This is a followup to the earlier post, Migrating Dentrix Image 4.5’s database to another computer. Please see that post to understand how I got here in the first place.
Now that we have successfully migrated, we want to begin the process of performing nightly backups of this data. As expected, Dentrix does not provide consistent, reliable documentation of how to do this, particularly for older platforms such as this. My goal here is to illustrate what I have done and solicit comments from others out there to understand their approach.
First, our setup.
- Main Dentrix 11 and all DXImage files are running on Windows 2008 Server
- DXImage database is running on Windows XP
- We have a 2-disk RAID NAS in our network
- We also subscribe to an offsite backup service, CrashPlan
We currently back up Dentrix Image’s database in two ways.
- With Dentrix’s internal backup. If you dig deep on the server where your image database is housed, you will see a folder called ViperDataBackup. In our case, this is in \Dentrix\DXImage\MSDE\MSSQL$VIPER\Backup\ViperData . This folder grows with two new files each day:
These files seem to represent nightly backups. We use Cobian Backup on the server to copy all files from this directory to the NAS each night. The main issue, as illustrated below, is that I have no idea how to restore from these files currently.
- With our own scripts. DXImage database is running on Microsoft SQL Server Embedded, in a database called VIPER. We created a script that essentially backs up the VIPER database each night to a file, then copies that file to the NAS. The two main lines of this script are:
osql -S SERVER2\VIPER -E -i SqlFullBackup.sql
copy /Y /Z /V *.* X:\backup\
where SqlFullBackup.sql is as follows:
BACKUP LOG MASTER WITH TRUNCATE_ONLY
BACKUP LOG MODEL WITH TRUNCATE_ONLY
BACKUP LOG MSDB WITH TRUNCATE_ONLY
BACKUP LOG VIPER WITH TRUNCATE_ONLY
BACKUP DATABASE MASTER TO DISK =’C:\backup\MASTER-nightly-backup.bak’
BACKUP DATABASE MODEL TO DISK =’C:\backup\MODEL-nightly-backup.bak’
BACKUP DATABASE MSDB TO DISK =’C:\backup\MSDB-nightly-backup.bak’
BACKUP DATABASE VIPER TO DISK =’C:\backup\VIPER-nightly-backup.bak’
We then backup the entire contents of this c:\backup directory to the NAS.
We have not had the opportunity to test the restore procedure for this backup method. However, I feel fairly confident that, by backing up in two methods, we will be covered should disaster strike our poor little DXImage database. I particularly trust the second method, as it does not rely on having to contact Dentrix Image Support at all.
I just recently installed Dentrix at the office where my wife works and I am rather shocked how little backup information there is in the Dentrix manuals. I guess it is obvious that Dentrix wants you to pay for their backup service rather than tell you how to backup the data yourself. I know that I have had great difficulty restoring SQL databases in the past and especially when you simply tried to copy database files directly. I would highly recommend that you test your backups before you in any way trust what you are doing. From what I have read so far, the recommended way to backup Dentrix is to schedule a data export to a file on your computer and then use your backup routine to take that file and back it up. I would recommend both an onsite backup as well as maybe an offsite(online) backup of some kind. I am very concerned myself about this and may just end up paying for the Dentrix backup and maybe also setup some kind of redundant computer system that is always ready to be used just in case something goes wrong.