How to safely backup UrBackup server's state and data running on Windows Server?

Hi :slight_smile:

We are using UrBackup Server to backup the Windows- and Linux-clients in our little network. The server is a Windows server (2012 R2) and we would like to use its own backup software to backup the server itself - along with UrBackup’s client backups.

My question: How can I make sure that the server’s backup of UrBackup’s data (state of database and backed up data) is consistent / does not get corrupted during the backup of the server? Does UrBackup work well with Windows Backup (which is issuing a set of events whille it is running)? Or is there a commandline that might be used to freeze UrBackup server with a consistent state when the backup of the server starts and to unfreeze it after the server backup has finished?

In any case: A big thank you for this awesome software!

Microsoft’s native backup relies on VSS for maintaining a consistent state during backups.

I don’t think there will be a major issue in the backups.

I think you will want to consider (and test) how you would leverage such a backup in the event of restoring an UrBackup instance, though.


Dear ASB,
thank you for your reply :slight_smile:
My concerns regarding a standard backup are
1st: If started automatically the backup of the UrBackup data could be in an intermediate state (with running / non finished client backups).
2nd: UrBackup uses hardlinks (for deduplication) and I don’t know if these can be backuped and restored safely.
I’m no expert system administrator. Currently I’m doing windows backups of UrBackups data after I made sure that there are no client backups running and after I stopped the UrBackup server process (for the duration of the backup).
Best regards.

Provided you stop the UrBackup service whilst snapshots are created & use an image backup, Windows, UrBackup (using a separate server) or another third party imaging solution, will all backup the UrBackup server & data storage in a consistent manner.

Hello Bearded_Blunder and thank you for your reply.
Well - I’m stopping the UrBackup service whilst backing up the whole server - but currently I’m using Windows Backup on a Win 2012 R2 Server for this. I don’t know if that handles hard links correctly (as a disk image backup would probably do).
Best regards.

Am aware this is an old (but recently resurrected) thread, and some parts have been answered, but…

[quote=“Marvin-42, post:1, topic:9161”]
The server is a Windows server (2012 R2) and we would like to use its own backup software to backup the server itself - along with UrBackup’s client backups.

My question: How can I make sure that the server’s backup of UrBackup’s data (state of database and backed up data) is consistent / does not get corrupted during the backup of the server?[/quote]

If you use the WSB in the Windows OS, then it will use volume shadow copy (VSS) to take a point-in-time snapshot of the server and its configured drives - this can depend on how WSB is set up, but presuming that you’re doing a file backup for now…

With the “picture” of what is on the server in that moment, it then backs the snapshot up, and that is what it has got…

The main things to be considered are:

  • Backing up backups, as this can cause exponential growth if you are backing up everything with both solutions
  • Do not have both running (actively backing up) at the same time or it can throw oddities in that may cause more issues than you are trying to solve
  • Type of backups can modify the archive bit, potentially meaning that a file doesn’t get captured in one backup if the other backup application has cleared the archive bit - there are four types of file backups: 1. Full 2. Copy. 3. Incremental. 4. Differential
    ** Full and Incremental backups reset the archive bit on the files (Full backs it up regardless, incremental only captures things with the archive bit set) while Copy and Differential jobs leave the archive bit alone (again, Copy captures it regardless, and Differential only gets the files with archive set)


Have got my own UrBackup server running in Linux, and it backs up the first two drives (operating system and data) onto a third drive (UrBackup repository) and have a secondary backup application to capture the first three drives onto a fourth - though this is only set to retain two versions, as it is only there in case UrBackup’s drive fails really…

I’m using 2012 R 2 myself, while I don’t use the built in backup much, & haven’t pointed it at UrBackup’s storage, it certainly has no problems handling hard links when imaging Windows system partitions.

Hello OnlyMe - and thank you for your answer :slight_smile:
Have you ever tried to restore the UrBackup state from your secondary backup application (btw.: are you doing image-backups or “normal” backups [incremental or differential])?
Best regards

That sounds promising.
In my setup, the UrBackup storage is a NAS that is accessed via iSCSI. So access on the block level should be possible (if I understood that correctly) and backup/restore of hard links might work there as well (I hope).
Thank you again for your answers.

Hi, and no, haven’t tried doing a restore from the secondary backup yet - though that is as much as it is only a very recent addition, and have yet to confirm it is capturing as expected…

Given that this is only for me, and my own computers, and does include backups of my website a few times a day (for when I play webadmin every so often, and want it to catch page changes as I go) it isn’t really that critical as my computers will still be running…

It was only when my server got knocked over and one of the four drives failed that I gave it any consideration…but it had captured all of the media (3 TB) that had been on the drive, and recovered it all successfully…


Have a combination of file backups for all, and also image backups for the Windows machines…and while I believe that UrBackup’s file backups may/can be “incremental forever” type, but I have generally it set to do a weekly full backup for all with incrementals between for all but the UrBackup host server, which does a daily every day…

My host is running Linux and has, as mentioned previously, got a total of four drives in it…

In case you (or anyone else reading this) isn’t aware, the way that Linux accesses the other/extra drives is via a symbolic link or mount…

  • To explain this in the way that Windows users would understand, this is basically creating a folder on the C: drive and using Disk Management to mount the extra drive in the new folder, repeating for as many drives as you have/need to add…

That’s what we hope for :slight_smile:
My clients get backed up daily too - and that works very well. From time to time I do a restore of some files and haven’t seen any problem so far.
My original question was just about a backup of the backups for keeping it off site - in case the house burns down or something like that (in that case I would loose the clients and the local backups at the same time).

Oh, have regularly browsed the backups in the web interface and checked files…and have done a restore a couple of times: once, as mentioned above, for a drive failure; the other, earlier, instance was to recover data from an OneDrive or offline files cache that was giving me permissions issues when done on the computer.

Never had to do an image restore with UrBackup yet - have done a fair few with other backup solutions for work, but those have been fine - should probably get a USB restore environment set up, but until I have a need to, have got other/better things to be doing with my time…and that is the joy of UrBackup, it has demonstrated its worth already, so has given me the relaxed feeling that all us SysAdmins want…

For the records, there’s a similar discussion in Backing up the backup