Standard HFS emails

Regular routines and checks are performed to ensure the smooth running of the HFS backup services.  Where possible, checks have been automated, so that alerts and notifications are emailed to the account or node contact for investigation and resolution.

Some checks cannot be automated but do require either further information or manual approval.  Where this is the case, a standard subject heading is used along with standard text.

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Certain HFS routine tests are performed on a daily or weekly schedule.  The outcome of these tests will result in emails being sent to some individuals.  Upon receipt of these emails, the user will normally have an action to perform.

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Why have I received this email?

You have received this email because you exceeded one of the limits set for the HFS Spectrum Protect backup service.  The email will specify which of the two possible limits has been breached:

  • Backup duration limit

Backups running for many hours (the exact number depends on the service but will be shown in the email) are automatically cancelled.  

  • Slow transfer speed

Backups transferring data at a very slow rate (under an average of 10kB/s for an hour) are automatically cancelled.  

When will I receive this email?

You will generally receive this email immediately after breaching a limit.

Action required

If your account exceeded the backup duration limit then it may be that you were transferring a very large amount of data.  Alternatively, as is the case if your account exceeded the slow transfer limit, it may be that there is a problem with backing up your machine.

Why have I received this email?

You have received this email because a Spectrum Protect node registered in your name:

  • MISSED its backup schedule.
  • FAILED its scheduled backup while backing up.
  • SEVERED its scheduled backup before it could complete.

When will I receive this email?

You will generally receive this email in the morning after the night when your backup was scheduled to run.

Action required

If you do not wish to use the scheduled backups, then please use this email as a reminder to run a manual backup.  Otherwise, please troubleshoot the MISSED/FAILED/SEVERED backups.

Why have I received this email?

You have received this email because a Spectrum Protect node for which you are the contact has data stored on the HFS that has not been updated for several weeks.  This email may refer to a whole system or just a particular drive/partition within a system.

Such emails warn about two different types of issue:

  • Node not being backed up

No data has been received at all for your node (computer) since the date specified.

  • Filespaces not being backed up

No data has been received for one or more of your node's filespaces since the date specified.  Filespaces typically represent separate disks or partitions on your computer. In Windows these might be C: and D:, which are backed up under the names \\machinename\c$\\machinename\d$ (the latter format is known as the UNC path).  On a Mac, the main drive is referred to as /, and extra drives have the name /Volumes/Name.

When will I receive this email?

  • "HFS Backup Reminder": no backup for four weeks

You will receive a warning message if your system or part of your system has not backed up for four weeks.

  • "Warning: HFS Backup Reminder - impending data deletion": no backup for ten weeks

You will receive a warning about imminent data deletion if your system or part of your system has not backed up for ten weeks. At this stage you will be told that you have 28 days more in which to run a backup.

  • "Final warning: HFS Backups are about to be deleted": seven days left

You will receive a final warning when your node or data is seven days from deletion.  Then, if no action is taken within the next seven days, it will be deleted from the HFS.

Action required

Actions will depend on whether it is the node, the file spaces, or both that are being reported on.  Both may be listed in the same email.

  • Node (computer) not being backed up

If the email which you received contains a paragraph that begins These nodes have not used the HFS Spectrum Protect service as shown below, this means that the node has not backed up at all since the date specified.

These nodes (computers) have not used the HFS Spectrum Protect 
service for over 4 weeks. They won't be deleted yet but we encourage 
you to back them up!

Node name               Last accessed
-----------------       -------------
MYPC.IT                 2022-04-09

If the node is no longer required or no longer exists, please deregister it and remove the backup software.

Otherwise, if possible please attempt a manual backup across all partitions required.

If the manual backup is successful and you wish to use scheduled backups, please troubleshoot the failed scheduled backups.

If the manual backup is unsuccessful then you should search for the error that you see on our knowledgebase.

If the problem persists then please contact the HFS team via hfs@it.ox.ac.uk.

If you are unable to run a backup for reasons such as you are out of Oxford or away on leave, please contact HFS team via hfs@it.ox.ac.uk to ask for your data to be retained until you return.

  • Filespaces not being backed up

If the email which you received contains a paragraph that begins The backups of these individual filespaces have not been updated, this means that your machine has been connecting to the HFS Spectrum Protect server but a particular filespace (drive or partition) has not been updated.

WARNING: The backups of these individual filespaces have not been 
updated for over 10 weeks. If they are not updated in the next 28 days 
these filespaces will be DELETED.

(Note: the node itself won't be deleted unless explicitly stated in
this e-mail or in previous emails.)
                     
Filespace name       Node name            Last accessed
-----------------    -----------------    -------------
C: on MYPC           MYPC.IT              2022-04-09
E: on MYPC           MYPC.IT              2022-03-30

Firstly check if the filespace listed was not backed up by accident - it may have been an external disk drive that was only plugged in once and that therefore you did not mean to back up.  For example, in the case given above, C: and E: were not last backed up on the same date, so perhaps E: was only backed up as a one-off by accident.  If this is the case then please advise the HFS team via hfs@it.ox.ac.uk to delete the particular partition from the specified node.

Alternatively it may be that your machine, or a drive, has been renamed.  In Windows, a renamed machine will cause a resend of data under a new name: the backup software will see C: on NEW-MACHINE-NAME and will back it up, even if the data is identical to that already backed up as C: on OLD-MACHINE-NAME (you can check the filespaces currently held for your account in the HFS Backup Services Portal).  In this case too, please advise the HFS team via hfs@it.ox.ac.uk to delete the partition from the node.

If the filespace is legitimate and you expected it to be backed up by the scheduled backups then firstly perform a manual backup across all partitions required.

If the manual backup is successful and you wish to use scheduled backups, please troubleshoot the failed scheduled backups.

If the manual backup is unsuccessful then you should search for the error that you see on our knowledgebase.

If the problem persists then please contact the HFS team via hfs@it.ox.ac.uk.

If you are unable to run a backup for reasons such as you are out of Oxford or away on leave, please contact HFS team via hfs@it.ox.ac.uk to ask for your data to be retained until you return.

Why have I received this email?

You have received this email because you are the registered contact for an HFS Spectrum Protect node that has no data backed up even though it has connected to the Spectrum Protect server in the last month.

When will I receive this email?

You will receive this email once a week whilst you are the contact for one or more HFS Spectrum Protect nodes that is/are empty. A node can be empty either because it has never been used, or because its contents were deleted after it was left unused for over 90 days.

Action required

If you wish to resume backing up, then how you proceed depends on whether your empty node is unlocked and usable or locked.  This will be mentioned in the email that you receive from us.  Alternatively, you may wish to close to stop using the service.  For each of these situations.

  • If your account is not locked

If the e-mail that you receive asks you to run a backup, then you may fix this problem by running a manual backup at any time.

Additionally you may wish to run scheduled backups.  The e-mail which you receive from us will tell you if you already have a scheduled backup slot.

If the e-mail that you receive states that your node is locked, then you need to contact HFS team via hfs@it.ox.ac.uk so that we can unlock your account.  

  • If you no longer wish to use the HFS Spectrum Protect backup service:

Please remove the backup software and deregister your account.

Sometimes an action that you perform as HFS account owner may result in an email being sent to you.  Manual review, approval and action may be required on your part.

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Why have I received this email?

You have received this email to indicate that you have successfully registered an HFS Spectrum Protect node; you should now download and install the HFS backup software.

When will I receive this email?

You will generally receive this email immediately after registering a node through the HFS Backup Services Portal.

Action required

Registering the node is the first step in getting started.

Why have I received this email?

You have received this email because you requested for a node to be registered.

When will I receive this email?

You will generally receive this email immediately after making a request to register a node.  A call will then be automatically logged in our call management system, and shortly afterwards you will receive an email from the HFS Team with a list of questions in relation to your request.  

Action required

Respond to the questions provided by the HFS Team.

Why have I received this email?

You have received this email because a Spectrum Protect node for which you are the registered contact has been deregistered from the HFS Spectrum Protect backup service.

When will I receive this email?

You will generally receive this email immediately after deregistering the node through the HFS Backup Services Portal.

Action required

If you did not intend for this to happen, please contact the HFS team via hfs@it.ox.ac.uk urgently, who will investigate.

If you did intend to deregister the node, please ensure that the Spectrum Protect software is removed from the machine.

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