Remote or off-site backups are a great solution for those who wish to protect their WHS files from fire, flood or theft. This adds a great layer of redundancy in case of catastrophic loss. For WHS there are a few remote or on-line backup options out there (iDrive-E, Mozy, Carbonite) and some even offer a WHS console add-in (Jungle Disk, Keep Vault). But these services either charge a monthly or per GB fee, which can quickly get expensive! Also, your precious files are in the hands of some unknown holder. But there is another solution and all you need is your own remote web site server with some extra storage space.
Personally, I use Handy Backup on WHS to run a weekly FTP upload of “special” files to my remote web site server. This gives me a great layer of redundancy for no additional cost per month because I already pay a monthly fee for the web server. My web server is cheap! I use a company called BlueHost for my web site needs. It’s only $6.95 US a month and is cheaper still if you pay up front for a year. You get 300 GB of storage, 3000 GB of transfer and a free URL if you need one, plus a ton of extras. Heck, that’s better than many of the fee based backup options listed above! So, if you want a more economical and customizable remote backup solution for WHS…then this option may be for you. All it takes is a basic understanding of the FTP protocol, a cheap web host plan and an hour to set up Handy Backup on WHS.
This article lists the steps necessary to set Handy Backup to run as a WHS Service and backup files to your off site server via FTP. This will allow Handy Backup to run in the background without being logged into a user account. This setup can also be used to create backups within your network as well. This was tested on WHS RC1 and the OEM (RTM) versions during October 2007.
Step 1: Get the software
The software comes with a 30 day trial or you can buy it for about $39 US.
Don’t bother to pay the extra money for the Run as Service! You are going to do it manually for free! Handy 5.8.0 comes with a 30 day trial for the Run as Service. Again, you’re going to set it for free!
- Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools-Here
- Marcel’s AnyServiceInstaller Tool- Here
It’s a zip file, so you may want to get it on your PC, unzip and place the .exe in a share folder with the other three files.
Step 2: Install Software
- Log into WHS via Remote Desktop. Drag all three files from your share folder to the Desktop.
- Install the Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools.
- Install Handy Backup.
During installation, install links to the Start Menu and the Quick Launch Menu.
During installation, tell Handy to open when finished.
Once started click on File>Settings. At the top click General. Uncheck “Launch Agent at Windows Start Up” and “Show Splash Screen at System Startup.” This is to reduce the annoyance factor at logon time.
If you paid for your license, install your key so you don’t forget.
Close Handy Backup.
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