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IBM TSM : Incremental backups fail because of  Microsoft VSS errors

Posted on 2014-04-16
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Last Modified: 2014-05-02
Hello experts,

I have been having issue with IBM TSM for mail lately.

All my full backup succeed but my incremental backups keep  failing

When I type command

VSSADMIN LIST WRITERS

I have the following error "vss microsoft exchange writer timed out".

How can I solve this please
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Question by:cismoney
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max_the_king earned 2000 total points
ID: 40008491
Hi,
with Exchange 2010 (which uses DAG), the log truncation can seem delayed because Exchange must make sure all log updates are sent and committed in all copies (active and passive) before it truncates the logs.
This means that ANY backup product you may use, completes a full backup and reports the backup is successful to Exchange. It is then the responsibility of Exchange to perform the actual log file truncation.
However, and here it might be right the problem you are facing, an incremental backup backs up only transaction logs. The Exchange Server deletes the committed log files after they are successfully backed up. These log files are not deleted if the backup fails.
Specifically the error "vss microsoft exchange writer timed out" might be due to an excessive large log file, maybe because the Exchange did not make it to truncate the log in the past and the vss writer is not confident in succeeding and exit with an error.

The above is just one possible cause, which you may test by rebooting exchange server and trying soon after that reboot to do an incremental backup. If it succeeds and we suspect that the cause is right what i have written above, than as a solution you will need to make some tuning on Exchange server or maybe use faster disks for the mail databases.

hope this helps
max
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