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From my simple mind to… mine…

Home Backup Strategy

with 2 comments

I have wanted to setup a home backup strategy for a while. Buying my Windows Home Server was the first step.

The HP Media Server is a fairly small server, designed to sit on a home bookshelf. I picked the 500 MB version, since the 1 TB version includes two 500 MB SATA drives, and I wanted to expand the server myself as my data needs grew.

Here’s a picture of the media server next to my other home server, for scale:


It’s pretty small. The server itself is basically a disk storage array, for storing home photos, music, videos, and backing up all your local data. It comes with a client that you install on every desktop or laptop that you want managed by the Home Server.

Once installed, the computer will show up on the Home Server console. The backup status of the computers are tracked:


As you can see, the first computer is currently off line, and hasn’t been backed up in 21 days and so the network status is set to critical. On my day to day computer, this status is reflected in a status tray application.


All this is great, and once the first computer comes back online it should be backed up to the Home Server automatically.

Backing up the Home Server

To back up the Home Server itself, I chose to use Carbonite‘s online backup system. This will backup the Home Server data onto a "trusted" repository in the Internet cloud.

Normally, I would choose Mozy, because with Carbonite I’m unable to back ALL the files on the system. System files are excluded with Carbonite. However, Home Server partitions the backup data nicely, I have the original install disks, and I don’t plan to use the Home Server for anything more than backing up data so this is not a problem. If the Home Server crashes, I should be able to restore the server and reinstall everything from Carbonite without much trouble.

Final Solution

The final backup solution looks like this:




Written by Nelson

February 24, 2008 at 4:24 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

2 Responses

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  1. Nelson: Re Carbonite, you made a mistake in your blog. Carbonite can back up any file, including system files. They’re not included in the default backup for obvious reasons, but you can right click on any file or folder and select “Back this up” or “Back up any file of this type” and Carbonite will do exactly that.

    Dave Friend
    CEO, Carbonite, Inc.

    David Friend

    February 26, 2008 at 8:49 pm

  2. David,

    I guess you’ll have to show that to me. I right clicked on my Windows directory and no Carbonite. But you’re correct on every other folder that I looked at.

    BTW, that’s pretty much what I meant.


    Nelson Montalvo

    February 26, 2008 at 11:14 pm

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