Server Backup doesn't save PC backups? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi all,

    Background: I have 1 home server and 5 pcs in my network.

    I just attached a USB drive to my home server and did a full server backup. The backup wizard allowed me to pick all the folders I'd expect, BUT strangely I see no indication that my PC backups (stored on the server) are being saved out to the USB drive. Could it really be true that if I lose my server, I can only restore the shared folders that were on it? ie. all the backups of my PCs will be irrecoverably lost?

    I'm hoping that there's something I'm missing here -- it would be a baffling oversight if server backup doesn't also save the PC backups.

    I would much appreciate some information on this.

    Thank you.
    Thursday, November 20, 2008 6:51 PM

All replies

  • Your PC backups are not included in the server backup. Per Microsoft's design for home computer backup, the backup database is essentially fungible. If you lose it, you are presumed to still have the computers from which it was created, so you simply back them up again. There is also an unstated implication that home computer backup is not an archival tool, for much the same reason. while there were at one time plans to include backing up the backup database, those plans were shelved when testing indicated that implementing such a feature would be very difficult to do in a way that would be sufficiently reliable and simple for the target audience for Windows Home Server.

    In other words, it's not an oversight, it's a design decision.

    Now, if you want to back them up anyway, there's a backup database backup add-in. Or you can do it manually; all the steps are documented in the Home Computer Backup technical brief. I agree with Microsoft's design in this area, but if I didn't, I would use the add-in, which I've tested. It seems functional and reliable.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Thursday, November 20, 2008 8:38 PM
  • Thanks for your quick reply Ken! It was helpful.

    If it was really a design decision to have Server Backup omit backing up vital data, that's very unfortunate. IMHO, the whole point of Backup is to protect the user against disaster scenarios. The reason I have a USB drive is so that I can physically disconnect it (after a backup is complete) and put it offsite in a Safe Deposit box. This protects me against power surges or even my house burning down.

    Looks like I'll have to use hacks/workarounds or get third-pary backup software :(

    Thanks again for your help! 

    Thursday, November 20, 2008 11:09 PM
  • Eshwars,
        If there was a disaster at your house that destroyed your home server, it would probably destroy your pc's also.  For example, a fire that burns down your house.  The backups on the WHS would not work on another system.  Making them useless if your systems burnt down.  So any important files you would like to be kept really should be stored on the server shares themselves, allowing you to use the server backup feature and taking them off site.

    athlon 3400, 2gb ram, 9 drives totaling about 3.5 tbs.
    Friday, November 21, 2008 9:32 AM
  • Hi,
    The Add-In Ken refers to, is no a 'hack/workaround' it is a piece of software specifically written to do exactly what you asked about.
    It can duplicate your Backups internally to another drive within your server and can export a copy of them to an external drive which can then be stored off-site and rotated with other external drives if necessary.

    Personally, I like the idea of someone seeing what it needed and responding to it. The writer is also a forum member and so I would think any problems or suggestions could be answered/implemented sooner than Microsoft would be able so to do.


    If anyone answers your query successfully, please mark it as 'Helpful', to guide other users.
    Friday, November 21, 2008 10:16 AM