Windows server Backup , Replication and Fail-over Ideas

90Ninety

New Member
I am just becoming acquainted with Windows server , I have been ' Playing' with it in physical lab environments, so I can become comfortable and ultimately competent in using it for security (AD DC) and file permissions .
I plan on deploying a server into a small business I work with , to cut down time on support calls and issues . I want to keep things as simple and basic as possible , so I am debating the need for more than one server . All services will be running from a bare-bones physical workstation - on a rack , I have this concept working just fine . Though I am now stating to brainstorm on methods of backup and potential failover , I have the following ideas :

  • Periodical bare-bones image backup ( full system backup ), I wonder can this be automated , say once a month , an image is made and sent to an external NAS . I do know how to do this manually , though can it be made into a scheduled task , where the latest image over-writes the last , or keep three or four backups and delete any older than 4 months . This will help in the event of hardware failure , I can restore the server to other hardware . If anyone can point me , give me guidance for something like this , it would be appreciated.
  • Fail-over replication server running concurrently . I am wondering if my current built out server in my lab can be replicated or synced to another server , for example , have a the server sync everything to a second server, either real time or perhaps periodically . If periodically I am thinking if its possible to have a power schedule to power on the backup server and sync with the primary server then power off , once a week. . This would also be a solution if the primary server fails
I appreciate any feedback on these ideas, perhaps one is more difficult than the other , or perhaps you have a better idea?
 

Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Having a single server means that server becomes your point of failure and just making backups or creating a HA cluster doesn't guarantee it will work, you'd need to do monthly or quarterly fail over testing. I'd say you'd be better of simply with two serves. You can have all of your primary services AD, DNS on both (all AD roles on both systems) and DFS shares which would be replicated between the servers automatically. In this use case even if one server goes down you're still operational and you simply fix the second server (re-install stuff if you need) and you're good to go. You will need 2 server licenses and I would go with USER CALs as you'd only need one per user
 

90Ninety

New Member
Having a single server means that server becomes your point of failure and just making backups or creating a HA cluster doesn't guarantee it will work, you'd need to do monthly or quarterly fail over testing. I'd say you'd be better of simply with two serves. You can have all of your primary services AD, DNS on both (all AD roles on both systems) and DFS shares which would be replicated between the servers automatically. In this use case even if one server goes down you're still operational and you simply fix the second server (re-install stuff if you need) and you're good to go. You will need 2 server licenses and I would go with USER CALs as you'd only need one per user
Thanks for your Reply

Is there any documentation on setting up/ running two servers , in a fashion that you have suggested ?
 

Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Not much to it beyond installing AD and setting up your forest and domain and setting up a second DC and join it to the same domain. DFS is pretty straight forward when you install the role
 
Top