[ISSUE] b20251 b20257 b20262 b20270 b20282 b20287 Formatting a volume fails





affected builds (tested): b20251,b20257,b20262,b20270,b20282

remotely via Server Manager from b20201


initializing as GPT / reset / clean works fine.

creating partition works fine

formatting volume fails


repro steps:

reset disk

new volume

fs refs or ntfs, default settings

format will fail (see diskpart and Server Manager)

if server manager is used, update cache will run eternally until wizard is closed





37 Replies

Hi @Karl-WE,


Based on your description it looks formatting the volume works well and the issue arising from formatting the partition. I'll direct this issue to the appropriate dev team and ask them to take a look.

@YanranHao thank you! If they need a remote session to get a better idea of the issue, I am fine with this. The issue is 100% reproducible here for many builds now. 

@Karl-WE Can you try the following in Disk Management and share the result?

1. initializing as GPT

2. Create a volume with "New Simple Volume" with the option "Do not format this volume" selected in the New Simple Volume Wizard. This option should be on a "Format Partition" page. 

3. See if you have a partition created with a new volume mounted as RAW.

4. If step 3 succeeds, try format the volume as NTFS as and see if it works.

Hello @YanranHao,
yes this works. We can narrow this issue down to specific methods

OK - Diskmanagement
OK - format.com (if I have a raw volume with a drive letter)

OK - PowerShell 5.1 format-volume
OK - Settings > System > Storage > Manage Disks & Volumes > Create Volume
OK - Windows Admin Center > Storage 
NOT OK - diskpart > format fs=xxxx quick (GPT initialization, volume / partition creation works)
NOT OK - PowerShell 5.1 New-Volume (GPT initialization, volume / partition creation would work if done with other cmdlets)
NOT OK - Server Manager > File > Disk / Volume Wizards (GPT initialization is ok, volume / partition creation fails at formatting, leaving the disk unusable until initialized again)

Hope it helps to fix the regression. If you need more information let me know.

Can you elaborate more on this "NOT OK - diskpart > format fs=xxxx quick (GPT initialization, volume / partition creation works)"? Which commands you ran and which is failing?

@YanranHao yes sure you see the the error message on diskpart (even with the latest build and other disks (SATA,NvME / vendor and MS defaut storage drivers - I want to guess it is not a driver issue at all)


[ISSUE] b20251 b20257 b20262 b20270 b20282 b20287 Formatting a volume fails - Microsoft Tech Communi...


OK - diskpart

OK - sel dis x

OK - clean

OK - convert gpt

OK - create part pri 

NOT OK - format fs=xxx quick 

Can you try adding two more steps?

OK - diskpart
OK - sel dis x
OK - clean
OK - convert gpt
OK - create part pri
Select partition pri
NOT OK - format fs=xxx quick
Hi there is there any news from the team? I really hope we can find the root cause and fix so I do not have to "reserve" a drive for testing. Thank you very much in advance!
Hi there, in your previous repro for "NOT OK - diskpart > format fs=xxxx quick (GPT initialization, volume / partition creation works)", did you did you select the primary partition and activate it before running the format command? Is so, can you record a TTT trace (instruction here https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-hardware/drivers/debugger/time-travel-debugging-record) for executing the failing "format fs=xxx quick" command?
Thanks for your response. Sure I can try this, I am not familiar with this process. Shall I repeat with Server Manager?
Is there a possibility for a remote session if I cannot manage it?
Please mind that the Format FS via diskpart is not optimal as by design raw volumes have no drive letter assigned. So it's not a usual procedure, but should be OK for demoing.
Sure I can try this too. Yet by design create part pri will automatically select the new part and it should be active as well by default.

@YanranHao I tried to repo with the latest 20317 build. 
Repro steps: reset drive via Server Manager

Try format via Server manager (incl. initialize GPT)
fails at formatting

This is the output after the known error in diskpart. 

Interestingly everything seems fine here.
The Server Manager 

OK - initialized the drive as GPT

OK created partitions as expected
NOT OK - even created a volume but it is marked offline (corrected manually - diskpart online)

NOT OK - both volumes are RAW

As suggested I marked it online. As said it is selected by default





assign letter x

format fs=ntfs quick





Format-Volume and also Server Manager Format... works either way.
So the issue is in the commandlet "New-Volume" which is used in the Server Manager wizard to complete following tasks

OK - initializing

OK - Partitioning
FAIL - formatting (volumes remain RAW and primary partition if marked offline with no mounting point or FileSystemLabel



@YanranHao it is clear now that the root cause is in Server Manager and the underlying PowerShell command "New-Volume" used by Server Manager

as pure formatting works with:

- diskpart > format
- Server Manager aka PowerShell Format-Volume
- format.com

How should I proceed with the time travel debugging. Which process to monitor? Thanks!


Thanks for the followup. To collect time travel, first set up time travel debugging as described at Recording Time Travel Traces. Then run the below commands.

net start smphost # this is to ensure that the mispace process is up and running
$id = (Get-Process | ? { $m = $_ | Get-Process -Module -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue; $m.FileName -like "*mispace*"}).Id
start tttracer.exe "/attach $id" # note the ""
<run repro>
tttracer.exe /stop $id
The file will be dropped at .\svchost01.run.
Hello it smphost or snmphost?

Hello @YanranHao i have reproduced the issue with Server Manager and recorded it. I have sent you the Onedrive link in a direct message. 
let me know if there is anything else I can do and if the file is helpful. Otherwise I can also try to repeat directly with PowerShell New-Volume if this record does not include enough or relevant data.

@YanranHao I have decided to install this server from scratch. I can confirm this has fixed the issue. 

It seem there was a problem with PowerShell New-Volume introed in B20251 which did not fix with upgrades to later versions.


Now I have installed b20234 from scratch the issue is completely gone. 
Maybe you can find something in the logs but it seems to be a local issue that happens when upgrading from previous versions. 

Thanks for your time. I will retry the behaviour once after upgrading to 20239 or later to make sure it does not reappear, is this ok?