By Yuka / Last update February 22, 2022

When do you encounter "the version does not support this version of the file format VHD" error?

When backing up file or system state to a shared folder on Network Attached Storage (NAS) device, you may receive the following error. This error will appear in all windows systems, of which, it occurs most frequently in Windows Server 2012.

"The backup of volume xxx could not be completed, Error: the version does not support this version of the file format."

When backing up to local disk, you may also encounter the error below.

"There was a failure in preparing the backup image of one of the volumes in the backup set (0x807800C5). Additional Information: the version does not support this version of the file format. "

Does Not Support This Version Of The File Formt

Why do you receive "the version does not support this version of the file format" error?

There are three main reasons why you encounter this error, please stay for a while and check the possible reasons carefully. Then, continue to see below and learn how to fix the problem of being unable to backup to NAS with given solutions.

First, the native VHD file is created as a spare file on NAS. Sparse files are universally used for taking backups, as it saves disk space and reduces time. When backing up data to NAS storage device, Windows Backup will create a mounted .VHD file, but the native VHD driver does not support the .VHD file created as a sparse file. Therefore, the backup failed.

Second, you use “include” or “exclude” parameter in the Wbadmin backup command. If you set an “include”, then it will backup everything in the “include” and ignore anything not in the “include”.

Third, the problem is caused by the existing old Windows backup files in the destination location. Therfore please delete or rename the old files.

How to fix "the version does not support this version of the file format" error?

Solution 1: Check the VHD file on NAS device

This is the first solution, you could try to check the .VHD file on your NAS device and see if the file is a sparse file. If it is a sparse file, you can modify or add a thread, "strict allocate = yes", which will force it not to create sparse file. Detailed steps are below.

Step 1. Delete the existing files on the backup destination location to make sure Window backup will create a new backup file.

Step 2. Log in the NAS and open the smb.conf file (usually in the [global] section of /etc/samba/smb.conf, or /etc/config/smb.conf). You may not find the "strict allocate’ line or find the “strict allocate = no”

Step 3. Modify or add "strict allocate = yes" to the smb.conf file. Then save it and exit.

Step 5. Reboot your system to restart the service. Then you should be able to backup to NAS with Windows built-in backup tool. If you do not want to reboot system, log onto the NAS and run the following command:/etc/init.d/services restart.

Solution 2: Check Wbadmin backup command 

This problem may be caused by “include” or “exclude” items in the wbadmin backup command, so please check the following syntax and remember not to add these items.

Syntax for Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 shows as below:

wbadmin start backup [-backupTarget:{|}] [-include:[-allCritical] [-noVerify] [-user:[-password:[-noinheritAcl] [-vssFull] [-quiet]

Syntax for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 and later version: only changed [-vssFull] to [-vssFull | -vssCopy]

Solution 3: Rename or delete old Windows backup files

There is a possibility that the backup task can run normally after you rename or delete the old Windows backup files from “WindowsImageBackup” in the backup destination location. Therefore, you could try to rename or delete that folder.

How to backup system partition with a different system backup software?

If you still get this error "the version does not support this version of the file format" after trying above solutions, you could consider using a different software to backup system

Here I recommend you the professional backup software AOMEI Backupper Server to backup system to NAS or network drive. For IT technicians or small and medium-size companies, you could consider using AOMEI Backupper TechPlus. You just need to input the display name, IP address, username and password when you add it for the first time. Here are the main page of AOMEI Backupper, clear and user-friendly. 


This software supports all the Windows systems, including Windows Server 2003/2008/2012 (R2)/SBS 2003/2008/2011 or Windows 10/8.1/8/7/XP/Vist, so you can use it no matter what your operating system is. It will include everything on the system partition, including the operating system(OS), system reserved partition or EFI system partition (ESP), recovery partition, system drivers, installed program and personal data (like photos, music, documents, etc), etc. 

To learn more, please download this software to explore it yourself. Please note the target disk will be overwritten finally, you need to backup important files in advance. If not, your data will go forever when unexpected errors happen.

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Step 1. Launch AOMEI Backupper, and you will see its deep-blue interface. Then, click "Backup"  and "System Backup" in order.

System Backup

Step 2. Modify the “Task Name” to distinguish it from other backup tasks. The program will select the system and boot partitions by default, so you just need to select the NAS device as destination path

Select Backup Destination

▶ To add NAS storage device, click where the arrow point and then select NAS/Share

Share Nas

▶ Then, in the next window, click "Add Network Location" and then type network path, username and password to add NAS. After that, the storage device will be listed under the Network Location tab, select a folder on it to store backup image.

Add Network Location

Step 3. Here you can specify the backup intervals as daily, weekly or monthly in "Schedule" to continuously backup system and changes made on it. And incremental backup is the default option of advanced settings. Then, Click "Start Backup" to backup system for your computer.

Schedule Settings General

"Options": You are allowed to comment for system backup to distinguish it from other backups, compress the system backup image file, encryption backup image to protect sensitive data, enable email notification to get alert without delay, etc.
"Schedule": Except for daily/weekly/monthly schedule backup, you can still use "Event triggers", "USB plug in", "differential backup". 
"Scheme": You can enable backup scheme to delete older backups automatically so that there is enough space on your backup location.

In addition, the operations of system backup will not interrupt your work. That is to say, you can do system backup while working on the computer. The time the system backup process will take is determined by the amount of the valid data. More valid data will take more time for system backup.

Written in the end

That's all for the version does not support this version of the file format. Here are three main reasons and you can fix this error by corresponding given solutions. The last resort is to use a different system backup software like AOMEI Backupper Standard to backup system to NAS or network drive.

This software is very easy to use, so all users even the novices can use it smoothly. Also, it has more advanced backup features to make this process simple and efficient, including daily backup, weekly backup, incremental & differential backup, 2 compression levels, email notification etc. Just download it to have a try!