Lesson 3: Advanced Backup and Restore
Now that you have created a backup plan and verified your procedures for backup and restore, you will want to understand the process in more depth so that you can config-ure backup operations to be more flexible, more automated or perhaps even easier. This lesson will explore the technologies underlying data backup, such as VSC and RSM, and will lay out options for scripting and scheduling backup operations. You will then leverage the new Shadow Copies Of Shared Folders feature to enable users to recover from simple data loss scenarios without administrative intervention. After this lesson, you will be able to ■ Configure group membership to enable a user to perform backup and restore operations ■ Manage tape backup media ■ Catalog backup sets ■ Configure backup options ■ Execute a backup from the command prompt ■ Schedule backup jobs ■ Configure and utilize Shadow Copies Of Shared Folders Estimated lesson time: 30 minutes
Windows Server 2003 offers VSS, also referred to as "snap backup." VSS allows the backing up of databases and other files that are held open or locked due to operator or system activity. Shadow copy backups allow applications to continue to write data to a volume during backup, and allow administrators to perform backups at any time without locking out users or risking skipped files.
Although VSS is an important enhancement to the backup functionality of Windows Server 2003, it is nevertheless best practice to perform backups when utilization is low. If you have applications that manage storage consistency differently while files are open, that can affect the consistency of the files in the backup of those open files. For critical applications, or for applications such as Microsoft SQL Server that offer native backup capabilities, consult the documentation for the application to determine the recommended backup procedure.
You must have the Backup Files And Directories user right, or NTFS Read permission, to back up a file. Similarly, you must have the Restore Files And Directories user right, or NTFS Write permission to the target destination, to restore a file. Privileges are
Lesson 3 Advanced Backup and Restore 7-21
assigned to both the Administrators and Backup Operators groups, so the minimum required privileges can be given to a user, a group, or a service account by nesting the account in the Backup Operators group on the server.
Users with the Restore Files And Directories user right can remove NTFS permissions from files during restore. In Windows Server 2003, they can additionally transfer own-ership of files between users.
Therefore, it is important to control the membership of the Backup Operators group and to physically secure backup tapes. A "loose" backup tape makes it easy for any intelligent individual to restore and access sensitive data.
The Backup Utility of Windows Server 2003 works closely with the RSM service. RSM, which is designed to manage robotic tape libraries and CD-ROM libraries, accepts requests for media from other services or, in this case, applications, and ensures that the media is correctly mounted or loaded.
RSM is also used with single-media devices, such as a manually loaded backup tape drive, CD-ROM, or Iomega Jaz drive. In the case of single-media drives, RSM keeps track of media through their labels or serial numbers. The impact of RSM is that, even in a single-media drive backup system, each tape must have a unique label.
The Backup Utility of Windows Server 2003 manages tapes with RSM using media pools, as seen in Figure 7-6.
Figure 7-6 Media pools
There are four media pools related to backup:
■ Unrecognized Tape media that are completely blank or in a foreign format are contained in the Unrecognized pool until they are formatted.
7-22 Chapter 7 Backing Up Data
■ Free This pool contains newly formatted tape media, as well as tapes that have been specifically marked as free by an administrator. Free media can be moved into the backup media pool by writing a backup set to them.
■ Backup This pool contains media that have been written to by the Backup Util-ity. The Backup Utility will only write to media in the Free media pool (and it will label the tape with the name you enter just before starting the backup) and to media, specified by name, in the Backup media pool.
■ Import This pool contains tape media that are not cataloged on the local disk drive. Cataloging such a tape will move the tape into the backup media pool.
Managing Tapes and Media Pools
In conjunction with backup procedures and tape rotation, you will need to manage your tapes in and out of these media pools. To that end, the following actions are avail-able from the Restore And Manage Media page of the Backup Utility:
■ Format a tape Right-click a tape and choose Format. Formatting is not a secure way to erase tapes. If you need to erase tapes for legal or security reasons, use an appropriate third-party utility. Formatting does, however, prepare a tape and move it into the free media pool. Not all drives support formatting.
■ Retension a tape Right-click a tape and choose Retension. Not all drives sup-port retensioning.
■ Mark a tape as free Right-click a tape and choose Mark As Free. This moves the tape into the free media pool. It does not erase the tape. If you need to erase tapes for legal reasons, use an appropriate third-party utility.
When the Backup Utility creates a backup set, it also creates a catalog listing files and folders included in the backup set. That catalog is stored on the disk of the server (the local or on-disk catalog) and in the backup set itself (the on-media catalog). The local catalog facilitates quick location of files and folders to restore. The Backup Utility can display the catalog immediately, rather than load the catalog from the typically slower backup media. The on-media catalog is critical if the drive containing the local catalog has failed, or if you transfer the files to another system. In those cases, Windows can recreate the local catalog from the on-media catalog.
The Restore And Manage Media page of the Backup Utility allows you to manage cat-alogs, as follows:
■ Delete Catalog Right-click a backup set and choose Delete Catalog if you have lost or damaged the backup media or if you are transferring files to another system and no longer require its local catalog. The on-media catalog is not affected by this command.
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■ Catalog A tape from a foreign system that is not cataloged on the local machine will appear in the import media pool. Right-click the media and choose the Cata-log command. Windows will generate a local catalog from the tape or file. This does not create or modify the on-media catalog. Tip If you have all the tapes in the backup set and the tapes are not damaged or corrupted, open the backup Options dialog box and, on the General tab, select Use The Catalogs On The Media To Speed Up Building Restore Catalogs On Disk. If you are missing a tape in the backup set or a tape is damaged or corrupted, clear that option. This will ensure that the catalog is complete and accurate; however, it might take a long time to create the catalog.
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