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Hyper-V Snapshot deleted incorrectly and now missing avhd. Need to try and merge.

Posted on 2012-03-12
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Last Modified: 2012-04-09
I came into an IT position at a company using Hyper-V, I didn't do any of the setup for Hyper-V, but after a paused-critical situation with Hyper-V last week I am trying to figure out how to get past the situation I am in now with one particular Virtual server.

I have a server running Windows Server 2008 Enterprise and it runs 4 Hyper-V virtual servers on it. One server is the exchange server and that is the server I am having the problem with:

I cannot delete, delete subtree, or export on this virtual server. I get the generic Snapshot failed to delete error and then it lists a virtual ID for which there is a folder, but NOT an avhd file ( I can only assume that it was deleted by the last IT person and the server has been running off of snapshots since.) I have an AVHD file that is currently over 800GB and needs to be merged with it's parent VHD file.

The server is running now and doesn't have any noticeable issues other than failures mentioned above with snapshots/merges/exports. I can create a new snapshot with no problem and I can also reboot the server with no issues....

What can I do to address this deleted AVHD file (yes I tried using recovery software in order to find the deleted file) and the lack of ability to delete/merge snapshots or export this particular virtual machine.

Thanks.
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Question by:MitchViste
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Expert Comment

by:ImaCircularSaw
ID: 37713781
I've not come across quite this issue before however, I did find this which might be of some help and seems to describe your issue:

http://scorpiotek.com/blog/?p=424

Hope this helps!
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Author Comment

by:MitchViste
ID: 37714852
You would need all of the AVHD files in this example...  I am missing one. If all else fails and I get no other answer I may try this with what I do have...
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Expert Comment

by:ImaCircularSaw
ID: 37715686
It looks like it'll work it'll just break other AVHDs in the chain.  Another route might Microsoft Virtual Machine Manager:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd277881.aspx

Creating Hyper-V Virtual Machines

In Virtual Machine Manager (VMM), you can create new virtual machines from any of the following sources:

Existing virtual hard disks (VHDs)

Blank virtual hard disks

Templates

Existing virtual machines

Hyper-V virtual machines

Virtual Server virtual machines

VMware virtual machines
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Author Comment

by:MitchViste
ID: 37715706
Considering it's the earliest avhd in the chain, breaking it would hose my entire server. yikes. I'll look into this next solution...
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Accepted Solution

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ImaCircularSaw earned 500 total points
ID: 37715904
I've only used MSVMM to go physical to virtual but it's a great tool!  You'll be able to, on the fly, create a brand new VM from a running server.

At the very least, in addition to what you have, have you got backups?  I would recommend making sure you have external backups of mailboxes and know the connector settings so if the worst happens, you can reinstall and setup exchange.  hope you don't have to do this but at least you can be in the position to.

Another option is to set up a brand new VM from scratch and configure it the same as your existing exchange server, copy mailboxes onto it during down time then switch the MX records to point to the new server.  This would mean you can keep the existing server in place until you're happy.
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