While attempting a backup of a VMWare Hardware Version 8 machine on vSphere 5 with the "Enable Guest Quiescing" option enabled in the vRanger backup job, the attempt to take the quiesced snapshot is reported as failed in the vCenter/Host Task list. The backup fails. Inspection of the VMware task log details reveals the following errors:
The guestOS has reported an error during quiescing. The error code was: 5 The error message was: 'VMBackupOnThaw" operation failed.
The guestOS has reported an error during quiescing. The error code was: 3 The error message was: Custom quiesce script failed.
In addition, inspection of the VM's file system in the Datastore Browser reveals that snapshot files were indeed created (the presence of "*.-00000x.vmdk" files will be noted).
The VMs that were being backed up are running Windows 2008 R2. Another backup product had been previously used on these VMs, and also was using VMware's guest quiescing to perform their backups (in this case it was Symantec's Backup Exec). Thus, the API call from vRanger to create a quiesced snapshot was attempting to run a pre-freeze script (called freeze.bat) that was "leftover" from the previous Backup Exec backup setup on these VMs. These other pre-freeze scripts cannot interface with vRanger, and additionally, this particular one from Symantec is not compatible with vSphere 5's version 8 virtual hardware or the new VMTools package, causing the failure.
1. On the machine upon which the quiescing is being attempted, navigate to the c:\Program Files\VMWare\VMware Tools\backupscripts.d directory.
2. If you do NOT need vRanger log truncation to occur via the "vzshadow.exe" process (i.e. to truncate Microsoft Exchange transaction logs), simply rename this directory to something else (e.g. "backupscripts.old").
3. If this VM is a Microsoft Exchange server, and you DO need log truncation to occur, setup Quest's custom pre-freeze script and deploy it as instructed in the vRanger 5.x Deployment Guide (under the section "using vzshadow.exe").
4. Re-run the backups; they should now proceed normally.