How to Backup/Restore Exchange 2016 using Windows Server Backup? – Part I

Siddharth Rawat
Siddharth Rawat | Updated On - 23 Dec 2020 |

Read time 6 min

Organizations cannot afford to lose their Exchange data after corruption and server crashes. In most occasions, database corruption occurs without any warning. Though highly efficient solutions are available for Exchange recovery, many administrators like to keep backups for their Exchange data so that they can use them in case of eventualities. Administrators can use the backup feature of Windows Server to backup and restore Exchange data. We discuss its procedure in this two-part article.

  1. Backup Exchange data using Windows Server Backup (Part I)
  2. Recover Exchange data from Windows Server backup (Part II)

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Before starting the backup, a process using the WSB, you need to know about the features and options associated with it.

  • The backups can be taken only at the volume level. So, to do the application-level backup and restoration, you will need to select the entire volume. For the backup of the database, you will need to choose the total volume with the database. It is impossible to take the backup (even of the folders) without selecting the complete volume.
  • You cannot take remote backup. The backup should run locally on the server that is being backed up.
  • Only the full backups should run. You can alter the folder after the completion of the WSB job.
  • The restoration process is more straightforward when you want to restore the database and the log streams to their actual location. The WSB manager and plug-in will take care of the complete restoration by copying the database data and replaying the transaction logs.

Backup Exchange Data Using Windows Server Backup

Windows Server Backup provides Administrators the facility to back up a complete server, selected volumes, or selected folders. Steps to back up the Exchange data using Windows Server Backup are:

  1. Start Windows Server Backup and select Local Backup. Click Backup Once from the Action pane.
    Native Exchanged backup
  2. Select Different Options on the Backup Options page, and click Next.
    Options for Exchange backup
  3. Now, select Custom on the Select Backup Configuration page and click Next.
    Select Exchange backup configuration
  4. On the Select Items for Backup page, click Add Items.
    Select Exchange items for backup
  5. Select the volume(s) to be backed up and click OK.
    Select Volumes for Exchange backup
  6. The selected volume gets added. Click on Advanced Settings.
    Items selected for Exchange backup
  7. Now go to VSS Settings tab, select VSS full backup and click OK and then click Next.
    VSS Settings for Exchange backup
    Note: To exclude file/folder from backup, go to the Exclusions tab; click Add Exclusion, and select the files or folders that are to be excluded from backup.
  8. Enter the location for storing the backup, on the Specify Destination Type page. Click Next.
    Destination for Exchange backup
  9. If you select Remote Shared Folder, the Specify Remote Folder page appears. Provide the necessary details and click Next.
    Specify Remote folder for Exchange backup
    Note: If you select Local Drives, the Select Backup Destination page appears, select one from the options available in Backup Destination dropdown and click Next.
  10. On the Confirmation page, verify the backup settings and click Backup.
    Exchange backup confirmation - Windows Server
  11. Now the backup process gets started. One can see its status on the Backup Progress page.
    Exchange backup in progress
  12. After the successful completion, the details of the backup are displayed.
    Successful Exchange backup

The Exchange data so backed up can be recovered using the Windows Server backup application when there is a requirement. We will discuss the procedure in the second part of the article.

To know more about Recover Exchange data from Windows Server backups – Part II