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Windows Server® 2008 Hyper-V™ Resource Kit by Janique Carbone Robert Larson and Microsoft Windows Virtualization Team

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Understanding the Hyper-V VSS Writer

Generically, a VSS writer is an interface provided by an application to manage data and state information, ensure that pending data is flushed to disk, and ensure that the application is quiescent prior to initializing a volume shadow copy snapshot. This process is necessary to provide a consistent application state prior to performing a backup. In fact, Hyper-V provides a VSS writer that supports the backup of Hyper-V server configuration information and virtual machines.

Without a VSS writer, an application can still be backed up using VSS, but with some major drawbacks. In particular, application state consistency cannot be guaranteed, and therefore, neither can the backup. If a virtual machine were backed ...

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