Fix a sluggish Win2000 remote server

Fixing a problem with older versions of remote storage services.


Fix a sluggish Win2000 remote server
Rick Cook

Remote Server Services (RSS) is an hierarchical storage-management feature in Windows 2000 that moves infrequently used files to tape backup automatically to free up space in the managed volume. Typically the RSS moves files and updates its database daily. However sometimes the performance degrades, in both the time it takes to move files and to retrieve them.

The problem is that early versions of RSS didn't handle the database of moved files well and the database could get out of synch with the files actually transmitted. This clogs the database with useless files and seriously affects performance.

This happens because files aren't erased from the local volume as soon as they are moved. Instead this version of RSS doesn't do any erasing until the volume reaches the preset utilization point. If the transferred-but-unerased file is accessed between transfer and removal, it creates another entry in the database.

The solution, according to Microsoft, is to update Windows 2000 with the latest service pack, which contains a fix for the problem. Alternately, storage managers can work around the problem by stopping RSS and deleting any files located in %SystemRoot%System32RemoteStorageFsaDb*.*. This should followed by scheduling a validate files job on all managed volumes.

More information on the problem and solutions is available in Microsoft note Q244832 on the company's web site at

Rick Cook has been writing about mass storage since the days when the term meant an 80K floppy disk. The computers he learned on used ferrite cores and magnetic drums. For the last twenty years he has been a freelance writer specializing in storage and other computer issues.

Additional Resources:
1. How does Windows 2000 offer better storage management?
Windows 2000 Server represents a considerable improvement in storage management functionality over Windows NT. Among other things, Windows 2000 adds the ability to create an online volume and to grow both simple and spanned volumes without interrupting user access to data.

2. What do I need to know for restoring Windows 2000?
Windows 2000 contains a number of improvements for doing backups and restores over previous versions of Windows. However, you can still find yourself in trouble if you try to restore a Windows 2000 Server system without some vital pieces of information written down. What are these must-have pieces of information? Read this tip to find out.

3. When is the best time to defrag Windows 2000?
This tip came from reader Darren R, who claims particular expertise in dealing with Windows 2000 and defrag. This tip doesn't talk about programs, but does talk about the best times to defragment and some things to take into account.

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