Setting Up A Temporary Server
If you have an application that is ran from the server for the network and the server crashes for any reason, sometimes you may need to setup a “Temporary Server” until the real server gets repaired or replaced. In a smaller network, you might be able to get away with doing this on a workstation.
First figure out, is it worth the effort? Most of the time it isn’t. If you run on a SQL DB then it could take hours, on the other hand, if you are using a flat file system, this could be fairly quick. The only time its really appropriate is if your server went down and you are not getting it replaced for a couple weeks.
Look at your most recent backup- What’s the last modified date? Try to run one if possible. Make sure to understand that once you restore from a backup, there is no going back. This is due to database conflicts that can arise.
Restore the relevant database to another workstation. Doesn’t matter which one, but look for a W7 workstation, XP has a limit of 10 computers that can map drives to a shared folder from it.
Point all software to the new location if it’s a network application.
Share out the database by placing it in a shared folder or drive partition if you have one. Set the permissions to how the server had them. If you have specific users in specific groups, set those up. I typically allow Full Control to Everyone at the share level and the restrict at the NTFS level by AD security groups.
Map a network drive on all the computers to the new temp server. Don’t delete the original mapped drives for when the server does come back. See Mapped Network Drive Issues for how to do this.