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I am modifying an old server to be used as a backup server. The backup server should be able to use the backups of the primary server and run the same as the primary server. Both servers are running Windows Server 2008 R2, but they are not running the same hardware. The question I have is what system related items should be backed up (system state, boot information, etc). Also, what would the appropriate method be for restoring the backup onto the backup server, which will hold the backups on a separate HDD. I have not touched servers very much, so I hope you guys can offer me some guidance.

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Well, to start with, you might want to include what backup software you're using. –  HopelessN00b Genius of network Jan 3 '13 at 22:06
    
What to backup/restore is highly dependent on what services you are using. You need to backup, or replicate the things you are using. –  Zoredache Jan 3 '13 at 22:08
    
You shouldn't call your old server the "backup server" - that name is for the machine that runs backup software. You should be calling it the "cold spare hardware", because that's what you're describing what you want to use it for. And yes, don't store the backups on it, because that's not how it can work. –  mfinni Jan 3 '13 at 22:38
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closed as not constructive by Zoredache, mdpc, Ward, faker, Alex Jan 4 '13 at 14:33

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1 Answer

You can perform a bare metal backup and recovery of Windows Server 2008 R2 using the Windows Server Backup tool (installed from Features). Follow this guide for detailed steps:

http://blogs.technet.com/b/askcore/archive/2011/05/12/bare-metal-restore.aspx

You wouldn't restore the backup to the backup server except in the case of a catastrophic failure of the source server and you probably don't want to store the backup on the original server or the backup server. You'll want to store the backup on an independent drive (USB) or network Share.

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