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insanely long backup period


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We have a 800 Mhz imac G4 512MB of RAM backing up to a firewire external drive. It is set to poll all comepers and scan them to fine the designate work folder on each of the 10 computers all via 100MB ethernet network

 

The first time we ran a backup it took a while but once the intial backup was done everything was great, but then our drives filled up and we were hoping Retro had grooming from macs but it doesnt so we had to do a Recycle Backup. We are now running a backup that started about 3PM yesterday and it still has 4 computers to go. I think its about 50GB of data in all.

 

It seems to take for ever for the computers to get scanned and then there is this "matching" window that comes up and then i starts the transfer and then the comapring takes forever too. The trnasfer rates seem to be the only thing that seems to be at normal speed.

 

Am I not optimizing something?

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I know from past personal experience that this problem is memory related and is to do with comparing the backup catalogue of multiple clients (so as to be able to only backup a single copy of a file rather than mindlessly backing it up multiple times). To do this it has to read all those catalogues in to RAM (hence the thrashing).

 

However as we all know ye olde Retrospect is still an ancient PowerPC app and a 32bit one at that. It is therefore limited to a maximum of 2GB of memory on two counts.

 

1. Being a 32bit app it can only address a maximum of 2GB of RAM itself.

2. If you run it under Rosetta then Rosetta is also limited to 2GB.

 

Therefore we need to wait for a) Leopard (to allow GUI programmes like Retrospect to be able to use up to a 64bit address space of RAM - if re-written to do so) and B) an Intel native version of Retrospect so we can run it native on new Mac Pros with oodles of RAM.

 

I already run Retrospect on a dedicated dual processor PowerMac G4 with 2GB of RAM so I have done as much as I realistically can.

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