Backing up Active Directory in Windows 2000
Generally speaking, the backup of mission critical data is the most important part of any IT engineer’s job. While recovering the missing data is important, additional consideration needs to be given to getting the network framework back up and running quickly so that employees can get back to work, saving the company the added cost of lost man-hours. We also need to ensure that the network structure that gets restored is one that the employees are use to using. Those hours the company saved in lost productivity by getting the network back up and the data restored will be lost if the environment provided to the employees is unfamiliar and causes them to spend their time working inefficiently. Any precautions implemented by a company need to take into account these factors at the very least to ensure network stability. During the discussion of these topics in this paper we will first explore the various procedures and structures that make up a sound backup system, and then we will look what it takes to backup the network environment in a Windows 2000 domain.
Let’s take into consideration a situation where the hard drive on your corporation’s primary file server fails. You contact the manufacturer of the server and have a warranty replacement hard drive shipped out to replace the one that failed. The problem is that that replacement hard drive is not shipped with your company’s data on it, and therefore is not a comprehensive substitute for the drive you lost. The main reason for this is because data (unlike hardware) cannot be replaced once it is lost, unless precautions were taken ahead of time that takes into consideration the possible failure of that drive.
Safety measures are usually part of an overall corporate Disaster Recovery Plan (DRP). One of the procedures commonly included in such a plan is a backup of that server. A backup is a point-in-time copy or image of data, such as a file system, a database, or any data on a mounted logical device.” Creating backups of important data and mission-critical systems on a regular basis can help make sure that your data is protected from an unrecoverable hardware failure that could happen to your system. Typically, organizations will use a software package that will provide the “intelligence” to schedule, perform, and track backups; and also restore needed data. The first thing to do is to ask some basic questions in order to begin development of a backup strategy. These include:
What are the possible failure scenarios, and what would be considered an acceptable loss?
What type of backup should you perform, and how often should it be done?
What medium should you use?
Where is the critical data stored?
Can you perform the restore you need in a given situation?
The answer to each of these questions will help to determine what the mission critical data is, where it resides, and how you need to go about the job of backing it up so that you...