Server 2008 Complete PC Restore

By rlynch@lockhartcadillac. ·
I had a dell server running 2008 server sp2 that we were using as a file share. It really doesn???t have a whole lot within those shares. The server was running with two drives in a raid 1 setup, and took a whole backup using the server 2008 backup utility every night. The server itself has died, but I happen to have a server very similar in hardware to swap it out with. It only has one drive, so non raid setup. I have the server 2008 backup on an external drive and booting to server 2008 setup using a thumb drive. When I boot the new server up with the thumb drive, I am able to get to ???Complete PC Restore??? however it looks like it always reads my thumb drive as the C drive, so when trying to restore from the back up on the external hard drive, it fails because the thumb drive is seen as the c drive and its 8GB. Is it best practice to boot from the server 2008 cd to do a complete restore. Can you restore a complete backup even if the raid config isn???t the same, obviously as long as the new hard drive as big as the previous. Thanks in advance for any help???

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If I understand this correctly

by robo_dev In reply to Server 2008 Complete PC R ...

You're trying to prevent having to reinstall the OS on the new server?

The short answer is no, that won't work because the hardware-abstraction-layer (HAL) of the OS, which includes the specific disk controller drivers, cannot be changed. The kernel-mode drivers must match the hardware.

If, for example, the replacement server had EXACTLY the same bios, motherboard, and disk controller, you could just pop the hard drive into the other box. But typically the HDD controller is slightly different, and the result is a nasty BSOD when Windows launches.

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couple of articles that might help

by CG IT In reply to Server 2008 Complete PC R ...

I've never done it so I don't know if the above will work. Last time I worked on a 1 server business that the server died, the answer is find and buy the parts to get the hardware working, restore the server and AD, while the company bought new hardware. Then migrate FMSO roles to new hardware.

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The only product I've seen work for this...

by 88Fan In reply to Server 2008 Complete PC R ...

Is Acronis Server Backup with the Universal Restore add on pack, but you'd have to have been using before the server died to be useful.

You can get further information at May be a good idea for the future at this point, and possibly an easy sell to accounting or whoever has to approve the expenditure.

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Got it, thanks for the help

I am using two servers with pretty much the same hardware. However when restoring the full windows backup image while booting from thumb drive, it wouldnt do the restore, something about not liking that thumbdrive in the mix. I read in other forums of people having same issue. As soon as I booted from server 2008 cd instead of the bootable thumb drive, I was able to restore the windows image that was made from server 2008 backup. Needed to install a couple drivers since the hardware isnt exactly the same, but os loaded just fine. Seems like as long as the hardware is too disimilar, its possible. Thanks again.

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