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intermittent Backup Exec backup issue

Hi,

We have two client companies that have issues in completing backup exec jobs seemingly at random and we dont have any clue as to what is causing this or how to fix it. These occur intermittently, backups can complete successfully for a week and then it can occur three times a week, there does not seem to be any pattern.

One company is using Backup Exec 12. The jobs complete successfully but occasionally the jobs will complete with exceptions:
AOFO: Initialization failure on: "C:". Advanced Open File Option used: Symantec Volume Snapshot Provider (VSP).
AOFO: Unable to get minimum quiet time for physical volumes. Reduce the activity on these volumes, or wait and run the backup when there is less activity on the volumes.

Company Twos is using Backup Exec 10d and their backup fails at the verify stage with the following error:
AOFO: Initialization failure on: "Shadow?Copy?Components". Advanced Open File Option used: Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS).
AOFO: Initialization failure on: "System?State". Advanced Open File Option used: Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS).

I have followed the Symantec knowledgebase for both but to no avail. I am also fairly new to the Syamntec Backup Exec family and would appreciate being walked through it.

Thanks
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granite03
Asked:
granite03
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1 Solution
 
manoelgjrCommented:
Hi, what kind of services/softwares are running on the machines you are trying to backup. Also, what is the OS and Service Pack of each of them?
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granite03Author Commented:
Both servers are currently using Windows SBS 2003 and are both on SP2.

All backup related services are on automatic and are started. The only thing that comes to mind is that Volume Shadow Copy is on manual and not started but we also have other client companies with a similar setup and they run fine.

Company One has Symantec Endpoint Protection and not much else and Company Two has a quite a few software installed including Trend Micro Antivirus.

Please ask if you need me to be more specific.
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manoelgjrCommented:
Windows SBS, as you know, can have a lot of Microsoft services running on it. I already saw this problem at least 4 times, and on all situations there was a service or a software that was running that was causing this issue. I would recommend you taking a deeper look on what is running on each server, for example: SQL databases (even the express version), Microsoft Exchange and Windows Update Service.

This last one, in particularly is one that I already had problems twice. To check if this is the problem, just stop the services you may think it is, than run the backup job. If you find the service/software that is causing the problem, you can either try to exclude it from the backup job or run pre/post commands to start and stop the service, software or database.

Also, on the backup job, which AOF option are you using? Symantec highly recommends to leave the option as "automatic" unless you have a reason to specify one.
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granite03Author Commented:
Both AOF options have already been set to "automatic" and I have disabled Windows Update Service.

Server one is using the following services:
Exchange:-
Event
IMAP4
Information Store
Management
MTA STacks
Routing Engine
System Attendant

SQL Server:-
BKUPEXEC
MSSQLSERVER
Browser
VSS Writer

Server two is using the following:-
Exchange:-
IMAP4
Information Store
Management
MTA Stacks
POP3
Routing Engine
System Atendance

SQL:-
MSSQL$SBSMONITORING
MSSQLSERVER

SQL Server:-
(BXUPEXEC)
(ENGUAGE)
Active Directory Helper
Browser
VSS Writer

SQLSERVERAGENT

Both have Volume Shadow Copy set to manual.

Hope this helps

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manoelgjrCommented:
The problem might be the Microsoft Exchange. I don't really know how it works on SBS, but talking about a regular Win 2003 Std, running Exchange 2003/2007, you can't use AOF. Said that, on all Symantec Backup Exec implementatios that I do with AOF, I always need to create a separated job just to backup the Exchange server, without the AOF option.

In your case, I am not sure what is the better way to go. If you really require the AOF, I would creat a stop and start script to run before and after the backup job completes.

Also, please keep in mind that you cannot online backup Microsoft Exchange correctly without an specific Backup Exec Exchange client. If you don't have this option, you MUST shutdown your Exchange to do an offline backup.
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granite03Author Commented:
I set Automatic Updates to Manual and stopped the service nearly a week ago. Since then both companies seem to be completing fine. I will wait until the end of the week to see if the problem reoccurs.
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manoelgjrCommented:
Ok. Please let us know the results when you have them. Thank you.
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granite03Author Commented:
Stopping the automatic Updates seem to have done it. Both backup jobs complete with execption at least once every 10 jobs, since they Automatic updates has been disabled it has not occurred since. Thank you for your help
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granite03Author Commented:
Stopping the automatic Updates seem to have done it. Both backup jobs complete with execption at least once every 10 jobs, since they Automatic updates has been disabled it has not occurred since.
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