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Exchange 2010 - Full backups with Windows Backup Not Clearing Transaction Logs RRS feed

  • Question

  • I am seeing an issue where a Full VSS backup taken using Windows Backup in Server 2008 R2 completes successfully but Exchange transaction logs are not truncated. After the event ID 9622 "Exchange VSS Writer <instance xxxx> has processed the post-snapshot event successfully" there is an Informational event logged which states "The Description for Event ID 0 from source wsbexchange cannot be found The following information was included with the event Service Started."

    I'm not sure if the above event is relevant to the backup failing to clear event logs or is misleading and is simply pointing out that the Microsoft Exchange Server Extension for Windows Server Backup (wsbexchange) service has started. I receive no other backup related events after this message and teh backups appear to complete successfully.

    If I examine the system log I see events 7036 "The Microsoft Exchange Server Extension for Windows Server Backup service entered the running state." about the time the Exchange backup starts and again shortly after it completes The Microsoft Exchange Server Extension for Windows Server Backup service entered the Stopped state.

    I'm not sure where I can start troubleshooting this issue and until the backup product I use supports Exchange 2010 I have to manually clear the transaction logs after 30 days or so by enabling/disabling circular logging.

    Any ideas appreciated
    Monday, April 19, 2010 6:11 AM

Answers

  • I think I've found the answer - will try this tonight:

     

    Note: The default behavior of WSB is to perform a VSS Copy Backup, which will not truncate the logs. To configure a VSS Full Backup you must configure a Custom backup (not Full Server), add the volumes that contain the Exchange data, click Advanced Settings, and select VSS Full Backup on the VSS Settings tab.


    Ali
    Tuesday, May 4, 2010 7:44 PM

All replies

  • Hi,

    Using the command 'wbadmin enable backup', the current backup settings can be queried. If the backups settings are for VSS Full backups, from the backup requestor perspective, the correct VSS settings are set for the logs to be truncated post the backup.

    Have a couple of queries though, are there any consistency check warnings for the exchange backup components post the backup? If they are there, logs would not be truncated as exchange components are not marked in the backup.

    "The Microsoft Exchange Server Extension for Windows Server Backup service entered the running state." Wsbexchange.exe is a helper binary needed for exchange backup\recovery through Windows Server backup. Start\stop of that service during backup is expected.

    Investigating further why the exchange logs are not getting truncated if the VSS settings are for FULL backups only would best known by the exchange folks, out of scope for the Windows Server Backup. Will try and get in contact with the partner team for issue.

    Thanks,

    Abhinav

     


    This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights
    Tuesday, April 20, 2010 7:01 AM
  • Hi,

    The VSS Settings are all as they should be, VSS Full Backups. There are no consistency check errors and I checked the log file sequencing with ESEutil and no out of sequence logs. 

    I have removed the system state from the backup selection and now the transaction logs are being truncated. I'm not sure that really solves the issue but at least I can get complete exchange backups and mange the log file growth. I can perhaps set a different schedule for the the System State Backups and back this up separately.

    Tuesday, April 20, 2010 7:25 AM
  • Hi,

    Exchange logs should get truncated even for the system state backups as the VSS setting is VSS Full backups. Would suggest to post the query on the exchange forum here http://www.microsoft.com/communities/newsgroups/list/en-us/default.aspx?dg=microsoft.public.exchange.admin&cat=en_us_918744ab-010e-4f16-9665-fe376f2631e4&lang=en&cr=us for the problem.

    Thanks,

    Abhinav


    This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights
    Thursday, April 22, 2010 7:25 AM
  • I'm running into a similar issue in the sense that the transaction logs are not clearing up.

    Backgroud Info:

    I have Exchange 2010 running off a virtual machine hosted on Win2k8-R2 Hyperv. VHD file size was set to 127GB.

    A couple of days ago, external mailflow stopped working. We identified that the diskspace was running low 5GB free only and that the transaction logs were taking up approximately 55GB of diskspace.

    I initiated a Windows backup, but the conisitency check showing in progress for over 6 hours. It was probably stuck due to no diskspace but oddly enough no error message.

    I killed the backup at that point. Expanded the HD drive space from HyperV to 175GB, restarted the Exchange 2010 VM and initiated the backup again to clear up the transaction logs.

    It seems that the backup utility cannot get past the consistency check. It just keeps going and going. Any idea if there a log I can check to see what is going on?

    :(


    Ali
    Friday, April 30, 2010 9:04 PM
  • Hi,

    You can enable some of the additional Exchange 2010 logging for the VSS Writer which may help;

    1. Open Microsoft Exchange System Manager
    2. Find the Server object. 
    3. Right-click the server on which you want to increase the logging level, and click Properties
    4. Click the Diagnostics Logging tab. 
    5. Expand the MSExchangeIS node in the Services pane and click System
    6. Click Exchange writer in the Categories pane, and then select the desired logging level. 
    7. Click Apply, and then click OK to close the Properties dialog box.
    Paul

    • Proposed as answer by lpe_vtx Wednesday, March 29, 2017 11:42 AM
    Tuesday, May 4, 2010 5:58 AM
  • Thanks for your reply. The Exchange System Manager pertains to Exchange 2003. I'm looking at doing this on as Exchange 2010 server.

     


    Ali
    Tuesday, May 4, 2010 7:14 PM
  • Update on the issue: The consistency check eventually completed and the backup was succesful after running for 9 hours.

    Earlier I was backing up to a network share and that may have been influencing the processing time. When doing the backup on the local host machine, things felt a little faster.

    Current status - backup is complete but the transaction logs still exist. Anyone know how to remove these? I was under the impression that the backup would purge these upon completion.

    Ali


    Ali
    Tuesday, May 4, 2010 7:17 PM
  • Hi Abhinav,

     

    Have a couple of queries though, are there any consistency check warnings for the exchange backup components post the backup?

    Where can I find these logs?

    Thanks,

    Ali


    Ali
    Tuesday, May 4, 2010 7:23 PM
  • I think I've found the answer - will try this tonight:

     

    Note: The default behavior of WSB is to perform a VSS Copy Backup, which will not truncate the logs. To configure a VSS Full Backup you must configure a Custom backup (not Full Server), add the volumes that contain the Exchange data, click Advanced Settings, and select VSS Full Backup on the VSS Settings tab.


    Ali
    Tuesday, May 4, 2010 7:44 PM
  • Did the transaction logs clear with the VSS Full Backup?

    I had some issues whereby even using a VSS Full Backup the logs would not clear after a successful backup. I discovered that removing the system state form the backup selections meant that I got a full backup which truncated the transaction logs. You should get an event ID 9780 if the logs purge successfully.

     

    Wednesday, May 5, 2010 2:06 AM
  • I have the same problem in my environment.  Exchange 2010 + Windows Server 2008 R2.  I've tried removing the system state but that did not make a difference.  I've selected Custom Backup with the VSS Full Backup.  The backup completes successfully however the logs do not get truncated.  Any ideas? 
    Wednesday, July 21, 2010 7:24 AM
  • Did you try using the wbadmin command line without the system state included but with all volumes included?

    I had same issue happen today, twice, with the Windows Server Backup GUI using vss full and bare metal (system state, system reserved, and C:\ but not D:\ which has absolutely nothing exchange-related on it), after an initial full backup a week ago that did truncate logs. I still have no idea why the logs did not truncate. But after I rebooted the server and used the wbadmin command line instead of the GUI to do a backup, without the system state as ex_admin_01 suggested, but including C:\ and D:\ (meaning, all volumes) the logs truncated. I used wbadmin start backup -include:C:,D: -backuptarget:\\server\remoteshare -vssFULL -user:<username> -password:<userpassword> -quiet 

    Now, some details which I think are irrelevant but one never knows:

    E2K10 is installed into a Hyper-V VM and it is on our test, not production network. The only change made since the first backup a week ago and today's attempts was to install new Send and Receive Connectors for SharePoint 2010 incoming and outgoing mail.

    I might have used the command line with the initial backup a week ago that did truncate the logs, I can't remember, but if so I did -allCriticall vssFULL; if I used the GUI it was also VSS Full, Bare Metal. Meaning, no difference.

    With the initial backup I had the Command Line Tools installed (Features, Windows Server Backup Features, Command-line Tools) as well as Windows Server Backup. Then today I read http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd876851.aspx which said not to have the tools installed so I uninstalled them. I then ran the GUI backup and the logs were not truncated. So I reinstalled the command-line tools and reran the GUI backup and the logs were still not truncated. So I rebooted the server (and let Exchange do a soft recovery even though I always clean shut Exchange before a reboot or shut down) and then used wbadmin from an elevated cmd prompt without system state included but with all volumes and as noted, that did truncate the logs. Go figure.

    Tuesday, July 27, 2010 6:25 PM
  • With Exchnage 2010 there is a new plug-in that is delivered in the form of an executable called WSBExchange.exe, which is configured to run as a service named Microsoft Exchange Server Extension for Windows Server Backup (the short name for this service is WSBExchange). The plug-in is automatically installed on all Exchange 2010 Mailbox servers and configured by default for manual startup. The plug-in enables Windows Server Backup to create Exchange-aware VSS backups.  Simply start this service then do your normal VSS Full backup and it works every time.

     

    Good luck all.

    • Proposed as answer by Sgt Tech Nut Tuesday, October 18, 2011 2:42 AM
    Tuesday, October 18, 2011 2:42 AM
  • when you say "select volumes that contain exchange data"

    if we have a server with the log files on L and the data on D, do you mean check off both the L and D completely? or do we need to just check off the log volume, or just the data volume? or both?

    and od you need to select system state? or C drive?
    • Edited by OldSchoola Tuesday, November 22, 2011 10:13 PM
    Tuesday, November 22, 2011 10:12 PM
  • Is it for Exchange system manager (E2k3) or Exchnage managemnet console (E2k10)

    can you tell me the Dignostic logging required for Windows backup

    Exchnage server 2010 (14.0) Windows server 2008 sp2

    Thursday, June 28, 2012 7:27 PM
  • Hi Paul, all,

    There is a easy working solution:

    1. Create schedulled backup task using Windows Server Backup
    2. Choose - Custom type of configuration
    3. Select ONLY the folder(s) where you have Exchnage data located (.edb file and logs). Be sure that you don´t include System State - this must be backed up separatelly...
    • in advaced Settings go to VSS Settings tab and choose VSS Full Backup

    4.  Choose backup time and destination for backup

    Note: Service "Microsoft Exchange Server Extension for Windows Server Backup" (wsbexchange) will start automatically for each Exchnage backup, You don't need to start it manually.

    It is working normally - cleaning the log files and backing up! :)

    Marian


    Marian, just trying to help you

    Monday, February 17, 2014 10:18 AM
  • Hi, all,

    There is a easy working solution:

    1. Create schedulled backup task using Windows Server Backup
    2. Choose - Custom type of configuration
    3. Select ONLY the folder(s) where you have Exchnage data located (.edb file and logs). Be sure that you don´t include System State - this must be backed up separatelly...
    • in advaced Settings go to VSS Settings tab and choose VSS Full Backup

    4.  Choose backup time and destination for backup

    Note: Service "Microsoft Exchange Server Extension for Windows Server Backup" (wsbexchange) will start automatically for each Exchnage backup, You don't need to start it manually.

    It is working normally - cleaning the log files and backing up! :)

    Marian


    Marian, just trying to help you


    Marian, just trying to help you

    • Proposed as answer by ceez38 Monday, October 20, 2014 2:04 AM
    Monday, February 17, 2014 10:21 AM
  • Select ONLY the folder(s) where you have Exchnage data located (.edb file and logs). Be sure that you don´t include System State - this must be backed up separatelly...


    Marian, just trying to help you

    Hello,why you suggest to not include system state in the same exchange backup?

    Friday, February 20, 2015 1:14 PM
  • Thanks Marian. This worked great. Once finished the 28,000 log files were purged and we reclaimed 40GB of disk space.

    Odd that the system had been running for over a year and for some reason on September 6th Exchange decided to stop purging them. No changes or updates were done to the system that day. BackupAssist jobs were running like normal and we even ran a Windows backup successfully without any luck. Running the Windows backup configured as you noted above took care of it though. Many thanks.

     John.

    Monday, October 2, 2017 9:05 PM