Windows Server Backup copies an entire disk volume to a .vhd file on a second local disk. After performing a backup, you can restore individual files or an entire volume. If Windows cannot start for example, if the system volume has failed, you can start the computer from the Windows installation media, restore the system volume from the backup, and have the operating system up and running in less than an hour.
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Installing the Backup Service
Right click Features and select Add Features. Scroll down the list. Expand Windows Server Backup Features. Select the required Features. Windows Server Backup for Graphical tools. Command-line tools for scripting backups. Either or both may be selected and click Next to continue. Confirm installation selections by clicking Install. Click Close to complete. Backup Features have been added.
Perform a Manual Backup
Select Windows Server Backup. Select Action. Select Backup Once. Select Different options and Next to continue. Select Full Server or Custom. Custom allows you to specify which Volumes to backup. Click Next to continue. Select Volume(s) to be backed up. Click Next. Select a Destination for the Backup and Next to continue. Select Destination and click Next. Click Next. Click Backup. When the Backup is complete click Close. The Backup was successful.
Scheduling backups requires a dedicated local disk. You cannot use the Backup Schedule Wizard to back up to a disk that will be used by other applications, and you cannot back up to a shared folder on the network. After running the Backup Schedule Wizard, the backup target disk will not be visible in Windows Explorer.
To schedule a backup to run automatically, follow these steps:
- Click Start, choose Administrative Tools, and then choose Windows Server Backup. The Windows Server Backup console appears.
- In the Actions pane, click Backup Schedule. The Backup Schedule Wizard appears.
- On the Getting Started page, click Next.
- On the Select Backup Configuration page, choose whether to back up the full server or select Custom to select specific volumes. If you are backing up to a local disk, you should select Custom so that you can exclude the backup volume from the backup.
- If the Select Backup Items page appears, select the check boxes for the volumes you want to back up, and then click Next.
- On the Specify Backup Time page, select the time and frequency of your backups.
- On the Select Destination Disk page, choose where to save the backup file. This disk will be reformatted, and all data will be lost. Click Next.
- Click Yes when prompted.
- On the Label Destination Disk page, click Next.
- On the Confirmation page, click Finish.
- On the Summary page, the Backup Schedule Wizard formats the backup destination disk. Click Close.
You can view the scheduled task that initiates the backup using the Task Scheduler console. The backup task is available in the \Configuration\Task Scheduler Library\Microsoft\Windows\Backup node in Server Manager and calls the Wbadmin tool to perform the backup.
Performing Backups from a Command Prompt or Script
You can use the Wbadmin tool to initiate backups from a script or at a command prompt (such as when using Windows Server 2008 Server Core). For example, to initiate a backup of the C drive to the L drive, you would run the following command prompt from an elevated command prompt:
wbadmin start backup –backupTarget:L: -include:C: -quiet
To perform a backup of the system state, type Wbadmin with the start systemstaterecovery parameters. To schedule a backup, type Wbadmin with the Enable backup parameters. For complete usage information, type wbadmin /? at a command prompt.