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What would one do to recover a disk crash in WHS? RRS feed

  • Question

  • I'm considering setting up a WHS however  I have some questions.  I understand I can set some folders to be duplicated over multiple disks but what happens when the main disk with the server OS crashes?  Can I have the whole server backed up so I can replace the drive while the server is still functioning?  I suspect that in this case, the server will be down until I get a new drive and then I have to manualy re-install the OS and all settings.  While my duplicated folders will be fine on the other disks, all plug-ins and server settings will be lost.  Is this correct? 
    Tuesday, November 18, 2008 4:35 PM

All replies

  • Just Pray !

    No backup possible of the system drive. And you will be in serious trouble.
    See my post : http://social.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/whssoftware/thread/982be9a2-3af7-466c-a51a-75306be991d6

    All your data will be kept (if duplication is enabled). But you will have some lonf work to make it come back (reinstallation, etc.)
    Tuesday, November 18, 2008 5:09 PM
  • Yes, if your system drive fails, you will lose your add-ins, users, and any configuration changes made outside the console, and software installed from e.g. remote desktop.

    Patrick's issue, as linked, may have been the result of a software, hardware or driver issue, and is not typical. Normally, you replace the drive, perform a server reinstallation, and everything is back the way it was (with the caveats above). However, I do tend to agree with him in one thing. The system builder package (the tan envelope with software) isn't aimed at the average non-technical user. It's intended for people who are building semi-custom WHS units for their clients, and for technically proficient enthusiasts.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Tuesday, November 18, 2008 5:57 PM
    Moderator
  • Mapoitras,

    The standard way of recovering from a system disk failure, (assuming that you don't have that much information that space on the system drive has to be used for data storage), is to just replace the drive then boot from the Server DVD. This, if your system is set up correctly, offer you two options, a re-install and a new install. Selecting a re-install will format the drive and install the WHS operating system. Towards the end of this, it will re-build all the pointers to your data which, if you have a lot of stored data, can take quite some time -hours - not minutes.
    On completion, you then need to re-add your Clients and any personalisations that you may have done, (Add-Ins etc).

    The idea of backing up the complete server, while beguiling, isn't feasible as your backup can never have your data up-to-date. There will always be errors and omissions when you do a restore, while doing a re-install, while apparently time consuming, has the advantage of not loosing any data.

    Whatever your system, the ideal is three drives. One for your system and landing stage, then two others preferably of similar size, which will then be used as your duplicated store. This ensures that your system drive isn't used for data storage.

    There is a number of documents worth reading, here, or here.

    Good luck,

    Colin
    If anyone answers your query successfully, please mark it as 'Helpful', to guide other users.
    Tuesday, November 18, 2008 6:06 PM
    Moderator