Jump to content
inzirillo

Retrospect 8 Users Guide

Recommended Posts

It is not completed yet. We note this in the "known issues" KB document. We are still finishing up the user's guide.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is the ETA of the user manual?

 

R8 was released nearly four months ago. The gist of the explanation given for no manual was that it was still in draft form, the release was held up pending some remaining edits, and "we're working on it." That's difficult to believe, because if the manual were really already in progress in March, one wonders why we don't have it by now. One possible explanation is that the manual was in progress, but the tech writers were taken off it to work on something else, and it's internally on hold. Which I guess would be even worse.

 

Another possibility is that the R6 -> R8 changes were so great that the manual is a b*tch. But if it was already in progress in March, we'd have docs by now. Entire operating systems can be documented in less time. So as an experienced user, I don't understand this at all.

 

I suggest that releasing a user manual draft would be better than nothing. I'd rather have some pages marked up as being out of date than have nothing at all. I can choose to ignore the pages so marked, or read them with a grain of salt.

 

There have been many questions posted here about options, checkboxes, etc. that searchable product documentation would answer.

 

Thanks for listening.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Your point is?

Those who have managed large software projects and who have read Frederick Brooks' seminal work will understand. I suspect that it's neither of the causes that you suggest.

 

Russ

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"getting close" doesn't help much. I've just made the switch to R8 but it is so different than version 6 that I'm having trouble planning a backup strategy. The getting started guide gives you the basics but no detail.

 

Some well organized KB articles might ease the transition pains until the manual is released. Or maybe sections of it can be released in preliminary form.

 

For example:

 

What's the R8 disaster recovery mechanism?

 

Some details on rules would help since they don't work the same way as selectors in previous versions.

 

Source-to-Disk-to-DVD needs some explanation. Can you restore the original source directly from the DVD? In a disaster, catalog files could be lost. Is there a way to include them in the DVD for use during recovery?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
What's the R8 disaster recovery mechanism?

 

That would depend on your backup policy and your disaster recovery planning.

 

Can you restore the original source directly from the DVD?

 

Yes.

 

In a disaster, catalog files could be lost. Is there a way to include them in the DVD for use during recovery?

 

Backing up catalog files has _always_ been a wise thing to do, but it's unclear what you are expecting when you specify "the DVD." Which DVD are you talking about?

It's all about your policy, what you backup, what you expect to restore, etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not sure if this is a dead horse. If it is, sorry for beating it.

I could use a little light reading over the weekend. Is there a Retro 8 Mac Guide as yet?

My KB searches aren't getting me the content I'd like. Such as, "how to backup and restore an entire Windows (insert variation here) Server."

Some best practices would be nice too. Apologies if all this it out there already and my impatience is keeping me from finding it.

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's the most recent status update from seven weeks ago:

 

Date: Fri, 21 Aug 2009 13:40:57 -0700

From: "Ullman, Eric"

Subject: Where the @#%& is my Retrospect 8 User's Guide?

To: EMC Retro-Talk

Message-ID:

Content-Type: text/plain; charset="US-ASCII"

 

Please feel free to choose the expletive you deem most suitable.

 

The Retrospect 8 User's Guide is a particularly frustrating pain point. So what's the deal?

 

The Retrospect team no longer has a dedicated staff tech writer. Knowing that EMC didn't have any tech writers familiar with both Retrospect and the Mac, and knowing also that to train someone on both would be quite a job, we wanted a tech writer who at least understood the Mac. Then we lucked out and ended up finding someone who understood both Retrospect and the Mac: long-time Mac journalist and author, Tom Negrino. (Those of you who remember MacWEEK may recognize Tom's name right off the bat.)

 

While some of the information can come across from the Retrospect 7.6 User's Guide, as Henry suggests, the methods for performing most actions are completely different. Combine Tom's other responsibilities with the fact that we were making changes to the UI up to the very last minute (and still are, really), and that extends the schedule for a User's Guide.

 

The good news is that it's getting close. Tom has been cranking along, and I'll be editing chapters this weekend. We have Iomega's tech writing staff ready to handle layout for us, since neither Tom nor I excel at that kind of work. Anyway, I expect that we'll have the User's Guide finished in about a month, which is pretty close to when we'll be shipping an update with Snow Leopard support. Of course, we'll announce it here as soon as the User's Guide is available to download.

 

Cheers,

Eric

 

--

Eric Ullman

Director, Product Management

EMC Retrospect

ullman_eric@emc.com

http://www.retrospect.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not impressed at all. Nearly a year later since product announcement, 8 months since product release, and 3 months after the response letter was posted and NO manual anywhere online. No draft, no excerpts - nada.

 

This is a HUGE stumbling block trying to figure it out on my own.

 

And who cares if there are interface changes? If the GD manual is digital - it should take NO TIME to edit it online!!!! Send me an email there's a revision.

 

I'm about to toss it at the window. WHY should I buy this product if I can't figure out how to get the DEMO to do what I want?!!

 

Friably yours.

Edited by Guest

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is there anywhere we can sign up to be notified when the User's Guide finally becomes available? I was eager to upgrade to Retrospect 8 over the holidays, but when I found out that there's no real documentation available, that was a deal-breaker. (I know the movies are out there, but I'm waiting for the book to come out.)

 

Edit: ... then I read the Snow Leopard compatibility statement. Perhaps it's time for me to move my household to something else. I'm just a home user with 3 Macs to backup, not trying to make a career of it.

Edited by Guest

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At least if there was "some" news on what is going on with the Retrospect product, I might be able to shake this eerie feeling that this product line might be ending.....Notice less and less post by support members? Maybe they just really busy....some info on what is being worked on may go a long loooong way to easy some pains here for end users, and let us know you are still thinking of us.

 

As an FYI, the last phone to tech support I had indicated late January **holding breath** 2010 for manual.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know why you think the product is being ended. That is totally not true. We are always putting out product releases, just a few weeks ago we did a major release of the Windows product and we have Mac product updates scheduled for January (if I have my schedule right).

 

We have multiple Mac product releases scheduled for 2010, including releases with new features not just bug fixes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's good news, thanks. As someone just trying to get the job done, not make a career of Retrospect, all I know is what I see on the discussions I stumble across, and you must admit this topic hasn't shown the progress that EMC suggested we could expect, nor updates to help us recalibrate our expectations. :confused:

 

Despite my post from a few days ago, I wound up spending Christmas Eve Day, Christmas Day, and Boxing Day working my way through the conversion to Retrospect 8 and am glad I converted, less so about spending three days on the process. A manual might have shortened the process by helping me nagvigate the subtle differences in Retrospect 8 (like, there doesn't seem to be an easy way to activate an inactive Proactive Backup script).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Im glad to hear Mayoff. Thanks for the update. The only thing I have to go on are these forums and the "news" section on the web site. Latest news is from Jan of 09.

 

I dont use windows so I would not know about those updates. Are you really shocked :omg: about my comment:

 

"At least if there was "some" news on what is going on with the Retrospect product, I might be able to shake this eerie feeling that this product line might be ending....."

 

taking a moment to say "hey guys sorry...updates coming soon" which you just did, goes a long way to making me feel more comfortable about the product.

 

Thanks for the update Mayoff. :thanks:

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

News (of sorts!)

 

On the Retro-talk mailing list today, Eric Ullman dropped this:

 

We are acutely aware of our resource limitations, and the fact that

Retrospect 8.1 still needs lots of work (and a User's Guide--which is now in

final editing and layout), but the development of this iPhone app didn't

impact any of that, and it provides a hugely useful capability.

 

 

 

"final editing" sounds good. Now the "how long will it be" countdown can start from Feb 10...

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It should be fast. We have hired an outside person (not the technical writer himself) to do the layout. Most of the final edits are done.

 

We are on the home stretch!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It should be fast. We have hired an outside person (not the technical writer himself) to do the layout. Most of the final edits are done.

 

We are on the home stretch!

Robin, I'm not trying to be negative here, really I'm not, but I don't see much difference in the reported status from almost six months ago: Where the @#%& is my Retrospect 8 User's Guide?

 

The good news is that it's getting close. Tom has been cranking along, and I'll be editing chapters this weekend. We have Iomega's tech writing staff ready to handle layout for us, since neither Tom nor I excel at that kind of work. Anyway, I expect that we'll have the User's Guide finished in about a month, which is pretty close to when we'll be shipping an update with Snow Leopard support.

Estimates sometimes are wrong. I've been in that same situation myself.

 

In the spirit of a constructive suggestion, I think that better communication as to the status might help. This is the first update since August 21.

 

Russ

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×