Are You A Collaboration Basket Case?


originally posted on
Because It's Everybody's Business

As an old-school backup guy, one of my favorite sayings is:

If you are putting all your eggs in one basket, it better be a good basket

It’s true for Virtualization (which I will talk about in a future post) and it’s true for collaboration platforms like Exchange or SharePoint.  And when I refer to the “basket” being good, I am not talking about the SharePoint platform or the Exchange platform or the Virtualization platform – I am talking about your backup. 

Are you confident that once you put all of your good information into your collaboration platform, will you be able to protect it, how will you restore it, is it supported?

That is the question that I ask of anyone who is planning their deployment of:

  • Windows Server 2008 R2
  • Exchange 2010
  • SharePoint 2010
  • Hyper-V R2

I am especially interested when you are planning to do a large and (keyword) distributed SharePoint farm, or when you are planning on using DAG in Exchange 2010 (or CCR/SCR in Exchange 2007).  Because, those are some of the scenarios we most often hear hesitation from customers that use legacy backup solutions.

In fact, one of the main reasons that Microsoft originally entered the backup market with System Center Data Protection Manager is to ensure that when Microsoft customers were planning their deployment of one of our premier server products, they would have confidence that they would be able to back up and successfully recover their data.

System Center Data Protection Manager 2010

Last week, I gave a webcast called Get Ready for DPM 2010 Release Candidate to about 500 of my new best friends.  The RC software is expected in the first week of February, so we wanted folks to start planning for it.  We talked a lot about the new features, including enhancements that we made for these newest server technologies from Microsoft.  We also talked about new features around Windows Client protection and Disaster Recovery.  If you get the chance, please check it out the on-demand webcast.

But for those of you who cannot wait to deploy DPM 2010, I wanted to draw your eye to some DPM guru’s out in cyberspace that are doing some great work around using DPM to protect and recover your collaboration platforms:

Chris Whitehead is a Premier Field Engineer for SharePoint in the UK and a fan of DPM.  He recently posted a series of blogs on SharePoint and DPM.  One of the things that I like about Chris is that he has a different point of view. 

– We in the DPM team think about “backing stuff up” … and what is necessary to protect each workload, such as SharePoint.

– Chris thinks about SharePoint … how to architect it, how to deploy it, how to manage it, how to troubleshoot it, as well as how to back it up.

Chris’ perspective has helped us build a better protection and recovery experience for SharePoint, and hopefully his blogs will help you too.

· DPM and SharePoint – Part 1 – A love/love relationship

· DPM and SharePoint – Part 2 – How does DPM protect SharePoint data?

· DPM and SharePoint – Part 3 – How does DPM restore SharePoint data?

· DPM and SharePoint – Part 4 – Why do I get this error?

· DPM and SharePoint – Part 5 – What’s coming next?

· DPM and SharePoint – Part 6 – What about Search?

· DPM and SharePoint – Part 7 – OK, you’ve convinced me, where do I find out more?

Thanks Chris !!


And the Exchange feature owner in the DPM development team recently started blogging about what is coming in DPM 2010 for Exchange 2010, and especially why you still need backup – even when you are running DAG.

Check out his post on the DPM team blog.

Another of my new favorite sites is, which is run out of the UK who is becoming scary good at helping DPM do things even better than how it comes out of the box – between his new Management Pack, as well as scripts and customizations.  But I digress…

So, before you become a “Basket Case”.   If you are deploying a collaboration platform, let me ask you …

How are you going to back it up ?

Thanks for reading.

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