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Tell me more about server recovery

Updated: March 30, 2011

Applies To: Windows Home Server 2011

Generally, the reasons that you would perform a system recovery are:

  • There is a virus on the server that cannot be inoculated or deleted

  • The server configuration settings are bad and you cannot start the server

  • You replaced the system drive.

Server recovery models

There are two models for factory reset and server recovery, and they differ based on your preference and the hardware that you received from the manufacturer of your server.

Locally administered server

This is the classic model where the server is administered at the server console. The server installation media is used to run the recovery. This requires that the server ships with the ability to view video output in addition to including a DVD reader. You start the server from the installation DVD, and then choose the server restore option.

Remotely administered server

In the model, the server is administered from a client computer after the Windows Home Server 2011 connector software is installed. This server recovery option requires that you run the server recovery process from a client computer on the same network. Because factory reset requires that a hardware-specific image be shipped with the server, the OEM must include a server recovery DVD when they ship the server from the factory.

Types of server recovery

There are two types of server recovery.

Restore the server from a backup

This option assumes that you configured server backup and that the server backup completed successfully at least one time prior to the server failure. Bare metal restore (BMR) supports recovery of the system drives only from a previous server backup. Following a BMR, the server is returned to the state that existed at the time of the backup that is used for the restore. This is typically the most recent backup, but in some cases it may be an earlier backup. Data recovery is done by using the Restore Files and Folders wizard after the system is restored.

Reset the server to factory default settings

This option returns the server to the original state that existed when the server was shipped from the factory. All settings and customizations are lost. Following a factory reset, you must perform the initial configuration of the server just as you did the first time that you turned it on.

You can reset the server to factory default settings only by using the remotely administered model and the recovery DVD provided by the manufacturer of your server.

Server with a single hard drive

System needs to be restored because of a virus or other issue that corrupted the system

The Server Restore Wizard reformats the system (C:) partition during the restore, and then restores the system to the state that is was at the time of the backup that you chose. Any settings that you changed since the time of the chosen backup must be recreated.

In this scenario, the data drives are not affected by the system restore, and there should be no data loss. However, if you created additional shared folders after the backup that you select, they might not be recognized by the server. In this case, you need to share them again.

Replaced hard drive or partition information is lost

If the hard drive is replaced or the partition information is bad, the Server Restore Wizard partitions and formats the hard drive. Two partitions are created, the system (C:) partition and the server storage partition. The system partition is restored to the state that it was at the time of the backup that you chose. Any settings that you changed since then must be recreated.

In this scenario, after restoring the system partition, you restore the data using the Restore Files and Folders wizard. If you created additional shared folders after the backup that you select, they might not be recognized by the server. In this case, you need to share them again.

Server with multiple hard drives

System needs to be restored because of a virus or other issue that corrupted the system

Same as for the single hard drive scenario.

Replaced Disk 0 or partition information is lost on Disk 0

If the Disk 0 was replaced or the partition information is bad, the Server Restore Wizard partitions and formats the hard drive. Two partitions are created, the system (C:) partition and the server storage partition. The system partition is restored to the state that it was at the time of the backup that you chose. Any settings that you changed since then must be recreated.

In this scenario, after restoring the system partition, you restore the portion of the data that was stored on the second partition by using the Restore Files and Folders wizard. If you created additional shared folders, they might not be recognized by the server. In this case, you need to share them again.

To learn how to restore your server from a backup using the locally administered server model, see Restore or repair your server using the installation DVD.

To learn how to restore your server from a backup or reset your server to factory default settings using the remotely administered server model, see Restore or reset your server using the recovery DVD provided by the server manufacturer.

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