Volume Shadow Copy Service
The Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) is a built-in Windows mechanism that enables the creation of consistent, point-in-time copies of data, known as shadow copies or snapshots. VSS coordinates with applications, file-system services, backup applications, fast-recovery solutions, and storage hardware to produce consistent shadow copies.
Shadow copies are created through one of two mechanisms—clone and copy-on-write. The VSS provider (described in more detail later) determines the method to use. (Providers can implement the snapshot as they see fit. For example, certain hardware providers will take a hybrid approach: clone first, and then copy-on-write.)
Clone Shadow Copies
A clone shadow copy, also called a ...