What is Microsoft Azure Backup Server?

Want to have DPM without having to buy System Center? Now you can. It is called Microsoft Azure Backup Server (MABS). Well MABS is not really a full DPM but a scaled back DPM. Microsoft released Microsoft Azure Backup Server on October 7th, 2015. In this post I am going to break down what Microsoft Azure Backup Server is.

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Microsoft Azure Backup Server’s goal is to solve some problems that have existed with Azure backup for a while. These problems are:

  • -No centralization of protected servers with Azure Backup. Historically if you did not have DPM and you only had Azure Backup but needed to protect on premises server you would install the Microsoft Azure Recovery Services Agent (MARS) agent on your on premises servers. They would then be protected up to Azure.
  • -Without DPM Azure Backup can only backup files and folders. To protect workloads like SQL, Exchange up to Azure you needed to protect with DPM first and then send the data up to Azure.
  • -Purchasing a System Center license is not economical for some organizations.

Microsoft Azure Backup Server solves these issues because it is an on premises backup server. Under the hood it is a scaled back DPM so it gives you similar functionality. It lets you protect the same workloads as DPM to disk on premises first and then up to Azure or you can backup directly to Azure. Essentially it gives you two types of protection:

  • – Disk (D2D), giving high RTOs for tier 1 workloads
  • – Azure (D2D2C) for long term retention

Tape protection with Microsoft Azure Backup Server is not possible. This is not included in the product.

MABS also gives you a centralized location on premises to backup your on prem servers to, manage the backup agent of your on prem servers and see the status of their protection. MABS does this without the cost of a System Center license. It can be used when you subscribe to Azure Backup. MABS will require you to provide backup vault credentials during the setup.

From the Microsoft site on MABS pricing: “Microsoft Azure Backup Server will continue to bill customers as per their existing Azure offers (e.g. Pay-as-you-go, EA, Open).” You can learn about Azure Backup pricing here: https://azure.microsoft.com/en-in/pricing/details/backup/

Now to get Microsoft Azure Backup Server you can either go download it directly here:

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=49170

Or you can download from the Azure portal. Go to:

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Then click on the “Download Microsoft Azure Backup Server for Applications” link as shown in the following screenshot.

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Microsoft Azure Backup Server is great for organizations that need a backup solution without the cost of the entire System Center suite. Keep in mind this does not provide tape backup. However backup up to Azure for offsite is a cost effective solution and also now gives you on premises backup to disk as well.

Here is an official blog post on Microsoft Azure Backup Server along with “how to” videos. These videos will help you install and configure Microsoft Azure Backup Server. https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/announcing-microsoft-azure-backup-server/

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DPM Azure Cloud Backup – Setup, Config, Recovery

This topic has been blogged about a few times already. Some of the posts I have seen just contain information about the service and not the setup, are no longer current, or are missing information on generating a certificate.

I have decided to go ahead and blog about this to detail my experience in the setup. In this post I am going to walk through deploying Azure backup for DPM 2012 SP1.

Here is what will be covered: setup of Azure cloud backup, adding Azure cloud backup to a protection group, and recovering data from Azure cloud backup in DPM.

Setup of Azure cloud backup:

This is what the Azure management portal looks like and the first screen you will see when you go create a backup vault. To create the backup vault click on Recovery Services and add cloud backup.

You will notice that it gives you the steps you need to get started with Azure cloud backup.

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The first thing we need to do is create a certificate for our local DPM server and upload this to Azure.

Use the Makecert tool to create a local cert or use an existing local CA to generate the certificate for your DPM server.

Makecert can be found here: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windowsserver/bb980924.aspx as a part of the Windows SDK.

To install makecert.exe only select the option Tools under .Net Development in the SDK install wizard.



Here is the process to create a certificate for your local DPM server.

Open an elevated command prompt (with Admin privileges) and CD to the location where makecert.exe is stored.

On my server it was here:
C:\Program Files\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v7.1\Bin Once are there type the following syntax:

makecert.exe -r -pe -n CN=YOURDPMSERVERNAMEHERE -ss my -sr localmachine -eku 1.3.6.1.5.5.7.3.2 -len 2048 -e 01/01/2016 YOURDPMSERVERNAMEHERE

After you create the certificate properly it will be created and stored in the same location here:
C:\Program Files\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v7.1\Bin.



NOTE: The expiration date of your certificate has to be no more than 3 years from today’s date or

Azure will not like the cert and you will receive this error:



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