System State or AD Backup and Restore on Server 2008 by command Line


This article will help you to how to backup of active directory on windows server 2008 by using command line wbadmin because windows server 2008 not support system state or active directory backup by GUI. But yes if you have Windows Server 2008 R2 then you can do via GUI (Graphical User Interface).

Before backup of AD in server 2008 need to install the backup features from the Server Manager, for install backup features in server follow these step.

Enable Windows Server Backup features from Server Manager

Steps 1 Open Server Manager from Run type – ServerManager.msc

- Or - Press StartMenu click Server Manager

- Or - Open MMC and Add Remove Snap-in and Add server manager

- Or – Right Click on My Computer then click Manage

Steps 2 – Expend server name and Click Features

Steps 3 – Click Add features (Right Top)Steps 4 – Scroll and Check on Windows Server Backup and Command-line tools in Windows Server backup Features

Steps 4 – Scroll and Check on Windows Server Backup and Command-line tools in Windows Server backup Features


Steps 5 – Click Next and Then Click Install

After installation of windows backup features, I need to take backup of Active directory.

For backup of active directory I have to backup of System state in server 2008 from the windows Server backup command Line tools.

System State Backup From Command-Line Utility.

Steps 6 – Open command prompt by Typing CMD on Run

Steps 7 – Type “wbadmin start systemstatebackup -backuptarget:F:\BACKUP”

   Where f:\BACKUP is your backup destination path and you can choose a different one.

Steps 8 – Now press Y for Start the system state backup.


Steps 9 – When backup has been done you will be see the summary of backup and Log path example –

Summary of backup:


Backup of system state completeed successfully [3/10/2013 11:30 AM]

Log of files successfully backed up

'C:\Windows\Logs\WindowsServerBackup\SystemStateBackup 1/10/2013 02-48-18.log'

Restore Active Directory Backup

For Authoritative Restore of Active Directory follow these steps –

Steps 1 – Restart your Server and press F8 for advance option during startup

Steps 2 – Boot from Directory Services Restore mode.


Steps 3 – Login in to your server with Directory Service Restore Mode password which you have already created during Active Directory Installation.

Steps 4 – Now you have to check the version for restore the correct backup

Steps 5 – Open Command Prompt and Type wbadmin get versions and remember your version Identifier. Version will be according to you Backup date and time.

Steps 6 – We need to perform a non-authoritative restore of Active Directory by typing “wbadmin start systemstaterecovery -version:03/09/2013-15:30


Steps 7 – Press Y to confirm the non-authoritative restore

Steps 8 – You can mark the sysvol as authoritative by adding the –authsysvol switch to the end of the wbadmin command.

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