May 14

Add multiple backup destinations to Windows SBS 2011 when not all backup devices are available (onsite).

The Small Business Server 2011 backup usually works pretty well. It meets the basic backup needs of most small businesses, and, in my opinion, it is an improvement over the SBS 2008 backup. It is usually pretty straight forward to set up and configure. Most end users should have no problems configuring the backup schedule and setting up the backup with an external USB drive.

If you want to add multiple backup destinations, it is also simple as long as you have all backup destinations connected to the server. There are certain situations when this may not be possible or ideal. You may not be able to connect more than one backup device to the server at the same time, some backup devices may not be available (they are stored off site), or you simply may not want plug in every single backup device just to add another backup destination.

Whatever the case may be, if you try to add a backup destination when not all the backup devices are connected to the server, you will get an error message, and you will not be able to complete the procedure. This behavior is by design. When the wizard completes, it verifies the currently listed backup disks. If any of the disks are missing, you will receive an error message, and the operation will not complete.

To add multiple disks when not all disks are available or connected to the server you will have to use the command line. Plug the hard-drive in to the server. Log in to the server using an account with administrator privileges. Click on the start menu, click on All Programs, click on accessories, right click “Command Prompt” and click “Run as Administrator.” This will open an elevated command prompt. On this command prompt type the following commands:

  • wbadmin get disks <—- use this command to determine the Disk Identifier of the new disk. Examine the output and locate the disk that will be added to the backup schedule. Make note of the disk identifier.
  • wbadmin enable backup -addtarget:Disk Identifier – make sure you include the brackets <— This command will add the new disk to the scheduled backup.

Once you run the last command you will receive a series of prompts. Type Y to accept all of them, and you are done.


Jun 26

Are you backing up your data?

I often come across customers who have lost their important¬† documents to a computer disaster. Most times they didn’t have a backup strategy in place, or they did, but they weren’t implementing it. I always stress this to my customers. Backup your data. Set up a backup strategy and stick to it. One key aspect of a successful backup strategy is keeping your data in as many places as possible.

Most operating systems include some sort of backup feature that allows you to set up a backup schedule. There are also services that backup your important documents online (services such as Mozy Backup or Carbonite for instance). You can always purchase an inexpensive external hard drive and copy your files manually or with a backup utility. Anything you choose to do is better than not doing anything.

If you are running any flavor of Windows 7 on your computer, you have access to an easy to use and reliable backup utility. It takes a few minutes to set up, and you just need to plug in an external hard drive. Getting two external hard drives and alternating between the two is not a bad idea either. As I said, keeping your data in as many places as possible is a key part of a successful backup strategy.

If you run a business, it is a good idea to hire a professional to help you come up with a reliable backup strategy that fits your business needs and policies. You can always give us a call. I may post something related to business backup strategies in the future.

On your personal computer, a backup strategy is something simple to set up.You just need to use a backup utility to set up a schedule and make sure the backup runs.

You can always use a third party utility or copy the files your self, but, if you are running any version of Windows 7, you can set up the backup schedule in a few easy steps.

Click on the start menu and type “Backup” in the search box. One of the items you will find is called “Backup and Restore” – click on it. This will open the Backup and Restore center. In this window you can check the status of your existing backup schedule if you already have it set up. You can also modify the backup settings or set up up a new backup schedule.

Plug in your external hard drive or thumb drive (make sure there is enough space to hold your data or complete system drive). Click on “Setup Backup.” This will open the Setup Backup Wizard. The wizard is pretty straight forward. Just select the destination on the first section (the external hard drive.) Select what you want to back up (you can let Windows choose for you or select the option to choose yourself if you want to add locations outside of your libraries – documents, pictures, videos, etc). Modify the schedule on the next window. Then click save settings and run backup. That’s pretty much it. Now you just have to make sure the computer is on and the hard drive is plugged in whenever the backup will run.