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Replace failing drive containing client backup database


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I have my WHS 2011 client PC database on its own dedicated drive. This drive is now showing errors, and the client pc backups are now not completing. I have a replacement drive and a backup of the client PC database made before the failure. How can I replace the client PC backup drive, restore the client PC database, AND have WHS 2011 continue to use the restored client PC database?

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Can you hook up both drives at the same time?

If so, then just "move" the folder using the dashboard.  Otherwise, it may get tricky. 

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I'm doing this from memory so if I "misspeak" hopefully someone will correct me.  I think Drashna's plan is best if it's possible.  Given that the backups don't complete, there may be a chance that the move does not complete successfully.  In that case (or if you can't put both drives on line at the same time), I think it still can be done.  I had to replace a bad drive with some of the Server Folders on it and got it to work eventually after some fiddling.  There may be (probably are) better ways to do it. But this is what I recall doing:

  • Shut down and removed bad drive.
  • I think I formatted the new drive on another machine, then created a "ServerFolders" folder in the root directory and, in your case,"Client Computer Backups" folder in the ServerFolder. (Note: I think these are the default folder names.  I don't think they can be changed?).
  • Installed new drive and restarted. logging on to an account that had administrator privileges. Added or changed the drive letter to be the same as the drive I previously removed (in Disk Management).
  • WHS 2011 threw an alert/error that it couldn't find one of the Server Folders (in this case that should be Client Computer Backups, assuming that was the only server folder on that drive).
  • This is where my memory is fuzzy.  Either (a) WHS 2011 gave me an option to repair the error; (b) I navigated to the Server Folders and Hard Drives/Server Folders tab in WHS 2011 and clicked on "Add a folder", or (c) The file list on the Server Folders tab showed the missing folder name with some error icon which I right clicked.  Somehow, I was able to direct WHS 2011 to the new existing folder and confirm that this was indeed the location for the folder missing from the standard list of Server Folders.
  • Went to the Computers and Backups tab in WHS 2011 and opened a recent complete Server Backup. Selected the appropriate folder(s) to restore and began the restore process. I believe i had to indicate I was restoring to a different drive/location than the original (because WHS 2011 identifies each drive uniquely even if the drive letter is the same etc.).
  • After restoring, I also had to reconfigure the Server Backup properties to remove the old/bad drive and add the new good drive.

Note: I was restoring folders other than the Computer Client Backups.  There may be issues with those particular files/folders that  I did not encounter. Also, WHS 2011 may have an issue with adding new client backups to the old ones.  


I hope I don't lead you astray.  I just know that I WAS able to do something similar to what you are asking about.  Hopefully those with more knowledge can give you more precise guidance if needed.

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Well, another option is "registry hacking".  This is the simplest way to move the database location without moving the files. 

But with all registry hacking.... if you're not 100% certain about it... just don't.   


But that said, "HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows Server\Backup", and the string is "DatabaseName".  This set's the path for the backups.  You need to stop the services for backup (all of the "Windows Server" services), make this edit, and then start them back up. 


And yes, the default path is \ServerFolders\Client Computer Backups".

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Drashna, I have installed the new drive in the server but when I attempt to move the client backup folder to the new drive I get: "An unxepected error has occured 0x80040080". A search at Microsoft turns up this thread where several others have had the same error. The thread ends with no resolution. Is this something you have experienced and have a fix for? If not, I'll have to try the registry hack although I'm not 100% certain about it...

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i'd have to dig, but I'm pretty sure that the error is ... well, a storage related error, because of the failing drive.  


You can try moving the data manually, pulling the problem drive and then try ... above, by setting the new drive's letter to the old drive's letter and reboot 

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Christopher, it may be because of the previously failing drive but I ran a repair on it today and it found no errors. Also, SMART now reports the drive is healthy, whereas before it was failing. Also, the WHS client computer backups have now begun completing properly. Of course my concern is this is only temporary - the drive may fail soon and I would really like to get my client database to the new drive before that happens.


Here is one thing I noticed that may offer a clue. When I look at the WHS Server Folders tab all of my folder locations except the client database are F:\ServerFolders\<folder name> whereas the client backup database shows the location simply as "E:\", i.e., no "ServerFolders" in the location name. Could this be the source of my problem with moving the client database folder?


Finally, I do backup my client backup database in my server backup. Is there a way to restore the backed up client database folder to the new drive and have WHS use that for subsequent client database backups?


I really appreciate your help on this.

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Christopher, here are screen shots showing the folder location in the dashboard, and the default client backup database folder restore location, which is in e:\ServerFolders. 



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The folder location is absolutely fine.  As long as the files are intact and not being modified by anything else .... it really doesn't matter.


However, for ease, I do recommend the "full" folder path.  ("X:\ServerFolders\Client Computer Backup"). 


I would say re-attempt the move now that it appears to be working fine.  If that still has issues, then let me know.


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As you can see from the 1st screen capture I still can't move the folder. I noticed that it was trying to move to (or create) ServerFolders on the new G drive so I tried again by first creating that folder. This generated an error that the folder already exists on the target drive. To recap, both of these error dialogs are the result of me attempting to move the client backup folder. Any ideas?



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