Can’t Access Your Shadow Copies?

by Chris Sanders [Published on 22 Feb. 2007 / Last Updated on 22 Feb. 2007]

If you are unable to access the configuration of the Volume Shadow Copy service remotely, there may be a good reason why.

One of the great features of the Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) is that you can access this services configuration and the backups it creates without being interactively logged into the server it is activated on.

A common misconception however, is that this is something that works automatically as soon as you activate VSS on a server. If you are under this impression then you may be shocked to find you don’t have a shadow copies tab when accessing a VSS enabled volume. This is because VSS must also be enabled on client systems before being able to access the service on a Windows Server 2003 system. This is done by installing the VSS client.

If you are running Windows XP then the installation executable can be found at %systemroot%\System32\clients\twclient\x86\twcli32.exe. If you are running another Microsoft operating system then the appropriate file can be obtained from the Microsoft website. Once you have completed the installation your shadow copies tab will magically appear!

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Chris Sanders is the network administrator for one of the largest public school systems in the state of Kentucky. Chris's specialties include general network administration, windows server 2003, wireless networking, and security. You can view Chris' personal website at www.chrissanders.org.

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