Backing up Windows for Bare Metal Restore.
To back up a Windows computer's System State, you must be an administrator or have administrator-level permissions. Starting from Windows VISTA, there are additional special requirements:

Special Requirements: Windows VISTA and later versions

The default Microsoft installation settings will not allow you to browse and select the System State of any remote target machine (even if you are using Administrator-level credentials). The error message "Access denied" is displayed when you try to select the System State.

This behavior is due to the User Access Control (UAC) introduced by Microsoft beginning with Windows VISTA. By default, UAC denies all users access to the administrative shares (i.e. System State), except for the built-in administrator user.

The built-in administrator user is disabled by default.

The following workarounds must be performed on each target computer whose System State you want to back up:
Enable built-in administrator account and specify its credentials when defining the backup set.

Disable UAC.

Enable access to the administrative shares.

This is equivalent to disabling UAC but only for network access. You can do this by adding / editing the DWORD LocalAccountTokenFilterPolicy" registry value under:

HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\system\registry key

Set it to "1".
A reboot may be required.


To ensure that any locked files used by those applications are backed up at least once, perform at least one backup of the target computer with the service applications stopped. Otherwise, those services will not start after you perform the BMR.

To restore from the special backup sets (e.g. Microsoft SQL Server), DS-Client needs to connect to a running service. If the service does not start, repair that service installation with the corresponding Installation Package.

The steps for BMR of a Windows computer running Microsoft SQL Server are:

1. Assemble the replacement hardware for the target BMR computer.
2. Re-install the same Windows Operating System (you do not need to apply any Service Packs).
3. If the hardware is different from the original computer, you must install the corresponding hardware drivers.

4. Restore from the target computer's backup set (including operating system volume, system state and services database). The restore of system state, services database and operating system files must be done in one step (at the same time).
5. Restart the Microsoft SQL Server (if applicable).
6. Restore the latest version of Microsoft SQL Server from the separate special backup set (if applicable).

System Reserved Partition (Windows 2008 & up)

Starting from Windows 2008 (including Windows 7 and higher versions), Microsoft's operating system installation includes a "System Reserved Partition" (usually 100MB). This partition contains the boot files for the operating system, but it does not have an assigned drive letter (by default).

For these operating systems, the following considerations should be made when creating a BMR backup set:

If you assign a drive letter to the System Reserved Partition, you will be able to select it as a separate drive for backup. However, if you select this drive for backup along with the System State, the System Reserved Partition will be backed up twice (see the next bullet point, below).

Even if it is not assigned a drive letter, the System Reserved Partition is automatically included as part of the System State backup item for Windows File system backup sets. As long as you include the System State as part of your BMR backup set, DS-Client will automatically restore the System Reserved Partition when the System State is restored.