Use Wbadmin in Windows Server 2016 for Backup and Recovery

Posted by @Cody

September 12, 2017

Is there any improvement on the Wbadmin utility in Windows Server 2016? Learn how to perform backup and recovery jobs with Windows Server 2016 Wbadmin.

Main features of Wbadmin in Windows Server 2016

In Windows Server 2016, there are two ways to run backup and recovery jobs, one is with the graphic user interface (GUI) of Windows Server Backup, the other is with Wbadmin from a command prompt. Compared with Windows Server Backup, Wbadmin gives you more options for managing backups, such as delete backups , so you must be a member of the administrator group to create backups with Wbadmin. To open an elevated command prompt, you can right click on the Start button, and select Command Prompt (Admin) in the pop out menu. Then you can use a command that suits you to create backup or recovery jobs. To see all the supported commands of Wbadmin, you can use the command: Wbadmin/?

Supported Commands

How to use Wbadmin command?

Windows Server 2016 Wbadmin backup command is often used for Windows Server backup and recovery. It is quite convenient for those people who are familiar with it.

Wbadmin backup

To create backups in Windows Server, you can choose system state backup or non-system state backup, which is to specify items you want to include in the backup. To create a system state backup, use the command:

"Wbadmin start systemstatebackup –backuptarget:[backup location]"

when specifying the backup target location, you can use a drive letter, volume GUID, or network address. Be able to perform a bare metal recovery, use the following command: "Wbadmin start backup -backupTarget:[backup location]: -allcritical -quiet". The switch –quiet means to execute the backup without prompt. For example, to create a bare metal backup to E: drove, use the command:

"WBadmin start backup -backupTarget:E: -allcritical –systemstate -vssful"

WBadmin Start Backup

A system state backup can only be restored to the same server where the backup was taken while a bare metal backup can be restored to any servers with similar or dissimilar hardware.

Wbadmin recovery

When your server 2016 does not work properly due improper changes in System Settings, you can perform a system state recovery to restore system settings. For a system state recovery, use the following command:

"Wbadmin start systemstaterecovery -version: versionIdentifier --backupTarget:[backup location] –quiet"

For the backup version, you can run the command "Wbadmin get versions" to list all the version identifiers. For example, to perform a system state recovery from network shared folder \\192.168.0.221\Public\backup, use the command:

"Wbadmin start systemstaterecovery -version:11/11/2015-01:09 -backupTarget: \\192.168.0.221\Public\backup -quiet"

System State Recovery

As you know, a system state recovery only restores system state data, so you may need to use Wbadmin start sysrecovery command recover your Server from a more serious condition. To perform full server recovery, you need to boot your server into Windows Recovery Environment with the help of Windows installation disc or a recovery drive. The syntax for full server recovery is: "Wbadmin start sysrecovery -version:versionIdentifier -backupTarget:[backup location]" for example: to restore a Windows Server 2016 backup taken at 06:48 on 11/10/2015, use the following command:

"Wbadmin start sysrecovery –version:11/10/2015-06:48 –backuptarget:D –machine:WIN-9814GD4FH95"

However, WBadmin utility does have its limitations, such as only volumes formatted with NTFS can be protected, and you can only create one scheduled backup job. For a better performance, you can use third party software.

Windows Server backup software

As a backup and restore tool for Windows Servers, AOMEI Backupper Server allows you to perform backup and recovery job in a more flexible and efficient way. It supports many file system including NTFS, FAT32, and EXT3, and the number of running scheduled backups is not limited. It brings many powerful functions and options to ensure the tasks runs smoothly and quickly. With its intuitive interface, you need only a few clicks to set up a backup or restore task; With differential/incremental backup, you can back up all the data you need while saving much space; With the ability to create bootable media, you can boot your server to AOMEI Backupper PE to restore your server when it is unbootable .

To perform a system backup with AOMEI Backupper:

1. Free download the 30-day trial version of AOMEI Backupper Server, install and launch it.

2. Under Backup tab, click System Backup.

Backup Tab

3. Click Step 2 to specify the backup destination location, any folder including network shared folder is supported.

Select Destination Location

4. Click Start Backup to start the backup process.

Start Backup

Besides backup and restore, AOMEI Backupper provides the function for data migration to SSD or other storage devices. What’s more, it is also available to run a backup, restore, or clone from the command line just like using Wbadmin Windows Server 2016. To display all the command-line utility parameters, you can type"AMBackup.exe /?" in an elevated command prompt.