Free Hyper-V 2012 Backup with Altaro

People are quickly discovering the benefits of implementing a Hyper-V server solution into their business. If you have been tentative about jumping, do so today!

I had an opportunity today to start exploring some of the 3rd party software solutions available for backing up Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V virtual machines (VMs). As I asked around for recommendations, several names kept coming up: Altaro, Storagecraft, Veeam.


As I was already familiar with Storagecraft and their ShadowProtect product, I decided to take a look at Altaro, primarily because I kept reading reviews about how easy it was to install and run, and because they offer a free version that will backup two VMs, forever, for FREE.

I like “easy” and “free”, and in less than ten minutes I had Altaro installed and backups scheduled and running. I also like the fact that these are hot backups, allowing you to back up running VMs without stopping them!

  • Go ahead and download the free edition here (installation file is less than 20MB in size). Installation was a breeze — five quick clicks of a mouse is all it takes! NOTE: you install Altaro on the Hyper-V host (parent), not the guest VMs.
  • Altaro supports Windows 2012 , and even creates some helpful tiles!
  • Start up Altaro’s Management console, and it will automatically start scanning for any and all of your virtual machines.
  • All that was left was to select which VMs I wanted to backup, and then select an appropriate drive to store the backups. I had a 2TB USB drive available.
    Note: Altaro does not delete any existing files or folders on the selected backup drive. It creates a folder labeled ‘AltaroHyperVBackup’.
  • Here’s a screenshot of their dashboard.


The free version, as I mentioned earlier, will backup two VMs forever. The free version does not include File Level Restore, and it will only allow you to restore backups made during the most recent four weeks.

For $345, you can back up up to 5 VMs, and for $445 you can back up an unlimited number of VMs.

View a comparison of the Altaro editions.

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