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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2014 12:27 pm 
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Hi all,

I have had an issue develop recently that I wanted to check in with the resident experts here about.

I tried to run a backup recently with WHS BDBB but it seems to have failed although I don't know how to verify that.

I stared the backup and let the server begin the process, which normally takes something like 8-10 hours. This last time however, after about that long, I checked on the server and could hear a repetitive disk action in the server. Most of us use computers enough to discern normal noises from abnormal ones. This one sounded like an error as it just kept repeating a seek and then read/write type of sound. over, and over, and over...

Upon trying to remote into the server with RDM, I could not get a response from the server. I got a reply when I pinged it, but RDM would not react, at least not within about 3 minutes or so...

I didn't know what to do, so I did a hard shutdown on the server. When I rebooted it, all appeared ok. There were no errors in the system logs. Also, HomeServerSMART is reporting that all disks are okay.

I even ran the Database Repair and Backup Cleanup functions on the server then tried the WHS BDBB again after deleting the backup that hung the server, but got the same behavior and result. I even did the hard shut down again. I really didn't enjoying having to do that! (Scares the heck out of me that it will wreak havoc on the system)

When I look at the summary of backups in the WHS BDBB tab in the server console, I see a backup, but the size of it is smaller than last time I ran a successful backup. See image below.

Is there any way to verify the integrity of the backup?
Should I just wait for RDM to come up when the backup is running?

Is there a way to checkdisk the drives in the server in an attempt to fix any clusters/sectors? I could pull drives and connect to another computer to run chkdsk but I'm not sure if that would do any good if these drives are used in a spanned configuration in normal use but not part of that normal array when recovery/repair is attempted.

The server hasn't shown any signs of failure.

Thanks in advance for your replies / insights and for upcoming follow up questions! :)

Attachment:
WHS BDBB image 1.jpg
WHS BDBB image 1.jpg [ 22.54 KiB | Viewed 2510 times ]


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2014 12:46 pm 
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I suspect you have a failing disk. I recommend you install the Home Server SMART Add-In if you don't already have it running, in order to see if any of your drives are reporting errors.

The only way to check the integrity of a backup is to restore it and try to use it. Before doing that within BDBB, I would try opening up some of your current backups and see if you can restore a few files.

BDBB does log a few messages to the Application Event Viewer on the server, you'd need to RDP on there to look at those. It's possible that an error condition is being logged.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2014 5:34 pm 
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Thanks, as always, for the feedback and advice Alex. Much appreciated to have someone to bounce ideas off of.

I have Home Server SMART installed and it has not indicated any errors or problems with any of the drives in the server.

I have checked the system logs and found nothing from WHS BDBB, but I'll look again when I can remote into the server.

For now, I have removed the backup drive from WHS server pool. It still registered as a drive in the server, but not under WHS's server control. It still registered as a drive (E:). So I initiated another BDBB backup and will see what happens. At this time, I cannot RDM into the server. Does this sound normal??

Also, the blue status light for the backup disk on the case goes from unlit to blue every 10 - 15 minutes or so. Does this sound normal?

I can hear the drive working and is doesn't sound like it is stuck, just working away...


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2014 9:14 pm 
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Try shutting the server down then remove the Unmanaged Drive you removed from the storage pool and see if things return to normal. If you had your BDBB Data Stored previously in your storage pool then it will still exist there. Failing drives can cause issues with WHS as its very sensitive to drive issues. Now you do have HSS Classic Installed so that should tell you the physical condition of the drives and WHS monitors the condition of the file system so if neither is reporting issues then one has to scratch their head.

I can't comment on what the drive lights do for an unmanaged drive and each MSS works the drive lights a bit differently. On my MSS units I always ran BDBB Backups to an external drive I could remove and store away and I never ran unmanaged drives within the server enclosure. So that's why I am unable to comment on this part but my gut tells me the drive light should be one color or another or breathing for an unmanaged drive.

There is a way to run a CHKDSK on the individual drives in the server but you need to know the drive mount points and its just easier and often quicker to shut the server down and remove a drive you want to check and connect it to another computer and run a CHKDSK from there.

There is an ADD-IN called ToolKit that will allow you to view the Event Logs from the Settings on the Console. I believe that came with the connector troubleshooter.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2014 10:29 am 
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Thanks Comp -

I don't expect that removing the unmanaged drive to which I am attempting to backup the BDBB will result in a functioning server, because aside from the BDBB backup function, the machine, by all accounts, is functioning correctly. In fact there are no significant errors reported by the server either with or without the BDBB backup drive installed in the enclosure.

I have used this drive in the past to backup the server as well as the client backup database without issue. I typically keep this drive at my in-law's house in their fire safe, but install it in my server periodically for backups.

I also maintain another backup drive in my safe, so I feel I have good coverage in the event of server failure, but I would like to resolve the current inability to backup the client DB.

I am going to attempt a backup with my other drive next.

At this time the backup I initiated yesterday at about 11:00am is still running apparently as I can hear the drives activity, but I cannot remote into the box.

Have you seen other situations where RDM will not respond or connect to the server? I am speculating that as I noted in a previous post, the unmanaged drive in the enclosure has its light go on and off very slowly. I wonder if it is in fact "breathing" but because of cpu load, the light is reacting VERY slowly. If the CPU is loaded up, that may also explain why I can't get a connection to the server via RDM before RDM times out...

Nonetheless, the cpu shouldn't be that loaded up by a BDBB backup as I have the server performing no other tasks. It only stores files and backs up household computers. Not used for anything else, so I need to correct the issue that may be loading up the cpu.

I'll look at the server logs again when I reboot the machine, but as I said before there have not been any significant errors logged to any of the log files I am familiar with via the Windows computer management console.

Thanks again for your support


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2014 12:09 pm 
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Every single time I've heard of an issue like this, it's because of a hard drive with errors. Try a BDBB backup to another hard drive.

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