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Backup Exec 2012 SBE to Ultrium LTO2 problems after Hotfix 201596

Created: 24 Apr 2013 • Updated: 31 May 2013 | 18 comments
deejerydoo's picture

Hi everyone,

About the environment:

Server: Acer Altos G330 Mk2. 4GB RAM. Plenty of RAID 5 storage.

Backup device: HP Ultrium LTO2 internal SAS drive.

OS: Windows Server 2003 SBS SP2 (fuly patched as of March 2013).

Backup Exec: 2012 SBE SP1 with all Hotfixes to date.

 

Everything was working perfectly, (read as well as can be expected in BENT 2012!) until I installed the above hotfix. Backups had been running reliably at a rate of 1.4GB/min. The same night, after applying the above hotfix, the performace plumeted to only 400MB/min.

Symantec support have git me to try running tests in NTBackup. However, the drive isn't appearing properly in Windows Rmovable Storage Manager. The drive looks good in Device Manager, but RSM seems to think the drive is offline. Symantec said, the problem is with Windows and that they won't escalate the case until it works corectly in Windows. I uninstalled the device and allowe Windows to redetect it, with the HP drivers. Immediately the drive appears in RSM and works in NTBackup (albeit at only 400Mb/min). Reinstall the Symantec drivers and immediately RSM can't see the drive properly again.

Is there anybody out there also experiencing issues, with this hotfix, of this nature?

Cheers,

David.

Operating Systems:

Comments 18 CommentsJump to latest comment

Larry Fine's picture

If NTbackup is getting the same 400Mb/min that BE is getting, then I would suspect a hardware issue.

Have you tried doing any testes with HP's Library & Tape Tools?

If you find this is a solution for the thread, please mark it as such.

pkh's picture

I believe the recommendation is that you turn off RSM.

CraigV's picture

...the drive is going to be offline in RSM if BE's services are started up. I really hope they asked you to stop the BE services first. BE effectively grabs hold of the device and locks access to it so NTbackup wouldn't be able to use it at the same time.

I suspect that the patch is the issue...load the patch, and performance tanks. Uninstall the patch and performance improves. If this is the case, I would find it hard to believe that hardware would be involved, and would suggest you also check out the Known Issues section too in order to see if issues relating to this patch have been lodged.

If it was hardware, you'd get slow performance with, or without, the patch installed.

The other option is to get hold of HP Library and Tape Tools, and do write tests on the drive (you need a free tape for this!) with, and without the patch installed (and the BE services stopped when doing so!). might be a good idea to check through HP LTT and see if you have any firmware updates outstanding for the device and do those too to cover yourself in that regard.

Thanks!

Alternative ways to access Backup Exec Technical Support:

https://www-secure.symantec.com/connect/blogs/alte...

Larry Fine's picture

I suspect that the patch is the issue...load the patch, and performance tanks. Uninstall the patch and performance improves

The OP never stated that they uninstalled the patch and performace improved.

Yes, coincidences DO happen.

 

If you find this is a solution for the thread, please mark it as such.

CraigV's picture

THANKS for that Larry! Sometimes even I get it slightly wrong...wink

Alternative ways to access Backup Exec Technical Support:

https://www-secure.symantec.com/connect/blogs/alte...

deejerydoo's picture

Thank you all for your responses.

I can confirm that my references to RSM have all been during my testing of the device with the Backup Exec services stopped.

I have run the 'LTO Drive Assessment test' in the current HP Library & Tape Tools and it has reported:

"The LTO Drive Assessment Test has checked the history and operation of the selected drive, and problems have been reported.

The drive is no longer recommended for use.

Please contact HP support for further assistance."

It must be some spectacular coincidence that the drive appears to have possibly developed a fault the same evening we installed the last hotfix.

I have opened a warranty support case with HP to see what they can bring to the mix.

Thanks again everyone for you pointers.

deejerydoo's picture

Sorry. Forgot to add that I am fully up to date with the firmware for this device. HP haven't released an updated firmware for their LTO2 devices since 2009.

CraigV's picture

...matter of interest, but was RSM also stopped during the tests?

Thanks!

Alternative ways to access Backup Exec Technical Support:

https://www-secure.symantec.com/connect/blogs/alte...

CraigV's picture

...and speaking of which, uninstall the patch and see if you get the same issue. If speed improves, leave it as-is and log an official call with Symantec around this.

Thanks!

Alternative ways to access Backup Exec Technical Support:

https://www-secure.symantec.com/connect/blogs/alte...

deejerydoo's picture

Hi Craig,

I can confirm RSM was disabled during testing and that removal of the patch has made no difference. It looks to me as though a very unfortunate coincidence has occurred in the case and the HP tape drive may have hit some issues the same night I installed the BENT hotfix. I have a case open with HP regarding the tape drive and I will update this thread once I have progressed this point.

Thanks again everyone for your input on this, it's much appreciated.

Regards,

David.

deejerydoo's picture

OK. Now this has just got weird...

I received a replacement drive from HP. Installed it and tested again in HP Library & Tape Tools (LTT). The drive failed the tests again, and would still back up at only 400MB/min. However, I thought I'd still see if Backup Exec would work with the new drive. So, I deleted the old drive from Backup Exec and reran the Wizard to create the new drive. Not only did last night's backup work, I now have the GB/min performance back (well it was actually only 1.2GB/min, but at least the 400MB/min is gone!)

So, as far as Windows and HP LTT is concerned, the drive is still suspect, but Backup Exec doesn't care!?

Next up is to reapply the BENT hotfix to see if it messes with the performance again, but I'll leave it a few days before I try that.

CraigV's picture

...and this is the latest version of HP LTT?

Alternative ways to access Backup Exec Technical Support:

https://www-secure.symantec.com/connect/blogs/alte...

deejerydoo's picture

Since receiving the replacement drive from HP I have:

1. Reinstalled the Symantec hotfix.

2. Reinstalled the Microsoft updates for April.

And the backup is still working fine.

So, this looks as though it was poor timing on the tape drive deciding to go on the blink the same night I installed the Symantec hotfix.

Thanks for your input guys.

ADDENDUM: Unfortunately, a month later, after applying the Microsoft updates for May to this server, we have hit the problem again. Backup performance has dropped from 1.4GB/min to 0.45GB/min. So, it would appear a dodgy HP drive was not the cause of the problem.

deejerydoo's picture

So, tonight I have deleted the Ultrium drive from Backup Exec and recreated it. Let's see if performance is returned to normal... I'll report back tomorrow.

deejerydoo's picture

Is anybody out there? Has anybody been using Backup Exec 2012 wih Win2K3?

CraigV's picture

...your options now would be as follows:

1. Don't install that patch and also log a call with Symantec around this. It might be something they need to look at more closely. You can also check the Known Issues section to see if this shows up there and if there is a resolution;

2. Leave the system as-is and log a call with Symantec.

Thanks!

Alternative ways to access Backup Exec Technical Support:

https://www-secure.symantec.com/connect/blogs/alte...

Larry Fine's picture

I haven't seen anybody else posting performance issues with that patch, so I don't think it is a widespread issue.

What speed do you get with NTbackup?  Did L&TT ever pass for this drive?  It might be worth contacting HP again.

If you find this is a solution for the thread, please mark it as such.