Friday, March 6, 2009

Lack of DFSR Locking Mechanism

An excellent article published by MS on an issue that has impacted a number of users.

Word 2003 and 2007 Documents Lost Formatting

We recently ran into an issue where hundreds of documents had all of a sudden lost formatting. Bullet and numbered lists would appear simply as paragraphs with strange indents. The files were likely created in an older version of Office but we're not sure.

The files didn't look right in Word 2007 or Word 2003. However, when I opened the files in Word 2000 and OpenOffice, the files looked correct. Strange behavior. Re saving the files in OpenOffice seemed to have fixed the issue, however when some users would go to edit the documents further, the formatting would get lost again. We had to call PSS.

A case with Microsoft was opened and the following hot fixes were provided that solved our issue.

Word 2003;EN-US;957706

Word 2007;EN-US;962872

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Very Slow Backups of DFS Shares with BackupExec

There are couple known issues when backing up DFS shares with Symantec's BackupExec software. These issues have been around since version 11.

  1. If you simply select the folders where your data resides, it will appear your backups are running correctly. The first time you go to restore data your heart will stop when you realize all the folders are empty.
  2. If you backup the folders the way Symantec wants you to, prepare for very very slow backups.
  3. If you utilize the Shadow Copy features that Symantec wants you to use, you'll notice that the folder will go back into initialization mode. This is particularly troublesome because this folder will not participate in replication until it is complete. It will also move existing data into the preexisting folder and really screw up your replication.
To get around these issues, I have been using a "legacy" feature of the software and it has been working great for quite awhile.
By default, the software will not let you select the shares to backup. This is the feature we need. To enable it, go to Tools - Options and then go to the Network and Security section. The first check box "Enable selection of user shares" needs to be checked. Now, go look at the remote servers and you'll see your shares for selection. Be sure to test your restores to make sure you have everything else working correctly.

I am currently running BackupExec 12.5.