I Hate Symantec Backup Exec.

I do. I hate it. It is the last fucking backup software I would ever recommend these days, and it’s still the fucking industry standard. 

Backup exec has been a pain in the fucking ass for years and years and years. Thank whatever god you believe in that backup tapes are on their fucking way out. Magnetic media… impacted by magnets. The earth is a giant god damned magnet…. Ok, I’m not getting into how stupid that is, that’s a post for a different day. 

Every fucking time I touch backup exec to upgrade to the next version it fucking blows up in my face. 

I started the upgrade for a client of mine from 2010 to 2012. You would think that a multi-billion dollar company like symantec would understand the importance of making one revision of software easily upgraded to the next. Clearly they do not. 

Backup Exec 2010 had an addon option called “Desktop Laptop Option” hence forth called DLO. That no longer exists in 2012, cause it is it’s own product now. With that installed for 2010, you cannot upgrade to 2012 unless you remove it. Seems simple enough. Open Backup Exec, go to options or something like that and uncheck it. Then of course, it asks for the 2010 installation disk.

Apparently when 2010 was installed, it was installed with a download from their website. Not a problem, we do this all the time. Someone at the client however, deleted the installation files. Fuck. 

To Google I go. The internet is littered with people in the same predicament. The solution is to go to the Backupexec.com downloads area and download the trial version of DLO2012. So I did. It’s not there. You have to fill out a request form to have a sales person contact you regarding it. Two days later, they email you and ask if you’re certain you want this. You have to convince them that yes, you want it, and then they email you the download link. 

Downloaded this 400MB software, and installed it on the server… almost. It wants a serial number. To me, this doesn’t exactly scream “trail version”. 

Instead of waiting another two days to hear back from symantec, I decided that their current backup job isn’t all that complicated, and recreating it wouldn’t be a big deal. So I removed the 2010 software all together. Reboot. 

Installed 2012, the report said it went fine. Reboot. However, the serivces do not start. Did a repair install. Reboot. Still no good.

Scoured the internet, for the error message: The Backup Exec Server Service did not start. An internal error (-1) occurred in object 51. The “Solution” is to remove the software again, reboot, then manually hack out ALL references to Symantec and Backup Exec from the registry. reboot. Then install again. reboot, and everything should be peachy. 

Are you kidding? Who is writing this code that an uninstall can’t fucking uninstall correctly? For the amount of money my client is spending on me to do this upgrade, on an installation that was running find I might add, they could have bought a whole redundant NAS device and backed up across the network with Robocopy, for Christ’s sake. I have submitted a ticket to Symantec, I’m sure I’ll hear back at some point in the next three to twelve years. 

Why can’t you make a software that just fucking installs or upgrades? How is someone who runs a small business supposed to handle things like this, if everyone thinks you buy a disk, put it in, and hit go. 

This is the worst god damned software on earth, bar none. I swear, if the installation doesn’t like the color of the paint on the walls, it fucking throws a bitch fit. 

I need to go listen to some really loud Tool for a while. Fuckers. 


81 thoughts on “I Hate Symantec Backup Exec.

  1. I love that this thread started in 2012 and is still going. I had 11.5 for the longest time and it worked….good enough. I started upgrading our servers and ultimately installed BE 15….and it blows. It blows harder than a cheap Saturday night hooker. I can’t get a single job to finish, and I have what, 4 servers? The interface blows and I still can’t figure out why the jobs keep stalling. Time for Vipre or something.

  2. I share your pain. I just upgraded from BE2010 to BE15. I also use DLO. The entire process was about as difficult as pole-vaulting across the Grand Canyon.

  3. I can’t help but feel that pain is a little bit of an understatement. Upgrade from BE2010R3 to BE15, all the options I have exist in both versions, but…. and wait for it…. NOTHING FUCKING WORKS!!!!

    The deduplication folders are missing, half the agents don’t communicate, the successfully tested credentials do not work when running an actual backup, and and and… Are you kidding me, WTF?!??!? So, as usual, uninstall and start again – and then… nearly 9 hours into a “10 minute” uninstall and the end is no-fucking-where in sight…

    I really and truly hate backup exec.

    p.s. – thanks for the epic post, made my day!

  4. Jesus H Christ! And I thought I was the only one who had trouble with this crap! Trying to go from 2014 to 2015 should be easy but no, Veritas had to continue Symantec’s crap coding. Where did they test this stuff – Afghanistan? Hey shit, someone’s shooting at us – we had better just shove it out the door and run 🙂

    Good luck to all fellow sufferers! It even blows in Australia…

  5. Add my experience to the list.
    We used small business 2010, then got talked into 2014. wasn’t a big deal because we have purchase the maintenance contract every year. End of contract, all the agents go red and start barking that they are out of contract. WTF.. we BOUGHT those agents, they were supposed to be permanent (half purchased when we were on v12.5) with exception to the one of the server it’s installed on. I call support and get a licensing specialist who couldn’t speak english fluently. Oh.. and now it’s Veritas, the one outfit on earth that is less qualified to support BUEx than your local plumber.

    They inform me that I can’t use small business edition because Veritas discontinued all small business versions. I have to upgrade to (BUY) v15, called ‘capacity lite’ which has total backup size limits. WTF? So pretty much I just paid double this year to renew my backup exec.

    Oh, but it gets even better.
    Go to upgrade to 15. Installer has a bitch fit. Fails every time. It claims it reversed back to 14, the icon still says 14, but now 14 won’t run anymore, two of the services can’t run, they just hang when you start them.

    Get them on the phone. 6 fucking hours over the next 3 days, 2 different idiots following the same script, doing the same thing over and over. Stop services, task manager, kill the one that hangs, run installer again. “does it work now? No?” Ok, rinse, repeat. Still no? Ok let’s do that again. Over and over and over. Finally after many hours of this, They called back again this morning, and I just said HEY, I fixed it, close the ticket. They couldn’t end that call fast enough.

    No, I didn’t solve it completely yet, but within one hour I’ve manually removed all the agents, re-installed 15 from scratch on a different server, and have new backup jobs running. The only thing is that the server it was on is still completely dysfunctional, can’t back it up, can’t install an agent, cant uninstall the current disaster Veritas left behind. (Intend to do it manually tomorrow)

    I’m furious about this because including the weekend, we had no backups generated for 4 days, and if a catastrophe had happened, well, I would be working on my resume right now. I can only be fired for a handful of things, and in almost every case I’d have to try.. EXCEPT THIS. I don’t appreciate their shitty dysfunctional software compromising my security and livelihood, especially after ass-raping me for double the price, while essentially holding my ability to backup my data as hostage. Fuck you Veritas.

    When we come up for renewal next year, I will be ready to tell them I found something better. It shouldn’t be hard to fulfill that promise.

    • Update:
      After I finally got everything removed and the software running, all new full and incremental jobs set up on a total of 3 servers, set up alerts, etc.. Seemed to be running well. I closely watched it for a couple of weeks, and finally the disaster seemed to be in the past.

      But no…Fast forward 3 months,
      I realize the alerts for completion are missing something.. servers. They are reporting successful jobs, but they apparently weren’t running the jobs I set up but backing up some portion of the backup exec agent or files of itself. I go to the interface and all my jobs are gone. Just gone. There’s hundreds of soft warnings, that my license has exceeded and the actual jobs were all completely disappeared. gone. The warnings all say that My 1TB license is exceeded and that my jobs won’t run (and none expired as they should have), but why didn’t it notify me of THAT?

      So now I need to keep buying more dataspace?!? How much frigging money do I have to spend to just get a solution that works from them? We wen’t from enterprise edition 12.5 which worked great and tech support and licensing was a breeze, to a capacity lite 2016 edition that doesn’t work and nobody in support knows the product, licensing, or english. For what will end up costing 4-6x more than we paid just 5 years ago for the one that worked.

      Nope, I can’t deal with this anymore. Our critical data is not negotiable to being held hostage. I’m officially done with them and looking for a better solution this week.

  6. i must add one more thing , the compression which employ backupexec in compressing file inside BKF make my life hell , i have gone through a situation when one of my backup set corrupted , whole management team shout at me and i was in real trouble, quickly search for recovery of it, but i am amazed none of them work. i spend hundreds of my company dollars in that and none worked. All displays files and folder but when i try to save all gibberish data appear in them. I worked with support teams of Symantec and third party vendors and come to know that backupexec compress files data and files can not be usable unless decompress, i asked Symantec to provide me some utility to decompress but they deny stating that it is propitiatory. Luckly i found a utility from a company named SysInfotools and it done its job well, anyways long story short, even though i have recovered most of the data but i must say that Symantec is so tough that they didn’t not even try to provide me a utility which can uncompressed data which i managed to recover from earlier corruption. They charged us thousands of dollars but give nothing. They managed to make simple software into so complex beast that even they are not able to handle it properly.

  7. Best fucking part…

    “I swear, if the installation doesn’t like the color of the paint on the walls, it fucking throws a bitch fit.”

    I feel your pain, hence how I found this old post.

  8. It’s such a lovely program – mine is randomly quitting the backup on a small 2TB domain controller. Veritas support says “The problem is in VSS – run Windows Backup and if that completes I’ll escalate the problem. I ran Windows Backup. It backs up completely, same stuff, to the same media, 1.3TB in 5 1/2 hours. BE takes 9 hours for the same stuff.

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