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Hello, this is Yang. Today let’s talk about data protection. Depending on your needs, Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials provides various backup solutions to make sure that your data is safe and recoverable.
Combining the two backup methods and Shadow Copies, you could have less frequent backups of the entire server to an external hard disk, and more frequent backups of the most critical business data to Windows Azure.
You can download and install the latest version of the Windows Azure Backup integration module from the Home page of the Dashboard, or directly from here. This version can be installed on a server running Windows Server 2012 Essentials, Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials, or Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard with the Windows Server Essentials Experience role turned on. In this latest version, we made some UI improvements:
By combining the two backup methods, you could protect data on Windows 7 clients with Client Computer Backup, and protect data on Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 with File History.
To simplify the bare metal restore scenario, we implemented the Client Restore Service, which will enable Windows Deployment Services (WDS) on the Windows Server Essentials server and configure the client restore image as a boot image. With the Client Restore Service turned on, the administrator can initiate a Pre-Boot Execution Environment (PXE) boot on a client computer by using a network interface to launch the Client Restore Wizard and restore the client computer. There’s no need to prepare a client restore DVD (actually this is not available for Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials), or a client restore USB bootable key.
In Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials, the client restore image is built by customizing a WinPE (Windows Pre-install Environment) image on the server. When you turn on the Client Restore Service or build the USB bootable key for the first time, the wizard will try to find the WinPE image on the server. If it cannot find it, the administrator is prompted to download it from a link that is provided, or you can download and install the WinPE image directly from here.
In Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials, the File History settings dialog box is now on the Users tab. An administrator can keep File History management ON for those users who have important profile data to ensure that those users’ data is well protected.
To reduce the time needed for rebuilding a Windows 8.1 client, we introduced a File History restore feature. When a domain user signs in to a new Windows 8.1 client that is connected to an Essentials server for the first time, the user has a chance to restore all the profile data from the existing File History backups on the server to the new computer. This feature helps the user more easily replace his/her client computer while continuing to work with the same profile data.
We hope you enjoyed the improvements in Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials. As always, please get started by downloading the trial today and joining the conversation on our forum.