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Help me recover from stupid mistake(s)!

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After uttering the famous words, "what can happen between now and backup?" I trashed my entire backup set to make room for a fresh start, five hours before the next scheduled backup. Three hours later BOTH my Mac clients crashed completely (my OTHER mistake - don't ask!) and left me with two freshly formatted Macs and two empty backup drives on my Windows server. DOH!


After buying two new drives for the server and CIA data recovery software, I began the slow process of restoring the deleted files from the original drives to the new drives (so as not to overwrite anything I may need - first rule of data recovery, don't write anything to the drives) but now Retrospect won't rebuild the backup sets from the recovered files - giving me a simple "can't use these files" error. No further explanation.


I understand that some of the deleted files may not have recovered 100% but is there no way to rebuild something at least from the over 400GB of recovered files? Anything would be better than nothing at all and there has to be some useful data on those new drives!


Anybody with any suggestions please help me. I'm about to jump off a bridge!

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Hi Nate, thanks for the reply.


The files look to be valid .rdb's and the maximum size of them is around 640MB (not sure of the actual figure but it is consistent with the last file of a given creation date (CIA lists file creation date of files to be recovered) being smaller and random in size).


Although I'm sure that one or two have not been recovered 100% (as you'd expect from any recovery of this kind) I feel sure that some of the over 1,500 files must be OK.


I also believe that Retrospect is tripping on files that are either corrupt (have not survived the deletion/recovery intact) or belong to a backup set other than the one Retrospect is expecting. Problem is, as Retrospect does not log which .rdb's it's tripping on (listing the source files instead), I am unable to systematically remove the offending .rdb files. These backups were run nightly, so losing the odd .rdb should cause no great heartache looking at the bigger picture.


Of the two sets involved, one has rebuilt (albeit with a resynchronizing (slow) error that needs to be aborted). Only problem with this is that, when I go to restore, it only recognizes one of the two snapshots - one Mac is restored, the other not.


BTW, I managed to get that set working to that degree by filtering out certain files that I reasoned (by creation date) belonged to the other set. I just don't know how to specify snapshots for the rebuild. I did manage to get it to recognize the second snapshot by rebuilding a test with only three .rdb files but going back to the full set the second snapshot disappears again.


The other set returns an invalid backup set name error (as you know, the title of the backup set is given to you by Retrospect - you can't change it) and then asks for a new disk. I select a disk and hit proceed and it goes back into the select disk dialogue and gets stuck in that loop until I cancel the rebuild.


If you have any tips as to how I might assess where Retrospect is tripping and thus manually sort the files to purge any corruptions I'd love to hear them. Hidden log files, coded messages etc., anything...


Thanks for your help.

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