[HELP] VERITAS BackupExec 9.1 hangs on Exchange 2003 Mailbox

fsurfer used Ask the Experts™
Hi everyone,
i'm using VERITAS Backup Exec for Windows Servers  9.1.4691 with agent for Exchange.

Everything runs fine except that from few days (i think after a MS update), every backup is hanging on some place on a Exchange mailbox. and the backup operation still runs but is doing nothing. And it mays last for more than 24 hours... Te poblem is that is can't exclude the mailbox from the backups.

does anyone has already experienced such a problem ? and solved it :)

Thanks in advance for any answer !

Best Regards,

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Hi fsurfer,

There is a simple solution for this - stop doing brick level backups.

Back up the information store instead, if you need to restore an individual mailbox, you can use the Exchange 2003 Recovery Storage Group to get it.

Brick Level Backups are useless in a disaster, and an absolute pain with issues like this, or corrupted messages, or poor formatting, etc, etc

Hope that helps,

I'll second Redseat's answer for you there.  Back up the Information Store (you can expand it to see the Message backup underneath).  You could eventually get the Exchange brick-level to back up, but I can tell you ahead of time it's a colossal pain, and, as Redseat says, is prone to failure when you actually need it.  


hi redseat and Adam,

thanks for your answers !

i'll check it in the nextdays and let you know - and give the points :) !

Best regards,

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Not me, was just confirming.  Redseat deserves the points. :)
Most Valuable Expert 2015

You can also try disabling the AV software while you are backing up.
Ron MalmsteadInformation Services Manager

I completely disagree with Redseat.
Brick level backups are highly convenient when you only need to restore a single mailbox.....instead of creating a "recovery group", in which case your server may not even have the disk space to hold a second copy of your entire store.  Plus it takes alot longer to restore if your db is large.  Alot of work for a single mailbox.
I've had this happen before to me, and here was the problem/solution.

Did you update your veritas recently ?

IF you update Veritas, you have to re-install the windows agent to all servers.  Uninstall the agent from your exchange box, and reinstall it.  Run a backup job on just exchange.(brick level).

Also, as a best practice....you should exclude exchange directories from being scanned by antivirus software.  You should also exclude the Veritas Agent folders, and program folders.

let me know if that works.

If you do not have the time or resources to run separate jobs, Veritas has acknowledged that a brick-level mailbox is not the best idea.  Even if their own forums, they have suggested you either set up a separate job or don't do it at all.  A single corrupt file within a brick-level backup will take the whole back up down and kill the verification process.  

While I agree with you it is a lot of hassle to restore a single mailbox, it's even more hassle to discover your backup you need is invalid because you decided to duplicate your mail backup in order to save yourself a little time.

Disagree all you like, the simple reality is that MS do not support BLB.

I only run information store backups, and have increased my deleted item retention time to 30 days.  90% or more of emails that need to be restored can be pulled from the dumpster without ever touching a tape, my backup jobs dont fail for stupid reasons, AND most importantly, if there is a disaster, I will be able to restore my server.

Have you ever tried rebuilding a totally dead server with nothing but brick level backups??  I have, and that is precisely why I don't do them!

With BLB, your backups are larger - simply because it doesn't use single instance storage.  I know of zero Exchange experts that use BLB with 2003.  The only way to do it well is with Exmerge -> http://www.petri.co.il/brick_level_backup_of_mailboxes_by_using_exmerge.htm <- but even that is a painful experience




thanks for your answer !

it worked perfectly.

now the backups run as they should, with no error nor any freeze.

i'm glad to give you those points !

best regards,



Glad to hear it worked out for you, welcome to the land of trouble free exchange backups :)



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