I need to back up a single server (Windows 2008 R2) onto an external drive. Because the server has millions of small files, block-level backup, not filesystem, is a requirement.

I can use Acronis Backup & Recovery, or Windows Server Backup. Is there any compelling reason to pick one over the other? (I already own the Acronis software, so price is not an issue.)

  • is this for bare metal purposes or what? And what os level are you running. – tony roth May 20 '11 at 0:39
  • Just added the OS details to the question (2008R2). Not for bare-metal restore -- just trying to figure out how to be able to quickly back up about 2 TB of very small files for DR. – Jesse May 22 '11 at 20:27

You did not identify the version of Windows. If it is 2008R2, then Windows Backup is almost a draw with its new backup format being that of VHDs. The VHDs can be mounted across Windows 7, 2008R2, Virtual PC, Hyper-V, etc.

The Acronis backup format can also be mounted "hot" onto a running system, but you need to install their drivers first. The bare-metal route still appears to be more streamlined on the Acronis side, but 2008R2 also has bare-metal capabilities as well.

  • Update: The latest Acronis will also backup to a VHD. On the non-Windows 2008R2 side of things, there is also Disk2VHD which will convert Windows partitions on-the-fly to VHD files/volumes. It works great on live running systems and can also "fit-the-bill" for block-level-type requirements. – user48838 May 25 '11 at 4:42

I like the Acronis backup, but if you are on win2008r2, the backup software is very good, and fast.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.