A protection agent is software installed on a computer that tracks changes to protected data and transfers the changes from the protected computer to the System Center Data Protection Manager (DPM) server. The protection agent also identifies data on a computer that DPM can protect and recover.

Before you can start protecting data, you must install a protection agent on each computer that contains data that you want to protect. After the protection agent is installed on a computer, the computer is listed as an unprotected computer in the Management task area of DPM Administrator Console. The data sources on the computer are not protected until you add them to a protection group. Each computer that you want to protect must meet the protected computer prerequisites. For more information, see Protected Computer Software Prerequisites.

If a firewall is enabled on the DPM server, you must configure the firewall on the DPM server. To configure a firewall on a DPM server, you must open port 135 to TCP traffic, and you must enable the DPM service (Msdpm.exe) and the protection agent (Dpmra.exe) to communicate through the firewall. For more information about how to update protection agents on computers that reside behind a firewall, see Updating Protection Agents behind a Firewall.

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