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SQL Server backups - differentials, copy_only, and the restore chain

Occasional Visitor

SQL Server backups - differentials, copy_only, and the restore chain

We currently are able to use the VSS with SAN/iQ to do shadow-copy-based backups of SQL Server databases.


We know that the databases are quiesced properly, because we can restore the databases from the copies just fine - we could not do that when we were copying the relevant drives without using the VSS.


But the copy is seen as a full backup by SQL Server, therefore the restore chain for our differential backups is broken (we prefer to retain a non-shadow-copy-based full weekend backup with daily differential backups against that).


I understand that Microsoft´s VSS framework does support the ¨copy_only¨ option of SQL Server backup, meaning that the restore chain for other backups is not affected - but how to get the SAN/iQ VSS provider to utilize it?


Has anyone else faced this issue, and how did you solve it?


Or, if you have not, what alternative backup strategies have you used that allow you to sidestep the issue?