Error 3254 – The volume on device BACKUP_PATH is empty

05 June,2013 by Jack Vamvas

The SQL Server message Error 3254 – the volume on device BACKUP_PATH is empty appear appeared in the application logs . What is it ? and how can I analyse?

 Different reason can cause the Error 3254 message to appear. Some suggestions

1) Check for a valid backup set. Use RESTORE VERIFYONLY which checks for

 a)  backup set is present   and header fields of pages

 b) Are volumes readable?

 c)  checksum (if enabled , BACKUP by default does not use CHECKSUM)

 d) destination drive – space check.

For backup header and list of files use Backup file information needed for RESTORE SQL database


2) Check for communication failures – which may invalidate the copy.


3) Check in Event Viewer for any DNS issues, if file is being backed up to tape or another server


4) If the file is being copied – check the source file and target file. If the source file is valid , and the target file is invalid – check communication links, storage devices and other related errors


5) Use the Display sql backup history for a single database - SQL Server DBA  to analyse any clues on the backup file


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Author: Jack Vamvas (


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