Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) System Writer backup fails, and error messages reference nonexistent files in Windows Server 2008

This article may contain a link to the Windows Installer Cleanup utility (MSICUU2.exe). If you were directed to this article to solve a problem by using the Windows Installer Cleanup utility, please contact your software manufacturer for installation support on the product, or see the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article for steps to troubleshoot uninstallation issues with products that use Windows Installer:


When you perform a backup on a Windows 2008 Server-based computer that uses the Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) System Writer, the backup fails with error messages that reference nonexistent files.


This problem occurs if registry entries remain from a program that was uninstalled. If the program was not uninstalled successfully, the System Writer may list files to be backed up even though the files have been deleted. For example, McAfee VirusScan 8.5i is known to experience this problem.


To resolve this problem, use one of the following methods.

Method 1: Contact the vendor

Contact the vendor of the program for information about how to clean up the files that are listed in the error messages.

For information about how to contact the vendor of the program, visit the following Microsoft Web site: Microsoft provides third-party contact information to help you find technical support. This contact information may change without notice. Microsoft does not guarantee the accuracy of this third-party contact information.

Method 2: Reinstall the program

Reinstall the program that is referenced in the error messages, and then use the Windows Installer CleanUp utility to uninstall the software. For more information about Windows Installer CleanUp Utility, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

290301 Description of the Windows Installer CleanUp Utility

More Information

The third-party products that this article discusses are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, about the performance or reliability of these products.

Article ID: 955078 - Last Review: Feb 18, 2011 - Revision: 1