Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Keeping Track of your Backups... The Easy Way

Wayne Small, an SBS MVP and fellow blogger told me a tip over IM the other day. I gave him about a month to post it to his blog, and he hasn't. I find it very useful in my day to day life, so I thought I'd share.

Wayne uses rules in Outlook to easily identify what's going on with backups on his clients servers, for me, that's 3 servers, my home server, the server at work and also my cousin's SBS box over in Great Falls, MI.

Wayne configures an Outlook rule to search for specific strings within the body of messages as they come in, those specific strings are:

  • Backup: Did not run

  • Backup: Completed successfully

  • Backup: Started but has not finished

  • Backup: Failed

Choosing flag colours for these strings and how they appear in the body of the message, will help you, "at-a-glance" figure out if the backup failed or succeeded.

If you're like me, and are short on rules because you have so many, then you might want to use a single rule and just put last two items in it and mark it red as I have done

Now you can determine the backup status of an incoming Server Status Report in the blink of an eye.