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SBS2011 Freezes during client backups


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Ok I realize this is SBS and not WHS, but here's a doozie for you guys.. I'm about to pull my hair out!


One of my clients is running SBS2011 Essentials for their file / application server. All of a sudden, after about 8 months without so much as a hiccup, the server will freeze when a client pc is backing up to it. Server backup still runs fine and the server runs great as long as no client attempts to do a backup.


I blew away the Client Computer Backups content and attempted to start over, no dice... I can restore the server back to an earlier date, but I'd rather avoid that if possible. Theres just so much to make sure is right if I have to do a restore.. (SQL Databases and Config for Microsoft Dynamics Point of Sale)


There are 2 partitions, the C and D, both of which are on a Raid 5 array, and I've ran a consistency check on the array and it came out fine.


So I dont think its a disk issue, there are no issues other than the client backups..



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  • ikon


  • tojoski


  • jmwills


  • Joe_Miner


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I'll throw some things out to check:




AV interferance

Ample space to perform the backups with Shadow Copy room


What is in the Event Logs when this starts to happen? Do the clients have any issues accessing files?

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I still wouldn't rule out a disk issue. RAID5 check utilities don't typically (AFAIK) do a surface analysis of the drives.


Also, what about the network? The NIC could be a bit flaky, such that it can handle normal traffic OK (with retransmits, but not enough to hang anything up) but falls over when the extra traffic of a backup starts.


I also agree with jmwills about RAM; you might want to run MemTest86 on it.


All of that said, I'm not, at this point, really thinking it's hardware. If it's feasible, I would arrange a time when I could go in with a spare drive, install it into the box after removing all the existing ones, install SBS on it and test backups. That would take a while (maybe 1 to 2 hours) but it would isolate whether it's a hardware or software issue. Best of all would be if you have a duplicate system at your place that you could use to pre-install SBS and just take in the already configured drive. I know not many people do it nowadays but I used to always try to maintain duplicate hardware at my shop that I could use to support clients. Course, I'm not in that business any more.....

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When I first started looking at it, I suspected a disk error as well..because when I opened the recycle bin, I got the error " the recycle bin for drive D is corrupt".. oh great :(


I did a chkdsk on both partitions and they came out fine..


The NIC is a possibility, it's an Asus server board so theres a 2nd NIC ready to go, it just has to be enabled.


Thanks for pointing out the Ram, I'll run a memtest on it overnight and see if that comes up with anything. I'll also try throwing another disk in it and moving the client backup files to that drive.. that should eliminate it being a disk error on the array...


I've poured through the event viewer for hours and there is nothing in there of any help, nothing of any importance gets logged between the freeze and the time it gets rebooted. Nothing short of a hard boot will bring it back to life when this happens too, the cursor will still move but everything else is unresponsive.


Thanks for the tip about the permissions too, hadnt thought to check the permissions.

Edited by tojoski
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Any possibility that the client is closed on weekends so you could bring it home to work on it? Or are you already ahead of me? :)

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If you think it could be the NIC, you could open a performance monitor applet and then kick off a client back up to see what happens during the event.

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If you think it could be the NIC, you could open a performance monitor applet and then kick off a client back up to see what happens during the event.


Good idea. I'm still liking the idea of putting a different disk, with a fresh install of SBS, into the server and trying a backup in order to absolutely isolate if it's hardware or software. I'm a big believer in the 'divide the problem in half repeatedly until there's only one option left'. Tojoski's idea of putting in a new disk and moving the backups to it is good, but it's not an absolute test of hardware vs software.

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Thanks for the pointers guys.. they are open tomorrow so monday I'm going to attempt moving the backups to a different drive, as well as a overnight memtest.

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They are open Mon - Sat, but I wasnt available over the weekend to do any troubleshooting.


The overnight memtest I ran last night came out squeaky clean, 14 passes with no issues.


I did find some interesting errors in the event log which I initially thought were unrelated, but I researched them and fixed them and so far the backups are working again.


The errors I found were:


In the Application log:

Log Name:		 Application
Source:		 VSS
Date:			 3/6/2012 1:33:48 PM
Event ID:		 8193
Task Category: None
Level:		   Error
Keywords:		 Classic
User:			 N/A
Volume Shadow Copy Service error: Unexpected error calling routine RegOpenKeyExW(-2147483646,SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\VSS\Diag,...).  hr = 0x80070005, Access is denied.


This was corrected by adding the "Network Service" full control permissions of the registry key "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\VSS"


The there was this in the System log:


Log Name:	  System
Source:		Microsoft-Windows-WinRM
Date:		  3/6/2012 1:33:48 PM
Event ID:	  10154
Task Category: None
Level:		 Warning
Keywords:	  Classic
User:		  N/A
The WinRM service failed to create the following SPNs: WSMAN/SERVER.AUDIOEXPRESS.local; WSMAN/SERVER.


This was corrected by adding the "Validated Write to Service Principal Name" permission for the "Network Service" account to the server's computer account in Active Directory.


I'm cautiously optimistic at this point..

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