Data to Exclude from Windows Backup Sets or Full Computer Backup Sets
Topic Last Modified: 2006-01-26
Do not back up the following directories and drives when you create either Windows backup sets or full computer backup sets.
Installable File System (IFS) drive
By default, the IFS drive (frequently referred to as the M drive) is turned off in Exchange Server 2003. If you have enabled the IFS drive, make sure to clear the check box in the backup utility (Backup) in Windows Server 2003 before you back up your data.
Important: If you back up the IFS drive, you might damage your Exchange databases. To avoid this type of damage, do not enable the IFS drive. Antivirus software and other programs that affect all drives might also damage or cause problems for Exchange. For more information, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 298924, "Issues caused by a back-up or by a scan of the Exchange 2000 M drive."
Exchange databases and log files
Because Exchange database and transaction log files are constantly changing, it is recommended that you back them up by selecting the Microsoft Information Store option under Microsoft Exchange Server in Backup. Selecting this option causes Backup to use the Extensible Storage Engine (ESE) to back up your database and transaction log files correctly. For this reason, do not back up Exchange data when you create Windows or full computer backup sets. Instead, back up your Exchange server's database and transaction log files as part of a separate backup.
When you create Windows or full computer backup sets, do not select the ..\Exchsrvr\MDBDATA folder in Backup, and clear the Microsoft Information Store check box (under the Microsoft Exchange Server node).
Do not back up the ..\Exchsrvr\MDBDATA folder
If your backup includes the drives or folders that contain your Exchange database and transaction log files or the Exchange IFS drive (by default, drive M), the files that are in use at the time that the backup occurs are not backed up. Any attempts to restore the backup might cause problems.
For information about how to back up Exchange databases and log files, see "Backing Up Exchange Server 2003 Databases" later in this chapter.
The cluster shared disk resources (if you are running Exchange on a cluster)
In a full computer backup set, you do not typically include the drives of the server cluster's shared disk resources (for example, the drive where you store your quorum disk resource or the drives where you store your Exchange database files and log files). You must back up these resources by using the System State option and the Microsoft Information Store option in Backup. For more information about how to back up a server cluster's shared disk resources, see "Backing Up an Exchange Server 2003 Cluster's Shared Disk Resources."
To save disk space for your Windows or full computer backup set, and also the time required to create and restore backups, do not back up the removable storage media (such as removable disk drives, floppy drives, and CD-ROM drives) that are not a part of your disaster recovery strategy.