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System Image Error: The system writer is not found in the backup – Windows Server Backup

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Date : February 16, 2015

Overview

Under Windows 2012 you are trying VSS backup and you receive an error message “System Image Error: The system writer is not found in the backup”

This issue occurs for lack of appropriate permissions to files in the %windir%winsxsfilemaps or %windir%winsxstempPendingRenames directories.

At the time of writing this blog, this is an unpublished bug for Windows Server 2012.

Cause

Causes for this issue are:

  • When Visual Studio 2012 is installed, more than 1,000 subdirectories in the following location: C:WindowsMicrosoft.Net
  • Windows Server 2012 limits any directory from containing more than 1,000 subdirectories.
  • When the system state writer tries to back up the folder, the issue that is described in “Symptoms” section occurs.

T1

Resolution

To resolve this issue, type the following commands from an elevated command prompt:

Takeown /f %windir%winsxstempPendingRenames /a 
icacls %windir%winsxstempPendingRenames /grant “NT AUTHORITYSYSTEM:(RX)”
icacls %windir%winsxstempPendingRenames /grant “NT Servicetrustedinstaller:(F)”
icacls %windir%winsxstempPendingRenames /grant BUILTINUsers:(RX)
Takeown /f %windir%winsxsfilemaps* /a 
icacls %windir%winsxsfilemaps*.* /grant “NT AUTHORITYSYSTEM:(RX)”
icacls %windir%winsxsfilemaps*.* /grant “NT Servicetrustedinstaller:(F)”
icacls %windir%winsxsfilemaps*.* /grant BUILTINUsers:(RX)

net stop cryptsvc
net start cryptsvc

Type the following command to verify that the system writer is now listed:

vssadmin list writers

T2

Now try your VSS Backup

T3

T4

T5

NOTE: After following the above steps if the issue is still not resolved then please install the server this Hotfix from http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2807849/en-us

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