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  • Active directory backup and restore in case of disaster situation

    i am thinking for scenario that if our server is distroyed (anythng like flood, blast, fire, earthquake etc) then is there way to backup and restore our active directory? if yes then how can we do it? (server is distroyed and the new server is of different specification means hardware is now change).

    and also in the same scenario on the old server we were using windows server 2003 now we r thnking to upgrade it to windows server 2008 so is it possible to take the backup on 2003 machine and restore on the machine with different hardware and on windows server 2008?

  • #2
    Re: Active directory backup and restore in case of disaster situation

    Q1) System State backup is the only "authorised" way to backup AD -- restore is via DSRM and SYstem State restore

    Q2) AFAIK there is no upgrade path this way -- AD schema is different between server versions. The preferred option would be to rebuild the 2003 DC (maybe on temporary hardware) and then upgrade in the normal way
    Tom Jones
    MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
    PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
    IT Trainer / Consultant
    Ossian Ltd
    Scotland

    ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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    • #3
      Re: Active directory backup and restore in case of disaster situation

      can you telll me about DSRM?
      i have done some research and according this link its is not possible if the hardwares are not same. but my boss is insisting that it should be possible
      support.microsoft.com/kb/249694

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      • #4
        Re: Active directory backup and restore in case of disaster situation

        DSRM (Directory Services Restore Mode) is an F8 boot option on a DC (actually on all OSes, but only does anything on a DC). It basically boots with AD stopped so you can, for example, overwrite the NTDS.DIT db with a copy from a system state backup.

        Reading the article doesnt say restore to different hardware is not possible, only that it is unsupported. I would not recommend it, but in a DR situation, it would be worth a try, as if it didnt work, you wouldnt be any worse off.

        IMHO your best method of ensuring AD availability would be a second DC, physical or virtual, so if one goes down, FSMOs can be seized on the other.
        Tom Jones
        MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
        PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
        IT Trainer / Consultant
        Ossian Ltd
        Scotland

        ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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        • #5
          Re: Active directory backup and restore in case of disaster situation

          will Authoritative System State Restore work if i try?

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          • #6
            Re: Active directory backup and restore in case of disaster situation

            On the same hardware, yes (although with 1 DC, all restores are authoritative)
            On different hardware, maybe

            Tell us a bit more about your infrastructure, please....
            Tom Jones
            MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
            PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
            IT Trainer / Consultant
            Ossian Ltd
            Scotland

            ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Active directory backup and restore in case of disaster situation

              well in our case we have 2 domain controllers.
              1 is the main DC and the other is a backup DC.there are about 45 users and 10 peripheral devices on network. lets suppose due to any circumstances we lost both of the hardware (due to fire,blas, earthquake etc) means all the users, data, FSMO rolls etc are lost.
              after that we bought a new hardware of different specifications. so in this disaster situation is it possible to restore the data that we had backed up from the old DC? (in short can we retore the data on different hardware)

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              • #8
                Re: Active directory backup and restore in case of disaster situation

                IMHO your best bet would be to make a virtual DC under HyperV, so there are no hardware compatibility issues. As noted, restores to disimilar hardware may work, but no guarentee they will do so
                Tom Jones
                MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
                PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
                IT Trainer / Consultant
                Ossian Ltd
                Scotland

                ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

                Comment

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