Question & Answer
When attempting a Windows System State restore, why does the command fail with the following error? ANS1949E Microsoft volume shadow copy snapshot initialization failed. Errors similar to the following are also present in the client error log file: 05/04/2009 09:41:57 ANS5250E An unexpected error was encountered. TSM function name : VssRequestor::initializeForRestore TSM function : InitializeForRestore() from file '\\droneclone14\c$\adsm.sys\vss_staging\DRONECLONE14\10.0.100.99\20090504093401\TSM_Backup.xml' returned VSS_E_INVALID_XML_DOCUMENT TSM return code : 4341 TSM file : vssreq.cpp (5521) 05/04/2009 09:41:57 ANS5250E An unexpected error was encountered. TSM function name : vssInitRestSpec TSM function : InitializeVss() returned '4341' TSM return code : 4341 TSM file : vssrest.cpp (751) 05/04/2009 09:41:59 ANS1949E Microsoft volume shadow copy snapshot initialization failed.
Microsoft has released an updated VSS code level in Windows Vista SP1 and in the Windows 2003 hotfix identified in KB940349. The new VSS code level generates .xml control files in a format which is not compatible with the earlier VSS code level. This error is encountered when a System State restore is being performed on a base operating system level which is older than the level from which the System State backup was taken. The following scenario illustrates how this error can be encountered:
1. Create a base Windows 2003 operating system image which does not include the Microsoft hotfixes identified in KB940349
2. Install the hotfixes from KB940349.
3. Perform a System State backup.
4. Revert the operating system of the machine back to the base operating system image taken in step #1. This is common in a system recovery scenario.
5. Perform a System State restore. Since the hot fixes in KB940349 have not been installed, and the restore will fail with the error described above.
The restore procedure for Windows System State already requires the base operating system being restored over to be at the same Windows service pack level from which the backup was taken. In addition, you should also apply the fixes in KB940349 prior to performing the System State restore if they were installed at the time of backup. You can either re-create your base operating system image to include the Microsoft hotfixes, or modify your restore procedures to ensure they are installed prior to performing System State restore.
17 June 2018