Jump to content

How to do Disaster Recovery with Retrospect 17


x509
 Share

Recommended Posts

The actual recovery instructions are at the top of this thread.  Read bottom-to-top for a complete understanding of this issue. -- x509.

 

Robin,

Thank you for this workaround.  It looks very helpful and complete.  I am going to copy/paste these instructions into a Word doc for reference.

When do you expect that the Retrospect fix will be released?  Version 17.5x?  17.6?
Cube

November 29, 2020 16:49 PM – Robin – Director, WW Support

Dear ---, 

Retrospect Agent Reply can be found below. 


Agent Response: 

Our engineers did some research into this issue, as part of an upcoming bug fix they are working on.  They came up with the following directions to correct the system after the restart fails to boot the computer after the restore:

Boot from the Windows installation media, when at the Install Windows screen hit Shift+F10 to bring up a command prompt.
Run diskpart, run list disk, if only one disk shows run, select disk 0.

    If there is more than one disk, they should be able to hopefully verify based on disk size. If it is not disk 0 they would replace 0 with the number of the drive.

1. Run, list par, to verify that there are 4 partitions, Recovery, System, Reserved, Primary.
2. Run, list vol, the volume number they want to use in the next step will have a FAT32 file system and should be 99MB with System under info.
3. Run, select vol, (number identified from step 4), i.e. select vol 3
4. Run, assign letter=z and should see "Diskpart successfully assigned the drive letter". Type exit
5. Run mkdir Z:\EFI\Microsoft\Boot
6. Run xcopy /s C:\Windows\Boot\EFI\*.* Z:\EFI\Microsoft\Boot
7. Run z: then run cd EFI\Microsoft\Boot
8. Run the following commands
    a. bcdedit /createstore BCD
    b. bcdedit /store BCD  /create {bootmgr} /d “Windows Boot Manager”
    c. bcdedit /store BCD /create /d “My Windows 10” /application osloader (they can change My Windows 10 to anything they want)
9. The last command run will return a GUID, example {D91FE7C2-605F-4A2B-B035-80A7C30979BF}, they will need to use this guid in the next step
10. Run the following commands
    a. bcdedit /store BCD /set {bootmgr} default {your_guid} (your_guid will be the guid mentioned in step 9)
    b. bcdedit /store BCD /set {bootmgr} path \EFI\Microsoft\Boot\bootmgfw.efi
    c. bcdedit /store BCD /set {bootmgr} displayorder {default}
    d. bcdedit /store BCD /set {default} device partition=c:
    e. bcdedit /store BCD /set {default} osdevice partition=c:
    f. bcdedit /store BCD /set {default} path \Windows\System32\winload.efi
    g. bcdedit /store BCD /set {default} systemroot \Windows
    h. exit
11. Reboot the machine.


Please let us know if you have any additional questions,

Robin Mayoff
Director, WW Support
Retrospect, Inc.

-----------------------------------------

See your Case History for # 00076665 in your Customer Portal (sign in required): 
https://www.retrospect.com/support/case/5004U00000sShTs

Verify your Support contract status:
https://www.retrospect.com/upgrade?license=J376-4ZXD-E6HV-UTEZ

-----------------------------------------

Additional Resources: 
* Knowledgebase - https://www.retrospect.com/kb
* Forum - http://forums.retrospect.com
* Training Videos - http://www.youtube.com/user/RetrospectInc
ref:_00DU0Kyj8._5004UsShTs:ref
Comment

November 28, 2020 01:58 AM

I give up. and I'm very discouraged at this point.  It would seem that volume restoration for Windows would be tested out extremely carefully before a release.  

I followed the instructions to first delete the entire contents of the target drive, and I still got the same error message list that I submitted previously.

After playing around a bit, I tried to do a restore WITHOUT the system state.  This restore failed because Retrospect refused to recognize the catalog file on a USB drive, even though it had recognized that same catalog file in previous restore attempts.  What happened here???

Also, I had to to disconnect all my drives other than the ones directly involved in the restore because on two restore attempts, it _seemed_ that data on other drives got corrupted.

As part of the setup for doing a restore, I was able to delete existing partitions, but not to actually reformat the drive. When I deleted partitions, my GPT formatted drive was converted to an MBR formatted drive, which would be a major pain to change back to GPT once Windows is installed. Another bug.

Also, with every restore attempt, the existing Windows install was corrupted and would no longer boot, even for those operations that ended "incomplete."  First I was re-installing Windows each time.  Then I started to use Macrium Reflect Free to back up the existing install.  All it does is partition backup and restore, but it does that quite well. After each failed restore operation, I had to restore that existing install with Macrium.

I've spent way too much time on this issue, and it feels like I'm doing trouble-shooting for Retrospect.  So when you do release fixes for these issues, then I will test them.  I would be willing to be a beta tester for these features.  My career was in software product management, so I'm very familiar with beta test programs, software quality assurance, etc.

For a product suggestion, I suggest that the Restore Wizard work with drives other than C:
Comment

November 28, 2020 01:58 AM

, because WinPE assigns different letters to drives.  I also suggest that Retrospect be able to do a volume restore to unused space on a drive, much as Microsoft does a Windows install to unused space.  Please pass these suggestions along to engineering and the product manager.
Cube

November 20, 2020 14:36 PM – Robin – Director, WW Support

Dear ---, 

Retrospect Agent Reply can be found below. 


Agent Response: 

I asked my engineering team for feedback and they reported:

It looks like this is the issue, X:\ProgramData\Retrospect\RtrExec.dir\Exec\State\ESP doesn't exist. The customer is sure that the system backed up was EFI?

If so it sounds like they ran into this open bug, "Bug 9135 - RestoreESPData: statePath X:\ProgramData\Retrospect\RtrExec.dir\Exec\State\ESP doesn't exist, return kErrGeneric". The issue is that on some Windows 10 systems Retrospect gets a different error when attempting to check if the system is EFI that prevents Retrospect from backing the ESP. I am in the process of fixing this issue today but the fix is for backup and not restore

Please let us know if you have any additional questions,

Robin Mayoff
Director, WW Support
Retrospect, Inc.

-----------------------------------------

See your Case History for # 00076665 in your Customer Portal (sign in required): 
https://www.retrospect.com/support/case/5004U00000sShTs

Verify your Support contract status:
https://www.retrospect.com/upgrade?license=J376-4ZXD-E6HV-UTEZ

-----------------------------------------

Additional Resources: 
* Knowledgebase - https://www.retrospect.com/kb
* Forum - http://forums.retrospect.com
* Training Videos - http://www.youtube.com/user/RetrospectInc
ref:_00DU0Kyj8._5004UsShTs:ref
Cube

November 20, 2020 14:10 PM – Robin – Director, WW Support

Dear ---, 

Retrospect Agent Reply can be found below. 


Agent Response: 

>I also tried to delete the Windows partitions and the various other partitions for a GPT drive. But I was unable to tell Retrospect to restore to unformatted space on the boot physical drive. What if I deleted the remaining partitions on that drive or tried to restore to a different SSD drive?

When you boot from the recovery disk, you can use the menu option to configure drives. I typically suggest doing a complete disk reformat and then create one single partition for the entire disk.  During the restore, the Microsoft ASR writer should automatically recreate the partitions to match what you had at the time of the backup. 

Please let us know if you have any additional questions,

Robin Mayoff
Director, WW Support
Retrospect, Inc.

-----------------------------------------

See your Case History for # 00076665 in your Customer Portal (sign in required): 
https://www.retrospect.com/support/case/5004U00000sShTs

Verify your Support contract status:
https://www.retrospect.com/upgrade?license=J376-4ZXD-E6HV-UTEZ

-----------------------------------------

Additional Resources: 
* Knowledgebase - https://www.retrospect.com/kb
* Forum - http://forums.retrospect.com
* Training Videos - http://www.youtube.com/user/RetrospectInc
ref:_00DU0Kyj8._5004UsShTs:ref
Comment

November 20, 2020 06:30 AM

Hi. I managed to figure how to get that snapshot you asked for.  Attached.
Attachment

November 20, 2020 06:30 AM

Attached 14.8 KB file: C drive backup option.PNG
Comment

November 20, 2020 06:11 AM

Costonel,

I wasn't able to bring up a Properties menu item for the snapshot I wanted to restore from.  I'm on Retrospect V17.  I tried several different appraoches and once I selected a snapshot, Retrospect moved immediately to the next window in the restore process.

Attached is a photo of the options I use when backing up the Windows volumes.

I also tried to delete the Windows partitions and the various other partitions for a GPT drive.  But I was unable to tell Retrospect to restore to unformatted space on the boot physical drive.  What if I deleted the remaining partitions on that drive or tried to restore to a different SSD drive?
Attachment

November 20, 2020 06:11 AM

Attached 13 KB file: C drive backup option.PNG
Cube

November 19, 2020 10:11 AM – Retrospect –

Attached 301 KB file: state win.jpg
Dear ---, 

Retrospect Agent Reply can be found below. 


Agent Response: 
We assume your BIOS is set to UEFI if you have a GPT drive.
When you selected the snapshot from which you restored, does the snapshot properties contain all the system state items like in the screenshot attached? Can you send us a photo of those items in your selected snapshot.


Thank you for using Retrospect,
Costinel
The Retrospect Support Team 

---------------------------

Click the link below to update your support case. Note, the case is automatically closed if no response is received within 5 days). 

* Case # 00076665 - http://retrospect.com/support/case/5004U00000sShTs
ref:_00DU0Kyj8._5004UsShTs:ref
Comment

November 18, 2020 23:05 PM

Unlike previous attempts, this time the restore operation did restore files as necessary, even though I didn't change anything about the way I tried to do the restore operatiion.  However, there was one error, as noted in the Operations Log.  As a result, the system would not reboot into Windows.  The boot drive was so messed up that the BIOS prompted me to use a Boot Floppy.

This time I did NOT get a message saying that the WinPE drive would be erased.

For emergency purposes, any time I do any operations with the C: drive, I use a simple, but effective program that backs up and restores partitions, nothing more.  It is called Macrium Reflect Free, and I don't consider it a replacement for Retrospect, but it does allow me to experiment safely, and recover from situations where Retrospect has somehow damaged the C: drive.
Attachment

November 18, 2020 23:05 PM

Attached 78.1 KB file: Restore Operation 2020-11-18.zip
Cube

November 17, 2020 12:02 PM – Retrospect –

Dear ---, 

Thank you for contacting Retrospect support.  Retrospect Agent Reply can be found below.

Your Problem Description.: 
I can't get a Restore with System State to run to completion.  The Restore operation starts but then terminates without actually restoring files.  I disconnected all drives except my SSD (restore target), the HDD with the backup set sessions and a USB drive that has the the Retrospect catalog of backups.  In addition, the WinPE Disaster Recovery USB stick is attached.

Also, I got an odd message that the WinPE drive would be completely erased, just before the restore operation terminated.  I don't understand why that would happen, since I clearly set up the restore to go to the SSD drive.

Do you want me to upload some photos that I took with my phone?

I really need to get this system restore done.

My system runs Windows 10 Pro 64, version 20H2.  It is homebuilt with AMD 3900X CPU/ASUS ROG X570 Strix-E motherboard, with 32 GB of RAM.  The system has been running 100% stable for six months.  The SSD is set up for UEFI/GPT format.

Agent Response: 

We apologize for the inconvenience.
The message about erasing WinPE is a cosmetic BUG you can ignore it.
we assume you Restore locally
Please provide us the log file to check it
Reproduce the Restore locally to your SSD then
Go to Reports>Operations Log and open the log file
Go to File menu and select Export and export the log to your backup drive.
You can zip it on your main computer and send it to us.

Thank you for using Retrospect.
Costinel
The Retrospect Support Team 

Additional Resources: 
Have you tried our online self-service tools? 
* Knowledgebase - http://retrospect.com/kb
* Forum - http://forums.retrospect.com
* Training Videos - http://www.youtube.com/user/RetrospectInc/featured?hl=en


-----------------------------------------
Click the link below to update your support case. (Note, the case is automatically closed if no response is received within 5 days). 

* Case # 00076665 - http://retrospect.com/support/case/5004U00000sShTs 

------------------------------------------
ref:_00DU0Kyj8._5004UsShTs:ref
Comment

November 17, 2020 04:52 AM

I can't get a Restore with System State to run to completion.  The Restore operation starts but then terminates without actually restoring files.  I disconnected all drives except my SSD (restore target), the HDD with the backup set sessions and a USB drive that has the the Retrospect catalog of backups.  In addition, the WinPE Disaster Recovery USB stick is attached.

Also, I got an odd message that the WinPE drive would be completely erased, just before the restore operation terminated.  I don't understand why that would happen, since I clearly set up the restore to go to the SSD drive.

Do you want me to upload some photos that I took with my phone?

I really need to get this system restore done.

My system runs Windows 10 Pro 64, version 20H2.  It is homebuilt with AMD 3900X CPU/ASUS ROG X570 Strix-E motherboard, with 32 GB of RAM.  The system has been running 100% stable for six months.  The SSD is set up for UEFI/GPT format.
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

x509,

Below are the actual recovery instructions from the head of Retrospect Tech Support, preceded in earliest-to-latest sequence by a few other Additional Notes that seem important for the Recovery process, all reformatted—so we don't need to scroll back and forth to read them—from your Support Case as you've posted it above.  I've upper-cased "GUID" as needed for descriptions—not commands—in instruction steps 9–10a.  Please let me know if I've left out any Additional Notes needed for Recovery—giving Support Case system dates and times, so I can edit them into this post.

Thanks from all of us. 😁

David Hertzberg

 

November 18, 2020 23:05 PM

Unlike previous attempts, this time the restore operation did restore files as necessary, even 
though I didn't change anything about the way I tried to do the restore operatiion.  However, there
was one error, as noted in the Operations Log.  As a result, the system would not reboot into 
Windows.  The boot drive was so messed up that the BIOS prompted me to use a Boot Floppy.

This time I did NOT get a message saying that the WinPE drive would be erased.

For emergency purposes, any time I do any operations with the C: drive, I use a simple, but 
effective program that backs up and restores partitions, nothing more.  It is called Macrium Reflect
Free, and I don't consider it a replacement for Retrospect, but it does allow me to experiment 
safely, and recover from situations where Retrospect has somehow damaged the C: drive.

November 20, 2020 14:10 PM – Robin – Director, WW Support

Dear ---, 

Retrospect Agent Reply can be found below. 


Agent Response: 

>I also tried to delete the Windows partitions and the various other partitions for a GPT drive. 
 But I was unable to tell Retrospect to restore to unformatted space on the boot physical drive. 
 What if I deleted the remaining partitions on that drive or tried to restore to a different SSD 
 drive?

When you boot from the recovery disk, you can use the menu option to configure drives. I typically 
suggest doing a complete disk reformat and then create one single partition for the entire disk.  
During the restore, the Microsoft ASR writer should automatically recreate the partitions to match 
what you had at the time of the backup. 

Please let us know if you have any additional questions,

Robin Mayoff
Director, WW Support
Retrospect, Inc.

November 20, 2020 14:36 PM – Robin – Director, WW Support

Dear ---, 

Retrospect Agent Reply can be found below. 


Agent Response: 

I asked my engineering team for feedback and they reported:

It looks like this is the issue, X:\ProgramData\Retrospect\RtrExec.dir\Exec\State\ESP doesn't exist.
The customer is sure that the system backed up was EFI?

If so it sounds like they ran into this open bug, "Bug 9135 - 
RestoreESPData: statePath X:\ProgramData\Retrospect\RtrExec.dir\Exec\State\ESP doesn't exist, return
kErrGeneric". The issue is that on some Windows 10 systems Retrospect gets a different error when 
attempting to check if the system is EFI that prevents Retrospect from backing the ESP. I am in the
process of fixing this issue today but the fix is for backup and not restore

Please let us know if you have any additional questions,

Robin Mayoff
Director, WW Support
Retrospect, Inc.

November 29, 2020 16:49 PM – Robin – Director, WW Support

Dear ---, 

Retrospect Agent Reply can be found below. 


Agent Response: 

Our engineers did some research into this issue, as part of an upcoming bug fix they are working on.
They came up with the following directions to correct the system after the restart fails to boot 
the computer after the restore:

Boot from the Windows installation media, when at the Install Windows screen hit Shift+F10 to bring
up a command prompt.  
Run diskpart, run list disk, if only one disk shows run, select disk 0.

    If there is more than one disk, they should be able to hopefully verify based on disk size. If 
    it is not disk 0 they would replace 0 with the number of the drive.

1. Run, list par, to verify that there are 4 partitions, Recovery, System, Reserved, Primary.
2. Run, list vol, the volume number they want to use in the next step will have a FAT32 file system
   and should be 99MB with System under info.
3. Run, select vol, (number identified from step 4), i.e. select vol 3
4. Run, assign letter=z and should see "Diskpart successfully assigned the drive letter". Type exit
5. Run mkdir Z:\EFI\Microsoft\Boot
6. Run xcopy /s C:\Windows\Boot\EFI\*.* Z:\EFI\Microsoft\Boot
7. Run z: then run cd EFI\Microsoft\Boot
8. Run the following commands
    a. bcdedit /createstore BCD
    b. bcdedit /store BCD  /create {bootmgr} /d “Windows Boot Manager”
    c. bcdedit /store BCD /create /d “My Windows 10” /application osloader (they can change 
       My Windows 10 to anything they want)
9. The last command run will return a GUID, example {D91FE7C2-605F-4A2B-B035-80A7C30979BF}, they 
   will need to use this GUID in the next step
10. Run the following commands
    a. bcdedit /store BCD /set {bootmgr} default {your_guid} (your_guid will be the GUID mentioned 
       in step 9)
    b. bcdedit /store BCD /set {bootmgr} path \EFI\Microsoft\Boot\bootmgfw.efi
    c. bcdedit /store BCD /set {bootmgr} displayorder {default}
    d. bcdedit /store BCD /set {default} device partition=c:
    e. bcdedit /store BCD /set {default} osdevice partition=c:
    f. bcdedit /store BCD /set {default} path \Windows\System32\winload.efi
    g. bcdedit /store BCD /set {default} systemroot \Windows
    h. exit
11. Reboot the machine.


Please let us know if you have any additional questions,

Robin Mayoff
Director, WW Support
Retrospect, Inc.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

x509,

As the head of Retrospect Tech Support reported was being worked on in his November 20, 2020 14:36 PM reply re-formatted as part of the post directly above, the engineering team has now released Retrospect Windows 17.5.2.103.  Its cumulative Release Notes contain the promised

Quote

Disaster Recovery: Fixed issue where Windows system error for RestoreESPData resulted in incomplete DR recovery (#9135)

That entry ends with a link to the newly-added Knowledge Base "Resources" article "CopyESPToDirectory error for XPMdStoreESP".  I think that article—which IMHO is as clear as mud—means the fix would avoid future backups such as the one from which you couldn't do Disaster Recovery.  If I'm right, the re-formatted instructions in his November 29, 2020 16:49 PM reply still apply to your Recovery problem; please tell us if they helped.

P.S.: If—as you threatened in the post directly below—you end up "writing that letter to some director or VP of sales pointing out that the inability to do a Disaster Recovery on a boot volume might be detrimental to review", you should ask them why "Retrospect Solo does not support creating a bootable environment."  We know darned well that there is no separate "backup server" download for Retrospect Windows Solo Edition, so some engineer must have disabled that capability via license code.  Tell them that I probably lost a Retrospect Solo sale to an Ars Technica forums poster, because I couldn't honestly say Retrospect Solo Edition for Windows—absent Desktop Edition—has a two-step bare-metal Disaster Recovery facility.

Edited by DavidHertzberg
P.S.: You should ask "some director or VP of sales" why "Retrospect Solo does not support creating a bootable environment."
Link to comment
Share on other sites

OK.  Give me a few days to catch up on my "honey do" list and I'll install the update.  I just red that article and it makes no sense at all to me, in terms of solving the root cause issue.  (Yes, I can follow their instructions, but ... )  Also, it's an incredible kludge, the kind that a startup might publish as a quick fix for their entire customer base of 20 "key accounts."  But Retrospect is hardly a startup, and presumably has thousands if not tens of thousands of customers.  And they are in a mature business area with lots of hungry competitors.

Since Robin said that this fix might not be available until early next year, it makes me suspect that Support and Engineering have a "failure to communicate" situation.  If this fix does work, then it saves me the trouble of writing that letter to some director or VP of sales pointing out that the inability to do a Disaster Recovery on a boot volume might be detrimental to review.  From existing customers who switch to another backup solution and stop paying support fees, or new customers who decide to go with a different solution. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...