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evanbenjamin

Drives on new macs not supported?

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Can it be true that both of my new macs have drives that are not supported by v6.1? How can this be?

 

I hope I'm wrong, but I have diligently poked through the website, installed the updates, and still cannot get the drive on my laptop OR dektop (both HL-DT-xxxx) to be recognized? What is there to do?

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I'm speculating here, as I don't use Retrospect for Macintosh anymore (switched to Windows a long time ago). However I'll have a go.

 

HL-DT-xxx implies you are talking about an Hitachi-LG optical drive (probably custom OEM for Apple)

 

Checking with Storage Device Keyword Search in the Device Support Information/Database doesn't yield any results. See: http://www.retrospect.com/supportupdates/technical/retrospect/device/

 

Retrospect 6.1 is quite old. Your Macs are quite new. They would new (Retrospect) drivers for Retrospect to utilize them. Realistically that's probably not going to happen.

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Can it be true that both of my new macs have drives that are not supported by v6.1? How can this be?

 

I hope I'm wrong, but I have diligently poked through the website, installed the updates, and still cannot get the drive on my laptop OR dektop (both HL-DT-xxxx) to be recognized? What is there to do?

Are you talking about disk drives or optical drives?

 

Disk drives are supported. Optical drives may not, and it takes a long time for EMC to support optical drives after they are introduced. Some drives can't be supported because they don't support the command set needed by Retrospect (Retrospect doesn't use the same set of commands that the Finder uses, so that Retrospect Optical backup sets can be appended rather than being closeed after each session).

 

Don't speculate - search the supported devices database:

Retrospect supported devices

 

See also the Retrospect 6.x Driver Update ("RDU") version history for a list of devices added for each RDU version. Sometimes the supported devices database doesn't get updated as RDU versions are added.

Retrospect 6.x Driver Update version history

 

Don't expect any further updates for Retrospect 6.1, which is several years old. All development is going into Retrospect 8.

 

Your best option, if you stay with Retrospect 6.x, is to buy a supported drive.

 

Russ

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I appreciate your help.

 

I most certainly, and before I posted, checked the supported drive list, and found nothing there for my drives.

 

Since further research indicates issues with verison 8 reading version 6 storage sets, it wouldn't help to upgrade, would it? What on earth is a user to do, if the ol version will not run and the new version won't read older backups?

 

I have a hard time understanding a company that works this way. I can't imagine spending more money on upgrades if I am going to be let down once again in the future. I will keep my old laptop around for the forseeable future, and look for another backup method.

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Since further research indicates issues with verison 8 reading version 6 storage sets, it wouldn't help to upgrade, would it? What on earth is a user to do, if the ol version will not run and the new version won't read older backups?

 

I have a hard time understanding a company that works this way. I can't imagine spending more money on upgrades if I am going to be let down once again in the future. I will keep my old laptop around for the forseeable future, and look for another backup method.

Well, I am in complete agreement with you that the only job that a backup program has is to read your older backups, and to do so reliably. When I have made this point before, exactly as you have here, I have been accused of having a disparaging tone.

 

I suggest that you give Retrospect 8 a few more months to stabilize.

 

I am hopeful that Retrospect 8 will eventually become stable and that it will gain the capability to read older Retrospect backups (we have them from 1992 or so forward, beginning with Retrospect 2.0). It's our data, and it's valuable to us. I do know that the product manager and the support people are dedicated to making the product a success, and I do believe that they are working hard toward that goal. I trust that the programmer(s) are also doing that. I am in agreement with the many (most) of the design decisions that were made for Retrospect 8, even though they were tough decisions to make and took a lot of courage.

 

My main concern at this point is that the product seems to have been prematurely released, and, as a lesser concern, without documentation.

 

Russ

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You have a more reasonable attitude, which I respect.

 

But I think a company that makes a product which has one valuable attribute-reliability-must not damage their reputation for the delivery of that attribute. But they have done so, and unretrievably.

 

Backward compatibility for a backup software is a must. Does that even have to be said? And to not support the stock drives on new Macintosh computers is laughable.

 

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Though I partially agree with the both of you (I really respect the positions and arguments) my own position differs somewhat. Retrospect is mainly a backup program, not an archival program. It might be a matter of opinion, but backup suggests (at least to me) a safeguard against failure with a more short time character to it (a backup of the most recent data, that kind of thing). Archiving however is something that centers around long term storage of information and to make that information easily retrievable even after many years.

 

Personally I don't think Retrospect is a good archival program, but I do find it's a reasonable reliable (I don't use the new Mac version ;)) backup program.

 

However, I would also expect a new incarnation of a program to be able to at least read its previous versions backups, and as such make it easier for users to transfer their older backups to the new system. And it would be even better if it would support at least two previous major versions.

 

Because for Macintosh we have gone from 6.x to 8.x one would indeed expect Retrospect to be able to read it's former version's backups. For the Windows version this is a bit of a different situation, as there was/is an in between 7.x version. I would not be amused to find out that the upcoming 8.x Windows version would not be able to read 7.x backups. And that is exactly the situation Mac users seem to be in right now and indeed that is a bad situation.

 

EMC probably has (for them) good reasons not to offer the needed backward support anymore. But it does not seem to take their current user base into respect. Time will tell if this is going to backfire. I can't shake the feeling that it is bad marketing, but on the other hand it might have been the only way EMC would allow for a new incarnation of Retrospect for Macintosh to be created. Remember EMC is a far larger company than Dantz ever was and so their perception of a commercially viable product certainly will be completely different. Other than that I can't see a good reason why this situation has materialised.

 

EMC is not giving the Retrospect product the resources it needs to create 6.x backward compatibility and indeed seems to forget the long time users who are still working with 6.x and are struggling to keep their new hardware compatible with an aging product while currently and arguably not providing a -stable- new version.

 

If 8.x would have been very reliable/trouble free and would have been capable to read 6.x backups we wouldn't have this discussion. Questions like the topic starter raised would have been easily answered with "you need to upgrade to the new version". But that answer at this time is not a viable one for many users for reasons mentioned.

 

From a Macintosh user's perspective I indeed can't really understand EMC's decision regarding these shortcomings of 8.x. I'm (so far) glad I switched from Mac to Windows a couple of years ago. I found it perfectly back ups Macs. But there are many users that just don't want to do that. I feel EMC just has dropped the ball regarding that matter.

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That's a fair summary.

 

It's not as if I was using a 5 year old version of a piece of software and demanded the new version be perfectly compatible. I have had many experiences with these sorts of issues, and upgrading solves the problem. I don't mind doing that.

 

But this...it's literally incomprehensible.

 

I always talked up Retrospect to my colleagues ( I work as a sound editor for film) but can do so no longer.

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Retrospect is mainly a backup program, not an archival program. It might be a matter of opinion, but backup suggests (at least to me) a safeguard against failure with a more short time character to it (a backup of the most recent data, that kind of thing). Archiving however is something that centers around long term storage of information and to make that information easily retrievable even after many years.

Ramon, you overlook the needs of some users for backup. I'm not talking archival with the need to read all the way back to Retrospect 2.0 (1993 or so), I'm talking backup.

 

In our particular area of law (patents and trademarks), patent cases last for 20 years and trademark cases can last forever.

 

We never (intentionally) delete files. However, when we go back to a case that was last touched five or ten or fifteen years ago to retrieve documents, sometimes we discover that they have disappeared, perhaps by accidental deletion, who knows. For that reason, we need to be able to go back to the state of each computer's disk in our office at any point in the distant past. Often the computers no longer exist. That's a backup function, not archival. Additionally, electronic discovery rules for litigation might require, for some discovery requests, that we be able to know exactly what documents were in our possession, and the state of those documents, on any day into the distant past. That's a backup function.

 

Our backup needs may not match yours, but they are real, and that's how we evaluated the various backup solutions back in 1993 (when we converted all of our floppies onto our file server), and is how we evaluate them now. Hope this helps you understand.

 

Russ

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Russ, now you have explained your needs I completely understand your point of view.

 

I guess it comes down in how one perceives the words "backup" and "archive". For me a "backup" is just a spare, in case the original gets damaged or gets deleted by accident. When I don't need the original anymore, but want to be able to restore it to my system I move the file to an archive.

 

Arguably there is a grey area in between, especially when technology progressed and capacity grew. And btw, our archives have their own backups. *L*

 

Due to my own perception of the terms "backup" and "archive" being slightly black/white I would consider your needs to be more of the 'archival' kind so to speak. Our own backup/archival structure totally reflects this as well. But our data and business needs probably are more suited to that approach than yours.

 

So for the sake of compatibility between our point of views I believe you speak of "long term backups" or "perpetual backups". ;)

 

Kidding aside, I understand why, relating from your data and business needs, you would consider this backup and not archival. However I feel EMC's point of view probably comes closer to my original black/white perception. In that case you will have your work cut out for you... Unless you save away spare/obsolete hard- and software to accommodate any file restore you might need in the future.

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Unless you save away spare/obsolete hard- and software to accommodate any file restore you might need in the future.

Yep. We do each migration step carefully, testing carefully before putting a new server into production or before deploying new software.

 

We have a cabinet with old DAT tape drives so that we can restore Retrospect 2.0 - 4.2 tapes.

 

We have old machines in storage (including Apple II) in case we would ever have to run old software to access an old file (AppleWorks, WordPerfect for Apple II, MacOS 7/8/9 programs/documents).

 

We have no need to do "bare metal restore" to the old machines, only to view documents and perhaps convert them to modern program formats. Almost all of our documents are simple word processing documents, PDFs, or JPEG files.

 

What prevents "archiving" is that many matters are never closed. There is really not a point at which we can "archive" the files for an open matter. When the old files are needed, they are needed instantly, and paper copies may be in dead storage (or shredded).

 

Russ

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I would say that version 8 is pretty new, so I'm looking to restore sound files from a film that I did just last year and backed up with v6-hardly going back into the distant past.

 

That is what this software means for me-I can't keep all this data on my drives for sheer size sake (although this is changing,prices being what they are)and must back them up and delete them from the drive.

 

I have been making dual retrospect backups to two sets of DVD backups, in case one got damaged. I foolishly assumed that would be safe.

 

I think my new policy is going to be dual drives that hold everything, and purchase new drives when those fill up.

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I think my new policy is going to be dual drives that hold everything, and purchase new drives when those fill up.

If you mean RAID-1 with dual drives you have to be careful as well. Inadvertently you could erase a file even if it's RAID-1.

 

If you mean two separate drives, than that would be the least you could do. Keeping another copy offsite might be a good idea as well.

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I would say that version 8 is pretty new, so I'm looking to restore sound files from a film that I did just last year and backed up with v6-hardly going back into the distant past.

Well, like many of us, you are hosed. You aren't going to see further development for Retrospect 6.1. EMC announced last Friday that they will never support Retrospect 6.x on Snow Leopard. Retrospect 8.1 cannot read backups made by older versions of Retrospect (such as Retrospect 6.1).

 

So, if you plan to retrieve your backups made with Retrospect 6.1, your only hope is to buy a supported optical drive and not to run Snow Leopard.

 

Russ

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