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How do I clean up the dedicated server backup disk? RRS feed

  • Question

  • My server backup disk is filling up fast.  I'm pretty sure I don't need 16 copies of backup.  I can't seem to find a way to limit the amount of backups to keep, or perform disk cleanup.  I see the option in disk cleanup where I should be able to delete old backups, but the area is whited out.  Am I missing something here?  Will old backups be deleted when disk space in almost full?  Can anyone point me in the right direction?
    D.W.
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 2:03 PM

Answers

  • The Windows Server Backup will delete old backups to make room for new ones. " In addition, if you use a disk or volume to store backups, Windows Server Backup automatically deletes older backups as a storage location becomes full" this is a quote from http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753528.aspx.

    • Marked as answer by dlwilliams12 Sunday, February 20, 2011 11:41 PM
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 11:21 PM
  • Well here is the answer I came up with.  When the backup disk is full, I will format it, and start over.  That works for me!
    D.W.
    • Marked as answer by dlwilliams12 Monday, February 21, 2011 11:46 PM
    Monday, February 21, 2011 11:46 PM

All replies

  • This question has been asked in different forms, many times, I haven't seen documentation on this or any question answered.
     
    You might look at the retention settings in Dashboard\Computers & Backup, on the right pane you will see "Additional client computer backup tasks". From this you can see what the "retention" policies are with information about it for the Clients.
     
    "Use an external hard disk with at least 1.5 times the storage capacity of the items that you want to back up"
     
    "Using an external hard disk with extended capacity helps ensure that you do not have to replace the hard disk too soon while the amount of stored data grows. Because server backups are incremental, an external hard disk of 300 GB or more can hold months of backup data."
     
    This was from that information and as you see "external of 300 GB"?
    --
    Don
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 4:58 PM
  •  
    You might look at the retention settings in Dashboard\Computers & Backup, on the right pane you will see "Additional client computer backup tasks". From this you can see what the "retention" policies are with information about it for the Clients.
     
    That is for client backups.  I am talking about the server backup.  Not the act of the server backing up clients.  The act of the server backing itself up to a dedicated hard drive.

    D.W.
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 5:05 PM
  • I understood what you are talking about just didn't have a direct answer on the server side. I have read as much as I could find and it always references "incremental" as far as server. You would think that alone would keep the backup in stride.
     
    The reference to client was just a thought on reducing the "retention" policy which I haven't tried.
    --
    Don
    • Edited by DonCarlson Sunday, February 20, 2011 5:16 PM d
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 5:12 PM
  • The reference to client was just a thought on reducing the "retention" policy which I haven't tried.
    --
    Don
    I have those set up as low as I want them.  That's not really the issue though either.  The issue is that I don't need 16 days worth of server backup.  I'm not sure if there is a way to get rid of those, or if they will delete automatically one the drive is full.

    D.W.
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 5:19 PM
  • DW

    I have noticed this as well, my drive is getting fairly full with 29 backups of my full server.

    I asked this same question yesterday morning and to date plenty of people have read the question but as yet nobody has come back with any comments or answers which is most unusual for this forum

    I can find no way to manage the backup retention policy for the server drive and at the moment I am allowing the drive to keep filling up and see if the server starts to delete backups from the end of the list to make room for new ones. I can't even see any way of manually setting old backups for deletion.

    I think being able to set up and manage backups with a user selected backup retention policy, for server backups, is essential why should it be any different from the client computers.

    My server backup drive is currently sitting at 78.1GB remaining out of 931.5GB so it shouldnt be long before I find out what happens when it is full

    I will keep you posted

    murray_s

    Sunday, February 20, 2011 5:22 PM
  • I hear you.  Like I said, if I put a drive letter to the backup drive, and run disk cleanup, under more options, there is a clean up old backups.  But the option is whited out. 

    Yeah, let me know what you find out.  I'm interested to know.


    D.W.
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 5:30 PM
  • I have a screen shot, but I can figure out how to post it.
    D.W.
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 5:33 PM
  • Hi,
    Windows Home server 2011 does not provide functionality for maintaining backups. I think the idea is to replace the backup disk by a new (or additional) disk when free space on the backup disk runs low.

    Actually at this point I do not know the "answer" on your question other then that as WHS 2011 uses the "Windows Server Backup" functionality available in the underlying OS you can probably (like in "not supported") use additional functionality at the OS level from the Remote Dektop.

    I found an interesting blob article on this subject here.
    Also on Technet you will find more general information on the build-in Backup and Recovery in Windows Server 2008 R2.

    Edit: Sushil.Baid explains more about the "auto-delete feature" of Windows Server Backup.
    But I don't think that auto-delete is effective voor WHS backups.

    - Theo.


    No home server like Home Server
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 8:21 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks Theo,  I have been into the server backup console at the OS level.  It gives me a lot of information about what is being done, but again, I can't find a way to delete anything.  I've just taken a brief look at the wbadmin.exe as stated in one of the articles that you posted, and it appears that one may be able to get rid of some of the old backups with that, but I need to spend some more time with it.  It just seems strange that a backup console that comes from a server OS, doesn't have that functionality. 

     

    Then the other thing.  When you open up disk cleanup at the OS level, and select the more options tab, and look at the second item, that is what I'm looking for right there.  But it is not available.  Maybe if you have the time you could take a look at what I am seeing, and let me know if there is a way to gain that functionality. 

     

    Thanks


    D.W.
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 10:03 PM
  • Looking at the Server Console, it appears that the backups are "incremental" and consequently the data transfered each backup is relatively small. If you are running out of space you may need a bigger disk!
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 10:21 PM
  • Looking at the Server Console, it appears that the backups are "incremental" and consequently the data transfered each backup is relatively small. If you are running out of space you may need a bigger disk!
    No, what I don't need is 30 possible backups to restore from.  I'm looking for a way to only keep a couple of backups.  And we are talking about server backups here.  Not client backups.

    D.W.
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 10:31 PM
  • and so am I, Server backups that is!!
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 10:36 PM
  • The Windows Server Backup will delete old backups to make room for new ones. " In addition, if you use a disk or volume to store backups, Windows Server Backup automatically deletes older backups as a storage location becomes full" this is a quote from http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753528.aspx.

    • Marked as answer by dlwilliams12 Sunday, February 20, 2011 11:41 PM
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 11:21 PM
  • The Windows Server Backup will delete old backups to make room for new ones. " In addition, if you use a disk or volume to store backups, Windows Server Backup automatically deletes older backups as a storage location becomes full" this is a quote from http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753528.aspx .

    That is what I am looking for.  Thanks.  My only other question is then why if the backups are incremental, does a 2TB disk fill up so fast if there is nothing changing on the server?

    D.W.
    Sunday, February 20, 2011 11:42 PM
  • Mine isn't - adding a few hundred Megabytes per backup.
    Monday, February 21, 2011 12:33 AM
  • >>I have a screen shot, but I can figure out how to post it.
    ========

    D.W., what we could do in newsgroups is virtually impossible in forums.


    Nancy Ward
    Monday, February 21, 2011 4:31 AM
  • Looking at the Server Console, it appears that the backups are "incremental" and consequently the data transfered each backup is relatively small. If you are running out of space you may need a bigger disk!

    ========
    And what do we do when we fill up a 2TB drive? :)


    Nancy Ward
    Monday, February 21, 2011 4:34 AM
  • Looking at the Server Console, it appears that the backups are "incremental" and consequently the data transfered each backup is relatively small. If you are running out of space you may need a bigger disk!

    ========
    And what do we do when we fill up a 2TB drive? :)


    Nancy Ward

    If the server storage that you need to back up is more than 2TB, you will need a bigger drive, if not you should be fine.  Using the Windows Server Backup allows a lot more flexibility, including once only backups, scheduled backups and choosing what should be backed up.  You should check it out.

    SethO

    Monday, February 21, 2011 5:30 AM
  • That sucks.  It would make explaining things so much easier sometimes.  I saw one guy do it, but I can't figure it out.  Copy and paste doesn't work.
    D.W.
    Monday, February 21, 2011 3:48 PM
  • Nancy

    Use a bigger external drive/arrray? Then use the original for offsite storage.

    Monday, February 21, 2011 4:32 PM
  • That sucks.  It would make explaining things so much easier sometimes.  I saw one guy do it, but I can't figure it out.  Copy and paste doesn't work.

    =======

    I'm not too sure, but there may be a way to do it from the actual forum. I haven't checked it out yet. I come from newsgroups, and even with the Community Bridge, there's a lot to be desired. I am trying to adjust, though, because I need all the help I can get. :)


    Nancy Ward
    Monday, February 21, 2011 6:38 PM
  • The Windows Server Backup will delete old backups to make room for new ones.

    I am not at all sure about that. At least, that is not what I see happening (auto-delete functionality is disabled?)
    Need to investigate a bit on this however.

    - Theo.


    No home server like Home Server
    Monday, February 21, 2011 11:12 PM
    Moderator
  • Well here is the answer I came up with.  When the backup disk is full, I will format it, and start over.  That works for me!
    D.W.
    • Marked as answer by dlwilliams12 Monday, February 21, 2011 11:46 PM
    Monday, February 21, 2011 11:46 PM
  • Hi Nancy,

    As far as I understand you should be able to use multiple backup drives.
    Then for each backup drive configure only part of the shares for backup (making sure the total size of the selected shares does not execeed 2T).

    (Warning: was not yet able to test this :-/)
    - Theo.

     


    No home server like Home Server
    Wednesday, February 23, 2011 8:42 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks Theo,  I have been into the server backup console at the OS level.  It gives me a lot of information about what is being done, but again, I can't find a way to delete anything.

    D.W.
    I had a more detailed look myself. And you are right: non of this applies to WHS backups.
    Sorry. Need to find out more about this :-/
    - Theo.


    No home server like Home Server
    Wednesday, February 23, 2011 8:49 PM
    Moderator

  • I had a more detailed look myself. And you are right: non of this applies to WHS backups.
    Sorry. Need to find out more about this :-/
    - Theo.


    No home server like Home Server
    It's kind of a disappointment that a backup service that stems from server 2008 r2 would not include something pretty necessary and simple like managing the backups.  I actually find it kind of unbelievable.  

    D.W.
    Wednesday, February 23, 2011 8:59 PM
  • I confirm that my WHS 2011 RC fills up the backup drive and then returns an error.

    Formatting the disk and starting over works fine, however I cannot acknowledge this method to backup your server as highly techical nor reliable.

    AK

    Friday, February 25, 2011 2:37 PM
  • I'm Burning in my server so I can't test this however from what I read in this thread this BUG is clearly a "SHOW STOPPER" and requires a fix and RC2. Have you folks filled a Bug report on this issue and recieved a response? My understanding is:

    The Server Backup via the dashboard in RC1 DOES NOT use all the features of Server 2008/R2. Thus, once the disk is filled you need to format and start over and remember that numerous Server backups can be larger than the 2TB limit in RC1. Starting over, a second volume, or a bigger hard disk is NOT a solution since Server 2008/R2 DOES provide for auto deleating old backups when the volume is full.

    Respectfully, lets also remember that the "server backup" is one of the most highly touted features in WHS2011 since it is not available in WHS v1. PLEASE fix this.

    Thank you - :)

     

    Friday, February 25, 2011 7:22 PM
  • I didn't file a bug, because it's not really a bug, but I did file feedback on connect.  Find it and vote it up.

    https://connect.microsoft.com/WindowsHomeServer/feedback/details/647558/server-backup-is-broken

     


    D.W.
    Friday, February 25, 2011 7:37 PM
  •  >Find it and vote it up.

    https://connect.microsoft.com/WindowsHomeServer/feedback/details/647558/server-backup-is-broken

    Done, D.W.! Show stopper for me because I want to be able to manage my server backups as well as my client backups.


    Nancy Ward
    Friday, February 25, 2011 8:25 PM
  • Thanks D.W. I voted and just posted my latest thoughts.

    *** SERVER ONLY Backups: For those of us who like to tweak/hack ONLY and desire a workaround ***

    NOTE: PLEASE perform these tweaks/hacks at YOUR OWN risk. I am NOT responsable if you destroy your server. I have only tested part of these tweaks but I'm relatively confident that they will work since I did this a few years ago. PLEASE only perform these tweaks on a TEST SERVER and NOT on real data. I'm going to give you a bunch of links to read as their are a few ways you may wish to hack around :). FINAL WARNING: You can DESTROY your server so do this stuff at YOUR OWN RISK PLEASE. Link dump:

    http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/windowsbackup/thread/d5302218-91ce-4f02-9fba-9c91e9027f69

    http://serverfault.com/questions/31142/how-to-clean-up-windows-server-2008-backups

    http://www.open-a-socket.com/index.php/2009/05/21/how-to-remove-backups-created-by-windows-server-backup/

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc754015(WS.10).aspx

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc742081(WS.10).aspx#BKMK_examples

    Good luck :)

    Sunday, February 27, 2011 11:11 PM
  • I think one thing that appears to be being missed at this point.

    As with any backup media, once the volume of data exceeds the backup disk size, the next backup will fail no matter what. You cannot fit a quart in a pint pot.

    As the backups are incremental, the data in the last backup set consists of all of the data from all previous backups. There is nothing that the system can delete that is not included in the later backups. The exception to this is if you have deleted data from an earlier backup it will be deleted freeing up some room.

    As far as the list of backups, it is a problem that you cannot easily delete references to them. At present I have a fair list of failed backups because of experimentation and no way to simply remove them and clean up the list.

    Dave


    The Frog on the Lilypad at Home
    Monday, February 28, 2011 3:26 AM
  • ..]
    once the volume of data exceeds the backup disk size, the next backup will fail
    [..]
    There is nothing that the system can delete that is not included in the later backups. The exception to this is if you have deleted data from an earlier backup it will be deleted freeing up some room.
    [..]
    As far as the list of backups, it is a problem that you cannot easily delete references to them.
    [..

    Thanks Dave,
    I am seeing what you are seeing, so I can only confirm your observations.
    - Theo.

    The backup disk on my main test server now being allmost full WHS raised an alert. I just noticed what it has to say about this:

    The Backup Disk {name}
    has less then 10% of free space.

    Resolve this alert

    To increase space
    1. Connect a larger hard disk to the server.

    Note: If you choose to keep the existing number of items to backup, you
    must replace the excisting hard disk with a larger hard disk. Adding an
    additional hard disk to the Server Backup will not correct the problem.


    No home server like Home Server
    Monday, February 28, 2011 6:20 PM
    Moderator
  • Yes, yuky error messages. The advice given by RC1 is an effort by the developers to simplify the issue at the exspense of functionality and real world desires of HOME users. Compounding this issue is that fact that we no longer have DE which under v1 could creat a huge storage pool.

    *** --> wbadmin which is the Server 08/R2 BU application is supposed to automatically manage backups and this means automatically deleating old backups to make room for new ones. From what you report it's NOT doing this when using the Dashboard. My sence of the issue is that the RC1 dashboard  may have a bug of some sort which prevents this auto deleate however if you test using wbadmin ONLY via the command prompt (see below) and it works then we know for sure that it is a RC1 Dashboard bug. Iv'e not tested this but will when I can find a small HD to use for my backups. Maybe you could test my theory by only using wbadmin via the command prompt and turning off the Server Backup in the Dashboard?

    To be fair, the Dashboard uses part of the functionality of wbadmin which is the native Server08/R2 backup app. This is a complex issue and numerous nuggets can be found via Google where you can see that IT pros have struggled with this issue. To perform some of the things we want to do requires using wbadmin from the Command prompt with Admin rights and can certainly be automated.

    An important point is that Backups (Server or Clients) ALSO create a Catalog file and LOG files. Iv'e not found any way to edit a Catalog and since it's Bianary Data it aint going to happen. :) Iv'e started testing so let me bounce a few things around in this thread.

    1) One of the issues is those funky entries in the server BU app. Even AFTER you format your backup drive and insure it has a drive letter they still appear.The Instructions to fix this which I have done are located:

    http://www.open-a-socket.com/index.php/2009/05/21/how-to-remove-backups-created-by-windows-server-backup/

    2) The above instructions refer to wbadmin use from the command prompt. ALL the switches for wbadmin which must be run with admin rights from the command C prompt are here:

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc742154(WS.10).aspx

    3) Their are a number of things you can do with wbadmin from the command prompt which you CAN NOT do from the Server app. Study the switches please. I turned OFF the Server BU in the RC 1 dashboard and ran a backup once which could be stored on a removable drive or even a network share. Since I had burned a System Repair CD I used it to recover my intire Test server. You can automate wbadmin via a batch file and the Task Scheduler. As noted above you can deleate the Catalog using wbadmin from the command prompt.


    4. Automate deleating of log files and this script needs to be modified:

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee176696.aspx

    5. Send an email to you when the backup is completed or fails at:

    http://www.backupmyhost.com/blog/tag/automated/

    6. Resonably priced BU app with trial which I will test at:

    http://www.backup4all.com/en/backup4all-professional.html

    NOTE: the above app does not perform a bare metal BU which wbadmin can do.

    I hope this helps :)

     

     

    Monday, February 28, 2011 9:52 PM
  • I wanted to correct myself based on some new research which I think will help fix the issue. The article is written by a member of the Storage Team at Microsoft and is located at http://blogs.technet.com/b/filecab/archive/2009/06/22/backup-version-and-space-management-in-windows-server-backup.aspx

    Significant exstracts and the entire article has lots of procedures which I have never seen written before.

    Title of article: Backup Version and Space Management in Windows Server Backup

    "If the backup storage location is full, Windows Server Backup automatically deletes the oldest backup version to make space for the current backup. Since each backup is stored inside a shadow copy, deleting a backup version is accomplished by simply deleting the corresponding shadow copy. *** --> However, space for a system state backup in Windows Server 2008 is not automatically managed by Windows Server Backup. See the section “How to Delete System State Backups” below for managing system state backups in Windows Server 2008. *** <---*

    "In Windows Server 2008, each system state backup  is a full backup and is stored in a separate directory, consuming the space needed for a full backup every time. New in Windows Server 2008 R2 system state backups are incremental and use VSS shadow copies for creating different versions of the backup."

    My Summary and guess: The RC1 Dashboard is creating a series of system state backups and does not provide an automated way to manage/deleate the old ones. The end result: the disk full errors some are seeing when the backup volume is filled.

    Tuesday, March 1, 2011 7:33 AM
  • And the bottom line to all of this is that WHS 2011 cannot backup more than 2TB of the server storage using the Dashboard app even though it can handle multiple external backup drives.

    The design of the server backup in the Dashboard is fatally flawed.

    If, like me, you have more than 2TB on your WHS, then if you switch to WHS 2011 you have have to learn the intricacies of the backup tools Windows Server 2008 R2. Wave goodbye to Home Consumer land and say hello to IT.

    Sunday, March 6, 2011 8:16 AM
  • And the bottom line to all of this is that WHS 2011 cannot backup more than 2TB of the server storage using the Dashboard app even though it can handle multiple external backup drives.

    The design of the server backup in the Dashboard is fatally flawed.

    If, like me, you have more than 2TB on your WHS, then if you switch to WHS 2011 you have have to learn the intricacies of the backup tools Windows Server 2008 R2. Wave goodbye to Home Consumer land and say hello to IT.

    This is what I'm finding confusing at the moment.  For someone who has over 30tb on v1 with the intention of increasing that to 64tb (system consists of 6 internal HD bays, 2x 3 HD sata backplanes & 10x external USB dual HD enclosures & wanting to put 32x 2tb drives on board - you'll be surprised how fast I can fill that up...lol ), the total of amount of space one has should not be a problem.

    The c:drive has been extended from 20gb in v1 to 60gb in v2 so at 2 backups per day, that equates to approx 16 days worth of backups & regardless of what's on the other drives, it shouldn't exceed 2tb at any time - asides from the issue of regulating/removing old backups that is.

    Or am I missing something obvious?   From what I've been reading regarding WHS 2011 so far, it leaves a lot to be desired & I personally will think twice before putting WHS 2011 into production mode on it's final release.

    Saying that, I must admit I am beginning to like it, BUT it's various issues with the Dashboard, storage siutation(lack of DE) & Backing up, for me is that as it currently stands, it's no longer a Home Server.

    Sunday, March 6, 2011 10:34 AM
  • OK - another happy customer for WHS 2011 RC ):

    I have a 1TB drive dedicated to server backup.   Lucky for me I only elected to backup once per day!

    I now have 20 days of server backup and the drive is almost full.  Based on the alert from WHS and the discussion in this thread I assume the current "backup of server" will require a new hard drive of 1TB every 21 days.   I do have a sizeable amount of space used on server folders so pretty sure I am getting incremental backups.

    That's not a backup system - its just stupid design or programming bug.  I had recently read the WHS 2011 blog where the team attempted to defend lack of DE with all the wonderful features of 2011.  Seems like at least a paragraph or two about the wonders of being able to backup the server.  Seems like there was a mention of doing backup every 30 minutes (but this might have been in a thread I read in the last day or two).  If the OS is not going to manage the backups beyond sending me a message when the drive is full than this is one of those vapor features - sounds good but in practice its cyberjunk.

    I hoped I could just change the backup frequency to once per week or once per month until this cyberpoo is cleaned up - but the only option seems to be a minimum of one per day - I can't find a choice for longer frequency!  Guess I will grab a 2TB disk from my used disk supply and get at least a months worth of backups before I need to reformat the drive - again I need this to be my temp fix - if its the permanent fix than another nail in coffin for me on WHS 2011.

    Except for a Danger Will Robinson solution I don't see any fixes in this thread.  Did I miss the GEM?

    Will do a bug submission and feature submission (weekly or monthly backup frequency).

     

     

    Thursday, March 17, 2011 3:29 AM
  • I now have 20 days of server backup and the drive is almost full.  Based on the alert from WHS and the discussion in this thread I assume the current "backup of server" will require a new hard drive of 1TB every 21 days.

    You will see the WHS will continue to backup your files, deleting previous backups to free up space.
    As long as the total volume in the shares + backup database does not exceed the maximum capacity of the backup disk there is no problem.

    It still is a good idea to recycling the backup disk with a second one. One disk will be in or near the server, the second one you best keep stored on a off-site location. Just in case somthing "bad" happens to your backup disk and/or server.
    You will need to decide on the cycling schedule as this depends how much data you are willing (or can afford) to lose in the worst case scenario where you have to fall back onto the oldest (off-site) backup.

    - Theo.


    No home server like Home Server
    Friday, March 18, 2011 7:49 PM
    Moderator
  • The UPS man delivered the 2TB for my upgraded backup.  So it was time to play.

    WHS 2011RC seems to have 3 locations where you can setup the backup process. 

    1.  Dashboard - only allows daily choice for backup.  After removal and re-format of my "old" 1TB drive for backup purposes I was a bit surprised to see that the dashboard still thinks I have my 21 days of backups.  So just have to guess that this is design feature related to Theo's comments and that the system has assumed I have placed that drive in a safe off-site location.  PS - attempting a restore after removal of the drive eventualy resulted in an Unknown error - you would think that if the 21 day list still being present is a feature than there might be an error message suggesting I wander down to the storage site and retrive the dirsk.

    2.  Programs - Administrative Tools - Windows Server Backup.  Apparently a near relative of the dashboard.  Still showing my phantom 21 days of backups - still lets me choose only a daily frequency.

    3.  Server Manager (the cute toolbox icon) - Configuration - Task Scheduler - Task Scheduler Library - Microsoft - Windows - Backup.       A little complex to navigate but does have daily/weekly/monthly option.  Seems smart enough to know my drive was MIA.  I set the frequency for weekly and it seemed to work as it did skip a day and generated a backup on the day I indicated for the weekly.  This is the set of options that I hope makes it to the dashboard.  Since I don't really add that much to the server each day than the weekly will likely be my final choice (if it makes it to RTM).

    All three of these paths do seem to be working the same process.  For example they all noticed the change to my hard drive label after I reformated it, etc. 

    However - based on Theo's reply I am going to leave the 1TB in place for now (dust collecting on my brand new 2TB so I really will have a spare biggie lying around).  Will set the frequency for multiple times per day, probably every 30 minutes.  Will update in week or so unless it crashes before than.

     

    Friday, March 18, 2011 9:38 PM

  • You will see the WHS will continue to backup your files, deleting previous backups to free up space.
    As long as the total volume in the shares + backup database does not exceed the maximum capacity of the backup disk there is no problem.


    Theo is this confirmed?  I have read many posts that say that there is an error message when the drive gets full.  I've been hoping for someone to tell me that it does work.

    D.W.
    Monday, March 21, 2011 12:13 AM
  • It still is a good idea to recycling the backup disk with a second one. One disk will be in or near the server, the second one you best keep stored on a off-site location. Just in case somthing "bad" happens to your backup disk and/or server.

    OK, on the surface, that seems to be a good idea . . . but as your next paragraph states . . .


    You will need to decide on the cycling schedule as this depends how much data you are willing (or can afford) to lose in the worst case scenario where you have to fall back onto the oldest (off-site) backup.

    So, playing devil's advocate here . . . in 21 days, according to James W., my 1 TB drive is full and I need to take it "offsite" for safe keeping. I'll buy that, but what happens when the second drive gets full and I need to store that one "offsite"? Now I have 2 TB's worth of backups shown as "phantom backups" according to James W.

    So, I reformat the first drive, but what happens then, since WHS 2011 only will allow 2 TB of backups? Even if it's allowed, I don't WANNA switch out drives every 21 days! If I wanted to "take care of the blasted thing like it was a kid", I'd just as soon use Windows Backup and DVDs!


    Nancy Ward
    Monday, March 28, 2011 2:09 AM
  • "You will see the WHS will continue to backup your files, deleting previous backups to free up space."

    Sorry, not true. Iv'e got 3 days in a row where part of the server BU's failed with not enough free space. The client BUs ran fine. Grabed a juicy screen snag but no way to upload it to this post. Trust me :)

     

    Monday, March 28, 2011 8:12 AM
  • So, I reformat the first drive, but what happens then, since WHS 2011 only will allow 2 TB of backups? Even if it's allowed, I don't WANNA switch out drives every 21 days! If I wanted to "take care of the blasted thing like it was a kid", I'd just as soon use Windows Backup and DVDs!


    Nancy Ward

    If I understand the matter right, WHS 2011 (or more correctly, the concept of Shadow Copy Service from the underlying Windows Server 2008 R2) can only backup from a maximum volume size (partition?) of 2TB.

    The destination volume size, if it's 2TB or bigger, shouldn't matter?

    The answer would be a new version of the Shadow Copy technology that can handle 2TB+ partitions, volumes...

    Correct?

    As a sidenote, if you like, I've setup my test rig with a 320GB USB drive for the Server backups, default values.
    Nothing to report there, yet.

    And the Server Folders are on two 2TB drives combined as one big 3TB-something (3 726GB, just checked) spanned volume, backup is handled by Crashplan (Free variant, no cloud service involved), to a 2TB USB 3.0 drive.
    Seems to be doing fine, haven't tried a restore yet.
    Backup size there with 2 clients and some data is close to 500GB.


    One WHS v1 machine in the basement with a mixed setup of harddrives in and outside the storage pool.
    Monday, March 28, 2011 9:36 AM
  • Actually you can backup from a larger volume.  You just can't backup more than 2TB of data.

    The 2TB limit arises out of the Virtual Hard Drive (VHD) technology for single backups.  A reasonable description of this technology is found in Wikipedia.  Since this technology is widely used in Microsoft products it is not likely to be modified for WHS 2011 alone.

    The practical consequences of the limitation for both backup and restore is described in a note in the Technet Server 2008 R2 backing up your server article:

    "Note: You cannot use Windows Server Backup to back up file and folders on volumes that require more than 2040 GB (or 2 TB). However, as long as the data size is less than 2 TB, you can perform a file or folder backup. For example, you can back up 1.5 TB of data from a 3-TB volume. But, a full server or volume recovery using the backup will recreate a 2-TB volume instead of a 3-TB volume."

    The artificial 2TB limit on the backup set destination in the Wizard will apparently require a registry hack.  However, the original connect thread has dissappeared.  A reference to it was captured in this thread.

    -Wellread01



    • Edited by wellread01 Monday, March 28, 2011 6:23 PM added information
    Monday, March 28, 2011 5:18 PM
  • Actually you can backup from a larger volume.  You just can't backup more than 2TB of data.

    The 2TB limit arises out of the Virtual Hard Drive (VHD) technology for single backups.  A reasonable description of this technology is found in Wikipedia.  Since this technology is widely used in Microsoft products it is not likely to be modified for WHS 2011 alone.

    The practical consequences of the limitation for both backup and restore is described in a note in the Technet Server 2008 R2 backing up your server article:

    "Note: You cannot use Windows Server Backup to back up file and folders on volumes that require more than 2040 GB (or 2 TB). However, as long as the data size is less than 2 TB, you can perform a file or folder backup. For example, you can back up 1.5 TB of data from a 3-TB volume. But, a full server or volume recovery using the backup will recreate a 2-TB volume instead of a 3-TB volume."

    The artificial 2TB limit on the backup set destination in the Wizard will apparently require a registry hack.  However, the original connect thread has dissappeared.  A reference to it was captured in this thread.

    -Wellread01



    Thanks for the clarification.

    One WHS v1 machine in the basement with a mixed setup of harddrives in and outside the storage pool.
    Monday, March 28, 2011 7:54 PM
  • You will see the WHS will continue to backup your files, deleting previous backups to free up space.
    As long as the total volume in the shares + backup database does not exceed the maximum capacity of the backup disk there is no problem.
    Theo is this confirmed?  I have read many posts that say that there is an error message when the drive gets full.  I've been hoping for someone to tell me that it does work.

    D.W.

    D.W.
    I would say defenitely yes.
    This is what I expect and what I see.
    I do get an alert telling me the dusj is getting low on space. But it keeps backing up, deleting old backups on the way.

    My test server has two disks (500GB system, 1TB Data, about 1200 GB in the shares + system backups)
    I had an additional 2TB disk as a backup disk backup backing up the default shedule for two weeks. It filled up, but kept on backing up nicely - deleting old backups. Tested restoring files and ssytem state. No problems. Then I removed this disk and added a second cunformatted 2TB disk. It also started to backup, filling up, etc.

    Observations:
    When re-inserted an existing backup disk the server asks if you want to keep the existing backup. I choose to do so. No problems. Somehowe managed to wipe the backup disk while experimenting. Wiped the partition and added it as a backup disk. It currently backing up fine at its day.

    I did see some initial errors when adding a fresh disk. As far as I can see when switching to a new disk the initial (full) backup takes more then 12 hours. This generated (1) an error about missing a backup schedule (the previous backup was still ungoing) and (2) the shadow copy service was not yet done resulting in one disk being skipped from the initail backup. So the initial backup was unsuccesfull. I just let it run and on the second day all backups started to run succesfully.

    - Theo.

     

     


    No home server like Home Server
    Monday, March 28, 2011 8:58 PM
    Moderator
  • "You will see the WHS will continue to backup your files, deleting previous backups to free up space."

    Sorry, not true. Iv'e got 3 days in a row where part of the server BU's failed with not enough free space. The client BUs ran fine. Grabed a juicy screen snag but no way to upload it to this post. Trust me :)

    Hmm...
    On my test server I do see it working.

    How much data is in your shares+backup database. If it exceeds the maximum size of the backup disk backups will most certainly.
    I remember reading somewhere to have a backup disk having the capacity of at least 1.5 times the total data on the server.

    (FYI: The test server holds about 1.2 GBytes of data and is backing up to two separte 2TBytes disks)
    - Theo.


    No home server like Home Server
    Monday, March 28, 2011 9:06 PM
    Moderator
  • "You will see the WHS will continue to backup your files, deleting previous backups to free up space."

    Sorry, not true. I/v'e got 3 days in a row where part of the *server BU's failed*with not enough free space. The client BUs ran fine. Grabed a juicy screen snag but no way to upload it to this post. Trust me :)/

    'Tweren't moi said it; 'twere Theo. :) Seriously, I knew I'd seen several posts about backup errors when the drive got full. So, that's exactly what I'm worrying about too.

    I wish we could go back to the old NNTP Newsgroups. At least we could tell what we've read and what we haven't; we could post screen shots too! Oh, well, the day of the beta tester for Microsoft is almost gone . . .


    Nancy Ward
    Tuesday, March 29, 2011 2:49 AM
  • On my test server I do see it working.

    How much data is in your shares+backup database. If it exceeds the maximum size of the backup disk backups will most certainly. I remember reading somewhere to have a backup disk having the capacity of at least 1.5 times the total data on the server.

    (FYI: The test server holds about 1.2 GBytes of data and is backing up to two separte 2TBytes disks)

    Theo, I have a 1 TB drive in my main computer with a 500 GB WD Mybook for all my files and pictures. I will never, never, never use the whole terrabyte in the main computer; I've only used 40 GB so far and I've only used 106 GB of the Mybook. There's not a whole lot on Lappy and Netty either. As I've said before, my needs are small.

    I plan on rebuilding WHS 2011 with a system drive between 250 and 400 GB, a 1 TB drive for backing up the above computers and a 1 TB external drive for backing up the server.

    What I have a real problem with is that several people have said that they have errors when the server backup drive gets full. I do  not  want to have to babysit this monster!

    And, with the problems I've had with WHS 2011, I'm not too sure I even want to jump through the hoops necessary to run it; I may just go back to WHS v1.


    Nancy Ward
    Tuesday, March 29, 2011 3:07 AM
  • I plan on rebuilding WHS 2011 with a system drive between 250 and 400 GB, a 1 TB drive for backing up the above computers and a 1 TB external drive for backing up the server.

    Hello Nancy,
    With such a setup you should be fine. Actually I am surprised how stable my RC server is running. They only issue I had where while experimenting with som add-ins and server restore. But I was even abled to repair that - whitout reinstalling ;-)

    What I have a real problem with is that several people have said that they have errors when the server backup drive gets full. I do not want to have to babysit this monster!

    I am taking these reports very seriuously. But I can not reproduce any of this - and believe me I really tried hard. So the only advise I can give anyone that is experiencing problems with the server backup functionality:

    Read the online help on setting up server backup, so you know what to expect,
    Please report any problems on Connect, preferably adding the server logfiles?

    Posting a link to the report in this forum helps other to maybe validate the report. The more info MS gets on this the more likely it will be they can reproduce the problem - and then fix it.

    And, with the problems I've had with WHS 2011, I'm not too sure I even want to jump through the hoops necessary to run it; I may just go back to WHS v1.

    Even without DE (:-( I really started to like (and trust) VAIL, so I will upgrade my production server the minute RTM gets available.

    - Theo.

     


    No home server like Home Se
    Tuesday, March 29, 2011 5:57 PM
    Moderator