Bare metal restore is a technique in the field of data restoration that enables you to recover backed up data on a bare metal machine, i.e., computer with no installed operating system. The use-cases for bare metal restore include ransomware strikes, hardware failures, operating system malfunction, and so forth. Needless to say, all of the cases typically require complete erasing or replacement of the storage media.
Having done that, the next logical step would be to restore the data. Granted that you have a copy (image) of your hard drive (or SSD), it only makes sense to employ bare metal restore in this situation to reinstate your storage media. Software solutions abound on the market, typically installing itself on a USB flash drive that you boot into from your computer. The software then offers you to fetch the backup data from the backup destination and restore it to the required storage media. The simplicity of this approach is unmatched, enabling you to restore the entire hardware infrastructure swiftly and conveniently.
Pros and Cons of Bare Metal Restore
Bare metal restore distinguishes itself from the most popular file-level backup in that it requires literally bare metal (only hardware) to perform data restoration. In other words, no reinstallation of operating system or individual software. However, it is not impeccable, and here are just a few potential obstacles to consider:
- Bare metal restore cannot restore data to dissimilar hardware, meaning that all of your backed up drivers might be incompatible with all-new hardware.
- Complexity is unjustifiably high; the process may involve rigorous tinkering and utilizing proprietary software.
- Having never performed a bare metal restore, it is nigh impossible to predict if it executes flawlessly.
Suffice it to say, the more complex infrastructure you’re trying to deploy using bare metal restore, the more like you are to face various challenges. Perhaps the most frequent and recommended usage scenario would be the restoration of an erased hard drive or SSD.
Bare Metal Restore and CloudBerry Backup
CloudBerry Backup supports bare metal restore out of the box, offering you a one-stop solution in the bare metal department. That is to say, not only does it allow to restore backups on bare metal, but you can also perform image-based backups to any cloud or local backup destination.
Once you’ve backed up your data to the backup destination, proceed to create a bootable USB capable of performing bare metal restore. That will only take a single click in CloudBerry Backup.
The Recovery Disk Wizard prompts to you indicate the USB device onto which the bare metal tool will be copied; optionally, you can specify the path to requisite drivers as well as protect the tool with a password to ensure that nobody can utilize your USB drive maliciously.
Having done that, you’re pretty much all set. Whenever you need to perform bare metal restore, simply boot into the USB drive that contains our restoration tool.
The interface should be familiar if you’ve used CloudBerry Backup. Launching and going through the Restore Wizard should get the job done. Having performed the restore, exit the tool and boot back into the storage device on which you restored your image-based backup and you should feel as if you’ve just gone back in time.
Bare metal restore demonstrates its weaknesses on paper and its strengths in action. It is truly a valuable technique in the toolbox of every IT professional, giving you the option of swift and immediate recovery of your backed up data to clean hardware. If applied correctly, it can yield tremendous results and save a great deal of time. Although, it is fair to mention that one has to be very cautious when employing it and be cognizant of all the pitfalls that come with it.