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Files missing after restoring volume, but exist in backup set

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Running Retrospect Single Server 7.5.387 with driver on Win XP with up-to-date everything, using VXA-2 tape library.


Restore of a Intel Mac client (running 10.4.11 with client 6.1.130) volume seems to have skipped many files at random, in spite of the fact that these files exist in the backup set.


This mac hard disk became corrupted, and though DiskWarrier could create a directory the disk was not bootable. However, the contents of the disk could be extracted to a separate volume. When I restored the original disk from Retrospect tape backup, Retrospect cryptically said that 922000 files out of 926000 files would be restored (what does that mean?). Then, the actual restore took about 24hrs, much of it with the Retrospect process using 99% of the CPU and displaying a status of "Completing restore" -- it finally broke loose and finished.


However, it immediately was obvious that several files were missing, e.g. login keychain, dock preferences, etc. Comparing just the restored Preferences folder with the version on the extracted volume shows that at least 11 files are missing. However, a search of the backup set I used for the restoration finds these files in several different snapshots.


I had selected the latest snapshot available when doing the restore, but this snapshot was incomplete; the mac client crashed during the backup, presumably causing (or because of) the problem I am trying to recover from. Could the fact that I selected this incomplete snapshot, and not an earlier one that ran to completion, have caused these missing files? I thought that you should always select the latest snapshot, and Retrospect will find all the files from all backup sessions to create the most complete version of a volume.


Anyway, I'm curious what I should do to restore *all* the files I have available on tape. I am dismayed at the prospect of comparing the restored volume (missing files) to the extracted external disk (with many of the missing files, but with unknown corruption that DiskWarrier was unable to correct).

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Could the fact that I selected this incomplete snapshot, and not an earlier one that ran to completion, have caused these missing files?


yes; Retrospect restored the files that were listed in the incomplete snapshot. You may also have a corrupted catalog.





Hmm, that's weird because that incomplete snapshot only has about 3600 files in it, yet Retrospect reported that it was restoring 922000 files (out of 926000 files), suspiciously missing about the same number of files that were in the incomplete snapshot.


Maybe my nomenclature is broken, and I had snapshots and sessions confused.


So I seem to have another snapshot with multiple sessions from the previous day, so I'll try that and see what I get.



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Snapshots and sessions don't really correlate. A "session" is an incremental backup session, during which needed files are backed up according to the set policy.


A "snapshot" (Retrospect's patented difference from other backup software) is a record of the state of the source volume at the time of the session backup. In addition to metadata (permissions, etc.), it has pointers into many past sessions, indicating where the files are that make up the snapshot so that the restore can be done rather quickly (and accurately). Other backup software requires you to go back to the last full backup, then restore every incremental from that forward to get the current state of each file.


Depending on how you have matching set, Retrospect will back up only one copy of a file even if it is on multiple volumes (and computers).


When it works, it works well.



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