From the forums: DPM is unable to enumerate Virtual SSP Writer on computer [computer name]. (ID: 3005)

September 16, 2010 at 4:38 pm in Uncategorized by mikeresseler

This is an interesting one that I found on the forums.  Normally, when you get this error message, this is the advice that I give:

1. Is the SPWriter service running on the WFE servers?

2. If they are running, use the following to register the writer: (

Or in short: stsadm -o registerwsswriter if you don’t want to go trough the article

3. Do a vssadmin list writers to see if there are errors with the vss writers

4. Run the configuresharepoint again with a farm administrator account

5. Try again


But in this case, and in a few other cases, it didn’t seemed to resolve the issue.  So the problem had to be somewhere else.  Since the issue couldn’t be helped with the assistance of the forum guys, a call was opened with Microsoft.

Unfortunately, the DPM guys couldn’t solve it either.  Therefore, the sharepoint guys had to assist, and in this joint venture, they found the solution:

Here is the quote of the administrator with the problem

Basically, the error was related to the inability to enumerate all resources defined in the farm’s configuration.  What the actual issue was turned out to be a missing database for one of the search services that was configured.

A similar internal MS bug was found that referenced issues with the Search services.  This led us to look at restarting our Search services on all of the servers in the farm.  Even though all of the search services were "running", one of them would not restart and asked to reprovide the credentials and database names, etc.  Before I submitted the restart, I verified on the SQL Server that the database that was referenced, did not exist !  You may ask, "How was SharePoint stating that the service was running if indeed it was not?"  I’m not sure, but after restarting the particular search service, the database was recreated and the VSS enumeration by DPM worked!

So a possible solution (one that worked for me) is to restart all of your search services and ensure that all ‘referenced’ databases actually exist.

So in the end, it was not a problem with DPM but with the Sharepoint config.  Since I found this interesting (a sharepoint farm that worked, but had issues after all :-)) I decided to search a bit more for this issue.  It seems that it happens quite a lot after an inplace upgrade of sharepoint.

So if you ever get this error, the first 5 steps don’t work for you, then make sure that you check out if the databases exist

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