Did you ever wonder if your backup software also secures your DHCP database? I often did, but never found time to make sure that we have backups of our DHCP settings. (Yeah, shame on me!). I was relying on Symantec Backup Exec to do the job.

Since we are currently moving our DHCP server to a virtual machine, we finally investigated this issue. I was a little surprised that Backup Exec 10.1 was unable to backup the DHCP.mdb file which contains the DHCP database, even though, we use the open file option.

However, my instinct about having backups of our DHCP server, was correct. After all, this should be a very common problem, and I never heard of a backup agent for a DHCP server.

Every 60 minutes Windows copies the DHCP settings to the %systemroot%\system32\dhcp\Backup\new directory. And these copies can be easily secured by any backup software since the files are not open. You can change this time interval in the Registry:

KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\services\
DHCPServer\Parameters

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The minimum setting of "Backupinterval" is 5 minutes, the maximum 30 60 minutes.

2 Comments
  1. Scott MIller 16 years ago

    If the maximum registry value is 30 minutes, how is the default behavior to backup the database every 60 minutes?

  2. Michael Pietroforte 16 years ago

    Scott, you are right! Thanks! The maximum is supposed to be 60 minutes. Although I am not sure anymore about the maximum and minimum settings. I googled again for this issue. This site says 5/60, but they are talking about NT. Microsoft Technet doesn’t mention any limits.

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