Volume Shadow Copy Service: Error Creating the Shadow Copy Provider COM Class with CLSID

Recently, I ran into a backup issue with a SBS 2011. The server was backing up just fine using the built-in Windows Server Backup utility until all of a sudden it started failing on me. The VSS snapshots would take a long time to create and would eventually error out on me. I was also getting lots of VSS error logs in event viewer. It didn’t matter what I tried, I couldn’t get the backup to complete successfully.

I decided to install Acronis on the Small Business Server 2011 to see if that would fix my issues. I tried kicking off a couple backups with Acronis and I ran into a similar issue. I was getting quite frustrated with this problem. Here are the steps I used to get my SBS 2011 to backup successfully.

Step One: Start a backup. Go into  Event Viewer and see if there are any VSS error logs. In my situation there were hundreds of them. This is what my VSS error log said.VSS Error Log

Volume Shadow Copy Service error: Error creating the Shadow Copy Provider COM class CLSID { 423bbc78-9b20-4bbe-a967-b63ec43bc7f3} [0x80040154, Class not registered].

Operation: Creating instance of hardware provider, Obtain a callable interface for this provider, List interface for all providers supporting this context, Get Show Copy Properties . . . 

Step Two: Open a CMD prompt as an administrator. Run this command:  vssadmin list writers . Check your results. If all of your VSS writers say Stable – No error, then your VSS writers are fine.List VSS Writers If your VSS writers are failing or corrupting you may need to reboot the server. In my case, the VSS writers were fine.

Type this command: vssadmin list providers . This will show the VSS writers capable of taking a system snapshot when backing up your sbs 2011. Take note of how many VSS providers you have. VSS Hardware ID

Next type: diskshadow  . Once that comes up type:  list providers .  You will now see the Provider ID for each VSS writer that you have. VSS Providers

Step Three: Take note of what your VSS error said in your event log. For mine I noticed that a VSS writer with the ID of { 423bbc78-9b20-4bbe-a967-b63ec43bc7f3} was giving me lots of errors. I matched up the ID number of the event log to the ID number of command prompt output. I noticed that the VSS Lifeline HW Provider was the writer that was giving me all my grief.

Step Four: Since I didn’t need that VSS writer, I decided to remove that writer. Here is how to remove your troublesome VSS writer.  Please be advised that you do this at your own risk! Incorrect use of the Windows Registry could cause your operating system to crash. Be sure to back up your Registry before deleting these keys.

  • Open the Registry Editor (Start -> Run -> enter “regedit”, hit enter)
  • Navigate to the this registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\VSS\Providers
  • Delete the registry tree with the GUID referenced in the event log and CMD prompt that was giving you issues.

Go back to command prompt and type in diskshadow and then list providers. The VSS writer that was faulty should now be gone. Faulty VSS Writer RemovedType exit in command prompt to close diskshadow.

  • {optional but recommended} Reboot the server.

Step Five: I tried starting a backup with Acronis and  it worked!! After a couple successful backups with Acronis I decided to try Windows Server Backup.  I started a backup and to my amazement the backup went through successfully! I have run numerous backups since and they have gone through without a hitch!

I hope this helps you out. Please post in the comments if this worked for you. Like us on Facebook and follow me on Twitter!

This was posted by techspeeder.

Thanks to this post for pointing me in the right direction.


2 thoughts on “Volume Shadow Copy Service: Error Creating the Shadow Copy Provider COM Class with CLSID

  1. Tyger

    You are confusing writers with providers in your article. These are two different things. You deleted provider not writer!


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