System Image Backup - error 0x81000333

What usually prevents you from doing a successful System Image backup is insufficient space on the System Reserved Volume to create a Mirror Image. About 50MB is eaten up by a file called USN Journal. This journal can only be manipulated by opening the Administrator Command Prompt and using a command called fsutil usn
To get there, do the following:
Click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, right click Command Prompt, click run as Administrator.
If you type fsutil usn Enter, you will see 5 additional command options. Follow the instructions below to eliminate the windows 7 error 0x8100033
Assuming drive letter h: had been assigned to the System Reserve Partition using Windows Disk Management, do the following:
fsutil usn queryjournal h:
    The output will be USN journal settings which also includes its size (in hex bytes). If it is anything around 30mb, the backup will fail due to snapshot creation failure because of lack of space.
 fsutil usn deletejournal /D h:
    This will delete the journal. Retry backup.

USN Journal (shorthand form of Update Sequence Number Journal, also known as Change Journal) is present on all mounted disk volumes and updated as changes occur on the volume. If the USN Journal is deleted on the System Reserved Partition it frees up approximately 50MB (Depending on computer configuration) of space, enough to do a successful System Image Backup. However, after some file changes/ creation, Windows 7 creates a new USN Journal on the System Reserved Partition to track those changes, using default parameters for it's size and behavior, Approximately 50MB!
You can choose to delete the journal prior to each System Image Backup or you can permanently fix the problem by limiting the size of the USN Journal on the System Reserved Partition doing the following:
Open the Administrator Command Prompt as described in the above link and delete the existing USN Journal.
Then create a new USN Journal, limiting its size to 1 MB using the following command:
fsutil usn createjournal m=1000 a=100 h:
Drive letter assignment for the System Reserved Partition in the above example is h:
You have now created a USN Journal with a fixed size of 1 MB (m=1000) which is updated in chunks of 100KB(a=100), placed at the end of the journal and the same amount removed at the beginning.
Since hardly any changes ever occur on the System Reserved Partition, the reduction in size of the journal is not noticeable in the performance or speed.
I hope this helps those with the consistent error message : Error 0x81000033 when trying to do a System Image Backup

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Last updated December 18, 2020 Views 2,392 Applies to: