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Backup duration jumped overnight from 5 minutes to more than 1 hour RRS feed

  • Question

  • How do I troubleshoot a sudden, enormous jump in the time that it takes to back up a particular computer?

    For months, the daily backup of my personal PC has taken 5 minutes. Suddenly, starting 5 days ago, it jumped to over an hour a day. If I browse the backup, it almost looks like it's backing up everything on my computer every day (although I may be misunderstanding what I'm seeing). Thank you for any troubleshooting suggestions.

    -Doug
    Wednesday, April 15, 2009 4:23 PM

Answers

  • This problem seems to have been resolved by rebooting switch, router, and DSL modem.

    Thanks to everyone who offered suggestions!

    -Doug
    Saturday, April 18, 2009 2:10 PM

All replies

  • Every backup will appear to be a full backup, when you browse the contents. It will only back up changed clusters of data, though. 

    Did you recently install a disk defragmenting utility on your workstation? Sometimes, those can have the effect of making it look like data has changed even though it hasn't. Also, has the size of your backup database grown dramatically in the past few days?

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Wednesday, April 15, 2009 6:05 PM
    Moderator
  • Ken,

    I have not added or reconfigured the type of program that you mention, although I've been running Diskeeper Home and CA eTrust antivirus (as well as Ad-Aware automated scans) since I built this computer. But nothing changed 5 days ago that I recall. I know we've had problems at work with eTrust causing files to be flagged as changed when no one had touched them, but I don't know why I would have started having a problem like that last Sunday morning suddenly.

    Isn't it possible for me to identify only what was backed up in today's backup, as a step toward identifying the problem?

    I've seen WHS logs mentioned. Would the logs contain any helpful information?

    Thank you for your time. I have great respect for our MVPs, and do all that I can to promote the MVPs in my field (SQL Server Integration Services).

    -Doug
    Wednesday, April 15, 2009 6:21 PM
  • No, there's nothing that identifies what was actually backed up in any given backup, at least not that's available to the end user of the product. Obviously if one could read the database that the backups are stored in, that would likely have the information, but the format is proprietary and there are no tools to read it available except Windows Home Server itself. (A year or so ago a user did a little work on reverse-engineering the format, but he never took it far enough to make the sort of tool you need.)

    I'll ask again: did you notice that your backup database started growing significantly at about the same time? A backup that takes an hour could be backing up quite a significant amount of data, enough to grow the database by dozens of GB over the course of a week. If your backup database isn't growing rapidly it could indicate some other sort of problem, perhaps a network or disk issue somewhere.

    And thanks for your support of the MVP program. There was a time several years ago when I worked extensively with SQL Server, and I recall MVPs in that discipline assisted me more than once. We do try to be helpful. :)

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Wednesday, April 15, 2009 6:45 PM
    Moderator
  • I have not been monitoring the size of my backup database closely enough to say how much it has grown recently. And I have not noticed any disk or network issues recently. The WHS backup seems to run normally - there's no indicating that it's hanging, it's not consuming resources unusually...it's just taking 20 to 30 times longer all of a sudden!

    Thanks for your suggestions.   -Doug
    Wednesday, April 15, 2009 10:14 PM
  • Which part does it seem to take the most time? The identifying the changed files or the actual data transfers?
    Friday, April 17, 2009 5:07 AM
  • Hi Dough,
    I have not added or reconfigured the type of program that you mention, although I've been running Diskeeper Home

    Diskkeeper is a defragmentation tool. Defragmentation means, that the clusters on the disk are rearranged, so if this happens automatically in the background, this could cause a long delay to determine, which of the moved clusters did really change. If possible, you could disable the tool for a while and check, if this is bringing back the backup performance you used to experience.
    Other than that, are there any events visible in the Event Viewer of the client and the server, which may point to other problems?

    Best greetings from Germany
    Olaf
    Friday, April 17, 2009 8:05 AM
    Moderator
  • This problem seems to have been resolved by rebooting switch, router, and DSL modem.

    Thanks to everyone who offered suggestions!

    -Doug
    Saturday, April 18, 2009 2:10 PM