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gspiese

Retro Workgroup on OSX simply does not work-LONG

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I've been banging my head with Retrospect Workgroup v5.0

238 and RDU v3.4.103 since I installed it on a client OSX server. The server is a B&W workgroup server with OSX Server v10.2.4. That server has an OEM Ultra2 (2940U2B) SCSI card. This card was part of the server when purchased from Apple. Besides the original hard drive (Seagate ST39102LW), I've added two other Seagate drives (ST39102LW & ST373405LW). Attached to the same card on the external SCSI connector is a Quantum v2.0 DLT drive. When I try to run Retro to this tape drive I get a Kernel Panic. So, I attached a VXA-1 External SCSI drive to the server. When I run a backup, I don't get a Kernel panic, but Retro just quits and usually brings down the server with it! When I look at the Retro Log I see nothing indicating what the problem might be. So I attached an external FW drive and tried a backup (to file) to that drive. Same result, Retro just quits without a clue! Next I completely wiped the boot drive and reinstalled OSX server. All test results after the reinstall were the same. I thought the problem might be that 2940U2B SCSI card, since I didn't see it listed in the approved list. I yanked that card and installed the Adaptec Power Domain 39160 SCSI card ( yes, I installed the v1.2 of the driver). I attached the boot drive to one channel and the other two internal drives to the second channel. Same result- no backup, Retro just quits. I've contacted Retrospect many times about this issue (Case# 1564600) without any resolution. Please note that OSX server is working just fine. I am now convinced that Dantz is incapable of supporting this product, and I'll no longer be recommending it to my clients until Dantz can show they've fixed the numerous problems they are having with this product.

 

The really funny thing is that as the result of problems this client was having backing up their ASIP clients, Retrospect support strongly recommended they move to OSX server and the OSX version of retrospect-saying that this would solve our problems. Well, several thousand dollars later- more problems than ever and no backups! What a louse piece of software!

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>>The server is a B&W workgroup server with OSX Server v10.2.4. That server has

>>an OEM Ultra2 (2940U2B) SCSI card. This card was part of the server when purchased

>>from Apple.

 

I don't believe Apple ever sold a Blue & White G3 OS X 10 Server package. I do think that there was an OS X 1.2 Server package, and of course Apple sold a lot of the "Server G3 (Blue and White)" configuration that came with Mac OS 8.5.1 and AppleShareIP. But in any case, SCSI support in OS X 10 is worlds apart from what it was in Classic versions of Mac OS.

 

>>Next I completely wiped the boot drive and reinstalled OSX server. All test results after

>>the reinstall were the same. I thought the problem might be that 2940U2B SCSI card, since

>>I didn't see it listed in the approved list.

 

You reinstalled the OS _before_ you replaced an unsupported SCSI host adapter?

 

What that what Dantz suggested during one of your numerous calls?

 

I'm not familiar with the specific SCSI drives you referenced; are the drives connected to the card without any sort of adapter? Same with the DLT, is it the same bus width/voltage differental as the card?

 

OS X SCSI SUPPORT IS NOT GOOD: THINGS THAT WORKED WITHOUT EFFORT IN OS 9 OFTEN FAIL TO WORK IN OS X!

 

>>I attached the boot drive to one channel and the other two internal drives to

>>the second channel. Same result- no backup, Retro just quits.

 

Is the DLT drive connected in the above tests? Or is it all disk based?

 

>>I am now convinced that Dantz is incapable of supporting this product

 

Or is it that Dantz is unable to get this software to work with your specific hardware configuration?

 

Are you getting crash entries written to /Library/Logs/CrashReporter/retrospect.crash.log ?

Did Dantz ask you to provide crash logs to them?

 

 

 

Dave

 

 

 

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Quote:

So I attached an external FW drive and tried a backup (to file) to that drive. Same result, Retro just quits without a clue!

 


 

Sounds like you are in SCSI hell of some sort. I suggest you need a baseline point where things actually work, and then add back things one at a time.

 

Can you disconnect all the SCSI cards and try a backup to file, with no extra devices at all?

1) If it still crashes, there is something nasty in your base configuration. Where exactly is it crashing? During scanning? When it starts the backup?

2) It it works, then you can add back just one SCSI card, nothing connected, and try again. Then add a disk, and try again...

 

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Quote:

CallMeDave said:

 

OS X SCSI SUPPORT IS NOT GOOD: THINGS THAT WORKED WITHOUT EFFORT IN OS 9 OFTEN FAIL TO WORK IN OS X!

 

 

 

>>I am now convinced that Dantz is incapable of supporting this product

 

 

 

Or is it that Dantz is unable to get this software to work with your specific hardware configuration?

 

 

 

Are you getting crash entries written to /Library/Logs/CrashReporter/retrospect.crash.log ?

 

Did Dantz ask you to provide crash logs to them?

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

2 things...

 

 

 

OSX SCSI SUPPORT BLOWS AWAY ANYTHING OS9 COULD HAVE HOPED FOR.

 

 

 

There, did you hear that one? Did you really have to shout out this blatantly incorrect information? You have things back asswards here. OSX is miles and miles above what OS9 could have ever hoped for as far as SCSI support.

 

 

 

Retrospect uses a terrible and old code base and seems unwilling to fix it. Their answer to me is "buy the newest version"... my answer? When the version I have is less than 1 year old, doesn't work, and is basically now unsupported? Fat chance.

 

 

 

I would agree with what you say that Dantz is unable/unwilling to get it work with this particular hardware configuration. Sadly it is something that was shipped from Apple directly and even more sad that my 'unsupported' adaptec 2940 series cards work _perfectly_ in OSX for everythign except, you guessed it ... Retrospect. It even works with other backup software quite well in fact.

 

 

 

Dantz has dropped the ball on their users, and they are bailing. Deal with it. Watch for my great reviews of the support and the functionality of their software on macdiscussion.com. I've been a loyal retrospect user for years.... but they've taken a crappy approach in recent years to supporting their users and people need to know this information.

 

 

 

Best of luck with Retrospect 6, I think the timing on my user experience review should be very helpful. About as helpful as Dantz has been to make their software actually _work_, but on the upside ...

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Quote:

OSX is miles and miles above what OS9 could have ever hoped for as far as SCSI support.

 

Retrospect uses a terrible and old code base and seems unwilling to fix it.

 


 

Dantz uses the same industry standard SCSI commands under OS X, OS 9 and Windows. The OS and the SCSI card must then properly pass those commands to the hardware.

 

Adaptec specifically states that the 2940 card is _not_ compatible with OS X. Why would you expect that Retrospect should be work with a card that is not compatible according to the hardware vendor?

 

http://www.adaptec.com/worldwide/support/supporteditorial.html?prodkey=mac_osx_info

 

Dantz is working directly with SCSI card vendors to help them improve SCSI card support for OS X. The SCSI card vendors have put out driver and firmware updates to specifically address the challenges with supporting SCSI in OS X.

 

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Funny thing that ... maybe the commercial 2940 cards are not supported in OSX by adaptec ... but the one that came stock in my B&W G3 450 most certainly is (both according to apple's tech info library - it is in the supported hardware list, and the fact that I run panther on it with no problems).

 

I was commenting on the fact that OSX SCSI is miles ahead of what OS9 could do, which was the point that the original answer was trying to make was that OS9 was better, which is very much wrong.

 

As far as "industry standard SCSI commands" do you mean a unified API? Or is the code really blindly issueing SCSI commands...

 

P.S. Retrospect _does_ use some very old toolbox calls in their OSX products. A simple backtrace reveals wonders about the affected code base (especially when you crash it left right and center).

 

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