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Reset VSS Writer & Lookup Display Name

When troubleshooting VSS Writer errors, the following table can be used to identify the Service Display Name in services.msc.


Backup fails with one or more VSS Writer errors.


  • Find each of the VSS writers in a Failed state by running the following command in a Command Prompt with administrator privileges:
    vssadmin list writers​
  • Take note of all VSS Writers where the state is not Stable
  • Find the VSS writer’s associated Service Display Name in the table below
  • Restart the corresponding service in services.msc.
    • To open the Services window, click the Windows start button, type “Run”, and hit enter.
    • In the Run window, type services.msc and click OK.
    • Scroll to the Service Display Name(s) that corresponds to the VSS writer error(s).
    • Restart the service by right clicking on the service name and selecting Start.
  • To confirm the action was successful and the VSS writer is returned to the Stable state with no errors, go back to the Command Prompt and rerun the ‘vssadmin list writers’ command.


List of VSS Writers and Service Names:

VSS Writer Service Name Service Display Name
ASR Writer VSS Volume Shadow Copy
BITS Writer BITS Background Intelligent Transfer Service
COM+ REGDB Writer VSS Volume Shadow Copy
DFS Replication service writer DFSR DFS Replication
DHCP Jet Writer DHCPServer DHCP Server
FRS Writer NtFrs File Replication
FSRM writer srmsvc File Server Resource Manager
IIS Config Writer AppHostSvc Application Host Helper Service
IIS Metabase Writer IISADMIN IIS Admin Service
Microsoft Exchange Writer MSExchangeIS Microsoft Exchange Information Store
Microsoft Hyper-V VSS Writer vmms Hyper-V Virtual Machine Management
NTDS NTDS Active Directory Domain Services
OSearch VSS Writer OSearch Office SharePoint Server Search
OSearch14 VSS Writer OSearch14 SharePoint Server Search 14
Registry Writer VSS Volume Shadow Copy
Shadow Copy Optimization Writer VSS Volume Shadow Copy
SPSearch VSS Writer SPSearch Windows SharePoint Services Search
SPSearch4 VSS Writer SPSearch4 SharePoint Foundation Search V4
SqlServerWriter SQLWriter SQL Server VSS Writer
System Writer CryptSvc Cryptographic Services
TermServLicensing TermServLicensing Remote Desktop Licensing
WINS Jet Writer WINS Windows Internet Name Service (WINS)
WMI Writer Winmgmt Windows Management Instrumentation


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