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I'm looking for a highly reliable option to backup data(not the Bare Metal or System State but various shared folders) from a Windows Server 2008 R2 to another 2008 R2 server. Servers are located in two different locations.

I would like to have folders backed up in it's original hierarchy, not in an image/ISO file, scheduled nightly, store full-backups for 7 days and 1st one to be deleted on 8th.

How could I achieve the above either thru built-in Windows Server Backup or any other open source/commercial app please. Would it help in anyway if I join Servers(both are Domain Controllers) via "Forest/External Trust"?

Thanks a million in advance.

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Do you need to backup files that are open for write? If so, that may narrow your options. – Greg Askew Dec 31 '11 at 16:56

What you describe is very generic and can be done using array of solutions depending on your needs, from simple script using Robocopy to high end third party software.
If trust is not already in place, adding it just for backup would not be a best idea from security point of view.

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Many thanks for the reply. Would you recommend any "high end third party software"? – Jags FL Dec 26 '11 at 4:03
I can only recommend something I am familiar with and this maybe not what suits you best.Ideally you should make a list of requirements and approach few vendors to see if they have suitable product.Also please note that product recommendation questions should be avoided on Serverfault: – Sergei Dec 26 '11 at 9:22

I have searched for similair solution and the easiest thing I have found was the - free rsync-based solution. It contains sync server and client. Just execute server and set aliases for folders you're going to backup. Then setup client on backup machine and bind it to server's folders created before. It transfers only differences and can compress, so backup is rather fast, especially for low-speed connections.

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The built in DFS replication sounds like it would work well for you. Once set up, no need to script anything - just drop files in the replicated folder, and they will copy to remote (1 or many locations) per the setup.

DFS Info at Technet

This is what makes it efficient: DFS Replication uses a compression algorithm known as remote differential compression (RDC). RDC detects changes to the data in a file and enables DFS Replication to replicate only the changed file blocks instead of the entire file.

Ive used this successfully over various wan links to remote locations very successfully.

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