Monday, April 10, 2017

How to backup Windows workstations with Vembu BDR

As time goes by, you may have noticed that accidents happen, especially when it comes to handling data. So, if you have a particularly important set of data in a machine, it's better to have a backup plan to avoid potentially critical problems. This time, I'll review a tool designed to take backups from different platforms: Vembu BDR. So, let's check the requirements for this demo.


  • 1 Windows Server machine - Server: As Vembu BDR uses the classic Client-Server model, we will need a machine that will work as the Server. Vembu BDR supports:
    • Windows Server 2012 R2 (64 Bit) 
    • Windows Server 2008 R2 (64 Bit) 
    • Windows Server 2012 
    • Windows Server 2016 
  • 1 Windows machine - Client: We will need another machines to work as the Client. I will use a Windows 10 machine for this example.



First, you'll need to install Vembu BDR in the Server machine. To do this, follow the steps:

1. Download Vembu BDR from here and copy the installer to the Server machine.
2. Double click the installer to start the installation wizard.
3. Click yes to give permissions to the installer.
4. On the first wizard screen, click Next.
5. Accept the agreement and click Next.
6. In the Default Settings screen, you'll see a list of the settings which will be used for the installation. If you want to customize these options, check 'Let me customize the configurations' and press Customize. I will leave the option unchecked because I'll install the program with the default settings. So, click Install.

You'll see a confirmation alert. Just click Yes. Now wait a little for the installation to finish. You can check the progress status in the installation window.

7. Once the installation finishes, you'll see a last screen. Leave the two options selected and click Finish.

8. The Vembu Web Console will be opened. Use 'admin' as user name and password and then click Sign in.
9. Select the Time Zone corresponding to your location and clic Save.

10. Enter a Vembu BDR ID. This is a unique ID that will identify the Server machine. So, I'll name it testools_server. Then click Update.

And that's it. If you see the following dashboard, it means that you successfully installed Vembu BDR in the Server machine.


1. You'll need the Vembu client installer for Windows. Download it here.
2. Copy the installer to the Client machine.
3. Double click the installer.
4. Press Yes in the User Account Control alert.
5. In the first wizard screen, press Next.
6. Accept the agreement and press Next.
7. Add a Vembu ImageBackup ID. This is a unique ID that will identify the Client machine, so I called it testools_client. Then, press Next.

8. Select 'Typical' to install with the default options or 'Custom' to customize the options. For this example, select 'Typical' and press Next.
9. Now, click Install to start the installation

10. Once the program is installed, leave the 2 check boxes selected in the final screen and click

11. Once the Vembu Web Console is open, enter 'admin' as user and password and press Sign in.
12. Select the Time Zone for the Client. be careful to select the same zone you selected for the Server. Then, click Save.

13. In the alert, click Yes.

14. In the 'Backup Server Details' screen, enter the IP or hostname of the Server and click Connect.

Taking the backup 

1. (Continuing from the step that clicks Connect after entering the Server's IP or hostname) Now, you need to install the Disk Image Driver. The first screen after clicking Connect will show you a link to install the driver. Click on it.

16. Click Yes in the confirmation pop up. The you'll see the driver installing:

The machine will be rebooted after the installation is complete.
2. Once the client machine is done rebooting, open the Web Console again.
3. Access the console with 'admin' as user name and password.
4. Select all the elements that belong to the disk you want to backup. Then, press Next.

5. Configure the schedule for the backup. Since this is just an example, I left all the options with the default values. Then click Next.

6. Select the options for retention. In this case, I left all the default values. Click Next.
7. In Review Configurations, enter the name for the backup. In this case, I called it 'testools_backup'. Then click Save the backup.

8. Click OK in the confirmation dialog. Now you'll see a progress screen:

Wait some time (this depends on the system you are running this backup tool) and, finally, you'll see a success message:

And that's it! You can further verify the backup opening the web console in the Server machine and going to Dashboard:

Vembu BDR is a very convenient tool to take backups. What I liked the most from this tool is that it provides all the extras you need as you go on with the backup process. Once you set it up, it's very easy to use and understand. I encourage you to give it a try.

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