While doing some testing on the restore capabilities of SBS 2008 using the native Server 2008 backup and restore tools, I ran cross an interesting tidbit regarding the restore process. Once I thought about it, it made sense, but not having tested a full system restore yet, I hadn’t run across it just yet.
When doing a bare metal restore of SBS 2008 using the native Windows Backup tools, your restore system must match the disk configuration of the source server as closely as possible. Specifically, if you have your backup from a server with two partitions on a single volume, you must restore to a single volume whose size is at least as large as the source volume. You cannot restore the two partitions from the original backup to a system with two volumes and expect that one partition would restore to one volume and the second partition would restore to the second volume. If your backup came from a system with a single volume and two partitions, you must restore to a system with a single volume so the backup can put two partitions on it.
I’m assuming that the reverse is true (if you have two volumes as the source for the backup, you must have two volumes for the restore) but have not had the ability to test this yet.
Again, this holds for a bare metal restore using the recovery method available when booting from the SBS 2008 installation CD. Using the native tools when SBS 2008 is running, you have the option to restore to alternate locations.