DPM 2010 Backup Error 0x800423F4

A customer reported an issue that they could not protect virtual machines running various Microsoft workloads on a Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise Hyper-V Server.  In Hyper-V terms, these virtual machines are defined as “Child Partitions”.  More information about architecture can be found here:
Hyper-V Architecture

At a high level, "The Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) is a set of COM interfaces that implements a framework to allow volume backups to be performed while applications on a system continue to write to the volumes.  Using a combination of flushing changes to disk and holding writes allows the system to become in a consistent state for backup."

Overview of Processing a Backup Under VSS

In my customer’s case, they are using (DPM) Microsoft Data Protection Manager 2010.  The error message reported in the jobs log was a consistency check failure.

Type: Consistency check
Status: Failed
Description: The VSS application writer or the VSS provider is in a bad state. Either it was already in a bad state or it entered a bad state during the current operation. (ID 30111 Details: VssError:The writer experienced a non-transient error.  If the backup process is retried,
the error is likely to reoccur.
 More information
End time: 2/2/2011 5:25:54 PM
Start time: 2/2/2011 5:15:17 PM
Time elapsed: 00:10:37
Data transferred: 0 MB
Cluster node -
Source details: \Backup Using Child Partition Snapshot\MYBLOGVM

Protection group: BLOGGroup

Items scanned: 0
Items fixed: 0 

C:\>err 0x800423F4
# for hex 0x800423f4 / decimal -2147212300 :
  VSS_E_WRITERERROR_NONRETRYABLE                            vswriter.h
# indicates that the writer failed due to an error
# that most likely would occur if another snapshot is created
# 1 matches found for "0x800423F4"


Based on this error we can conclude that this is not necessarily a DPM issue but a VSS issue preventing DPM from working properly.  The first thing I always recommend is ensuring that DPM is running with the latest rollup available.  At the time this blog was authored, I applied the following update.

System Center Data Protection Manager 2010 QFE Rollup [KB 2250444]

After installing this update, the job still failed.  The error within DPM had a link called “More Information” referencing the following information:

Automount should be enabled on all nodes          
Error: (ID 30111 Details: Unknown error (0x800423f4) (0x800423F4))
Posible solution: Enable automount (cmd /c mountvol.exe /E) on the Hyper-V host (on all nodes in a cluster if the hosts are part of a Failover Cluster)

This Hyper-V server is not a part of a cluster but the error code is specific so I checked whether the automount feature of Windows was enabled, which is the default.  The system had automount disabled and after some research found that this is a requirement for child partitions to be backed up via VSS Hyper-V Writer.  I enabled automount and restarted consistency check jobs successfully!



Dave Guenthner [MSFT]
This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.

Comments (3)

  1. Mike, I would expand the audience and post your question to forum as you can leverage some great resources there:



  2. Eric says:


    this error 0x800423F4 has driven me crazy for hours (backing up a hyper-v guest 2008 r2).

    The reason for this errorcode in our case was creating a volume in guest which was too small (!). After increasing volume to > 400 MB – DPM could make use of vss without error.

    Absolutely nowhere in any log was a hint, that there is a volume which is too small for shwadow copies. In fact, that would be much to easy 😉

    Hope this helps anyone else.

  3. mike says:

    Dear Dave,

    I have exactly the same issue and same error eventhough automount is enabled on both hyperV nodes.

    This error is really driving me crazy for weeks.

    I have a cluster with 2 Hyper-V nodes (2008 R2 Enterprise 6.1.7600 build 7600), CSV (HP MSA 2312i), and DPM2010 backing up using Child Partition Snapshot.

    If I move all VMs to node#1 the error goes away. same thing If I move all VMs to Node#2.

    but for some VMs, if they are on node#2, backup works fine. If moved to Node#1, backup fails with the above error.

    other VMs, backup works fine regardless of which node they are on.

    Your advice is very much appreciated!

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