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Backup Exec 2012 failing - VSS Writer issue

Posted on 2013-01-17
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Last Modified: 2014-05-27
Hello

I have a Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard SP1 64-bit Hyper-V server. In the Hyper-V Manager I have two virtual machines. One is my Small Business Server 2011 Standard SP1 64-Bit and the second is my SQL Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard SP1 64-Bit.

On the Hyper-V machine i have Symantec Backup Exec 2012 installed. It is setup to run full backups on the Hyper-V machine as well as the two Virtual Machines.

Recently, the Hyper-V backups have been failing due to a VSS writer issue. When all three servers have been rebooted and I run the CMD command 'vssadmin list writers' they all show as stable no error. About 1.5 hours into the backup, it failes and when I run the CMD command again, it shows one of the VSS writers - the ASR Writer as [7] Failed Last Error timed out.

I have logged a case with Symantec and they have said they cannot help me with this. I have researched the issue and some people are saying to re-register the VSS Writers but i have heard that this can break it and will result in re-installing the server. I cant let this happen as i have no decent backups of the server.

I have attached the log for the CMD command when run in Hyper-V after a failed backup, and also the log for the same command I ran on the SBS server (in case that's helpful)

Symantec tried to help by making changes to the backup settings (i have included a picture of the changes they made) but either way it made no difference.

Please help, is there something I can do to resolve this without resorting to a re-install?
Symantec-changes.JPG
VSS-Writers-Hyper-v.txt.txt
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Question by:Nezza815
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LVL 42

Expert Comment

by:Paul Solovyovsky
ID: 38791974
Typically this is caused by conflicting VSS agents.  Are there any VSS backups running during the backup?
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Author Comment

by:Nezza815
ID: 38799849
Not that I can see in the Task Scheduler on the Hyper-V
On the SBS server it runs at 7am and 12pm
I do have a Sharepoint backup running (in Backup Exec) but that starts at 10pm and finished in about 5 minutes, and this failing backup starts at 11pm
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LVL 42

Expert Comment

by:Paul Solovyovsky
ID: 38800047
This could be VSS scheduler or another backup exec job running, or something like the VSS Hyper V agent versus bare metal backup. Take a look at your logs and see what VSS errors you see
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Author Comment

by:Nezza815
ID: 38800153
I didnt see errors for VSS as such, but I've attached a VSS info log and a Backup Exec error log that have appeared a fair bit recently
Backup-Exec-Error.txt
VSS-Event.txt
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Author Comment

by:Nezza815
ID: 38829513
After rebooting the server and running the backup job, I checked the VSS writers on the other servers and they are also showing errors, various reasons.
Sharepoint backups now starting to fail because of the writer issue
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Author Comment

by:Nezza815
ID: 38846293
Issue is still not resolved
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Accepted Solution

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Nezza815 earned 0 total points
ID: 38900386
Just an update, in case anyone is interested.
MS have looked into the issue and they dont believe it's a VSS writer issue, they have checked the correct services are running and have used their own backup software (Windows Server Backup) to test and the backups have worked.
However the Symantec backups I have tested are still failing, and showing a VSS writer issue. So now getting back in touch with Symantec as MS believe it's an issue with their program.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Nezza815
ID: 40092451
Took three months but fixed (Symantec issue)
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