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I am backing up a laptop and an external HD (La Cie) onto anther external HD (La Cie). All of a sudden I'm receiving the 206 Error (media failure). The HD I'm backing up to seems to be fine. I can see the files on it (archived) and I "Verified" the drive( in the Tools menu) and it checks out as fine too. It says it's "Ready" when my backup session gets ready to put new files on it, but Retrospect will not continue to use it. It wants a different drive to to my backup to. The manual has info mainly about tape drives under this error code, which I'm not using. I could try to erase the whole drive and start a fresh backup to it...but is that my only choice? I appreciate any help with this.

thanks!

Deborah

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That's not the question I asked. When you set up the backup set, did you specify that the backup destination was for

(a) a File backup set, or

(B) a removable media backup set ?

 

Asked a different way, if you don't remember, when you go to Configure > Backup Sets, what is given on the second line of text (below the name of the backup set) ?

 

Russ

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No, at the very top of the window. But you are looking at the right window!

 

You should see, in the window title bar, the words "Some Arbitrary Name You Gave for the Backup Set"

Below that, a the left edge, you should see a little icon. To the right of that Icon you will see two lines of text:

The first line will be the same as the words in the window title bar ("Some Arbitrary Name ...")

Below that will be the line of interest. It will say "Tape Backup Set" if you are backing up to tape. Don't think that's what we have here.

Other possibilities are:

CD/DVD Backup Set (don't think you have this)

Removable Disk Backup Set

File Backup Set

Internet Backup Set (don't think you have this).

 

Which does yours say?

 

See pages 47-48 in the Retrospect 6.x Users Guide. A sample picture of the window is shown on page 153.

 

Russ

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From the slightly eratic information provided, I'd guess that a Removable Backup Set is being used (clue; "drive to (do) my backup to").

 

The capability to treat external drives as removable media requires the user to change the program's preferences from their default configuration, leading to the question of "are you sure this is the best Type of Backup Set for your particular needs?"

 

Since the configuration worked in the past, another question would be "what has changed since it worked?"

 

Also, information describing _exactly_ when the error is displayed would be helpful.

 

Dave

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yes, it's set up as a removeable drive. I thought that any external HD would be considered as such...

I wouldn't say it works best as such. In fact, I barely know what I'm doing, as you can see. I am simply trying to backup all files on both my laptop and an external HD onto anther external HD. I'm told that archiving is "good" as well as compression so that I don't run out of space too quickly on the backup drive. Beyond that, I'm all ears as to the simplest and best way to do this. I'm happy to start all over again with a better method.

thanks!

Deborah

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Ok. That's the problem. First you need to understand the difference between the two.

 

A File Backup Set stores the backup data in a file on a disk with a filesystem. Its advantage is that you can have other files on the disk. That's not what you have, but is what you think you have.

 

A disk backup set takes over the entire disk, much as if it were a tape cartridge, etc. Its advantage is that the backup set can span multiple disks if the backup set grows too large.

 

You have to first erase a disk before it can become a disk backup set. That's a safety measure so that Retrospect doesn't wipe out your disk with other files. You cannot change the type of a backup set once it is created; you will have to create a new backup set and "forget" the old one. See page 47 of the User Guide.

 

Deborah, the learning curve is very steep on Retrospect, and it uses different terminology from other backup programs (and the terminology has even changed over the years, which confuses us old-timers). We've all been there. You will get the hang of it.

 

There's a discussion of use of disk drives for backup on page 35-37 of hte user guide.

 

Russ

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yes, I do understand that I'm using the entire disk, and that's what I'd like to do - it's dedicated only to backing up these hard drives. Do you think I should be doing a different type of backup? And yes, I understand that I'd need to completely erase the backup HD in order to start over.

 

It will take a little while for me to generate the error I was getting... but I'll let you know when I get it again. It seems that all the files are getting compared and then when it's time to move any new files onto the backup drive the error is generated.

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Ok, as long as you understand that you are using the entire disk. What has me thinking that you really want a file backup, and that there are files on the disk (which implies that there is a filesystem on the disk) is your original post:

Quote:

I can see the files on it

 


A removable disk backup is fine. Those people who use a removable disk backup generally have more than one disk that they swap in as one gets full. You will not be able to use the Finder to access the removable disk backup because only Retrospect will be able to read it (in contrast to a File backup set, where the file grows as needed, and is stored on a filesystem that is readable by the Finder).

 

I suspect that your problem is that you have a filesystem on the disk. Have you tried erasing the disk? That will make it ready for use. See pages 30-36 of the user guide.

 

Also, I believe that you should be doing a "Normal" backup, not archive. Archive moves files from one volume to another. That's not a backup. Are you wanting to remove the old files as they are copied to the new volume? That's what Archive is doing, and is really not utilizing the power of Retrospect.

 

Russ

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Hi, I just see the retrospect data files in the HD-not readable files. I'd be happier backing my data up as regular files but I couldn't figure out how to use compression in such a backup. And w/o compression I'd have to get another drive to swap out with - that is if I want to keep a bit of the history rather than wipe out the data and start over. (I know I'm using the wrong words here but I hope you know what I mean). Interestingly, I asked the group a while back how I could get more data on the backup drive and that was when someone recommended the archive/compression thing. Do you know of a way to do a normal backup and also compress the backed up data?

thanks again

Deb

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oh, and I didn't get an error message during the backup. Retrospect asked me to choose a different drive to backup to - it said that the one I'd been using belonged to a different backup set.. It was when I was looking in the log that I found the error message. The error happened when retrospect tried to copy the data to the backup disk - error 206.

thx

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Why did you think that you couldn't do software compression on a file backup set? I think it just works. In fact, I just tried moments ago, and it does work. You get that option when creating the Backup Set. Even if you have Retrospect set up to do software compression, it will use hardware compression if the device (like most tape drives) support hardware compression. You also get an option for a selector that will disable compression on certain files that don't compress well (set to no files or all files if you want, or choose the default selector that "does the right thing" most of the time).

 

As for Retrospect asking you to choose a different drive, sounds to me like you tried to create a new backup set with the same destination as the old one, rather than doing another "normal" backup to the same prior backup set. Either use the same old backup set as the destination, or you can "recycle" the old and reuse, and it will start over.

 

The model for Retrospect is that you usually do a "Normal" backup. The first time it will do what other programs call a "full" backup (because there are no files yet in the backup set), and then every other time it will do what other programs call an "incremental" backup, adding files that have changed, etc. The "snapshot" is an illusion, and presents to the user the contents of the system at the time of backup, but is really a compilation, starting at the very first backup in the set, rolling forward with files that were added and deleted, etc., at each backup, even though "incremental" backups were really done at each step.

 

A "recycle" clears the backup set and lets you start over. To "really" get rid of a backup set, you have to do two steps (annoying to me): (1) "forget" the backup set in Configure > Backup Sets, then (2) delete the catalog of the forgotten backup set. Until you do both of these, you can't create another backup set of the same name.

 

Clearer?

 

Russ

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I actually do understand that. When I first setup Retrospect I did setup a normal backup and the compression option was greyed out. Maybe I'll try this all over again, when I have some more time, and report back to you as to how it goes! smile.gif

As for the current problem, I have a script that does my backup every night, so I haven't touched the backup at all - same old script every night. Why this problem has come up I don't know. It's possible there was a power outage at some point when it was backing up. I seem to recall there was one at one point but I can't remember when. We have power outages all the time for some weird reason (leave it to Silicon Valley to have power outages all the time!) That is the only thing that i can think of that may have caused the problem.

 

Thank you so much for explaining all this. I do think I'll just try to create a normal backup again, wiping out both items you'd mentioned. I have trouble finding where the catalogue is...is that on my hard drive or on the backup disk?

thanks!

Deb

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You get the choice of where to save the catalog file when you created the backup set. See page 48 of the user guide. I don't know what you chose.

 

But you can find it by going into terminal and typing (substituting your backup set name between the quotes):

find / | fgrep "Your Backup Set Name"

 

That's a pipe symbol (the shift of the \ key) between the two.

 

That will show you the path.

 

Russ

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Quote:

Dave, you are contaminating the witness into giving leading testimony

 


 

What can I say; I felt a brief flash of pity; must be the holiday season. Don't get used to it... smile.gif

 

> I'm told that archiving is "good" as well as compression so that I don't run out

> of space too quickly on the backup drive.

 

One wonders who is providing the advice. As Russ noted, Archive is a specific term in Retrospect. It is not Backup. If you want Backup, Archive is Not Good.

 

> You will not be able to use the Finder to access the removable disk backup because only

> Retrospect will be able to read it (in contrast to a File backup set, where the file grows as needed,

> and is stored on a filesystem that is readable by the Finder).

 

Actually, I'm pretty sure that there is less difference between the file systems on Removable Backup Set Members and volumes containing File Backup Sets then you imply here.

 

When Retrospect erases a disk, it doesn't reformat it. The disk maintains the same file format as before Retrospect stated using it (to be truthful, I haven't tested this, but I'm pretty sure).

 

For both Types of Backup Sets, only Retrospect can read the data on the file it writes.

 

For both Backup Set Types, the Retrospect data file grows and grows.

 

The main differences are that the Removable has a Catalog file that is independent from the Data file, while a File must have both parts in the same directory, and that each Member of a Removable Backup Set must have the correct volume name for Retrospect to recognize it.

 

A member of a Removable Backup Set _can_ contain other files, but only if those files are added to the volume after Retrospect has already erased and renamed the volume.

 

> I do think I'll just try to create a normal backup again, wiping out both items you'd mentioned.

 

The discussion so far has not been limited to Normal vs. other Backup Actions, but to the different Types of Backup Sets. Unless you expect (or need the option to) span your stored backups across multiple hard drives, you should leave your Media Handling Preferences set to their default, and use a File Backup Set stored on the external drive.

 

 

Dave

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Quote:

When Retrospect erases a disk, it doesn't reformat it. The disk maintains the same file format as before Retrospect stated using it (to be truthful, I haven't tested this, but I'm pretty sure).

 


I might be mistaken, but it's the understanding that the documentation gave me. I thought that Retrospect used the raw device for removable disk backups, so that the model was exactly like a removable tape cartridge, and that dd could get the data off the raw disk.

 

russ

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A little testing is a wonderful thing, but it turned out to be difficult to access a removable device; my how times have changed.

 

But I found a machine with a built-in Zip drive, and found that my earlier assertions were slightly off.

 

When I wrote "When Retrospect erases a disk, it doesn't reformat it. The disk maintains the same file format as before Retrospect stated using it " I was spouting nonsense. In OS X, erase is where formatting takes place, so in fact Retrospect _does_ reformat the disk.

 

But the formatting option used is good old Mac OS Extended; if you start with a Removable Media Member formatted as any other OS X type (Extended Journaled, Extended Journaled Case Sensative, etc) it will be changed to HFS+ before Retrospect begins to write to it.

 

But that's it; Retrspect accesses the volume and writes to it using standard Apple API's. Even ejecting the disk when it's full is something that's built into the OS, and Retrospect just calls to it.

 

The ability, introduced in 5.1, to use fixed platter hard drives as if they were removable platter devices is a kludge, designed to provide similar capabililties to the Windows version's Disk Backup Sets. The latter are more powerful, but I don't know very much about them.

 

Dave

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