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SBS 2003 Backup Issues

I run a backup every night on my SBS2003 server. Instead of tape, (which I consider to be slow, clunky and overpriced compared to modern-day alternatives - But that's a matter of personal opinion!) - We use 5 external hard-drives, rotating daily - Which are taken off-site for safety.

The backups have been going fine, but now the drives contain a fair few backups, they are beginning to fill up. Last night, the backup failed for the first time.

Here's a copy of the backup log:
13/09/2010 19:00
-------------------------------
Date: 13/09/2010
Time: 19:00
User: SYSTEM
-------------------------------

Backup Runner started.
Launching NTBackup: ntbackup.exe backup "@C:\Program Files\Microsoft Windows Small Business Server\Backup\Small Business Backup Script.bks" /d "SBS Backup created on 13/09/2010 at 19:00" /v:yes /r:no /rs:no /hc:off /m normal /j "Small Business Server Backup Job" /l:s /f "F:\Backup Files\Small Business Server Backup (02).bkf" /UM
NTBACKUP LOG FILE: C:\Documents and Settings\SBS Backup User\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Windows NT\NTBackup\data\backup02.log
=====================<BEGIN NTBACKUP LOG FILE>=====================
Backup Status
Operation: Backup
Active backup destination: File
Media name: "Small Business Server Backup (02).bkf created 13/09/2010 at 19:00"

Volume shadow copy creation: Attempt 1.
Backup (via shadow copy) of "C: "
Backup set #1 on media #1
Backup description: "SBS Backup created on 13/09/2010 at 19:00"
Media name: "Small Business Server Backup (02).bkf created 13/09/2010 at 19:00"

Backup Type: Normal

Backup started on 13/09/2010 at 19:02.
Backup completed on 13/09/2010 at 19:38.
Directories: 5159
Files: 44435
Bytes: 27,280,998,918
Time:  36 minutes and  11 seconds
Backup (via shadow copy) of "D: Storage"
Backup set #2 on media #1
Backup description: "SBS Backup created on 13/09/2010 at 19:00"
Media name: "Small Business Server Backup (02).bkf created 13/09/2010 at 19:00"

Backup Type: Normal

Backup started on 13/09/2010 at 19:38.

Error: The device reported an error on a request to write data to media.
Error reported: Invalid command.
There may be a hardware or media problem.
Please check the system event log for relevant failures.
The operation was ended.
Backup completed on 13/09/2010 at 19:40.
Directories: 76
Files: 331
Bytes: 2,855,105,501
Time:  2 minutes and  19 seconds

Error: D: is not a valid drive, or you do not have access.


----------------------

The operation did not successfully complete.

----------------------

=======================<END NTBACKUP LOG FILE>=====================
NTBackup finished the backup with errors.

For more information about failed backups, see the article on troubleshooting your backup at the following Web page: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=18414

Backup ended at 13 September 2010 19:40
Backup Runner finished.

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I have researched this, and there is only *Just* enough free space on the drive to complete the backup. This happens on any hard-drive I try out of the 5 I have.

If I delete all but the most recent bkf file from the hard-drive and run the backup again, it's fine! It's almost as if ntbackup isn't correctly calculating free space and over-writing the last backup.

Thoughts please!
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UncleVirus
Asked:
UncleVirus
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2 Solutions
 
Radhakrishnan RSenior Technical LeadCommented:
Its showing "Error: D: is not a valid drive, or you do not have access" - How about the credentials, you should be Administrator for the server & backup operator group.
if its is the space issue, you can delete some old backup's 3-4 months before from current, you should keep the backup for at least 3 months. So, if the old backup files not required you can delete it and get some free space.
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UncleVirusAuthor Commented:
It's working fine when the drive isn't (relatively) low on space, so I'd be inclined to dismiss it being credentials. It was set up through the SBS Backup wizard too. I've checked credentials and it's correctly showing administrator and I've re-entered the password to confirm.
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SysExpertCommented:
Ypu are correct that the estimate may not be correct, and since your data is probably growing, you should consider some type of archiving if you need longer term retention.

So as part of the backup, run a batch file that deletes the oldest bkf,  if xxxx bytes are not free.

SImple and will work as long as you correctly set xxxx on a regular basis.

I hope this helps !
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UncleVirusAuthor Commented:
Any idea how I can pre-launch a .bat when the backup starts?

I'm not using a batch file to initiate the backup, I've done it through the wizard.

The scheduled task has the following shortcut path:

"C:\Program Files\Microsoft Windows Small Business Server\Backup\bkprunner.exe"

I'm unsure as to the syntax for the batch script also. The freecom external drives I'm hot-swapping have 149GB of usable space, and the backups reach 33.4 GB (35,960,156,160 bytes) per day.
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UncleVirusAuthor Commented:
Infact to be honest, I think this setup could be simplified by having differential or daily backups instead of a full backup every day - That would more than likely solve the problem, as they only keep a weeks worth so the drives would never become close to full before being overwritten! This is a much simpler solution :-)

Thanks for your help everyone!
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