SBS 2003 Server Backup Scheduled Task Stopped Working

Posted on 2014-07-26
Last Modified: 2014-07-30

As part of my backup strategy for my SBS 2003 server, I created three scheduled tasks to backup the C drive with Exchange to a NAS.  (The shared files are on different partitions and are backed up separately).  The NAS drive is volume X and it has three folders and backup files as follows:


I set it up this way to mimic a three-day tape rotation scheme.  Each task is scheduled to run around 1 am every third day.  It was designed to go to it's designated folder, delete the backup file that is currently there, and run a new backup.  This way, I should have full backups of my server's C drive for three days.  Every few weeks I needed to go to the recycle bin of the NAS and permanently delete all of the old .bkf files.  This system was working great for about 5 months.  A few weeks ago I noticed that all three of the scheduled tasks stopped working.  Checking Event Log I found the following error on a daily basis right around 1:00 am:

Event Type:      Error
Event Source:      NTBackup
Event Category:      None
Event ID:      8017
Date:            7/25/2014
Time:            1:22:16 AM
User:            N/A
Computer:      THEORACLE2
NTBackup error: 'The operation failed. Consult the Backup Report for more details.'

Checking the backup log I found what appears to be a simple explanation to the problem:

Backup Status
  The operation was not performed because the specified media cannot be found.

I cannot understand why all of a sudden the scheduled tasks cannot find the media.  The server is able to ping the NAS device and the drive X shows up under Explorer from the SBS server.  What would cause backup to be unable to find the media?  I should point out I have another scheduled task that runs the same backup every day to an external RDX drive.  That task simply writes over the files daily and it continues to work fine.  Over the past few months I have rebooted the server several times to install MS Updates.  Those have been the only changes.

Here is the syntax related to one of the jobs called "SBS-Synology-1.job"

C:\WINDOWS\system32\ntbackup.exe backup "@C:\Documents and Settings\Administrator\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Windows NT\NTBackup\data\SBS-Synology-1.bks" /n "SBS-Backup-NAS-1.bkf created 1/21/2014 at 10:58 AM" /d "Set created 1/21/2014 at 10:58 AM" /v:yes /r:no /rs:no /hc:off /m normal /j "SBS-Synology-1" /l:s /f "X:\SBS-Backup-NAS-1\SBS-Backup-Synology-1.bkf"

For months, when this worked the file X:\SBS-Backup-NAS-1\SBS-Backup-Synology-1.bkf would be replaced every third day.  I realize I could re-create these tasks and hopefully solve the problem.  I would prefer to understand why these working tasks all of a sudden stopped working.

Thanks in advance for your help!!
Question by:MrChip2
LVL 23

Accepted Solution

Brian B earned 200 total points
ID: 40225025
If it has been working, I guess the first question is what did you different? You might have to track back and think about it, but that might help pinpoint the cause.

Do the jobs work if you run launch them manually from scheduled tasks?

The one thing that stands out in my mind is that the drive "X" will not be mapped unless the account being used for the scheduled task is logged on. Assuming it is a mapped drive, of course.

Besides that, the patches came out from MS a couple of weeks ago. Since it's a 2003 server there shouldn't be too many patches to look into and see if there are any known issues.
LVL 29

Assisted Solution

by:Sudeep Sharma
Sudeep Sharma earned 100 total points
ID: 40225637
Also could you check if your Synology NAS is up-to-date. There are updates which are been release last week for the Synology NAS, not sure if your model of NAS falls into the same category.

Further as you have mentioned, there is other job too, for the testing could you pause or disable that job to check if the two jobs at same time are causing this issue.


Author Comment

ID: 40225659
Sorry for the slow reply.  Somehow I missed the email about your posts.

TBone2K, I think you may be on the right track.  Sometimes I reboot the server through remote desktop while other times I use the console. I tried running one of the jobs manually and it worked.  I just checked and it looks like another job ran as scheduled last night.  I think this has to do with how I reboot the server, drive mapping (it is mapped), and permissions, etc.

How do I check to see what account is running the script?  I know this may sound rudimentary, but I am not sure how to do that.

Is there a way to make the script run as long as the server is booted, regardless of whether or not a particular account has logged in since the last reboot?

Sudeep, later this afternoon I will log into the NAS and check for updates.
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LVL 27

Assisted Solution

Steve earned 200 total points
ID: 40227952
This is a well known issue. You can check which user account is running the backup in scheduled tasks. Check the settings for the task, under 'run as'

Also, many people copy the backup command to a batchfile instead of running tge command directly.
As the scheduled task runs the batchfile instead of the backup command directly you can add additional commands to the batchfile(eg remap the drive if its missing)

Author Comment

ID: 40228162
Hi totallytonto,

I checked and all three scheduled tasks are being run under the administrator account.  I also verified that all three tasks are working now.

You bring up a very good point about the batch file.  I have no idea how to write a batch file that would:

1) check to see if the X drive is mapped
2) if it is not mapped, map it

The X drive is located at \\\work backups.  Would you, by chance, be able to give me the code to put in a bat file?  I will then create a scheduled task to run that bat file daily at midnight, which is an hour before the SBS backup jobs.

I think this question/problem is now solved.  If you would prefer, I can post a separate question asking for the bat code.  Just let me know.


Author Closing Comment

ID: 40228203
Thank you all.  I will be posting a new question about the batch file that totallytonto referred to.  Please look for it if you are familiar with batch files.
LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:Brian B
ID: 40229294
Thanks for coming back. Don't forget my comment about the X: drive. Remember don't use mapped drives since the user must be logged on for them to work. Use the UNC path instead (\\server\share). I'll look for you next question.

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