When and How to Use SIRIS Bare Metal Restore

October 14, 2020

When and How to Use SIRIS Bare Metal Restore

By Andrew Burton

When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail—as the saying goes anyway. The same can be said about traditional backup tools with limited restore capabilities. Thankfully, Datto SIRIS offers a complete restore toolkit, with options suited for a wide range of recovery scenarios.

However, some Datto partners don’t take advantage of all of the restore options available to them, according to Chris Wooldridge, Datto Elevated Support Manager. “We have seen support requests where partners want to use BMR (Bare Metal Restore) for everything,” he said. “In some cases, BMR is totally appropriate, but in others, there are better options.”

Bare Metal Restore is the process of restoring the contents of a failed computer to new hardware. It is a multi-step process and can be time-consuming. So, when and how do you use it?

When to Use BMR

BMR is intended to be used for full server recovery to new hardware. If you are performing a restore to the same hardware, there may be a better option. For example, if you need to simply need to recover deleted or corrupted files or folders you might perform a File Restore (aka volume-level restore). Alternatively, if you need to undo widespread file changes, such as those caused by a ransomware infection, Rapid Rollback is the best option. It is also important to note that BMR is intended for the restoration of physical servers. If you need to perform a full restore of a virtual server, use the Image Export process.

When determining whether you should use BMR, follow this flowchart:

How to use BMR

BMR uses a backup recovery point to completely re-image a protected server to new hardware. Datto’s Instant Virtualisation relies on the same recovery points. So, when performing a BMR, we recommend that you first virtualise a recovery point locally on the Datto appliance or in the cloud, and then use that recovery point to perform the BMR.

This approach has a number of benefits. First, it allows your clients to resume normal business operations while you perform the BMR—minimising business downtime. Second, it verifies that the recovery point is good and can be used for a BMR. And finally, it reveals unforeseen issues with the recovery point in the backup environment rather than in the middle of the BMR process.

Once you have virtualised the recovery point and your client is up and running, you can begin the BMR. For detailed, step-by-step instructions, check out this series of knowledgebase articles:

  1. USB Bare Metal Restore (BMR): Getting Started
  2. Imaging a USB Drive with Datto Utilities
  3. Booting a Target Machine with Datto Utilities
  4. USB Bare Metal Restore: Beginning The Restore

Finally, Datto’s Direct to Tech support is available 24x7x365 to assist with restores. “If Partners have any questions, they can always reach out to us,” said Wooldridge.

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