Enable Shadow Copies for Shared Folders in a Failover Cluster (2012 R2) RRS feed

  • Question

  • I cannot find a reference on how to Enable Shadow Copies for Shared Folders in a Failover Cluster using separate disks for Data and Shadow Copies, using Windows Server 2012 R2.  I found an article for Server 2003, but that doesn't solve my issue.  Enable Shadow Copies for Shared Folders in a cluster.  Can someone point me to documentation on how to setup properly?

    I have a 3 server failover cluster, a single fileserver role with a 2 TB data storage drive and a 200 GB disk for shadow copy drive.  The 2 TB is ReFS and being used by Home Directories.  The 200 GB is also ReFS, but I didn't have a letter assigned, but it is associated with the fileserver role.

    Any help is appreciated.

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    Thursday, April 23, 2015 11:21 PM

All replies

  • Hi Chase Roth,

    You can use DPM for the file server cluster backup,

    Set up protection for virtual machines with SMB storage


    More related information:

    VSS for SMB File Shares


    Use Cluster Shared Volumes in a Failover Cluster


    I’m glad to be of help to you!

    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help and unmark them if they provide no help. If you have feedback for TechNet Support, contact tnmff@microsoft.com

    Tuesday, April 28, 2015 8:23 AM
  • Hi Case

    You can do it outside Cluster Manager. Open Explorer, find any disk, right-click/properties/Shadow Copies.

    Find your clustered disk and click on "Configure". Don't set any Schedules, only change "size" and "storage area volume". This will set different "Diff" disk but doesn't create any "local" schedules. When done, enable Shadow Copies via Cluster Manager. It wil reuse already set different disk and create schedule correctly.

    Check that dependency of data disk on "diff" disk was created or do it manually. To see changes you should restart cluster resources.

    But these steps will not enable "Previous Versions" for clients via UNC path as it is when FileServer is not clustered.

    Also using Computer Manager console is unreliable for configuring clustered shares as described in my another post.



    EDIT: Btw. same can be done via cmd "vssadmin Add ShadowStorage /For=diskletter1: /On=diskletter2:"

    • Edited by ExSportCZ Wednesday, April 29, 2015 4:52 PM added command line way
    Wednesday, April 29, 2015 4:45 PM
  • As mentioned above I spotted Shadow Copy configuration problems in clustered environment on Windows 2012 R2 with latest updates.

    Enabling Shadow Copy via Cluster Manager on disk will enable schedule and snapshots but schedule is not-cluster aware (is created locally on node) and "Previous Versions" are visible only locally but not via shared folders (UNC path accesible by clients)

    When I spotted this behavior I tried different way going via Computer Management and cluster resource name but console always hangs for me when using "Configure Shadow Copies". After many minutes configuration window is opened (Hurray!) but any action there will hang whole console again. Enabling Shadow Copies will fail with "0x80004005: Unspecified error" for creating scheduled task but "Next Run Time" column still shows "Disabled". Checking disk resource via Cluster Manager shows it is enabled and ?local? scheduled task is created.

    Computer management console still shows DISABLED and any action freezes whole console (only when cluster resource name is used).

    This fix I found, unfortunately, is not applicable to 2012 R2 OS: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/2894464

    To sum up there is a major bug in MS implementation in Shadow Copies for Shared Folders when clustering is used or it is still not supported in 2012 R2? Doing it outside cluster works as it should (without freezes and Previous Versions are available via UNC)

    There is no documentation about FileServer Clustering on 2012(R2) unfortunately.

    Could someone from MS clarify it?

    Many thanks



    Ok, one correction:

    Scheduled task is not created in "Failover Clustering" hive of Scheduled tasks as user may expect but failover of fileshare to other node will unregister/reregister it on active node only.

    Wednesday, April 29, 2015 4:48 PM
  • That is some great information.  I am trying to follow the different pieces you guys mentioned, but I'll need to try and click through things for it to sink in.  I'll have to try it out either this weekend or Monday. 

    I am not seeing the UNC and previous version issue you mention.  I have enabled shadow copies from the cluster just using the same disk, not a separate one.  Is the issue you speak of directly related to the data and shadow copies being on different disks?  I can get to mine from UNC path...but I have not moved the fileserver role to a different machine in the cluster...it is still on the same one.

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    Friday, May 1, 2015 6:01 PM