We installed a Windows 2003 SBS Server for a customer about a year ago. After going over a few backup options, they decided to use 2 external USB hard disks that would be switched out every day. One employee would be given the responsibility to change the USB drive every day before leaving and take the un-attached drive home with them.
This solution worked fine for several months. One day I got a call because the Server would be "froze-up" every morning when they came in, and a hard re-boot would be necessary to get the Server up and running again. It would then run OK, but like clock-work - the next morn it would be froze again.
I do not know how long this went on before they finally contacted me, but one of their problems was that, for some reason, they stopped swapping out the USB drives, at least for the most part, and there was literally no free space on these drives at all. I assumed that the freeze-ups were related to NT backup trying to run at midnight every night, with a 100% full target location.
I explained the problem, made some reconfigurations to the back up plan, and checked in on how things were going via a remote connection every day for about a week. After that I was satisfied that the drivers were being switched out , and the backups were completing successfully.
Now here is the problem, it has been about 2 weeks since I stopped checking in on the backups, and everything went smooth according to the customer until today. The server was froze-up again today, but it is not full. What is different is that no matter how many times in the past year the USB drives have been swapped in and out, both drives always received F:\ as the drive letter. When I logged into the server remotely this morning, I noticed some NT backup errors, and that the USB drive was now drive E:\ which certainly explains why the back-up failed, but no other hardware has been added to or removed from this Server.
Does anyone know why this would happen? Is there a way that I can ensure that these drives will always be F:\, or perhaps some other work around?
Thanks in advance