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So Far So Good With Retro 9

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Just adding a data point to the boards. We are giving the trial a go on a new, clean Mac Mini i5 with 4GB RAM, 10.7.2 and a Promise SANLink adapter connected to an LTO-4, dual-drive Scalar i40. Currently we don't do any client or server backups with Retrospect (our workflow didn't accommodate Retro 8, so we changed that aspect). That server aspect is about $1500, which isn't terribly unreasonable given the fiber connectivity (if you had a PCIe chassis and an existing card it could be even less).


But we do use Retrospect for project archives: we first backup from the server storage to the tape library, and then test the restore right then by restoring to a hard drive. The hard drive with finder-readable files stays on site, and the LTOs go off-site. This also lets us do a full verify of the LTOs before sending them out.


So far, so good. Retrospect 8 on an older machine was less than speedy, and the interface crashed often (only run locally). With Retrospect 9 we have been pleased with a speed increase (though that may be the machine as much as the software) though the overall experience has been better. The email notifications have gone out as expected, and we've actually been more efficient since the system doesn't seem to spend so much time "thinking".


I do wonder if a clean install would be the way to go rather than trying to upgrade a Retro 8 install (I have no plans to go down that path to test), but so far multiple archives and restores have worked well (about 2.2GB/min on backup, and 3.3GB/min on restore to drive connected via Firewire). I was particularly cautious because of the Thunderbolt connection, but that hasn't seemed to be an issue (certainly a better experience than we had with the Apple FC adapters).


Anyway, while I'm certainly as upset as anyone at the time needed to get a useable, stable product that didn't require my assistance on a regular basis (and the cost to do so), this seems like an improvement on what we had before. If only documentation were better, but that is another thread. I may give client backups a shot if we get an update that addresses some of the issues. I know my usage is rather limited, but even that had showed some glaring issues before. Not so many now-it's progress.

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I'm moving directly from Retrospect 6 in Snow Leopard to Retrospect 9 in Lion. I love some of the new features, but am baffled by why the program is so slow while setting up a restore (click, beachball, click, beachball...). But once the script is running, it accesses data very quickly.


Looking at the big picture, I'm backing up (3) Macs to a hard disk set, performance is great, at around 2.2GB/min., small test restores have been fine. Cheers to the Retrospect team making this software great again!

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  • 2 weeks later...

What issues? Version 9 of the Retrospect OS X Client software is entirely new.


And the 8 engine was entirely new as well, and that worked out really well for everyone.


The retroclient.state issue (admittedly that should be simple), the general multicast flakiness (which I see too-v6 works just fine here), and some of the other bugs listed elsewhere. Right now there are too many reports of issues, and no reports of any timeframe for a next patch set (though given prior history that may not be too reliable anyway).

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