Troubleshooting BACKUPTHREAD wait type

21 March,2014 by Jack Vamvas

When running a backup , you’ll notice a BACKUPTHREAD wait type in in the sp_who2 output or sysprocesses. What is the meaning?

According to the msdn site – the backupthread wait type “Occurs when a task is waiting for a backup task to finish. Wait times may be long, from several minutes to several hours. If the task that is being waited on is in an I/O process, this type does not indicate a problem”

In summary – a backup is running  and there is a process waiting for it to complete. 

You may be thinking about killing the task. But before killing the task consider how far the task has completed in percentage terms. This can guide you to a decision.

 SQL Server - Predict SQL BACKUP DATABASE finish time with sys.dm_exec_requests

SQL Server – Restore Database Estimated Finish Time

A number of factors could be delaying the activity – such as zeroing out of LDF files during a RESTORE ,  IO write delays , busy network. Start troubleshooting the delays by comparing against the benchmark timings for the activity and try to understand what other activity is occurring causing the bottleneck.

Read more about SQL Server faster restores with instant file initialisation


Author: Jack Vamvas (http://www.sqlserver-dba.com)


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