Now that the Windows Home Server 2011 Release Candidate is available, lets take a look at the new Server and Folder backup feature. There’s even a video at the end showing it working.
One of the most obvious missing features from Windows Home Server V1 was the ability to backup your WHS System drive and your backup database. There was the great add-in, BDBB that enabled you to backup your backup database but that still left the System drive at risk. And frankly that all should have been “out of the box” functionality!
With Windows Home Server 2011, both missing features are there, and they are very simple to you.
Now that Drive Extender has been removed, Microsoft recommend that you backup your WHS at regular intervals in case of drive failure, corruption, or whatever. In fact, the default setting for backing up your server is twice a day, but that can be changed to suit your needs, and we shall cover that in a moment.
Using Server and Folder Backup
Server and Folder backups require the use of an external hard drive. After all, the whole point of this exercise is to have a backup and if you kept it with the WHS and there was a fire or flood for example, the backup would also be lost. So using an external drive makes it easier to store it offsite.
Make sure you have connected your external backup drive and click on the Hard Drive tab within Server Folders and Hard Drives. Click on the Add the hard drive to Server Backup task from the BACKUP Tasks list.
This starts the wizard – so just click Next.
You then need to select the backup drive, in my case I only have one drive connected, but if your drive isn’t shown click the Refresh list button and check the connections as well. Once you have selected your drive, click Next.
You are then warned that the drive will be formatted and any data on the drive will be lost (this only happens the first time you add a backup drive, so don’t worry). Click Yes to continue (once you have copied off any data you want to keep that may have been on the drive).
You are asked to label the drive – so put something useful in here, such as Server Backups and click Next.