account Information dialog box, in Run as, type the domain or workgroup and user name of the account that is authorized to perform backup and restore operations. Use the format domain\username or workgroup\username. In Password, type the password for the user account. Retype the password in Confirm password, and then click OK.

    NTback10.gif

    You need to update the password specified in the scheduled task anytime the account's password changes or expires to ensure the backup job runs as scheduled.

  17. On the Completing the Backup or Restore Wizard page, confirm the settings, and then click Finish.

    Notes: We recommend creating a summary backup log which, when regularly reviewed, will help ensure that the backup was successfully completed. To do this, click the Tools menu, and then click Options. On the Backup Log tab, select Summary.
    If it's determined that the backup is not occurring, review the status of the scheduled task for possible reasons. To review scheduled tasks, click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Scheduled Tasks.

To schedule a weekly differential backup

  1. Click Start, click Run, type ntbackup, and then click OK.

  2. The Backup or Restore Wizard will appear. Click Next.

  3. On the Backup or Restore wizard page, ensure Back up files and settings is selected, and then click Next.

  4. On the What to Back Up page, click Let me choose what to back up, and then click Next.

  5. On the Items to Back Up page, click the items to expand their contents. Select the System State check box and select other check boxes for any drives or folders that contain data that should be backed up on a regular basis, and then click Next.

    NTback11.gif
  6. On the Backup Type, Destination, and Name page, in Choose a place to save your backup, click the drop-down menu or click Browse to choose a location to save your backup. In Type a name for this backup, type a descriptive name for the backup, and then click Next.

    NTback12.gif
  7. On the Completing the Backup or Restore Wizard page, click Advanced.

  8. On the Type of Backup page, in Select the type of backup, click Differential, and then click Next.

    NTback13.gif
  9. On the How to Back Up page, select the Verify data after backup check box, and then click Next.

  10. On the Backup Options page, ensure the Append this backup to the existing backups option is selected, and then click Next.

    NTback14.gif
  11. On the When to Back Up page, under When do you want to run the backup, click Later. Under Schedule entry, type a descriptive name in Job name, and then click Set Schedule.

    NTback15.gif
  12. In the Schedule Job dialog box, in Schedule Task, select Weekly from the drop-down menu.

  13. In Start time, use the up and down arrows to select the appropriate time for the backup to start, and then select the days you want the differential backup to run each week. It is recommended that you schedule a differential backup on the days that a normal backup is not run. Click Advanced to specify a start date and an end date for the scheduled task or to specify whether the scheduled task runs repeatedly at a particular interval. Click OK when finished.

    NTback16.gif
  14. In the Set Account Information dialog box, in Run as, type the domain or workgroup and user name of the account that is authorized to perform backup and restore operations. Use the format domain\username or workgroup\username. In Password, type the password for the user account. Retype the same password in Confirm password, and then click OK.

    NTback17.gif

    You need to update the password specified in the scheduled task anytime the account's password changes or expires to ensure the backup job runs as scheduled.

  15. On the Completing the Backup or Restore Wizard page, confirm your settings, and then click Finish.

    Notes: We recommend creating a summary backup log which, when regularly reviewed, will ensure that the backup was successfully completed. To do this, click the Tools menu, and then click Options. On the Backup Log tab, select Summary.
    If it's determined that the backup is not occurring, review the status of the scheduled task for possible reasons. To review scheduled tasks, click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Scheduled Tasks.

Verifying Data after Backup is Complete

Data that is backed-up can be verified against a checksum that is also stored on the backup. When data is backed up, a checksum is calculated for every file that is backed up. Backup stores the checksum with the file itself. When data is verified, the file is read from the backup; the checksum is recalculated and then compared with the value stored in the backup. It is recommended that you verify backups of data files only; system backups are difficult to verify due to the large number of changes that happen to system files on a continual basis. Some data files that were in use during the backup might also cause verification errors, but you can generally ignore these errors. If there are a large number of verification errors, there may be a problem with the media or the file you are using to back up data. If this occurs, use different media or designate another file and run the backup operation again.

To verify data after backup, in the Backup or Restore Wizard, on the How to Back Up page, select the Verify data after backup check box.

Note: Selecting this option might substantially increase the time it takes to perform a backup.

Enabling Shadow Copies of Shared Folders on a File Server

When you enable Shadow Copies of Shared Folders on your file server, snapshots of the content of shared files and folders will be taken. These snapshots can then be accessed using the Previous Versions client. By enabling Shadow Copies of Shared Folders, you also create a default schedule that will create shadow copies at 7:00 A.M. and noon, Monday through Friday. There will also be a limit set on the amount of space that can be used to store the shadow copies. The default storage size is 10 percent of the source volume (the volume being copied). When the storage limit is reached, older versions of the shadow copies will be deleted and cannot be restored.

Requirements

  • Credentials: To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the Administrators group on the local computer, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group will be able to perform this procedure.

  • Tools: Computer Management.

To enable Shadow Copies of Shared Folders

  1. Click Start, point to All Programs, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Computer Management.

  2. In the console tree, right-click Shared Folders, point to All Tasks, and click Configure Shadow Copies.

    NTback18_big.gif

  3. In the Shadow Copies dialog box, click the volume where you want to enable Shadow Copies of Shared Folders, and then click Enable. The Enable Shadow Copies dialog box will appear. Click Yes to confirm that you want to enable shadow copies on the volume.

    NTback19.gif

    To create a single shadow copy of the selected volume, click Create Now.

    Note: To change default schedule settings, click Settings. In the Settings dialog box, click Schedule. Change the settings in the task scheduler as appropriate. The default schedule is 7:00 A.M. and 12:00 noon, Monday through Friday. It is recommended that you do not schedule copies to be taken more frequently than once an hour.

    NTback20.gif
  4. In the Shadow Copies dialog box, click OK to complete the procedure.

Restoring Data from Backup

There are several ways to restore your server depending on what files need to be restored and whether your system will start normally. The following procedures are covered in this section:

  • Restoring files from Backup

  • Restoring your computer using an ASR set

Restoring Files from Backup

If the original data on your hard disk is accidentally erased or overwritten, or becomes inaccessible because of a hard disk malfunction, the data may be restored from the back up copy.

Requirements
  • Credentials: To perform this procedure, you must be a member of either the Administrators or Backup Operators group on the local computer, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group will be able to perform this procedure.

  • Tools: Backup. If you are performing a combination of normal and differential backups, restoring files and folders requires that you have the last normal as well as the last differential backup.

To restore files from Backup

  1. Click Start, click Run, type ntbackup, and then click OK.

  2. The Backup or Restore Wizard will appear. Click Next.

  3. On the Backup or Restore page, click Restore files and settings, and then click Next.

  4. On the What to Restore page, click the items to expand their contents. Select any drives or folders that contain data that should be restored, and then click Next.

    NTback21.gif
  5. On the Completing the Backup or Restore Wizard page, if you want to change any of the advanced restore options, such as restoring security settings and junction point data, click Advanced. When you are done setting advanced restore options, click OK. Verify that all of the settings are correct, and then click Finish.

Restoring Your Computer Using an ASR Set

ASR should be used as a last resort in system recovery, only after you have exhausted other options such as the startup options Safe Mode and Last Known Good Configuration. For more information about these and other recovery options, see "Repair overview" in "Related Information" later in the document.

Automated System Recovery will not restore your data files. For more information, see "Restoring Files from Backup" earlier in this document.

Requirements
  • The person performing the first part of this procedure must be physically present at the computer and does not need to be a member of the Administrators or Backup Operators group on the local computer. However, to restore the data to the computer after the system has been restored, they must be a member of either the Administrators or Backup Operators group on the local computer, or have been delegated the appropriate authority. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group will be able to perform this procedure.

  • Tools: Your previously created ASR set, your previously created backup media and the floppy disk that you created with that set of media, and the original Windows Server 2003 installation CD.

To restore your computer from an ASR set

  1. Insert the original Windows Server 2003 installation CD into your CD drive.

  2. Restart your computer. If you are prompted to press a key to start the computer from CD, press the appropriate key.

  3. Press F2 when prompted at the beginning of the text-only mode section of Setup. You will be prompted to insert the ASR floppy disk you have previously created.

  4. Follow the directions on the screen.

Restoring Previous Versions of Files and Folders

With the Previous Versions client, you may be able to access previous versions of your files that are located in shared folders on your network. This feature is available when Shadow Copies of Shared Folders is enabled on the server.

Accessing previous versions of your files is useful because you can:

  • View previous versions to compare versions of a file while working. You can use previous versions when you want to check what has changed between two versions of a file.

  • Recover files that were accidentally deleted. If you accidentally delete a file, you can open a previous version and copy it to a safe location.

  • Recover from accidentally overwriting a file. If you accidentally overwrite a file, you can recover a previous version of the file.

Requirements

  • Credentials: To perform this procedure, you must at least have Read permissions on the file to view or copy a previous version and Read & Execute permissions in order to restore the file.

  • Tools: Previous Versions client. The client is installed by default on computers running Windows Server 2003. For more information about installing the Previous Versions client, see "Before You Begin Using Shadow Copies of Shared Folders" earlier in this document.

To view a previous version of a file or folder

  1. Locate the file that you want to view a previous version of (on the network), right-click the file, and then click Properties.

  2. On the Previous Versions tab, click the version you want to view, and then click View.

    Notes: If there are no previous versions listed, the file has not changed since the oldest copy was taken.
    If you do not see the Previous Versions tab, the client is not installed.
    Previous versions are read-only. You cannot make changes to the previous version of the file as it exists on the server.

To copy a previous version of a file to a new location

  1. Locate the file that you want to copy (on the network), right-click the file, and then click Properties.

  2. On the Previous Versions tab, click the version of the file that you want to copy, and then click Copy.

  3. In the Copy Items dialog box, click a new location to place the file, and then click Copy.

    Notes: If there are no previous versions listed, the file has not changed since the oldest copy was taken.
    If you do not see the Previous Versions tab, the client is not installed.
    When you use Copy, the file permissions will be set to the default permissions for the directory where the copy of the file is placed.

To restore a previous version of a file

  1. Locate the file that you want to restore (on the network), right-click the file, and then click Properties.

  2. On the Previous Versions tab, click the version of the file that you want to restore, and then click Restore. A warning message about restoring a previous version will appear. Click Yes to complete the procedure.

    Notes: Restoring a previous version will delete the current version. If you choose to restore a previous version of a folder, the folder will be restored to its state at the date and time of the version you selected. You will lose any changes that you have made to files in the folder since that time. If you do not want to delete the current version of a file or folder, use Copy to copy the previous version to a different location.
    If there are no previous versions listed, the file has not changed since the oldest copy was taken.
    If you do not see the Previous Versions tab, the client is not installed.
    When you restore a previous version of a folder, files in the current folder that were not contained in the previous version of the folder will not be erased.
    When you restore a file, the file permissions will not be changed; permissions will remain the same as they were before the restoration. When you copy a previous version of a file, the permissions will be set to the default permissions for the directory where the copy of the file is placed.
    Restoring a large directory puts a heavy load on the file server and can result in previous versions being deleted. Try to restore individual files instead of entire directories whenever possible.

To recover a file that was accidentally deleted

  1. Locate the folder where the deleted file was stored (on the network), right-click the folder, and then click Properties.

  2. On the Previous Versions tab, double-click the most recent version of the folder that contains the file that you want to recover. A list of files that are stored in that previous version will appear.

  3. Right-click the file that was accidentally deleted, and then click Copy.

  4. Right-click the location where you want to place the file, and then click Paste.

    Notes:When you copy a file, file permissions will be set to the default permissions for the directory where the copy of the file is placed.
    When you recover a file that was accidentally deleted, you are copying a previous version. You will lose any changes made to the file after the last previous version was created.
    To recover a deleted folder, go to a previous version of the parent folder to view and select the folder to copy.

Related Information

For more information about backing up and restoring data, see the following:

For more information about Shadow Copies of Shared Folders, see the following:

For more information about Backup technologies, see the following:

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