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macevans

Terminology and lack of control

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After years of backing up networked AI workstations and more years backing up Macs with Retrospect, I have now run into Retrospect Small Business Server for Windows. And I'm completely lost without having to read the entire manual.

Why is a full backup now called a Recycle Backup??

Why is an incremental Backup now called a Normal Backup??

Why don't I have total control over H/W compression and S/W compression??

Why don't I have manual control over folders when making a script as I do when doing an immediate backup???

Why is it that Windows versions of programs are like trying to figure out a 747 instrument panel, while Macintosh versions of programs are like trying to figure out a Cessina 172 inst panel when they both do the same thing?? [rhetorical question!]

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Which version are you using? In 7.0 and 6.5, a full backup is not called a Recycle Backup. Recycle Backup is simply when you want to clean out the current backup and start fresh.

 

Normal Backup has to do something - what would you have it do? Incremental seems 'normal' to me.

 

Why are you asking about h/w and software compression? Who cares?

 

What do you mean by 'manual' control over folders? In making a script, I can choose any folder I want.

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I'm running v7.0.249 and its right in front of my nose on the screen, both in the program, and in the program help, and in the manual. This thing called a Recycle backup does what experienced admin people call a Full Backup.

 

Normal is different things for different people [or you could say there's no such thing as normal], hence it is a fuzzy name. Whereas Incremental Dump has a specific meaning for admin people with experience OUTSIDE of the MS Windows world and prior to Retrospect for Windows. Go to a UNIX or LINUX machine and type "man tar". I'm sorry, but to me, I would guess that a Normal Dump would be a Full or Complete Dump ... er... excuse me, a Recycle Dump.

 

I am tallking about h/w and s/w compression because they effect backup times. When it takes 12hrs to do a 100GB full backup to a DLT, being able to select the fastest method is important to some people.

 

Yes, you can select any folder you like in scripts, but the method sucks. My RAID drive has a stack of top level folders and, right now, I want to break up my backups into 1) everything in /Users; and 2) everything outside of /Users.

 

In Immediate Backup, I can click the Preview button for the folders/files browser, and manually select and deselect any folders I desire by clicking on check boxes. My first backup is simple: just click the Users folder. The second backup is almost as simple: just click Select All and again click the Users folder to deselect it.

 

Just where do I do this while editing a script in Advanced Mode?? Under Selecting is a pile of conditions that don't match anything I want. So far, all I can see is that I have to create a subvolume for every top level folder that I want. But that doesn't grab any random files sitting at root level [which I should beat on people to clean up]. How do I get to the folders/files browser that appears in Immediate Backup?????

 

And its so nice that much of the procedures and pictures in my 400 page 7.0 User's Guide DOESN'T match what my program is doing.

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This thing called a Recycle backup does what experienced admin people call a Full Backup.

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FWIW, maybe other experienced admin people can comment. From my own experience, I wouldn't call a Recycle backup as a Full Backup. FYI. Each time Retro does a Normal backup, it takes a snapshot of ALL the files included by the Selectors. So, even though Retro backs up only incremental files since the last time, ALL of the files defined by the selectors are in the snapshot. If you were to restore a snapshot, all the files present at the time of the snapshot are restored.

 

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to me, I would guess that a Normal Dump would be a Full or Complete Dump ... er... excuse me, a Recycle Dump.

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Having no experience in Unix or Linux, I can't comment. That said, Windows does run on the vast majority of systems these day.

 

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I am tallking about h/w and s/w compression because they effect backup times.

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Right. Retrospect has what it has. Maybe it isn't right for your application/needs.

 

[quoteI want to break up my backups into 1) everything in /Users; and 2) everything outside of /Users.

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I would use the selectors to do this. You would need two different scrips, I believe.

 

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In Immediate Backup, I can click the Preview button for the folders/files browser, and manually select and deselect any folders I desire by clicking on check boxes. My first backup is simple: just click the Users folder. The second backup is almost as simple: just click Select All and again click the Users folder to deselect it.

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Got it. That function isn't available in the scripts [at least I haven't found it]

 

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Just where do I do this while editing a script in Advanced Mode??

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To create a scipt, on the left hand panel/menu - go thru Automate - Manage scripts. In the dialog box that opens, choose New. And, you're off and running.

 

HTH

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<sigh>

Normal IS NOT an incremental backup.

I set a script to do a normal backup last night, after completeing a full ... excuse me ... recycle backup the day before. I came in this morning to find retrospect wanting a second tape because it was backing up the entire RAID, not just changed or new files.

 

Now what?? Recycle backs up everything ... normal backs up everything .....................

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Not to be infuriating, but you'll probably need to read the book. Retrospect does not operate the way one is used to if you're familiar with pretty much any other backup software. I think if you only know Retrospect, that it can be really good. Especially, I think if you're a tiny business or home user.

 

The recycle backup and new backup set backups are your "full backup" choices. Which, I would agree, would be "normal" if I was talking over lunch with somebody else about backup. Because, normally, I prefer to do a full backup whenever possible to minimize how many. The difference is that the "recycle backup" recycles a tape (erases it, then backs up everything) and the new backup set doesn't need to erase the tape, because it's already blank.

 

The Retrospect "normal backup" is your incremental choice.

 

As far as I understand (and I haven't reread the whole book lately) you don't have a differential option. Really, Retrospects "snapshot" concept is somewhere in the middle. The process of backing up is like an incremental, in that each night you only back up what changed from the night before. However, the snapshots are in place to work like a differential, so that when you restore you don't have to restore all the complete backup sets only the files needed from each one. Now, if you prefer a differential, because you like to only need to do a complete restore with your full tape (say Friday night) and your last night's tape, you may not like that so much.

 

To get Retrospect to work and be happy with it, you need to embrace the Retrospect way of doing things. I manage that most of the time, though my requirements mean that the one place I do backup its a mess to make Retrospect work in a "traditional" way (I'm smashing a round peg into a square hole - it works, but its ugly - now that I've used Retrospect longer I could probably make it more of a round peg through an octagon hole). Other people I know do not want to do that for a variety of reasons, and can't stand to use Retrospect.

 

Good luck.

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Thanks for your comments, khodge. I have been getting deep into the manual to find out what's going on with Retrospect for Windows. I have been using Retrospect for Macintosh since it first came out. Using it on the Mac [pre OS X] is second nature with me. But I am finding out now that Retrospect for Windows 7 is a completely different animal ... and I'm getting more unhappy the more I read.

 

I have found out that Retrospect is now totally stuck on making everything over-automated based solely on the Backup Set. In order to do what would be an incremental dump, I have to create a Backup Set, do a Full Dump [Recycle Dump] within that backup set, and then do a Normal Dump, again, only within that backup set. Unfortunately, this doesn't match my physical requirements and needs.

 

Previously, Retrospect for Mac actually physically marked files and folders as backed up. I wasn't tied to any specific backup set and could do complete and incremental dumps as needed. It appears that Retrospect for Windows 7 doesn't touch anything and keeps all backup information in the Backup Set Snapshot, and, without that Snapshot, cannot figure out how to do an incremental dump.

 

I'm going to have to start a new post to solicit advice on my configuration and needs and see if Retrospect can do what I want.

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