Windows Server Backup RRS feed

  • Question

  • I am looking for  in-depth articles/tech  notes on Windows Server Backup for versions 2008, 2008R2, 2012 and 2012R2 in both HyperV  and non-Hyperv environments.  Please note, I do not want a 'how to do a backup/restore' link/reference.

    In particular I am looking for the way daily backups are created/named/folders that are created. In other words when I go onto the backup drive I see all kinds of files and folders with various long alphanumeric string names. I want to know what they are and how they got to be where they are and what is the rationale of the naming structure and what is the relationship of the files I see  to restoring to specific points in time, etc.  I would like to know for instance the role that Volume Shadow Copy plays in the process.  So again I do not want a   "how to do a backup" article link but a behind-the-scenes detail of what happens once a backup is configured and runs.

    Here are some specific questions I would like answered.

    For instance, when I look at my backup folder on my locally attached  USB drive, I see a folder called Windows Image Backup.

    When I look in there I see another folder with the name of the server that I am backing up - Server2012

    If I explore that I see the following structure:

    Backup2014-1-03 033039 (folder)

    Catalog (folder)

    Logs (folder)

    Sppmetadata Cache (folder)

    Mediald (file)

    In the Backup2014-1-03 033039 folder I see:

    a long list of XML files with long alphanumeric string names all with the same date/time

    a backupspecs.xml file - same date and time as above

    another long alphanumeric string file with a description that says Hard Disk Image file that is about 500 gig - same date and time as above

    In the Catalog folder I see two files Backup Global Catalog and Global Catalog, the backup one day behind the the other which has the date/time as the ones above

    In the logs file, I see a long list of Backup_error.... with consecutive dates leading up to the date of the XML files and others I listed earlier. When I look in them they are all blank.

    The Sppmetadata Cache (folder) is empt

    The mediald file is not one I know how to open

    What do all the above folders and files represent? How do they get generated? What is their relationship to each other and to the daily backup?

    Other questions I have:

    Is there a way to look at the backup files to see if the backup is incremental/differential or full? How would I know for sure? Is there some where I can see the sizes of the 'incrementals/differentials'?

    Also is there a way to directly view a backup drive that has been dedicated to Windows Server backup? It does not show up in Explorer and I also can't get at it from Disk Manager .

    As well when I look at  details of backup in the Windows Server backup GUI that show me all the backups that have gone through, I see two column headers - BMR, SSR - what do they represent?

    Any help on this is appreciated in advance.

    Monday, December 8, 2014 4:41 AM