Cyber Protect- recovery using WINPE and Mediabuilder
Been having 'fun' with attempting a restore from a acronis cyber protect backup held on an iSCSI nas box, to recover to an HP DL380 Gen 9 server with an HP Smart Array P440ar controller.
This is a list of the steps i had to go though, and the traps i fell in a long the way!
Things to know...
1. HP Smart Arrays use drivers which are not included in the generic .iso boot images (or other providers) due to them being non open source. This means that if you boot of a generic .iso you wont be able to see your logical discs
2. iSCSI nas connection is fine, but if you have used private ip ranges to talk uniquely between the nas box and your server, you will need to manually configure the network settings once you have booted on the .iso if you have done anything clever with the connection rules for the iscsi like authentication or restrictions, you could be in trouble... a simple straight forward connection worked.
3. iSCSI setup on the generic .iso (the one you download from the restore options on your backup) is fine, enter the ip address of the iSCSI device, the port number if you have changed it, otherwise leave at the default, then select the target id from the list that you find.
4. Once connected to the iSCSI and you can see your backup files (Yay!) enter your encryption password to access (if you have set one) if you can't remember it, or it is lost. Sorry you are stuffed! there is no backdoor way to access it. Please remember to take off the CAPs lock as there is no view option to see what you are typing - that is 10 minutes of my life i wont get back! also check for foreign keyboard layouts.
5. The newer version of the Acronis agent contains a media builder to build your own WINPE .iso that you can inject drivers in to if you are having problems with smart arrays or network connections. This can be downloaded onto any machine, it doesn't need to be one that you already backup, I am restoring a windows 2012 server, but i built the WINPE iso on a windows 10 pro machine. Download the ADK kits from microsoft, but although the help screens from Acronis say to use the most recent ones - they didn't work for me, I had to uninstall them and go back to a lower version to create the .iso download the .inf driver file from hp for your device (or your manufacturer) the driver is added during the WINPE add process. here are the instructions sent to me from support (worth noting they listed the up to date downloads which didnt work for me):
Download the ADK for Windows Server 2022 - Download the Windows PE add-on for the ADK for Windows Server 2022 - Mount the 20348.1.210507-1500.fe_release_amd64fre_ADKWINPEADDONS.iso
to install the Windows ADK WinPE add-on; Run as administrator the adkwinpesetup.exe file; Mount the 20348.1.210507-1500.fe_release_amd64fre_ADK.iso; Run as administrator the adksetup.exe file; Install the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit – Windows 10 to the device; Allow Microsoft to collect insights for the Windows 10 Kits? No; Accept the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit – Windows 10 License Agreement; Make sure Deployment Tools feature selected and click Install;
Mount the 20348.1.210507-1500.fe_release_amd64fre_ADKWINPEADDONS.iso to install the Windows ADK WinPE add-on; Run as administrator the adkwinpesetup.exe file; Install the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit Windows Preinstallation Environment Add-ons – Windows 10 to this computer; Allow Microsoft to collect insights for the Windows 10 Kits? No; Accept the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit Windows Preinstallation Environment Add-ons – Windows 10 License Agreement; Select the features you want to install: Windows Preinstallation Environment (Windows PE); Restart the server; Try to run the media builder again.
6. Having created my WINPE .iso file I uploaded it to a machine on the same network as the dead server. I used iLO to mount the .iso and booted the server. Now for me, this boot process took for ever, not sure if that was a left over issue from the smart array issue that i had which caused the initial problem for me (It lost all its array config and had to be rebuilt during a failed disc swap!) but it literally took half an hour to boot to the blue acronis winpe screen... so patients people!
Once on the blue Acronis recovery screen, you can launch the recovery option and go to tools, iSCSI setup. Now again - for me there seemed to be an issue here, i click on the setup button and nothing happens, i use the arrow keys and enter and nothing happens, i leave it for a while wondering if it is going to take a while to come up, but no. The button simply didnt work. Thankfully they include in the WINPE the A43 tool - which is basically your access to the windows files, you can manually configure the iSCSI by browsing the folders c:\windows\system32 you will see the iscsicli file and also your good old command file. execute the command file. I followed the instructions from this site Macrium.com thanks guys!
net start msiscsi
(mine was already started)
iscsicli QAddTargetPortal 10.17.0.32
(replace the ip address with that of your iSCSI device)
iscsicli ListTargets T
(this lists all the target luns on that ip address)
iscsicli QLogInTarget <iqn.1991-05.com.microsoft:fileserver-iscsi-drive-target>
(replace the contents and <> with the name of your target as listed in the previous step)
hopefully it will now come back and say it is successfully connected
when you now look under the local folders to find your backup files, you should see the nas box in the list
hope this helps someone!
Jose Pedro Magalhaes | Forum Moderator
Information provided AS-IS with no warranty of any kind.
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