Friday, October 8, 2010

DHCP Jet Writer retryable error

During an incremental backup done with TSM client version 5 on Windows 2003 I encountered a VSS_WS_FAILED_AT_FREEZE error message. This caused the TSM scheduled backup to stop immediately.

This is what I could find in dsmerror.log located under c:\program files\tivoli\tsm\baclient:

10/08/2010 10:26:19 VssRequestor::checkWriterStatus: VssRequestor::checkWriterStatus failed with hr=VSS_E_WRITERERROR_RETRYABLE
10/08/2010 10:26:19 ANS5268W The Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Services writer 'Dhcp Jet Writer' current state (VSS_WS_FAILED_AT_FREEZE) is not valid for the current operation.
10/08/2010 10:27:49 ANS5271E A Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Services writer is in an invalid state before snapshot initialization.
10/08/2010 10:27:49 ANS1327W The snapshot operation for 'server\SystemState\NULL\System State\SystemState' failed with error code: 4353.
10/08/2010 10:27:49 ANS1228E Sending of object 'server\SystemState\NULL\System State\SystemState' failed
10/08/2010 10:27:49 ANS5258E An error occurred initializing a VSS request. For more information, see the TSM client error log.
10/08/2010 10:27:49 ANS1375E The snapshot operation failed.

As you may know... Windows 2003 includes Volume Shadowcopy Services (VSS) as a part of the OS. TSM makes strong use of VSS to backup the Windows 2003 System State and the system services. Each system state and system service component has its own VSS "writer", which TSM uses to backup up that component. Sometimes a writer does return the VSS_WS_FAILED_AT_FREEZE state code. In my case it was the DHCP jet writer that has errors and did not want to collaborate with TSM.

This can be checked by issuing the following command at the DOS prompt: vssadmin list writers

Here's the output in my case:

vssadmin 1.1 - Volume Shadow Copy Service administrative command-line tool
(C) Copyright 2001 Microsoft Corp.

Writer name: 'Dhcp Jet Writer' Writer Id: {be9ac81e-3619-421f-920f-4c6fea9e93ad} Writer Instance Id: {2f71cad9-230d-4cf4-b6d7-21c7342a5180} State: [9] Failed Last error: Retryable error

The DHCP jet writer is responsible for enumerating files required for the DHCP server role. This writer is an in-box writer for Windows Server operating system versions.

Microsoft states that VSS writer time-out errors might appear during a system-state backup if the audit log is extremely large. This was not my case (but you could always check...).

My simple solution was just to restart the DHCP server service without rebooting the server. Everything went well and I could successfully restart and complete the TSM backup.

If you have found this post useful do not hesitate to let me know or to leave comments! They will be most welcome!


  1. I first tried restarting the Volume Shadow Copy Service but it did not work. Restarting the DHCP Server service worked and let me backup our server.

  2. Thanks mate.
    We run DPM and came across the same thing.
    Resarting the DHCP server service worked a treat.

  3. Works! Cheers mate.

  4. Same experience. Have restarted the service. Will trust it works at next backup. Thanks for the tip.

  5. Effectivly, it work on 2008 R2 with Backup Exec 2010 too.

  6. It worked after a hard day!!

  7. Thanks, this worked on a SBS2011 with Backup Assist.

  8. Also worked for me - although when I tried to stop DHCP, it went into high utilization. Ended up killing SVCHOST.EXE (the one in high utilization). Thanks for the good tip!

  9. Super clear, super simple. ran "vssadmin list writers" and saw the error. Restarted DHCP server service, no problems. Checked vssadmin again and now it reports "no error". This makes me happy.

  10. It really worked without a doubt...!! Thanks for the information.

  11. I have same issue, However it is ni CA arc serve Backup application... what shall i do ?

  12. It worked. Thanks.

  13. This worked for me.
    Also it is safe to restart the "COM+ Event System" service and all of it's Dependencies. No server restart required.
    Don't keep the services stopped for too long though.

    1. I restart the COM+ Event System service along with its dependencies on one of my 2012 servers at least weekly when our Amazon CloudBerry backup fails with an "HRESULT" error. I always do it after normal business hours to be sure users are not inconvenienced.

  14. I have this same problem every week. Restarting the service allows me to backup the server again, but after 5-6 days it happens again.

    What could the problem be? Is there a more permanent fix?

    Backup Exec 2014
    Windows Server 2012 R2

  15. Same thing still happening - Windows 2012 R2 + BackupExec 15. Thanks for the info.


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