|Windows Imaging FAQ|
|File Replication FAQ|
|Centralized Monitoring FAQ|
BackupAssist Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
See below for a list of common asked questions about BackupAssist. You can also view individual categories listed to the right for more specific, backup related questions.
[ + ] Licensing and installation
- [ + ] Can I run BackupAssist with other backup products (eg. ArcServe, BackupExec) on the same computer?
Generally, no. Products such as ArcServe and BackupExec can take control of your backup device (especially tape drives) by installing their own drivers for the device; and this means that they cannot be used by other applications, such as Windows Backup (NTBackup) or BackupAssist.
While we recommend uninstalling other backup software products from your system before installing BackupAssist, if this is not possible, we suggest that you install the latest Windows drivers for your backup hardware device. We also recommend that you temporarily stop any services associated with other backup software applications, as they may interfere with BackupAssist.
- [ + ] I don't have an Internet connection on my server. Can I activate my BackupAssist license?
Yes. For machines without an internet connection you can export an activation file from BackupAssist, which can be copied to a machine that does have an internet connection.
To learn more, see our license activation page
[ + ] Features and functionality
- [ + ] What advantages does BackupAssist have over other backup software products?
The major difference between BackupAssist and competing solutions (that typically cost 2-4 times as much), is the ease of use of our software and its affordability for small and medium sized businesses. Typically many of our customers choose our software simply because it is far easier to drive, while still offering all the features that are necessary for small and medium businesses.
Our philosophy is to make the software as simple to use as possible, and provide the essential features for comprehensive server backup, while leaving out the unnecessary bells and whistles that make other backup software more complex and more expensive.
BackupAssist gives you super-fast setup and scheduling, user-friendly interfaces, daily email reminders and email notifications - that are designed to significantly reduce the amount of time you spend managing your backups.
- [ + ] What advantages does BackupAssist have over built-in Windows backup applications (NTBackup, wbadmin, etc) and scheduled tasks?
There are a number of benefits and advantages that BackupAssist offers over the standard Windows Backup, including the following:
- No need to write scripts or batch files: this saves you time, effort, and reduces the possibility of errors.
- Implement an industry-standard backup scheme automatically using BackupAssist. We put the hard work in, so you won't have to devise a media rotation strategy yourself.
- If a backup fails, you'll know about it. The backup status emails give you the results of each backup, so you can see if anything went wrong with the backup at once. Scheduled jobs may be used to schedule a backup, but if it fails you are often given no warning at all.
- Minimize human error. Reminder emails can be sent to your secretary / office assistant to minimize the chances of human error in your backup strategy.
- Add-ons, such as Exchange Granular, SQL continuous backups and Hyper-V Advanced which allows you to perform granular restores of guest data and rapid recoveries of Hyper-V guests
For more information about the advantages of using BackupAssist over Windows Backup and Windows Server Backup see our Windows Imaging product tour pages.
- [ + ] Does BackupAssist support different types of backup (full, incremental, differential, etc)?
Yes. Depending on the backup engine you are using, you can customize your schedule to perform different types of backups, such as incremental and differential, on any given day within your backup schedule.
The different backup types available depend on the backup engine that the job was created with. Some engines, such as System Protection, File Protection, Rsync and File Archiving. For example, Imaging jobs start with a full backup, and then incremental backups from then on, with changes being merged into the original image; past versions of the images will appear as shadow copies within the main backup, and as the backup hard drive fills up, old versions will be automatically deleted, however, supports the ability to schedule different types of backup, such as full, incremental and differential, on any day within your backup schedule.
- [ + ] What format will my backups be in?
The backup format depends on what backup engine was used to backup your data. BackupAssist provides a number of different backup types. See the list below for the common backup formats associated with each backup engine.
Backup type Backup Format SQL .BAK database backup file (standard Microsoft SQL database backup format) System Protection .VHD file (standard Windows Server Backup drive image format) File Protection Exact replica of your selected files and folders (can search for files within your backups, just like a normal file system). File Archiving Compressed archive in .ZIP format. The Zip engine also provides support for standalone tape drives.
[ + ] Software compatibility
- [ + ] What operating systems and server types does BackupAssist work with?
A list of supported software and platforms can be found here
[ + ] Hardware compatibility
- [ + ] What hardware devices does BackupAssist back up to?
BackupAssist’s backup destination support depends on the type of backup you are performing and includes support of Tape drives, local drives, external hard drives, RDX drives, CD/DVDs, Blu-rays, network destinations, NAS devices and iSCSI targets. BackupAssist includes tailored support for each backup hardware device, including specially designed rotation strategies and a variety of unique hardware options for each device type
- [ + ] Do you provide tape drive support for Server 2008?
Yes, we do! BackupAssist and the BackupAssist Tape Archiving add-on solution utilize our very own ZIP Engine that allows users to back up to a standalone tape drive and offers the added advantage of password protection using 256-bit AES encryption and real-time data compression to save data storage space and fit more backups on each tape.
The BackupAssist Tape Archiving Engine is based on the ZIP64 standard, meaning you can now backup to tape using the trusted and proven ZIP file format. As long as your tape drive ships with drivers (which all drives do), it will work with BackupAssist and the BackupAssist File Archiving add-on. You can even schedule Full, Differential, Incremental and Copy backups to your tape drive.
- [ + ] What level of hardware compression will I have with my tape drive backups?
Generally you will only get a 1.4:1 compression ratio on your tape drive with hardware compression enabled in BackupAssist. Please note that the higher figure listed by tape drive manufacturers (eg. the 40Gb on a 20Gb/40Gb tape) is a best case scenario and is rarely achievable in practice. The compression ratio is highly dependent on the types of files you are backing up - JPEG images and MP3 files for example, will not benefit greatly from hardware compression as they are already greatly compressed. If you run out of space on your tape we suggest that you either reduce the amount of data you are backing up, create a second backup job with data selections that fit on a single tape, or exclude unnecessary file types from the backup.
For further information about tape drive compression refer to the following: FujiFilm Tape Drive Data Compression Q & A
- [ + ] What tape drives is BackupAssist compatible with?
BackupAssist is compatible with just about any standalone tape drive supported under Windows. It is only autoloaders and tape libraries that we do not support.
If you find that both BackupAssist cannot communicate with your tape drive you should first ensure that no additional third party backup software products are installed on your system. We've found that certain other backup software products can overwrite the drivers for your tape drive device when first installed. Even when these programs are removed from the system, the drivers may still remain. BackupAssist utilizes the Windows drivers for communication with your tape drive, so you should ensure that the latest Windows drivers are installed for your tape drive device.
- [ + ] What about data encryption to tape?
With the BackupAssist Tape Archiving add-on you can choose to have your ZIP backups to tape encrypted with a password, making your data safe and secure. The add-on applies 256-bit AES encryption to a password protected tape backup. Once encrypted, a password is required to restore your data, so it is essential that you use a password that you can easily remember.
[ + ] Technical and sales support
- [ + ] If I have a technical issue, what should I do?
To assist the support team with investigating your technical issue it is best to email us with diagnostic information first. Diagnostics can greatly assist with identifying the cause of technical issues. To send us this information, open the BackupAssist console, click in the top right corner of the console, and then click Contact support and fill out the available form.
Additionally, while waiting for a response from the support team, you may like to consult some of our useful online resources that may address your technical query:
Please let us know if you are able to resolve your problem before receiving a response from the support team. This helps to ensure prompt service for users with pending issues.