WHS Backup Errors - The specified path, file name, or both are too long. RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi,

    I am trying to create a backup of the WHS server itself. However, the backup shows errors (see below) on some file which are embedded into deep paths.


    Error: The specified path, file name, or both are too long. The fully qualified file name must be less than 260 characters, and the directory name must be less than 248 characters. 


    I am running PP3.

    Friday, June 18, 2010 4:14 PM

All replies

  • Are you trying to back up the server shares using the server backup functionality built into Windows Home Server? Or using another tool? Or are you trying to back up more than just the shares?

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, June 18, 2010 4:29 PM
  • Hi Ken,


    I added a new USB drive to WHS this morning. Instead of augmenting the server storage, I used the option of using this drive to back up WHS itself. So, this drive is recognized as such by WHS Console and I can see it in the Storage and Disk Management tabs as being recognized.


    As far as the backup is concerned, I am using the WHS Console's backup feature.

    Friday, June 18, 2010 4:34 PM
  • Yes, and I am backing up the server shares i.e. Users/, Video/, Photos/ etc.
    Friday, June 18, 2010 4:35 PM
  • Okay, then there's a known issue regarding long paths and file names. A search in the forums should get you more information), but really the error message tells you the exact problem.

    Unfortunately, the workaround is to rearrange/rename things so that paths and file names don't exceed the limits. Microsoft hasn't said that they're going to fix this; you could search the Windows Home Server Connect site to find out the status of any bugs submitted on this issue, but I'm betting it will be something like "Closed (Postponed)", or "Closed (Won't fix)".

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, June 18, 2010 4:57 PM
  • Hi Ken,

    Can you suggest an alternative backup software that will not hit this snag and at least won't leave me in the spot I am in? I constantly get "file or directory is corrupt and unreadable" errors and I have to run chkdsk /r almost on a routine basis. This also gets rid of the bad file(s). I thought it would be a good idea to backup the server itself in case one of the bad files turns out to be something important.


    Any suggestions, besides renaming a boatload of files?



    Friday, June 18, 2010 5:19 PM
  • The maximum path depth supported in Windows Explorer and some system DLLs is 260 characters (unfortunately also in the most current versions of Windows). So there is no simple way to access data in deep pathes.

    If you share a folder in the deeper part of the hierarchy and access the share (or map it as network drive), the path may be shorter than the local path on the disk. Since a local backup performs the job from that local path, it hits the limit. (Also the most 3rd party software would do, and this does not support WHS well and does not store the data that efficient for multple backups to the same disk as the WHS integrated.

    So I go with Ken - find the deep path and rearrange these files/folders by moving them to a different location, as long as there is no other damage happening due to this.

    Best greetings from Germany

    Friday, June 18, 2010 9:10 PM
  • If you're running chkdsk regularly and getting errors, you may have a hardware or driver issue with your storage subsystem. 
    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, June 18, 2010 11:54 PM