VSS woes

A client reported some tales of woe regarding their backup strategy and random failures in the backup process. The servers involved were 2008 R2 with the hyperv role and exchange 2007. When investigated it appeared that they had been having very little success getting backups to fully complete on a regular basis. One idea was to attach a large capacity USB drive to the servers and run a full backup of the contents plus exchange. This resulted in about a 1TB backup but completed successfully in 16 hours. The research carried out while this was running suggested that there have been a raft of issues with Backup Exec 12.5 and Trend antivirus – compounded with issue regarding the VSS writers running on server 2008.

Microsoft appears to have issued a number of patches and fixes for hyperv and vss but the client would feel more comfortable with a solid backup strategy before conducting that piece of work.

Looks like this particular problem may run for a while longer but at least its heading in the right direction with full data backups completing – now just to get the Exchange and System state backups to play ball and we may have a stable enough infrastructure to do some work on this ill server infrastructure.