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Backup stuck in 'Closing'

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I've had a couple of problems with a particular backup script where it just seems to 'lock up'

 

At the moment it's sitting there, the activity monitor says it's 'closing'

 

According to the log, the backup finished at 22:34:40 - it's now 09:12 the next morning...

 

Is there anything I can look at to see why it's been 'closing' for so long?

 

It's a "backup to file", the file in question is local to the backup server, about 13GB, and was last modified at 22:34, there's loads of free disk space

 

The relevant backup client still says 'in use by <server>', and the PC being backed up is still working and on the network, and the server and client can see each other's files over the network.

 

(I can't think of anything else 'environmental' to look at - are there any logs or anything)

 

I had to kill it using task manager to get anywhere frown.gif

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Your post said 'a particular backup script' - so you're not seeing this issues with other backup scripts/backup sets? Can you provide more information on what configurations work vs. which ones don't?

 

Is the problem specific to one client or does it happen with other clients? What was the state of the client when this occured? Had it gone to sleep?

 

What Operating Systems? What version of Retrospect? What version of the client?

 

What does the Operations Log show? Reports > Log

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Actually, since my post, it's happened with another backup script, again 'backup to file' and again from a retrospect client

 

It's intermittent, so it may happen with all of my scripts, just not yet, IYSWIM.

 

The client PCs never suspend or anything (they're servers (ones an SQL/file server, the other's a web/mail server))

 

The retrospect client software says 'in use by <backup server>' for <backup script name>' in the Status section.

 

The backup server's running Windows 2000 Server (and Retrospect Multi-server 6.5), one of the problem clients was running Windows 2000 Server, the other Windows 2000 Professional.

 

Server version: 6.5.276

Client version: 6.5.127 (in both cases)

(The software was installed from a single download, so I presume they don't have to match exactly)

 

The operations log shows absolutely nothing, zilch, zip, for the backups in question. It seems to only get written to when the operation succeeded, which it doesn't do in this case. (There is other stuff in the operations log before & after the time of this operation, since the other execution units seem to continue regardless, except for ones which are waiting for the blocked one)

 

In \documents and settings\all users\application data\retrospect\rtrexec.dir

there's a folder 'exec-4' which could well be to do with this operation, because it's execution unit '5' (yes, I'm a programmer, so I'm happy with 5=4 ;-) )

 

The files in this folder are about the time that this particular backup operation seemed to freeze. I've taken a copy of these files in case they'd be useful to you.

 

Ah, in the \docs\all users\appdata\retrospect\rtrexec.dir folder itself are some tmp files which seem to be the operations log entries for the execution units which are still running. One of those (which I've got a copy of in case you need it) doesn't seem to have any problems.

 

The last thing in the file is

 

Quote:

 

$[*20750] File "$[1]C:\webdata\avastupdates\HiTech_Support_Ltd_-25.log$[2]": different modify date/time (set: 15/06/2003 12:07:01, vol: 16/06/2003 01:07:50)

16/06/2003 01:59:17: 267 execution errors $[127001880132080000]

Completed: 87722 files, 6.1 GB, with 45% compression

Performance: 65.7 MB/minute (45.9 copy, 115.5 compare)

Duration: 03:56:37 (00:45:16 idle/loading/preparing)

 

 


 

So, it looks like it's got to the end OK, just can't sort itself out

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Quote:

Actually, since my post, it's happened with another backup script, again 'backup to file' and again from a retrospect client

 


 

 

 

To be clear, another backup script or another backup set? When this happens, go over to the client, open the Retrospect Client and turn the radio button to off. Does the backup server log the event as a normal execution or does it log an error?

 

 

 

Are you writing to multiple backup sets on the same drive with multiple executions? Are these file or disk backup sets?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Quote:

AmyC said:

To be clear, another backup script or another backup set?

 


 

Both. It's another backup script which is saving to a different backup set.

 

Quote:

When this happens, go over to the client, open the Retrospect Client and turn the radio button to off. Does the backup server log the event as a normal execution or does it log an error?

 


 

Neither - it stays 'stuck' in the 'Closing' state. It doesn't seem to realise the client has been turned off.

 

Quote:

Are you writing to multiple backup sets on the same drive with multiple executions? Are these file or disk backup sets

 


Yes, they're file backup sets. (I thought this was supposed to be OK)

 

 

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If this is Windows XP, try turning off the System Restore feature:

 

Start> Settings> Control Panel> System> System Restore Tab

 

Put a check in the Turn off System Restore box. Click Apply, then click OK

 

Reboot

 

To be notified when this issue has been addressed in Retrospect, please join this notification mailing list.

 

http://list.dantz.com/mailman/listinfo/xp_system_restore

 

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I'm still having problems with this - it's starting to make Retrospect unusable as I have to check all the time that it's not stuck

 

Retrospect is running on Windows 2000 Professional - current problem is backing up a Windows 2000 server, so system restore isn't a problem

 

I've just had it happen with a backup to tape, so it happens with both file and tape backups

 

At the moment, the log claims it finished on 16 August at 23:21 - it's now 19 August 15:43 - so hopefully that would have been enough time to do anything if it's really doing something.

 

The progress bar is at about 33% of the way across.

 

The problem is that everything else is held up until this one finishes, which it doesn't look as if it's going to do any time soon..

 

Please give me some hope... or something to check, or some logs to produce, or something.

 

I like Retrospect, but this is making it hard work.

 

Paul

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Hi

 

My apologies if I overlooked this in your posts but where are you saving the backup files themselves? Is it a RAID or dynamic volume? As a test were you able to give a "disk" backup set a try?

 

Nate

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Originally the backups were going to a simple disk on another computer. Now they're just going to a simple disk on this PC ('E:' which is just a plain standard internal 120GB IDE drive). It is shown as a 'Dynamic Disk' in the Disk manager.

 

I haven't tried a 'Disk' backup

 

I've never really understood the difference between Disk & File backup

 

I want to put about 8 different backup sets onto one disk - I had the feeling that this wasn't possible with a Disk backup.

 

(I've also just started using a USB2 HDD as a backup device as well, again with file backups - this hasn't been in place long enough to see if the 'Closing' problem applies to that)

 

It isn't at all consistent - so most of the times the backups will work fine, but every week or so one (not the same one) will just stay stuck in 'Closing' for ages.

 

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Hi,

 

You can have a single disk be a member of multiple "disk" backup sets no problem. probably the easiest way is to create 8 folders on the drive and specify each one of them as a member of a disk backup set. The biggest advantage with Disk backup sets is that it breaks the data into smaller chunks rather than just one huge backup file. XP system restore (amoung other things) can choke on large single files. The disk backup set avoids this problem.

 

Nate

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I am having the EXACT same problem randomly on server backup servers. In fact, this is one of two issues I am researching. This problem of jobs getting stuck at closing is making me less and less comfortable with Retrospect as every morning now I have to go onto every backup server and make sure no jobs are stuck at "closing".

 

My configuration is as follows:

Backup Server = Windows 2000 running Retrospect 6.5

Client = Windows 2000 running Retrospect 6.5

I am running a backup to disk and not to tape.

 

I read throught this thread completely and I don't see where anyone actually solved the problem.

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I'm 'glad' it's not just me..

 

No, no-one's come up with a solution, or even any suggestions on how to get more information to submit to Dantz. (This is the bit I find annoying. Software bugs exist, but most software manufacturers put problem diagnosis code into their software so users can send logs etc in case of a problem. Either Dantz haven't bothered to do this, or they don't see this as a big enough problem to bother with).

 

I may chase up the support call I purchased which they've never bothered answering about a previous issue, and and re-use it for this issue. Then they may take notice.

 

Paul

 

(I'm not happy about using disk backup instead of file backup, in my case, because the docs say that a disk backup to a removable disk will erase the disk first, and since I use a USB drive as well now - that's not good)

 

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Nope, you are not alone on this one. In fact, I just had to do the old "Task Manager --> End Application" for Retrospect since my backup last night got stuck at "closing". I spend a SIGNIFICANT part of my day "checking" on the Retrospect servers to make sure no backups have hung at "closing" or "catalog out of sync" or "application error" or "network communication error" or "backup client in use", etc, etc.

 

And I don't know about you, but I have yet to go more than three execution units running at once without eating up all my system memory and CPU cycles. Trust me, I have spent literally days trying to get the backups running under Retrospect in such a way I can count on them to be successful.

 

The old saying you get what you pay for sure does ring true sometimes. smile.gif

 

Oh well, if I figure out what is causing the "closing" problem I will let you know.

 

JJ

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Hi

 

Disk backup sets only erase and rename a hard disk if you tell it to or if it is an empty Fat 32 volume.

 

What does the log show when you are stuck in closing? Has the snapshot been stored/ Compared?

 

Nate

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Look at my 2nd post in the thread - the log says it's finished everything - the backup, snapshot & compare. It just can't 'sort itself out' afterwards.

 

I'm sure I've seen somewhere in Retrospect that it will erase removeable disks before backing up to them in 'disk backup set' mode

 

Ah, here we are "Chooing the Backup Set Type"

 

Quote:

Removable disks used as part of a disk Backup Set must be erased before you can use them. Removable disks used as part of a file Backup Set do not have to be erased, and the disk can store and access files other than the Backup Set data files.

 


 

(So, maybe Retrospect won't erase the disks itself, but it says you have to do it first. I don't want to - that's why I chose the file backup set type).

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Hi

 

Thanks for making that clear. Are you using the open file option? Maybe it is stuck when trying to "let go" of the drive.

 

Hard disks are not considered to be "removeable disks" by retrospect no matter how you attach them to your computer. You are correct in what you are saying about removeable disks (jaz,dvd ram, zip..).

 

You do not need to erase your external hard disk to use it as a member in a disk backup set. Retrospect simply creates a folder at the root of the drive or folder of your choice. All of the backup data goes into that folder so you can use the rest of the drive as normal.

 

 

Nate

 

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I am using the open file option, but I don't know why, because it has never yet worked for me.. It always says it can't work because the disk is too busy.

 

I'll try turning it off to see if that makes any difference.

 

 

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Hi

 

That is interesting - is the disk indeed busy or not?

Dantz TS can provide a tool to test the open file option on your machine.

 

Nate

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It probably is busy.

 

I only use the Open File Backup facility on three PCs, one is a mail server, one is a web server and one is a database/file server used by the web server.

 

On all the other (workstation) PCs it'd be of limited use, so I'm not using it.

 

From what I've read about OFB systems, it's probably not much use anyway, so I've disabled it to see if that makes any difference (the database is backed up by having an SQL Server task make backup files which can be backed up as normal files, and the web & mail servers rarely lock files open for any length of time anyway)

 

Paul

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OK, it's just happened again. This is on a backup from a remote client to tape (so the disk/file backup set issue doesn't apply AFAICS)

 

The last entries in the log are

Quote:

 

10/09/2003 09:30:58: 80 execution errors

Completed: 63813 files, 16.8 GB, with 33% compression

Performance: 143.4 MB/minute (129.4 copy, 160.7 compare)

Duration: 05:09:05 (01:09:13 idle/loading/preparing)

 

 


It is now 13:52 here, so over 4 hours has passed since it thought it had finished.

 

The client on the remote computer (a W2K server computer) says it's still active

 

The progress bar on the server is at about 95% (not 100%), but it says state 'Closing', and the progress bar has been at that point for ages

 

Looking at the task manager, Retrospect is using around 30-60% of the CPU, even though no other backup tasks are currently running (several are in the queue waiting to run when the stuck one frees up the tape drive)

 

So, either it's incredibly slow, doing something which no one will explain, or it's got itself stuck in a loop (which is my suspicion since it's been left a lot longer than this before now, if you look back in the thread)

 

Oh, and this backup was without Open File Backup being enabled.

 

So, the 'reason's that have been suggested (file backup set, OFB) don't apply in this case.

 

 

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Hi

 

What kind of network activity are you getting when this happens - it sounds like Retrospect is trying to close the connection but can`t. If you turn off the client will Retrospect recover?

 

Nate

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For me, there is little network activity (I haven't looked into it in detail, so I don't know if the activity is there is from the mail server, web server or from Retrospect

 

If I close the client, then the client closes quite happily, but the server still stays stuck in 'Closing'.

 

 

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I'm experiencing the same problem. If backup set is a tape, backup job goes on for days - until the tape is full. If the same backup job is backing up to a file set, it will get stuck every day or sometimes even more often.

 

Said that, it does not appear to be a network issue since same backup job works just fine when backing up to the tape.

 

Mikee

computer.gif

 

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Hi Paul

 

One longshot is to turn off the option to backup the client registry - It is not a long term solution but it can help us narrow down when this is actually happening. Is there any chance you can move your backup to another computer as a test?

 

Nate

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I can't move it to another computer. The backup PC has a SCSI card (for the tape library), 3x160GB internal drives, USB2 external drives etc on it (managing the backups is its main purposes)

 

At the moment, I telephoned technical support in the US (cost me a fortune..) and they suggested I uninstalled and reinstalled with the very latest version (I was on a slightly earlier version). It hasn't got 'stuck' since, but it was intermittent anyway, and I've reduced the backup frequency (the performance issues meant it couldn't do all the backups I wanted it to do, even though it should have been able to), so it the upgrade might have fixed the problem, or it might just not have gone wrong yet. We'll have to wait and see.

 

(When I spoke to the tech support in the US they didn't seem to want to investigate the problem I was having at the time (it was in 'stuck' mode when I rang), they just gave the stock answer 'upgrade to the latest version' - even though none of the published changes affect anything like what we've been seeing)

 

 

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