Hello Zimbra Community. I am using Zimbra 8.0.5 Network Edition with 100 users running a Ubuntu 12.04 server in a virtual environment. This virtual machine is running on a ESXi 5.5 server. We have the VMware vsphere essentials packages (so no HA or DR with VMware currently). I also have a spam proxy setup through Xeams.

In the last month I am have been thinking of getting our email system better protected in the event of of the ESXi machine going down. Currently I believe that Zimbra is on its default backup schedule of nightly incrementals and weekly full backups. These backups are then backed up by my backup server.

What I am looking to do is to have a spare server, either hot or cold setup so that in the event of a disaster I could switch over to that I can start that machine up and be back up and running relatively quickly. So here was my first thought, change the backups to do incrementals every 1 hour and rsync these to my spare server every hour as well. Since I have Xeams setup I have it set to store incoming emails for a period of time so I can get missing emails from there. For example if I had something happen 1 minute before the next incremental backup, I can get those emails from the past 59mins from the Xeams Virtual machine. I would also keep my weekly fulls, and again rsync these to my spare server. The spare server will be a clean install of Ubuntu 12.04 and Zimbra 8.0.5 NE on a separate ESXi VM. From here I am not 100% on how to restore users and their mailboxes. And here is where I have a couple questions.

1) Are hourly backup going cause issues?
2) How do I restore my Zimbra backups on a cold or new install?

I know some of this is out on forums, I have been searching around for some time now but I haven't seen a lot of up to date scenarios involving Zimbra 8 and the Network Edition. If I missed something please let me know. I know I could use some other software to keep a hot spare of our server but my goal is to use what we have currently to make this work as effectively as possible. If you need any more information from me please let me know.