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Hey! We might finally be able to reproduce our bug!

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I'm hoping somebody else might try this on their end to see if they can reproduce this.


Our long-standing/long-suffering bug:


Using Mac Retrospect, we backup our Windows XP clients. We use Backup Server. We have it set to backup clients weekly.


What happens is that *some* of the clients will backup on schedule one week, but then when the next week comes around, the client -- in "backup server" -- gets set to "Deferred" -- even though the time is ASAP. I can not override this deferral from "backup server" by changing the date/time, etc...


(An "immediate" backup works -- so it's not that the clients are unreachable -- it's that they can't be backed up via "backup server" for some reason...)


The only resource for these Windows clients is to *reboot* to get backed up again.



However, I checked with a couple of the client users. They said they had connected to their machines using *Remote Desktop* during the week.



SO -- I'm wondering if there's anybody out there that does something similar: Backs up Windows XP clients (7.x client -- doesn't matter what version), but uses "backup server" to back them up. *And* their clients connect to those machines occasionally using Remote Desktop.


It would be just as valuable to me to hear that you have clients doing this in this setup and you've *never* seen this problem (clients deferring until reboot.)


Anybody? I'd really like to get this bug resolved (or at least finally reproducable so it can be fixed in whatever version of Mac Retrospect ever comes out...)


- Steve

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I did an immediate backup scan (all files) of one of the computers deferring this.


There is no C:\Windows\Temp directory on the computer (at least none seen by Mac Retrospect). Should I be looking somewhere else?



(edited): I searched for "retro" and "defer" on this machine and didn't find anything either.


Now what?

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Contacted a number of users experiencing this problem. None found a "retro_defer" file in C:\Windows\Temp (but I asked them to clean out that folder anyway.)


It didn't occur to ask: Is this file supposed to be visible or is it a "hidden" file?



Assuming this isn't the problem -- what next?

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It is not hidden.


I have seen "defer" happen when a screensaver or another 3rd party utility is pushing "enter" when the dialog box appears. Defer is the default, and Enter on the keyboard causes defer to happen.


Take a client out of defer mode. Start proactive and watch the client computer to see what happens.


Are the users sleeping hard disks or running any utilities at night when the computer is idle?

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As a related question: The PC in my office: I *intentionally* deferred it from it's daily backup (it's now set for 10:00 p.m. tonight.)


However, in doing so, there's no "retro_defer" file *anywhere* on the computer (did a search including hidden files.)


So what's controlling *that* functionality if it's not this "retro_defer" file you referenced above?



(and as relates to your "screen saver", "sleeping" question -- in backup server, I've seen computers say "Ready" and "ASAP" that backup server checks, then moves along -- I assume those computers are sleeping.) This is different from the "Deferred/ASAP" issue...)

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Mayoff -- feel free to contact me off-line if you want to. I currently have 3 machines deferring stuff that I could go physically examine and try different things on if you want (short of rebooting -- which I know works.)



Oh, and another follow-up -- even if the computers were *sleeping*, or doing something else: I can *still* do an immediate backup to these computers. That continues to function.


it's only "backup server" -- which is what I use 24x7 -- that's failing here.

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Had one user on the phone showing this.


Had him go to the "Proactive Backup" tab in the client. Client was set to "according to normal schedule".


He toggled it to "as soon as possible" and applied it


I watched the backup server go around and scanned through all the machines. It paused on that one and skipped right along to the next one again.


Asked him to restart -- backup worked.

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*And* for what it's worth...


I just downloaded/installed the Windows 7.5 application and added one of these deferring clients to a "Proactive Backup" script in that program and started it (it's the only client there...)


The "Status" on that shows "Deferred", then it goes blank, then Deferred, then blank (as it's checking presumably) wi the "Next Backup" set to ASAP.



So it's not just the mac *app* doing this -- but specifically the Windows *client* at fault here.


Now -- how to fix the client?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, crap -- purging C:\windows\temp did not help.


Machines rebooted once during the past week when the Windows Updates were released -- backup went fine after that.


*A week later* (meaning this week) -- machines are deferring the backup again.


This is clearly a Windows client problem. We need some help here from EMC as we can't necessarily force people to restart every day just to get backed up!

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