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What is Windows Server Backup?
Windows Server Backup (WSB) is the built-in backup and recovery tool for Windows Server environments. It begins with Windows Server 2008 as the replacement of NTBackup. You can use Windows Server Backup to back up a full server (all volumes), selected volumes, or the system state. Consisting of a Microsoft Management Console (MMC) snap-in and a command-line utility (wbadmin.exe), it enables you to use Windows Server Backup command lines to create backups easily.
Although it provides a basic backup solution for Windows Server users especially for small business owners, you may be disappointed by its limitations sometimes. Therefore, you’d better figure out Windows Server Backup limitations before you rely on it to protect the system and all your precious data.
Windows Server Backup crucial limitations you must know
Here I’m going to talk about several major limitations of WSB:
1. Windows Server Backup 2 TB limit
In Windows Server 2008 (R2), WSB backs up volumes to virtual hard disk (VHD) files, each VHD file for a volume in the backup. The VHD file has a 2 TB file size limit, so volumes larger than 2 TB cannot be backed up. However, in Windows Server 2012 and latter versions of Windows Server, Microsoft has introduced VHDX files that support storing Windows backup larger than 2 TB.
2. Windows Server Backup limit number of backups/copies
WSB owns the automatic disk space management feature. This feature deletes old backups automatically when it detects there is insufficient space for new backups. As a result, the number of backups kept by WSB is limited. Nevertheless, it will not shrink the storage space allocated for snapshots to less than 1/8 of target volume size, so you may find Windows Server Backup not deleting old backups sometimes.
3. Items to backup
You can only select entire volumes to backup, not individual files and folders. Furthermore, you can only select local volumes to backup, not network shares.
4. Destination drive
You can’t write backups to tape using WSB. Moreover, you will need a separate, dedicated disk for running scheduled backups, not just a partition.
5. Backup schedule
The Backup Schedule Wizard of WSB offers only two options: “Once a day” and “More than once a day”. If you want to perform Windows Server backup schedule weekly/monthly, you have to resort to Task Scheduler.
6. Monitoring and reporting
WSB offers neither the centralized monitoring ability for monitoring large numbers of servers nor the automated email reports about the backup status.
Now you know Windows Server 2016/2012/2008 backup limitations. How to overcome the limitations of Windows Server Backup? What you need is powerful server backup software which is superior to WSB.
Best Windows Server Backup alternative for all server systems
AOMEI Backupper Server, specialized backup software for server, can be the best Windows Server Backup alternative. It is embedded with multiple features to meet all your demands concerning server backups:
Wanna have a try? Just click the button below to download AOMEI Backupper Server 30-day free trial.
Now follow the steps below to schedule a system state backup and enable automatic disk space management via AOMEI Backupper:
Step 1. Install and launch AOMEI Backupper. Click on “Backup” and select “System Backup”.
Step 2. The required system partition(s) is (are) selected by default. Choose the destination path to store the backup files.
Step 3. Click “Schedule Backup” in the left bottom, and then choose “Enable Schedule Backup” to set the frequency of the system backup to run.
Step 4. In the Schedule window, click “Backup Scheme” from the left panel.
- Backup Method: you can choose to run full/incremental/differential backups.
- Enable Automatic Backup Cleanup: choose one cleanup rule from the drop-down menu. “By quantity”, “By time”, “By daily/weekly/monthly”, and “By space” are provided.
Step 5. Confirm the operations and click “Start Backup”.
✐Bonus tip: how to backup system to a recovery partition
Usually, after creating a system image backup, you will be asked to create a bootable media so as to boot computer when it fails. It is very useful in such case, but you can use an easier way to create both of them simultaneously - it's using one key recovery software AOMEI OneKey Recovery.
If you select the recommended backup option - "Backup system to AOMEI OneKey Recovery Partition", it will create a recovery partition but not specify a drive letter, thus greatly reducing the risk of mistaken deletion. Also, it adds a boot option to Windows Boot Manager and specifies a fast key to access it for system recovery.
To sum up
Figuring out Windows Server Backup limitations can help you manage this tool better. If you are disappointed by all the limitations, you can use the best alternative AOMEI Backupper Server. AOMEI Backupper not only overcomes the shortcomings of WSB but also offers you more advanced functions. You can use it to clone hard drive on Server 2016 and create Server 2019 bootable USB. Go for AOMEI Backupper right now!