Troubleshooting the recovery environment in Backup Exec System Recovery

Article:TECH56225  |  Created: 2009-01-04  |  Updated: 2011-01-05  |  Article URL http://www.symantec.com/docs/TECH56225
Article Type
Technical Solution


Issue



Troubleshooting the recovery environment in Backup Exec System Recovery


Solution



To resolve problems while using the Symantec Recovery Disk (the recovery environment) or to solve issues while recovering data with Symantec Recovery Disk, review the following information.

 
  • How Symantec Recovery Disk works.
  • Starting a computer from the CD drive .
  • Unable to access the local drive where recovery points are saved .
  • A warning message indicates that Windows might not run correctly because of insufficient memory.
  • Recovery point is on CD, but the drive cannot be used because the Symantec Recovery Disk CD is running the recovery environment  
  • Finding network from the recovery environment.
  • USB devices in the recovery environment.
  • Using the pcAnywhere thin host for a remote recovery.
  • Mapping a network drive in the recovery environment.
  • Getting a static IP address .
  • Server clusters and restoring .
  • Workgroups and restoring .
  • Restoration of a recovery point in a workgroup environment .
  • Restoration of a DHCP server .
  • Setting the time zone and then exiting the recovery environment.
  • Using a SAN.
  • Using dual-ported fibre channel cards.
  • Wireless devices.
  • Viewing the IP address or other configuration information.
  • Restoring after setting encryption on an NTFS volume.
  • Using the recovery environment to perform multiple restorations to the same location.

How Symantec Recovery Disk works

Symantec Recovery Disk makes restoring data possible under most computer disasters, provided user have access to a working recovery point. Occasionally, a computer failure can leave the operating system intact but still prevents from restoring the computer to working order. Or, a computer failure can leave the operating system inoperative, making a restoration impossible. For these types of situations, a recovery point can be restored using Symantec Recovery Disk.

Note: Depending on which version of the product is purchased, the Symantec Recovery Disk is either included on the product CD, or as a separate CD. The CD containing the Symantec Recover Disk should be kept in a safe place. In case the CD is lost, a new one can be created, provided a CD burner is available.

In the recovery environment, among other tools, the Recover My Computer Wizard (to restore a drive, including the system drive) or the Recovery Point Browser (to perform a file-level restore) can also be run.

When the Recover My Computer Wizard finishes, the computer can be restarted into a previous, usable state.

Using the support utilities

The recovery environment contains various support utilities (under the Utilities and Network panels) that can be used to troubleshoot networking or hardware issues. For example, these utilities can be used to ping a computer, renew IP addresses, or gather information about a hard drive partition table.

Symantec Technical Support may require information generated by these utilities, if Symantec is contacted for help in resolving problems.
 
The following table describes the support utilities that are available in the recovery environment.
 
 
Panel Support utility Description
Network Start Networking Services Used to load the necessary network drivers on the computer so that network-stored recovery points can be accessed.
Network Start pcAnywhere thin host Used to start pcAnywhere thin host to establish a remote control session for use by a remote computer that connects through Symantec pcAnywhere. When selected, it starts Networking services, if necessary.
Network Map Network Drive Used to map a network drive.
Network Configure IP Address Used to configure network addresses for a network card.
Network Run IPConfig Utility Used to view network adapter information. It can also be used to release or renew IP addresses and save the information to a text file (ipconfig.txt), which can then be sent to technical support, if necessary.
Network Ping Remote Computer Used to see if the remote computer (where the recovery point is located) is available and network connections to that computer are intact and functioning.
Network Set Network Card Speed Used to automatically set the network interface card (NIC) on the computer to the highest speed possible. To use a recovery point that is stored on a network, run this utility (while network services are running) before restoring the data. This setting helps ensure maximum throughput of the recovery point data across the network.
Utilities Edit boot.ini Used to edit the boot.ini directly from the recovery environment.
Utilities Support Tool Use this tool under the direction of Symantec Technical Support to gather information about various system operations for troubleshooting purposes.
Utilities Display SME Disk Information Used to view information about the hard drive on the computer. The information can be saved to a text file (smedump.txt), which can then be sent to technical support, if necessary.
Utilities View Partition Information Used to create a report of the contents of the hard drive's partition table. This report can help in diagnosing and fixing various disk partition problems. This information can be saved to a text file, which can then be sent to technical support, if necessary.
Utilities Edit Partition Table Used to read and allow manipulation of the partition table information in the Master Boot Record and EPBR Boot Record. This utility is useful for fixing partition table errors or boot sector problems.
Utilities Change Active Partition Used to switch between bootable primary partitions. This utility is for users who only occasionally need to change the active partition. This utility makes the partition active and restarts the computer.
Utilities Restore Master Boot Record Used to save or restore critical Master Boot Record (MBR) information in the first sector of a hard drive. The contents of the first sector or entire first head of the hard drive are saved or restored to a file.


 
Note: Edit Partition Table utility should only be used under the guidance of Symantec Technical Support
 


To use the support utilities

1. In the recovery environment main window, click Utilities or Network.

2. Select the support utility to be used.

Starting a computer from the CD drive

To run the recovery environment, the computer must be started from the Symantec Recovery Disk CD.

Note: Depending on which version of the product is purchased, the SRD is either included on the product CD, or as a separate CD. The CD containing the Symantec Recover Disk should be kept in a safe place. In case the CD is lost, a new one can be created, provided a CD burner is available.

To start computer from the Symantec Recovery Disk CD

1. Turn on the computer.

2. While the computer is starting, watch for a prompt that tells how to access the BIOS. Generally, the Delete key or a function key needs to be pressed.

3. From the BIOS screen, choose the Boot menu.

Note: The term boot refers to the location where software required to start a computer is stored. The Symantec Recovery Disk contains a simple version of the Windows operating system. By changing the boot sequence of the computer to the CD drive, the computer can load this version of Windows. Boot is also used synonymously with start.

4. Change the CD or DVD drive to be the first bootable device in the list.

5. Save the changes and exit the BIOS setup.

When a computer is started with the Symantec Recovery Disk CD in the drive, the following prompt appears "press any key to boot from CD". If a key is not pressed, computer attempts to start from the next bootable device listed in the BIOS. There is only a short delay when the prompt to press a key is displayed, so watch carefully as the computer starts.

6. Press a key to start the recovery environment.


Unable to access the local drive where the recovery points are saved

The drivers needs to be loaded for the storage device in which the recovery points are saved. Drivers can be loaded once the recovery environment is started.

Note:
 
To load a driver for a local drive from within the recovery environment

1. Start the computer by using the Symantec Recovery Disk CD.

2. Once the recovery environment starts, click Load a Driver on the Home panel.

3. Browse to the folder containing the required driver, select the driver, and then click Open.

 
Unable to access or see the USB device where the recovery points are saved
 
Plug in the USB device before rebooting into the recovery environment. If the device is plugged in but still cannot be seen, manually assign a drive letter to it.
 

To assign a drive letter to a USB device in the recovery environment

1. From within the recovery environment, click Analyze.
2. Click Open Command Shell Window.
3. At the command prompt, do the following:
 
  • Type diskpart, and press Enter.
  • Type list vol, and press Enter.
  • Identify the USB drive in the resulting list.
  • Type select vol drivenumber, where drivenumber is the number assigned to the USB drive, and press Enter.
  • Type assign, and then Enter.

 
A warning message indicates that Windows might not run correctly because of insufficient memory
 
The recovery environment requires a minimum of 512 MB of RAM to run (768 MB if the multilingual version of the product is installed). If the computer's video card is configured to share the computer's RAM, more than 512 MB of RAM is required to use the recovery environment.
 
Continue if not sure. If issues are encountered in using the recovery environment, upgrade the computer's memory.
 

 
Recovery point is on CD, but the drive cannot be used because the Symantec Recovery Disk CD is running the recovery environment
 
If there is only one CD or DVD drive and data is to be restored from a recovery point that is stored on a CD or DVD, the Symantec Recovery Disk CD should not be removed from the drive until Browse is clicked to locate a recovery point. When the Open dialog box opens, the Symantec Recovery Disk CD can be removed and the media containing the recovery point can be inserted in the drive.
 
If the Symantec Recovery Disk CD is removed before clicking Browse, the recovery environment exits back to the recovery environment main window.
 

Finding network from the recovery environment

On clicking Browse, if the network cannot be browsed from the Open dialog, perform the following:

1. In the File name box, type the name of the computer and drive or share that holds the recovery points.

For example: \\computer_name\drive_name

2. Press Enter.

3. Select a recovery point, and then click Open.

If the network still cannot be browsed after typing the computer name and drive name, map a drive and log on as a different user to see and browse the network.

USB devices in the recovery environment

To enable a USB device while running the recovery environment, first attach the device, and then restart the computer in the recovery environment.

If USB device cannot be found, but it was attached before rebooting into the recovery environment, see the section "Unable to access or see the USB device where the recovery points are saved" in this technote.

Using the pcAnywhere thin host for a remote recovery

Using the Symantec Recovery Disk, a remote control session can be hosted by starting pcAnywhere Thin Host. Once started, the thin host waits for a connection that can be used to remotely manage a recovery or perform other tasks in the recovery environment.

To connect to the thin host, Symantec pcAnywhere needs to be used on a remote computer.

The pcAnywhere Thin Host contains the minimum settings needed to support a single-use remote control session. The thin host requires an IP address for hosting a remote control session.

Note: A thin host cannot be deployed to the recovery environment. The thin host can only be started from Symantec Recovery Disk to host a remote control session. The thin host in Symantec Recovery Disk does not support file transfers and cannot be used to add drivers for network or storage devices.

To start pcAnywhere Thin Host

 
  • In the recovery environment main window, click the Home pane, and then click Start the pcAnywhere Thin Host.
If they haven't been previously started, the Networking services are started.
The thin host establishes a connection.

Connecting remotely to the pcAnywhere Thin Host

Symantec pcAnywhere can be used on a computer to remotely connect to a computer that has already started the recovery environment and the pcAnywhere Thin Host. When connected, the client computer can remotely manage a recovery or perform other tasks supported in the recovery environment.

Note: The client computer cannot transfer files or add additional drivers for network or storage devices on the computer running the thin host.

To connect remotely to the pcAnywhere Thin Host

1. Ensure that the computer to be remotely managed (the host) has been booted into Symantec Recovery Disk and that pcAnywhere Thin Host has been started and is waiting.
2. Obtain the IP address of the thin host computer.
3. On the client computer, in Symantec pcAnywhere, use the Remote Setup Wizard to configure the remote control session.
 
  • Specify a TCP/IP connection type.
  • Specify the IP address of the host computer.
  • Choose to automatically login to the host on connection.
  • Type the following login name:
symantec
 
  • Type the following password:
recover
 
The thin host shuts down when there is an attempt to connect using any incorrect configuration settings.

The thin host does not support encryption.

To prevent unauthorized users from tampering with the settings or launching a session without permission, set a password for the remote connection item using the Protect Item properties page in Symantec pcAnywhere.

4. Start the remote control session.

If the connection attempt is unsuccessful, three attempts are provided before the thin host must be restarted on the host computer before making another attempt to connect.

5. Remotely perform necessary tasks on the host computer.

The remote control session ends when the thin host is closed, the thin host computer is restarted, or when the remote control session is ended.

After the host computer has started the Windows operating system, the client computer can deploy and connect a thin host on the computer to verify the success of tasks that were performed while using the recovery environment.

 
Mapping a network drive in the recovery environment
 
The following information applies only if networking services are started while booting in the recovery environment.
 
While booting directly into the recovery environment when there is no DHCP server (or the DHCP server is down), a prompt appears for entering a static IP address and a subnet mask address for the computer running Symantec Recovery Disk.
 
After providing the static IP address and subnet mask address, the recovery environment can be accessed. However, because there is no way to resolve computer names while running the Recover My Computer Wizard or the Recovery Point Browser, the network needs to be browsed using IP addresses to locate a recovery point. To resolve this issue, a network drive needs to be mapped.
 
Editing the boot.ini file

If necessary, edit the boot.ini file directly from the recovery environment.

Note: The boot.ini file cannot be edited on Windows Vista. This section only refers to Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Windows Server 2003.

The boot.ini is a Microsoft initialization file that is found in the root directory of the primary boot drive (usually the C partition). The file is used by Microsoft Windows to display a menu of operating systems that are currently installed on a computer. The operating system to be booted can be selected from this menu. The boot.ini is also used to point to the locations of each operating system on the computer.

For more information about editing the boot.ini file on a particular Windows operating system, see the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article IDs on the Microsoft Web site:

 
  • 289022 (for Windows XP)
  • 311578 (for Windows 2000)

To edit the boot.ini file

1. In the recovery environment main window, click Utilities.
2. Click Edit Boot.ini File to open the file in a plain text editor.
3. Make the required changes and save the file.

 
Getting a static IP address
 
If a drive cannot be mapped or browsed or network cannot be shared (usually due to unavailability of the DHCP service) for restoring a recovery point located on the network drive or share, assign a unique static IP address to the computer running the recovery environment. The network drive can then be mapped or shared.
 
The Network Configuration dialog is automatically displayed if the DHCP service is not available when the recovery environment is started. However, if it does not display, open it from the recovery environment.
 

To display the Network Configuration window
1. In the recovery environment main window, on the Network pane, click Configure Network Connection Settings.
2. If a prompt appears for starting the networking services, click Yes.

To get a static IP address

1. In the Network Configuration window, click Use the following IP address.
2. In the Network Adapter Configuration dialog box, specify a unique IP address and subnet mask for the computer that to be restored.
Be sure that the subnet mask matches the subnet mask of the network segment.
3. Click OK.
4. Click Close to return to the recovery environment main menu.
5. In the Network panel, click Ping a Remote Computer.
6. Specify the address of a computer that to be pinged.
For example: 168.212.226.204
7. Click OK.

If communication to the storage computer is operating as expected, the Map a Network Drive utility can be used to map a drive to the recovery point location.

To get an IP address if the ping is unsuccessful

1. On the computer that holds the recovery point to be restored, at a DOS prompt, type the following command, and press Enter:
ipconfig /all
2. Write down the IP address that is displayed.
3. Return to the computer that is running the recovery environment and run the utility Ping Remote Computer by using this IP address.

To map a network drive
1. In the recovery environment main window, on the Network pane, click Map a network drive.
2. In the Drive drop-down list, select a drive letter.
3. In the Folder text box, type the IP address of the storage computer and the drive in which the recovery point is located.
For example: \\IP_address\drive_name\
4. Click Connect using a different user name.
5. In the User name box, type the IP address and user name.
For example: IP_address\user_name
6. In the Password text box, type the password for the user name.
7. Click OK.

The drive should now be mapped to the recovery point location on the storage computer.
 
Server clusters and restoring
 
When working with a server cluster, none of the servers' shared hard drives can be online during a restore from the recovery environment. Therefore, when a volume is to be restored to a computer that is part of the cluster, make sure that all other servers in the cluster have exclusive rights to the shared storage. Take all shared hard drives in the cluster offline, and then perform the restore by using the Recover My Computer Wizard.
 
For additional information, please see the following document:
 
Workgroups and restoring
 
To mount computers that are located in other workgroups or domains while running Symantec Recovery Disk, the WORKGROUP must already be present on the network. It must already be authenticated to the domain by mapping the drive so that the WORKGROUP server is able to share across the network.
 
Restoration of a recovery point in a workgroup environment
 
When using Symantec Backup Exec System Recovery in a workgroup environment (such as a small office/home office) that is not part of a network domain, a DHCP, DNS, or WINS service is not there to manage the assignment of the dynamic IP addresses. Instead, a static IP address is assigned to each computer. Not having a dynamic IP address is not a problem when restoring a recovery point while running the recovery environment.
 
For example, suppose there is a small office workgroup environment with two computers. Make sure that both computers have the same login user name and password.
 
To restore computer 1 by using a recovery point that is stored on computer 2, do the following:

 
  • Boot into Symantec Recovery Disk on computer 1
  • Map a network drive to computer 2
  • Browse to the recovery point (or a file within the recovery point if using the Recovery Point Browser)
  • Restore as usual
If using a delayed apply, a prompt appears for the user name, password, and domain name. This behavior occurs because computer 1 is trying to authenticate to computer 2 where the recovery point is stored. The workgroup name for the domain name or the IP address for computer 2 must also be provided.
 
Restoration of a DHCP server
 
A DHCP server cannot be restored from a recovery point that is stored on the network. The recovery environment must get an IP address from the DHCP server. If the computer to be restored is the DHCP server from which the recovery environment is trying to get a dynamic IP address, the task will be unsuccessful.
 
Specify a static IP address manually.
 
Setting the time zone and then exiting the recovery environment
 
When setting the time zone in the main window of the recovery environment, be sure that the recovery environment is exited properly by clicking Exit in the main window as well. This ensures that the computer's CMOS clock remains unchanged (or is reset to its original time). Do not exit the recovery environment by pressing the computer's restart button.
 
Using a SAN
 
If using a SAN with a local disk drive and the operating system and the data partitions run from the SAN over Emulex fibre channel cards, the entire recovery point may not be restored. However, the individual files can be restored from the recovery point using the Recovery Point Browser.
 
Using dual-ported fibre channel cards
 
If using dual-ported fibre channel cards that are connected for redundancy, one channel should be disconnected before attempting to restore a recovery point by using Symantec Recovery Disk.
 
Wireless devices
 
The Symantec recovery environment does not support wireless devices. To recover files, folders, or computer from recovery point that is normally accessed from Windows over a wireless network, connect the storage device containing the recovery point directly to the computer through network or USB cable.
 
Viewing IP address or other configuration information
 
The IP address or any other configuration information can be viewed from the recovery environment.
 
To view IP address and other configuration information
 
1. On the Network page of the Symantec Recover Disk, click Run IP Config Utility.

2. Click View.

 
Restoring after setting encryption on an NTFS volume
 
If encryption is enabled on an NTFS volume, it cannot be restored until it is decrypted. Attempt to restore an encrypted file will result in an Access is Denied error message.
 
Using the recovery environment to perform multiple restorations to the same location
 
If using the Symantec recovery environment to perform multiple restorations to the same location, the computer must be rebooted in between each restore.
 



Legacy ID



295044


Article URL http://www.symantec.com/docs/TECH56225


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