By Ivy / Last update May 16, 2022

User case

 

how do I create Windows file server backup?

"User wants to add the ability to have multiple backup versions of files/directories. Looking at going with a Drobo 5C for the file server DAS and then Second Copy for the program. Any thoughts, other recommendations for Windows file server backup best practices? I’m trying to stay as cheap as I can.  I’ve really liked the Drobos I’ve used, so I’m not as worried about the hardware piece, but any other recommendations for the software/setup side."

- Question from Reddit

Windows file server backup best practices

File server is similar to a network drive or NAS, which helps you store computer files for all departments within companies, including documents, sound files, photographs, movies, images, databases, etc. And all the priority users have constant access to specific files stored on the server computer. Besides, they are able to change or delete files on department servers, and sometimes this may lead to files being deleted or wrongly modified due to human error.

Without a Windows file server backup, the company may suffer the loss of critical business data. And it is subject to problems such as power failure, hardware failure, physical damage, etc. Thus, many users want the best practices for Windows file server backup.

Windows File Server Backup Best Practices

In fact, Microsoft provides you with built-in Windows Server Backup to backup files in Windows Server 2019 or other systems. However, you need to install FSRM (File Server Resource Manager) and File Server, create shared folder and map it to local drive in advance.

But if you know the network location, you can directly try third-party professional file backup software - AOMEI Backupper Server. It allows you backup files automatically and delete old backup image on a regular basis. 

Method 1: Directly create Windows Server 2019 file server backup

Here you will use AOMEI Backupper Server to create Windows file server backup in all Windows systems, including server 2003(R2)/2008(R2)/2012 (R2)/2016/2019/2022 and Windows XP/Vista/7/8/10/11. And you can enjoy many useful backup features in the following: 

Schedule Backup: It allows you to backup files in daily, weekly, monthly, or use Event trigger and USB plug in. More precisely, you can set backup date, time and intervals. 
Incremental and differential backup: Compared with full backup, incremental or differential backup only backup changed files and requires less backup time and disk space. And this software use normal compression and automatic splitting to further reduce disk space you will use. 
Automatic Backup Cleanup: It is the complete way to prevent the backup disk is full issue due to accumulted backups and limited space.
Other useful tools: It has the ability to create bootable USB or CD/DVD to boot computer when it fails.  If you don't have any storage device, try to create a recovery environment. 

And all the operations are based on intuitive interface, users can easily and quickly understand this software. Please download the free trial version to have a try! For continous data protection, it's suggested to upgrade server trail (70$ off) to the officiall. 

Download Free Trial Server 2008/2012/2016/2019/2022
Secure Download

(PS: this vesion only support limited PCs and servers. If you want to create Windows file server backup within company, try AOMEI Backupper Techncian or TechPlus edition.)

Step 1. Open the Windows file server backup software - AOMEI Backupper Server. Then, click Backup and File Backup subsequently.

File Backup

Step 2. Click Add FolderShare/ NAS > Add Share or NAS Devices subsequently to add network path. Then, type display name, IP address, username and password of your file server and click OK to access it.

Add File Or Folder

Then, you can add all the displayed folders for backup. If you don't have permission to it, you will be asked to type the network credentials.

Select Backup folder

Step 3. Click the folder-shapped button to choose a destination path to backup files on the file server. You can choose to backup files to external hard drive, USB flash drive, network drive or NAS etc.

Step 4. Confirm all things and click Start Backup to create Windows file server backup. In daily use, you need to set more advanced feature for continuous data protection.

✍ Options: It allows you to comment on task, enable email notification, set high compression level or customized splitting, etc.
Schedule Backup: It allows you to create a file backup task running daily, weekly, monthly, or use event triggers and USB plug in feature on the professional version.
Backup Scheme: It is able to set backup method among full backup, incremental or differential backup and cleanup methods (By quantity, By daily/weekly/monthly, By time) to delete old backup image automatically.

Select Backup Destination

Wait until the process is complete, you will have a copy of files on the Windows file server. You can restore files from backup if any files are deleted or corrupted.

If you don't create a file backup in advance, you can explore image with system backup, disk backup partition backup. It will create virtual partitions on the computer, then you can copy files in it and past to another location.

Explore Image

Method 2: Configure and perform Windows file server backup

File Server Resource Manager (FSRM) and Windows Server Backup can be a good choice to backup files in Windows Server 2019, but the process is a little complicated. Thus, please follow the steps below carefully. 

Note: File Server was installed by default on Windows Server 2012 and later, but the FSRM is not. You need to install FSRM if you want to backup files with it. 

Part 1: Install FSRM and File Server

Step 1. Open Server Manager and then choose Add Roles and Features from the Manage menu.

Step 2. Expand File and Storage Services role>File and iSCSI Services File Server Resource Manager. If you do not install file server, you need to select File Server first and then others features.

Select Server Roles

Part 2: Configure file server sharing

Step 1. Open File and Storage Services and click Servers, you will see the detailed information of your file server. 

File Server Server 2012(R2).jpg

Step 2.Click the Task menu and select New Share option. Then, follow the New Share Wizard to configure file server sharing. 

Tasks and New Share

Step 3. Go the destination location and properties window of shared folder. Then, select Sharing tab and check its network path.

Verify Your Share Folder

Part 3: Perform Windows file server backup via Map network drive

Step 1. Navigate to This PC Computer Map network drive and click it to open the Map network drive window. 

Step 2. Specify a drive letter for your file server and type the network location of shared folder. Then, click OK and Finish subsequently.

Map Netowrk Drive

Step 3. Open Windows Server Backup in the Server Manager and backup files in Windows Server 2019 with it.

Conclusion

Both AOMEI Backupper Server and Windows Server Backup can help  you create Windows file server backup successfully, but the latter is complicated. And its schedule settings are limited to daily or more than once a day.  Besides, the retention policy is not working after the disk space is less than 1/8.

Whether you want to simple way or feature-rich file backup software, AOMEI Backupper Server will be a great option. It provides you with 5 schedule backup, 3 backup and cleanup methods, etc. If you want to keep original structure of files, try sync feature. It not only sync network files to local drive, but also sync local folder to Google Drive. And it makes all these tasks can be done easily and effectively.