Configure server backup

Server backup is not automatically configured during installation. You should protect your server and its data automatically by scheduling daily backups. It is recommended that you maintain a daily backup plan because most organizations cannot afford to lose the data that has been created over several days.

To set up server backup

  1. Log on to the Windows Small Business Server 2011 Essentials Dashboard using an administrator user account and password.

  2. Click the Computers and Backup tab, and then click the name of the server

  3. In the Task pane, click Set up Backup for the server.

  4. The Set Up Server Backup wizard starts. Follow the instructions in the wizard.

    If you start the wizard before attaching the external hard drive to the server, click Refresh list on the Select the backup destination page after attaching the hard drive.

Server backup schedule

When you use the Set Up Server Backup Wizard that is included with Windows SBS 2011 Essentials, you can choose to back up server data at multiple times during the day. Because the wizard schedules differential-based backups, Backup runs quickly, and server performance is not significantly impacted. The default schedule is to run backup twice daily at 12:00 P.M. and 11:00 P.M. However, you can adjust the backup schedule according to the needs of your organization. You should occasionally evaluate the effectiveness of your backup plan, and change the plan as necessary.

Backup target drive

You can back up your data to any external storage drive that supports USB 2.0, IEEE 1394, or eSATA. Drives of this type offer large storage capacities and the speed that is necessary to efficiently back up your data. You should visit the website for your external storage drive manufacturer to ensure that your backup drive is supported on computers running Windows SBS 2011 Essentials.

You can use multiple external storage drives for backups, and you can rotate the drives between onsite and offsite storage locations. This can improve your disaster preparedness planning by helping you recover your data if physical damage occurs to the hardware onsite.

When choosing a storage drive for your server backup, consider the following:

  • Choose a drive that contains sufficient space to store your data. Your storage drives should contain at least 2.5 times the storage capacity of the data that you want to back up. The drives should also be large enough to accommodate the future growth of your server data. Because server backups are incremental, a backup drive of 300 GB in size or more can hold months of backup data.

  • When reusing an external storage drive, make sure that the drive is empty or contains only data that you do not need.

Items to be backed up

You can choose to back up all the drives, files, and folders on the server, or select only individual drives, files, or folders to backup.

When you add or remove a computer, or add or remove shared files and folders, you should revisit the server backup configuration to make sure that these items are added to or removed from the backup configuration. To add or remove items for the backup, do one of the following:

  • To include a data drive in the server backup, select the adjacent check box

  • To exclude a data drive from the server backup, clear the adjacent check box

To minimize the amount of server storage that your server backups use, you may want to exclude any folders that contain files that you do not consider valuable or particularly important.

For example, you may have a folder that contains recorded television programs that uses a lot of hard drive space. You may choose not to back up these files because you normally delete them after viewing them anyway. Or you may have a folder that contains temporary files that you do not intend to keep.