Help! UrBackup Server Disaster Plan


Hello Everyone,

I been using URBACKUP from about a year and it’s awesome compare to any backup software in market.

from while i was trying to figure out how to have 2 copies of backup 1 in urbackup server and 1 in ext drive, just to be in safe side if in case i lose data from one place, but unluckily couldn’t find any right or good information anywhere in web and here in forum.

Current Network structure
Clients : Windows 7 and 10
Total Clients: about 50

Tried using anther Urbackup server in anther computer and backing up the primary urbackup drive, but it takes ages and mostly it fails.

Tried other programs like freefilesync, QtdSync , hardlinks, but can’t find how to do incremental backup. Hardlinks is the best one so far saves storage but issue with incremental backup.

Hoping if anyone have any Disaster plan.

UrBackup backup server disaster recovery


For me, what works the best is to backup directly to the two servers at once.
Not exactly at the same time, but still directly to the two servers.
Do not try to backup the urbackup server, tell the agent t backup to two different servers.

Either set one local , one internet if you want offsite or two local servers.
For this either copy the keys from one server to another so it s zero setup on the client or add the two different server keys to the clients.


Hi there,

i am not aware that UrBackup supports that. What about using task scheduler to make robocopys with /b in backupmode? Haven’t heard if that is possible or causes any troubles.


Robocopy doesn’t understand hardlinks, so 300GB of backups turns into 3,000GB of storage used pretty quickly, even with the /SL flag. Those are real numbers because I just tried something like that to rescue a set of backups from a failed hard drive and gave up after several different tries. Right now I’m using the migrate_storage_to function (UrBackup Admin Guide v2.2, section 10.8) to copy what it can, and it’s a lot faster too.


In the manual it is stated “The migration functionality is only suited for migration and not for e.g. mirroring the backups”. Does it not delete the content of the old backup path?

In the Webinterface there is a setting to use symlinks. Doesn’t this resolve the issue?



I am always advocating volume level replication when this comes up. Windows has some options for that as well.
For example you can install another UrBackup Server and then make image backups of your UrBackup Server volume to this other server.


thank you @orogor for your input. i would give it a go.


I hope you doing great, i tried creating imgae backup for a urbackup server to onther one urbackup server. again it takes ages and failed manytime.

Now I’m trying Urbackup in freeNas.


Another option might be to run the urbackup server inside a virtual machine and then backup the virtual machine. That would be an easy way to get a block-level backup of the urbackup server.


that would be a good option but if you have data for 6-8TB i don’t think that would be a good idea. I’m going to test Urbackup in FreeNAS jail. I’ll update.


I’m doing it with a 10TB urbackup server with no problem.


Oh great, would you tell me what’s your setup like…? So i can look into it more, and also how does incremental or differential backup works in VM machines …? if it works well for you would be great if you can put some lights on it for us.

thank you


I’m using VMware ESXi as the hypervisor OS and Nakivo to perform “forever-incremental” backups.


I run Urbackup in FreeNAS jail with 34TB used in a 48TB array (8x8TB raidz2-0). Two different volumes on two different SAS arrays (one internal drives, one external tower), and zfs replicating the volume from internal to external.

Haven’t tested in a while, but for disaster recovery (MB/CPU failure) I can pull the SAS external card and external enclosure and put into a new machine, take one of the mirrored USB freenas drives and boot, mount the jail with the replicated zvol and keep on rolling while I repair/rebuild…at least that’s the plan :slight_smile:


@silversword thank you so much for your input, now I’m confiended that it will work, i couldn’t find any correct and complete information about.

My Setup

  1. A machine with freeNAS jail
  2. Single drive for FreeNas OS
  3. Raid 1 Mirroring (no hardware raid)

Would you be able to put some detailed light on this, like what’s your setup like. do and do not bits. (if possible)

Many thanks


Many have skirted the OP’s question.

Run a second copy of Urbackup server on some other hardware, or a virtual machine, and do cross image backups of the two servers boot drives. Not the Urbackup data store.

Don’t try to backup a Urbackup data store in any manor.
The hard links will make a total mess of it.

If you lose a data store drive. Replace it and let Urbackup refill it with new backups.
If you lose the boot drive. Replace it and restore the image from the other machine running the other copy of Urbackup server.

Two Urbackup servers. Each server backs up all workstations, and the other server, with a specific exclusion for the other servers backup store. Two backups of each workstation and one backup of each backup server.

There is no way that you will ever be able to make a copy of the folder that Urbackup uses to store its backup data into.

That’s just the poor state of how windows treats hard links.
To windows, hard links are god, and windows has absolutely no way to ask you what to do with hard links.
Copy the hard link only, copy the file that the hard link points to only or copy both the hard link and the file pointed to by the hard link.

Hope this helps.
Copy won’t work. Xcopy wont work. Robocopy won’t work.


…under windows and NTFS you are correct. NTFS is not a COW-style filesystem. You could theoretically use the mirroring function of a Dynamic drive for a two-drive based mirror but I’ve found the Windows software mirror with any non/safe restart will almost always trigger a resync process aka windows software RAID is crap. Windows a duplication of the UrBackup Data path is nigh-impossible unless you’re taking an image snapshot of the data volume that supports hardlinks.

However if you’re on file system based on the COW principle like ZFS/BTFRS you can replicate (specific or scheduled) point-in-time snapshots of the filesystem to other volumes/drives maintaining all it’s hardlinks seamlessly. It’s why everyone is slowly moving to a COW based system (AFS under apple is COW based as well). It’s what is classified as a “modern” filesystem because of it’s advanced feature set with pooling/snapshots/checksum validation etc.

The OP’s original post listed a Windows UrBackup server, but then he said he was going to test with a FreeNAS jail…so two zvol’s that are replicating from internal drive to external drive on FreeNAS are possible (of course FreeNAS you should run with ECC RAM, min 8GB, with a 6TB zvol more like 16GB)


First if you’re running Freenas:

  1. Install on a 16-32GB USB drive that’s setup to mirror with a 2nd USB drive for failover. This is your boot device (or you can use an SSD)
  2. You need a motherboard with ECC RAM. 8GB is the minimum RAM FreeNAS. Have an extra 1GB of RAM for every 1TB of storage…so 16GB RAM absolute minimum for a 6TB storage array. Since you’re doing a 2nd array, and a jail: 32GB RAM would be much safer.
  3. Initialize your internal storage, usually single zvol with however many disks (keep it under 8 till you understand ZFS: read )
  4. Initialize a 2nd zvol on your external storage device (I’d avoid USB, use an external enclosure connected with a SAS expander)
  5. Create a replication task to replicate the snapshots of the UrBackup Jail data volume between the internal and external volumes. While you’re setting up replication replicate your jail volume as well.

New to FreeNAS review this: