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My WHS Crisis – Server storage full – cannot delete unessential backups! RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi all,


    A backup of my most important client PC included a very big, but unnecessary partition.

    This backup swamped the Server storage, taking it from 70% full to 99% full.

    I reconfigured the backups for that client PC to exclude the “unnecessary” partition – the Server let me mark the backup for that partition for deletion.

    I then initiated a backup cleanup on the Server – but this was terminated with an error: “An error in the backup service is preventing the cleanup operation”.

    I rebooted the Server – now I cannot start the WHS console from the Server.  I can start the WHS console from the desktop PC, but this remote console session does not include the “settings” button that would let try to initiate another backup cleanup.

     

    I am starting to wonder if WHS is really worth all this effort!

     

    Regards,

    Leigh

    Sunday, July 26, 2009 11:44 PM

Answers

  • Hi all,


    A backup of my most important client PC included a very big, but unnecessary partition.

    This backup swamped the Server storage, taking it from 70% full to 99% full.

    I reconfigured the backups for that client PC to exclude the “unnecessary” partition – the Server let me mark the backup for that partition for deletion.

    I then initiated a backup cleanup on the Server – but this was terminated with an error: “An error in the backup service is preventing the cleanup operation”.

    I rebooted the Server – now I cannot start the WHS console from the Server.  I can start the WHS console from the desktop PC, but this remote console session does not include the “settings” button that would let try to initiate another backup cleanup.

     

    I am starting to wonder if WHS is really worth all this effort!

     

    Regards,

    Leigh


    It's probably bogged down because it's trying to move files from one drive to another, but can't because all of the drives are full.  I would try adding another hard drive to the storage pool and give it a little while to free up some space.
    Yes, adding a 3rd drive fixed the problem.
    It took about 12 hours to "re-Balance" the 3 x 1 TB drives - not all this time is taken up with copying - it seems as though WHS does a burst of copying every hour, with long periods of inactivity in between.

    Regards,
    Leigh
    • Marked as answer by Leigh Wardle Wednesday, July 29, 2009 1:29 AM
    Wednesday, July 29, 2009 1:29 AM

All replies

  • Have you tried the "Repair" option for the backups database? To get to this option, open the WHS console, click Settings, then Backup. At the bottom, you should see a "Repair..." button under the "Backup Cleanup and Database Repair" section. I believe you must be running at least PP2 for the repair option to be there. You may also want to try removing the PC via the Computers & Backup tab. This should trigger a routine to clean out any backups from this PC. Once things are cleaned out and your storage is back under control you can add it to WHS again and re-establish the nightly backups.

    If neither of the above work, there's an unsupported method you could try. This will remove all backups from your WHS, but if you're comfortable going backupless for a little while (until the backups are again performed nightly), there is a procedure I used a few times during the WHS beta when my backup database would become corrupt.

    DISCLAIMER: I make no guarantees that this will solve your problem and as such, please proceed with extreme caution.

    Remote desktop to your WHS and login as administrator. Open My Computer and browse to D:\folders. This is where your backups are stored. Delete all the folders in this folder and you should now be able to perform backups again. It's been quite a while since I've done this (as I said, I had to do it during the beta a few years ago now), so I don't remember if I had to Configure Backups again on the client PC's or if those settings were retained, so just a heads-up that you may have to do that again.

    Again, if you can follow the methods described in my first paragraph, please do so. Otherwise if you're left with no other option and are comfortable doing so, the unsupported method is something you could fall back on.
    Monday, July 27, 2009 3:42 AM
  • Hi all,


    A backup of my most important client PC included a very big, but unnecessary partition.

    This backup swamped the Server storage, taking it from 70% full to 99% full.

    I reconfigured the backups for that client PC to exclude the “unnecessary” partition – the Server let me mark the backup for that partition for deletion.

    I then initiated a backup cleanup on the Server – but this was terminated with an error: “An error in the backup service is preventing the cleanup operation”.

    I rebooted the Server – now I cannot start the WHS console from the Server.  I can start the WHS console from the desktop PC, but this remote console session does not include the “settings” button that would let try to initiate another backup cleanup.

     

    I am starting to wonder if WHS is really worth all this effort!

     

    Regards,

    Leigh


    It's probably bogged down because it's trying to move files from one drive to another, but can't because all of the drives are full.  I would try adding another hard drive to the storage pool and give it a little while to free up some space.
    Monday, July 27, 2009 4:40 AM
    Moderator
  • Have you tried the "Repair" option for the backups database? To get to this option, open the WHS console, click Settings, then Backup. At the bottom, you should see a "Repair..." button under the "Backup Cleanup and Database Repair" section. I believe you must be running at least PP2 for the repair option to be there. You may also want to try removing the PC via the Computers & Backup tab. This should trigger a routine to clean out any backups from this PC. Once things are cleaned out and your storage is back under control you can add it to WHS again and re-establish the nightly backups.

    If neither of the above work, there's an unsupported method you could try. This will remove all backups from your WHS, but if you're comfortable going backupless for a little while (until the backups are again performed nightly), there is a procedure I used a few times during the WHS beta when my backup database would become corrupt.

    DISCLAIMER: I make no guarantees that this will solve your problem and as such, please proceed with extreme caution.

    Remote desktop to your WHS and login as administrator. Open My Computer and browse to D:\folders. This is where your backups are stored. Delete all the folders in this folder and you should now be able to perform backups again. It's been quite a while since I've done this (as I said, I had to do it during the beta a few years ago now), so I don't remember if I had to Configure Backups again on the client PC's or if those settings were retained, so just a heads-up that you may have to do that again.

    Again, if you can follow the methods described in my first paragraph, please do so. Otherwise if you're left with no other option and are comfortable doing so, the unsupported method is something you could fall back on.

    Do NOT remove everything under D:\folders (there may be other folders there besides the backup database).  If you really want to go the route sully213 suggested (which is unsupported), you would want to delete everything inside D:\folders\{00008086-058D-4C89-AB57-A7F909A47AB4}.
    Monday, July 27, 2009 4:42 AM
    Moderator
  • Hi all,


    A backup of my most important client PC included a very big, but unnecessary partition.

    This backup swamped the Server storage, taking it from 70% full to 99% full.

    I reconfigured the backups for that client PC to exclude the “unnecessary” partition – the Server let me mark the backup for that partition for deletion.

    I then initiated a backup cleanup on the Server – but this was terminated with an error: “An error in the backup service is preventing the cleanup operation”.

    I rebooted the Server – now I cannot start the WHS console from the Server.  I can start the WHS console from the desktop PC, but this remote console session does not include the “settings” button that would let try to initiate another backup cleanup.

     

    I am starting to wonder if WHS is really worth all this effort!

     

    Regards,

    Leigh


    It's probably bogged down because it's trying to move files from one drive to another, but can't because all of the drives are full.  I would try adding another hard drive to the storage pool and give it a little while to free up some space.
    Yes, adding a 3rd drive fixed the problem.
    It took about 12 hours to "re-Balance" the 3 x 1 TB drives - not all this time is taken up with copying - it seems as though WHS does a burst of copying every hour, with long periods of inactivity in between.

    Regards,
    Leigh
    • Marked as answer by Leigh Wardle Wednesday, July 29, 2009 1:29 AM
    Wednesday, July 29, 2009 1:29 AM
  • This is so stupid.  The only way you can fix this is to add another hard drive?  Well ... WHAT IF YOU HAVE NO MORE ROOM for another hard drive? Duh. Microsoft didn't even think of that??  

    Just another example of how Microsoft cannot design products that work well or have good user experiences. 

    Wednesday, November 17, 2010 6:59 PM
  • Actually, Mr Roger this is an example of someone not having a clue what's going on and just bashing a company.

    The backup cleanup process requires space available to run. It builds new .dat files and removes old ones that are not needed. How would you propose to do this without space available?

    If you could not add another drive, you could still clear some space on one of the shares or reset the backup database.

    -timotl

    Thursday, November 18, 2010 4:04 PM
  • On Thu, 18 Nov 2010 16:04:01 +0000, timotl wrote:

    Actually, Mr Roger this is an example of someone not having a clue what's going on and just bashing a company.

    The backup cleanup process requires space available to run. It builds new .dat files and removes old ones that are not needed. How would you propose to do this without space available?

    I think the correct solution is for WHS to notice when space is about
    to get too low for cleanup, post a clear message, and then refuse to
    do more back ups without explicit approval. If possible, the approval
    should be restricted to whichever user maintains the WHS. And WHS
    should, of course, notice when room becomes sufficient.


    If you could not add another drive, you could still clear some space on one of the shares or reset the backup database.

    I don't have any shares on the server, so that would not be an option
    for me.


    -timotl

    Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:06 PM