Day 14: A first look at backup providers in Lights-Out 2
Today we start with an important topic that will keep us busy the next days. Backup! While Lights-Out version 1.x was only able to handle Windows Essentials or Home Servers Computer Backup, version 2 can now handle additional backup providers. As a result, Lights-Out 2 assists you better in doing backups. You can wake your computers, schedule and monitor backups. This works with software from different vendors. Lights-Out 2 supports backup on your server and on your client computers.
Finally, do not save your backup on the same computer. You should prefer backup software which saves the backup on a server or on the cloud. As a result, ransomware is not easily able to encrypt the backups themselfs.
Backup providers in Lights-Out 2
Lights-Out 2 uses so called “backup providers” to do the job. A backup provider handles one specific backup product or product family.
Backup providers are required to
- detect and report backup activity
- retrieve the backup result
- run a backup on demand
At the time of writing, Lights-Out 2 includes backup providers for these backup products:
- Classic Windows Home Server / Windows Server Essentials Client Backup
- Windows Server Backup
- Windows 7 Backup (also available on Windows 10)
- Microsoft Azure Backup
- Acronis True Image Home
- Veeam Endpoint Backup Free
- Cloudberry Backup
- Duplicati 1.x
- Lindenberg Backup
- User defined backup scripts
We will look at each of the backup providers in a separate blog post. Most of all backup providers work out of box, but some require additional configuration steps, for more details please read the manual.
Using a supported backup provider
Lights-Out 2 automatically detects available backup software on your system. Furthermore, if only one is detected, this one is selected as default. If you have multiple backup solutions installed, open the computer properties, go to the backup tab and select the primary backup provider from the list.
Why do I have to select a backup provider you may ask. The selected backup provider is used to run a scheduled or interactive backup. That’s the third and last item on our requirements list for backup providers (see above).
If your backup providers list is empty, you are probably missing some required additional configuration steps.
A second selection, called “Default action after backup” is below the backup provider selection. This default action is executed after a scheduled backup or if you run a backup manually from the task pane.
This is the first item on our requirements list and probably the most important because it keeps your computer active. Any supported backup provider reports backup activity. It does not matter if it is the selected backup provider or not. You see activity either in the “status” tab
or on the “computers” tab
and finally, in the runtime diagram:
This is the second item on our requirements list. A backup provider retrieves the result of the last backup. Again you can see the last result on the computer tab
and the history on the computer properties (see picture above). If you look carefully at the picture, you see backups are reported from two providers.
We started with an overview on backup providers. You learned how to select the primary provider, to watch progress and results. Tomorrow we will continue with an in deep look at each supported backup provider.
Here you will find the complete list of all days of our step-by-step series.