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Server Backups - won't switch to new drive?


khill0
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I was tired of my old 2TB external backup drive reporting as full all the time.  So, I bought a new 4TB external drive and added to my setup.

 

I moved the old 2TB drive to the drive 'pool' and set up the 4TB drive as the new server backup drive.

 

Unfortunately, I can't get the server to backup successfully to the new drive.  The backup starts but fails after a few minutes.

 

I'm not sure where to even start with troubleshooting.  Is there a step in this process that I'm missing?  It seemed pretty simple to set up in the first place but this time around, its not working.

 

Thanks!

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I was tired of my old 2TB external backup drive reporting as full all the time.  So, I bought a new 4TB external drive and added to my setup.

 

I moved the old 2TB drive to the drive 'pool' and set up the 4TB drive as the new server backup drive.

 

Unfortunately, I can't get the server to backup successfully to the new drive.  The backup starts but fails after a few minutes.

 

I'm not sure where to even start with troubleshooting.  Is there a step in this process that I'm missing?  It seemed pretty simple to set up in the first place but this time around, its not working.

 

Thanks!

 

 

You have a couple of challenges, first did you go through the setup process to defining that drive as a backup through the wizard?  Second, even if that works, I believe (have not tried in awhile) that it will format your 4T as a 2T.  You should be able to do it but you may not like the results.

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Which OS is this?  If V1, it will not work (90% sure) and if WHS 2011 there is an update you need to install to get the OS to see those GPT drives.

 

Any flavor of 2012 should see the drive with no issues at all.

 

Edit:  see last post in this thread:

 

http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/4339-whs-v1-hp-ex490-doesnt-register-3tb-hd-properly/page-2

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Which OS is this?  If V1, it will not work (90% sure) and if WHS 2011 there is an update you need to install to get the OS to see those GPT drives.

 

Any flavor of 2012 should see the drive with no issues at all.

 

Oops.  My bad.  This is Windows Home Server 2011.  

 

The drive is being "seen" as a backup device and it reports that there is 3.7GB of free space.  But, the server backups to that drive won't work.

 

Thanks!

You have a couple of challenges, first did you go through the setup process to defining that drive as a backup through the wizard?  Second, even if that works, I believe (have not tried in awhile) that it will format your 4T as a 2T.  You should be able to do it but you may not like the results.

 

Yes, I went through the wizard and it is reporting the space available as 3.7GB.  So, no worries there.  The server just won't backup itself up to that drive.

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WHS 2011 is based on Windows Server 2008 R2 and there were always issues backing this up to large disks. The problem was that large disks would usually be formatted with big (4k) sector sizes and although a patch was issues to enable 2008 R2 to see and use these disks, the backup system was a bit more problematic.

 

Windows Server Backup created VHD file images of the source volumes and these were limited to a maximum size of 2TB - this is where the maximum backup size limit comes from - a source volume couldn't be bigger than 2TB because the image of it couldn't be bigger than that. It's nothing to do with the destination disk size at all which, theoretically could be of any size. However there is a huge problem in that VHD files can only use the smaller 512k sector size and hence Windows Server Backup would fall flat on it's face as soon as it tried to use anything else.

 

So we have the exact situation you are describing - the server can see the backup drive perfectly (you can read and write files to it with no trouble), the backup engine starts up, tries to create a VHD file and then falls over with a somewhat less then revealing error message.

 

I'm not sure, but I don't think that this was ever fixed by MS - the advise was to try (somehow) to reformat the disk to 512k sectors. There is a Technet article about it;

 

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windowsserver/en-US/889b01be-d333-4fc7-b005-e12b7b236ad7/problem-with-windows-server-backup-2008-r2-with-advanced-format-4k-drive?forum=windowsbackup

 

Sorry not to be of more help.

 

 

John

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WHS 2011 is based on Windows Server 2008 R2 and there were always issues backing this up to large disks. The problem was that large disks would usually be formatted with big (4k) sector sizes and although a patch was issues to enable 2008 R2 to see and use these disks, the backup system was a bit more problematic.

 

Windows Server Backup created VHD file images of the source volumes and these were limited to a maximum size of 2TB - this is where the maximum backup size limit comes from - a source volume couldn't be bigger than 2TB because the image of it couldn't be bigger than that. It's nothing to do with the destination disk size at all which, theoretically could be of any size. However there is a huge problem in that VHD files can only use the smaller 512k sector size and hence Windows Server Backup would fall flat on it's face as soon as it tried to use anything else.

 

So we have the exact situation you are describing - the server can see the backup drive perfectly (you can read and write files to it with no trouble), the backup engine starts up, tries to create a VHD file and then falls over with a somewhat less then revealing error message.

 

I'm not sure, but I don't think that this was ever fixed by MS - the advise was to try (somehow) to reformat the disk to 512k sectors. There is a Technet article about it;

 

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windowsserver/en-US/889b01be-d333-4fc7-b005-e12b7b236ad7/problem-with-windows-server-backup-2008-r2-with-advanced-format-4k-drive?forum=windowsbackup

 

Sorry not to be of more help.

 

 

John

John - Thanks very much for the reply.

 

OK, well, at least that makes sense as to why it won't work.  Would upgrading to WSE 2012 take care of this?  

 

I guess I can just reformat the 2TB drive and continue to use it until it fills up again.  How do people manage these server backups once the disks get full?

 

Ken

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Are you backing up the server OS and Data?  Personally I don't see a need to backup data when I use RAID for redundency, a NAS to replicate the Data stores, and offsite storage.

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