Backup DHCP Server in Windows Server 2012 R2

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After you successfully configure your Windows DHCP server, the next thing you would probably want is to make a backup for it. Windows DHCP server has a native function to back up all DHCP server settings like scopes, reservations, filters, etc. It’s always a good idea to back up your Windows DHCP server. You can use the backup to recover the settings or if you want to migrate the DHCP role to another server. In this post, we’re going to show you how to Backup DHCP Server in Windows Server 2012 R2.

Step by Step – Backup DHCP Server in Windows Server 2012 R2

You can backup your DHCP server by using either GUI or PowerShell. This example will show the step by steps in Windows Server 2012 R2 but it should also be applicable for other Windows Server variant. To back up your DHCP server using GUI, open Server Manager then click Tools > DHCP to open up the DHCP manager console.

Backup DHCP Server in Windows Server 2012 R2 - 1

In the DHCP manager console, right click on the server name and select “Backup” (in our case, the server name is

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The system will ask where to store the backup, by default it will be stored in C:\Windows\System32\dhcp\backup folder. You can choose whether to use the default location or specify your own preferred location, then click OK button to confirm.

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The DHCP backup process will run, but unfortunately there is no confirmation box or message that appears when the backup is succeed. That’s all the steps to backup your DHCP server using GUI. Alternatively, you can also use PowerShell command that does exactly the same thing as in the GUI above. The PowerShell command is:

Backup-DhcpServer -ComputerName [DHCP_Server_Name] -Path [Backup_Location]

Change the variables in bracket with your own value. Example adaptation in our case:

Backup-DhcpServer -ComputerName "" -Path "c:\windows\system32\dhcp\backup"

Verifying DHCP Server Backup Result

To verify if the backup success, browse to the directory where the backup is saved. You should see contents like the figures below:

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In that folder there should be a file named “DhcpCfg” and a subfolder named “new”. If you look at the content of the subfolder, it will show you something like this:

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These files are not something that we can easily interpret. However, if you can see all these files then you can tell that you’ve most likely succeed in performing all the steps to backup DHCP server in Windows Server 2012 R2. Eventually, there is no better way to ensure the result other than testing to restore the DHCP server using this backup.

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Arranda Saputra

ITIL Certified, CCNA, CCDA, VCP6-DCV, MCSA Administering Windows Server 2012
I am IT practitioner in real life with specialization in network and server infrastructure. I have years of experience in design, analysis, operation, and optimization of infrastructure solutions for enterprise-scaled network. You can send me a message on LinkedIn or email to for further inquiry regarding stuffs that I wrote or opportunity to collaborate in a project.

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