Battery powered Small Business Server 2008 will not do backups…

Strange as the title might sound, it is indeed possible to get into this scenario with a bad installation of the APC Powerchute 7.0.x software on Windows Small Business Server 2008.

We recently deployed the APC Powerchute 7.0.5 software to a Small Business Server 2008 site, and the software functioned for a few days without issue.   We still received good server reports, including the backups, until on closer inspection during a spot check things did not quite appear ok.   This is the mail received on the 15th May 2009, can you spot the issue?

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Yes, there it is….  even though we have a nice GREEN check, the backup has in fact not run since the 4th May 2009!    Quite a shocking discovery because the end user was simply looking at the green check and presuming that everything was ok.   Frankly, so were we!

 

This was quite a worrying development so I asked the SBS team to take a look.   It turns out that the Powerchute 7.0.5 software had caused a problem with the UPS driver and the server thought that it was on battery power!    Because of this, the scheduled tasks did not run, and that included the backup.

 

I then spoke to APC whom initialy said to me over the phone that it should work, then told me that in fact only version 8.0.1 and above were supported.   (Though I cannot understand then why it worked for a few days, but there you go).

The outcome of this will be (if I have my way):

  • The SBS Best Practices Analyzer will be updated to spot Powerchute 7.0.5 software installed and recommend removing it as it is not supported by APC on 2008 based servers.    It will recommend installing the new, simpler APC Powerchute 8.0.x agent only (web based control).
  • We’ll get an updated report on the codeplex site that will trigger alerts if the backup scheduler does not run / the server is on battery power. (As a temporary solution to my next point)
  • I hope that the backup report, vital as it is, will be changed as part of a SBS 2008 update rollup to give a yellow or red if the scheduled task did not run.

For what it is worth, and this is directed at the SBS Team management, not the technical folks whom help us and the community out…..   

PLEASE can you get those codeplex unofficial report updates in one of the SBS 2008 rollup packages!   Then, can you PLEASE get the reports to be as good as the SBS 2003 versions!

Lets hope for a response on the Official SBS Blog

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