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Recovery Manager for AD Disaster Recovery Edition 10.1.1 - User Guide

Overview Getting started
Permissions required to use Recovery Manager for Active Directory Recovery Manager Console Getting and using help Configuring Windows Firewall Using Computer Collections Managing Recovery Manager for Active Directory configuration Licensing
Backing up data
Permissions required for the Backup operation Managing Backup Agent Using a least-privileged user account to back up data Using Managed Service Accounts Active Directory backups vs Windows System State backups Creating BMR and Active Directory backups Using the Backup Wizard Retrying backup creation Enabling backup encryption Backing up AD LDS (ADAM) Backing up cross-domain group membership Backing up distributed file system (DFS) data Backup scheduling Setting performance options Setting advanced backup options Using Forest Recovery Agent Unpacking backups Using e-mail notification Viewing backup creation results
Restoring data
Getting started with Active Directory recovery Managing deleted or recycled objects Restoring backed up Active Directory components Integration with Change Auditor for Active Directory Using granular online restore Restoring AD LDS (ADAM) Selectively restoring Active Directory object attributes Restoring objects in an application directory partition Restoring object quotas Restoring cross-domain group membership Performing a restore without having administrator privileges Reports about objects and operations Using complete offline restore Offline restore implications Restoring SYSVOL authoritatively Performing a granular restore of SYSVOL Recovering Group Policy Restoring data from third-party backups Using the Extract Wizard Restoring passwords and SID history
Full Replication Consolidating backup registration data Monitoring Recovery Manager for Active Directory Recovering an Active Directory forest
Forest recovery overview Deploying Recovery Manager for Active Directory Forest Edition (Disaster Recovery Edition) Permissions required to use Forest Recovery Console Forest Recovery Console Managing a recovery project Recovery methods Phased recovery Managing Forest Recovery Agent Rebooting domain controllers manually Resetting DSRM Administrator Password Purging Kerberos Tickets Managing the Global Catalog servers Managing FSMO roles Manage DNS Client Settings Configuring Windows Firewall Developing a custom forest recovery plan Backing up domain controllers Assigning a preferred DNS server during recovery Handling DNS servers during recovery Forest recovery approaches Deciding which backups to use Running custom scripts while recovering a forest Overview of steps to recover a forest Viewing forest recovery progress Viewing recovery plan Viewing a report about forest recovery or verify settings operation Handling failed domain controllers Adding a domain controller to a running recovery operation Selectively recovering domains in a forest Recovering SYSVOL Deleting domains during recovery Resuming an interrupted forest recovery Recovering read-only domain controllers (RODCs) Checking forest health Collecting diagnostic data for technical support
Restore Active Directory on Clean OS Bare metal forest recovery Using Management Shell Creating virtual test environments Using Recovery Manager for Active Directory web portal Appendices
Frequently asked questions Best practices for using Computer Collections Technical characteristics Best practices for creating backups Best practices for creating backups for forest recovery Best practices for recovering a forest Descriptions of recovery or verification steps Ports Used by Recovery Manager for Active Directory Forest Edition (Disaster Recovery Edition) Backup Wizard Online Restore Wizard Online Restore Wizard for AD LDS (ADAM) Group Policy Restore Wizard Repair Wizard Extract Wizard Events generated by Recovery Manager for Active Directory Descriptions of PowerShell commands
Add-RMADBackup Add-RMADCollectionItem Add-RMADFEComputer Add-RMADReplicationConsole Add-RMADStorageServer Backup-RMADCollection Close-RMADFEProject Compare-RMADObject Convert-RMADBackup ConvertTo-RMADRecycledObject Create-RMADStorageManagementAgentSetup Expand-RMADBackup Export-RMADBackup Export-RMADFERecoveryCertificate Export-RMADFEResult Get-RMADBackup Get-RMADBackupAgent Get-RMADBackupInfo Get-RMADBackupObject Get-RMADBackupSecurityStatus Get-RMADCollection Get-RMADCollectionItem Get-RMADDeletedObject Get-RMADFEComputer Get-RMADFEConsole Get-RMADFEDnsCache Get-RMADFEDomain Get-RMADFEEvent Get-RMADFEGlobalOptions Get-RMADFEOperation Get-RMADFEPersistenceConnection Get-RMADFEProject Get-RMADFERecoveryAgent Get-RMADFESchedule Get-RMADGlobalOptions Get-RMADLicenseInfo Get-RMADObject Get-RMADReplicationConsole Get-RMADReplicationSchedule Get-RMADReplicationSession Get-RMADReplicationSessionItem Get-RMADReportObject Get-RMADReportObjectAttributes Get-RMADReportObjectChildren Get-RMADReportSession Get-RMADSession Get-RMADSessionItem Get-RMADSessionItemEvent Get-RMADStorageServers Import-RMADBackup Import-RMADFERecoveryCertificate Install-RMADBackupAgent Install-RMADFERecoveryAgent New-RMADCollection New-RMADFEProject New-RMADFERecoveryMedia New-RMADSchedule Open-RMADFEProject Publish-RMADBackupSecurityStatus Remove-RMADBackup Remove-RMADBackupAgent Remove-RMADCollection Remove-RMADCollectionItem Remove-RMADFEComputer Remove-RMADFERecoveryAgent Remove-RMADFESchedule Remove-RMADReplicationConsole Remove-RMADReplicationSchedule Remove-RMADReplicationSession Remove-RMADStorageServer Remove-RMADUnpackedComponent Rename-RMADCollection Restore-RMADDeletedObject Restore-RMADDomainController Restore-RMADObject Resume-RMADFERecovery Save-RMADFEProject Set-RMADCollection Set-RMADFEComputer Set-RMADFEDnsCache Set-RMADFEDomain Set-RMADFEGlobalOptions Set-RMADFEPersistenceConnection Set-RMADFERecoveryMode Set-RMADFESchedule Set-RMADGlobalOptions Set-RMADReplicationConsole Set-RMADReplicationSchedule Start-RMADFERecovery Start-RMADFEVerification Start-RMADReplication Start-RMADReportViewer Stop-RMADFEWorkflow Update-RMADBackupAgent Update-RMADFEProject Update-RMADLicense

Active Directory backups vs Windows System State backups

The Active Directory and Windows System State backups are very similar. The key components that Recovery Manager for Active Directory backs up as part of the AD system state are the Registry, the NTDS.dit file, and SYSVOL.

What differences do they have?

  • Windows System State backup is a full backup of the Windows operating system; Active Directory backup contains only pieces of Active Directory that allow you to restore the domain controller on a clean operating system.

  • Windows System State backups contain more components - not all of these components are necessary for Active Directory recovery, e.g. IIS Metabase, Cluster Services, etc.

  • Windows System State backup may contain viruses in the components of the operating system.

  • Windows System State backups are larger than Active Directory backups.

For the list of Windows System State backup components, see Microsoft documentation.

Recovery Manager for Active Directory enables the backup and restoration of the following Active Directory components on domain controllers:

  • DIT Database


  • Registry, including all registry hives and the file NTUSER.DAT

Recovery Manager for Active Directory Disaster Recovery Edition also supports BMR backups. With BMR backups, you can completely rebuild the server if necessary. For more details, refer Bare metal forest recovery.


Creating BMR and Active Directory backups

Recovery Manager for Active Directory allows you to create backups of system-specific data known as the Active Directory and BMR backups. Note that Recovery Manager for Active Directory creates Active Directory backups for Active Directory domain controllers only.


If you are going to store backups on the Recovery Manager Console machine, check that the Administrative Share "DriveLetter$" exists and is accessible on this host. Otherwise, the backup operation will fail. For more information, see Installing Backup Agent automatically.

You can use Computer Collections to create backups for multiple computers. For more information, see Using Computer Collections.


Creating Active Directory backup


When the backup is triggered and any specified backup path is not available, no backup is created, neither in the DC storage nor in the Console storage. The backup creation session will fail.

To create backups of all computers in a Computer Collection
  1. In the console tree, select a Computer Collection, and then click Create Backup on the Action menu.

  2. If prompted, confirm the operation.

You can also use the Backup Wizard to start a backup job:

  1. In the console tree, click the root node, and then click Create Backup on the Action menu.

  2. Follow the instructions in the Backup Wizard.

  3. On the When to Back Up page click Now, and then click Next.

  4. Click Advanced to view backup options. You can modify the options as needed. When finished, click OK to close the Properties dialog box.

  5. Click Finish to start the backup job.


By default, the wizard uses the default settings. You can view and modify the default settings using the Collection Defaults command that appears on the Action menu when you select the Computer Collections node in the console tree.

With the Backup Wizard, backup jobs can be scheduled to run at a specific time. For more information, see Scheduling backup creation subsection of Task scheduler overview.

While a backup job is running, you can examine the progress of the operation and, if needed, stop the backup job. After a backup job is completed, you can view backup creation results:

  1. In the console tree, click Sessions.

  2. In the details pane, click the backup-creation session, and then click Properties on the Action menu.

  3. In the Properties dialog box, click the Progress tab, and examine the displayed information.

  4. By clicking Abort on the Progress tab, you can stop the selected session.


Creating BMR backup

  • This feature is supported only for Windows Server 2008 R2 or higher domain controllers.

  • Active Directory does not allow using a backup whose age exceeds the Active Directory tombstone lifetime (default is 180 days). But if there is a RMAD BMR backup that is older than 180 days and a more recent Active Directory backup, you can successfully perform the restore operation.

  • If the process of creating a Windows Server 2008 R2 BMR backup completes with the error like "The sector size of the physical disk on which the virtual disk resides is not supported.", make sure that the disk sector size on the target machine (NAS device or similar) is equal to 512 bytes.

For instance, NetApp ONTAP operating system uses the following command: vserver cifs options modify -file-system-sector-size 512.

To create a BMR backup
  1. Create a computer collection.

  2. Right-click the computer collection, and then click Properties to open the Computer Collection Properties dialog box.

  3. On the Agent Settings tab, select the option Use the following account to access Backup Agent and specify account credentials. In Recovery Manager for Active Directory, this account is used both to connect to the Backup Agent and to access the backup storage if you do not specify a separate account for the backup share on the DC Storage tab. For more details, see Usage of backup access credentials.


  4. On the DC Storage tab, select the option Save backups on the backed up DC or a UNC share and enter the backup path. You need to specify path to the SMB share in the following format (%DATETIME% variable is required ): \\RemoteHost\ShareName\%COMPUTERNAME%\%DATETIME%.

  5. On the Backup tab, select the Full (Bare Metal Recovery) backup type. Now only system critical volumes are included in the BMR backup by default. For information on how to include additional volumes into a BMR backup, see below in this article.

    Select the Encrypt and protect backups with password option to encrypt BMR backups and protect them with a password (Recommended). This password is used to generate a passphrase with which the backup is encrypted. The password cannot be used directly to unlock the backup container *.vhd(x) file.


If a customer restores encrypted volumes from a backup, the volumes are restored as unencrypted.


  1. Right-click the collection node and click Create Backup.

Including additional volumes to a BMR backup


Now only system critical volumes are included in the BMR backup by default, e.g. Active Directory database volume, SYSVOL volume, OS volume, etc.

To include additional volume on several domain controllers
  1. Create the following registry key on the selected domain controller, or check if the key already exists in the directory:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Quest\Recovery Manager for Active Directory

  1. Add the following string value under this registry key:

Name: WindowsBackupCommandLine

Data: wbadmin start backup -allcritical -quiet -backuptarget:"%s" -include:E:,G:

Where "E:,G:" - drives that will be included into the BMR backup.

To include additional volume on all domain controllers

On the Recovery Manager Console machine, add the new string value under both these registry keys:

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Quest\Recovery Manager for Active Directory

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Quest\Recovery Manager for Active Directory

Name: WindowsBackupCommandLine

Data: wbadmin start backup -allcritical -quiet -backuptarget:"%s" -include:E:,G:

Where "E:,G:" - drives that will be included into the BMR backup.


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