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baxsie

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  1. Update: It all went well as far as booting Windows PE from the USB drive and starting the Retrospect utility on the client PC. Restore of the ~230GB data backed up from the old Samsung 850 Pro 1TB would not restore to a brand new Samsung - 870 EVO 1TB. Retrospect claimed not enough space, even though it said there would be ~700GB free. Spent ~2hours on phone support and in a remote control zoom session proving that this is what happened. Strangely enough the restore kind of worked to another brand new Samsung - 870 QVO 2TB (yes, this exercise is getting expensive). Logging in with the user account gave Windows error message: "We can't sign in to your account". I was able to patch it up using the "Fix a corrupted user profile" procedure, but that is not a successful restore in my book. The phone tech "escalated" the problem -- as far as I can tell that just meant opening a support ticket on my behalf, which remains totally silent from the Retrospect side. This has not been a good experience.
  2. I went through creating the bootable Windows PE USB stick. The biggest problem is that the USB stick must be MBR, while it appears that GPT is now the default (at least for my machines and my USB stick). Once I got through using diskpart to make the USB drive an MBR drive, it all went well.
  3. Bump . . . is there a guide to create a Microsoft WinPE recovery flash drive that includes the necessary retrospect files to recover a client?
  4. OK, so Retrospect only deduplicates within a given backup set, and only one execution unit can access a given backup set. So if you want to deduplicate across machines, you are limited backing all the machines up to one backup set, using only one execution unit, which will be very slow. To me, that is crippled 😞 I do not care that everything has to go to one backup set, but limiting to one execution unit would make the job impossibly slow. Hopefully one day they can deduplicate across clients without the impossible performance penalty.
  5. Do you remember when Retrospect did not have multiple execution units? Basically it was single threaded? For sure deduplication was added some time after multiple execution units were introduced. I think it only deduplicates within a given backup set. There is a clue in the check box: Since I am using a disk storage group, there is a unique backup set for each drive (automatically generated, thank you). So I do not think it deduplicates across machines in this case. When I looked at it after deduplication was first introduced, the only way to make deduplication work across machines was to have all the machines back up to one (huge) backup set, and since multiple execution units cannot backup to a single backup set you are limited to one execution unit. I sincerely hope I am wrong . . . deduplication would save a ton of time and space if it could be enabled across machines while keeping multiple execution units enabled. Drat: https://www.retrospect.com/en/support/kb/storage_groups#_data_deduplication
  6. Thank you for your reply. This is good news. Is there documentation on how to create one of these Microsoft WinPE boot USB drives? Can the PE drive include the needed retrospect client? Also -- how to do the restore from Retrospect after it has booted on the PE drive? Is there anything special that I need to do during the backup phase to make sure the restore is successful?
  7. Thank you for your replies. I am using a disk storage group. Many of my clients are nearly identical Windows 10 desktops. I would gain a lot by being able to deduplicate across machines. Is it possible to configure Retrospect 18.2 to deduplicate across clients? For instance, if 9 clients all have an identical "command.com" file, can Retrospect be set to back that file up only once?
  8. If I want to be able to restore a windows client from the ground up, can I do that from a USB drive? Is there a tutorial on how to do that? Can the same USB drive be used on different machines, or would I need a separate USB drive for each machine? Minus 10 points for anyone who replies with "burn a disk" 😞 - unless you can back-date your post to 1999 :when that was a valid option :-)
  9. Finally side-graded from 16.6 to 18.2 I remember being super excited when Retrospect announced it had enabled deduplication -- only to be dismayed when I found out that it could only use one execution unit going to one backup set to make deduplication work. Some of our backups take multiple days (using multiple execution units), and backing up all our clients simply would not complete within the 1-week window if we had to use a single execution unit. Is this still the case in 18.2 or am I missing something? (Backup server is a dual Xeon with 12/24 cores, 144GB ram, backing up to one of two 6x4TB removable RAID 5 arrays - recycled and swapped weekly. Clients are a mix of windows PCs.) When it first starts up, it is pretty CPU heavy: Once it settles down, it is disk write (and possibly ethernet) bound:
  10. These numbers are using new fresh backup sets every time.
  11. Without breaking a sweat -- 9GB from one client to the server in around 9 minutes, and from our linux file server, 8GB to the backup server in around 8 minutes.
  12. We are backing up 8 clients simultaneously. The best example is the one that just completed -- 34 hours for ~378 GB. I don't know the average file size, but I will venture to guess that "many, many, very tiny files." is not what we're backing up.
  13. Thank you -- a very useful answer. Then the definitive question would be . . . when will Retrospect be smart enough to know how many NICs are present, and then use them intelligently without reconfiguring every client you want to not use the default?
  14. ... and once you have multiple NICs installed, how do you make Retrospect utilize them?
  15. The theoretical I was referring to was based on actually measured bandwidth versus the theoretical per the specifications for gigabit ethernet. The 480 MB/min is what we're actually seeing, which works out to be 480 MB/min / 8 execution units = 60 MB/min per unit. That said, will retrospect take advantage of multiple NICs to get the backup done? If this is the case, we would have loved to have known sooner, as this would have made us change the backup server years ago. How much difference will multiple NICs make, in a real-world situation?
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