Beware of Acronis "Leftovers" Issues

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Arvy, Jan 17, 2012.

  1. MerleOne
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    MerleOne Registered Member

    In spite of all that has been said here about Acronis, I'd like to add my story about them.

    I was a convinced user of Macrium Reflect V4, then I upgraded my PC to a Win64 model, having also USB 3 ports. Reflect recovery media would neither recognize the Raid array (stripe 0) of my new system, nor the USB 3 ports. I followed the directions on the user forum to try to add the right drivers at boot time, to no avail.

    Then I got the info that only V5 could solve my issues, but at that time it was still buggy, according to other users, and Macrium wanted me to switch all 4 licenses of my Familiy Pack to V5. And for a helfty price.

    There was no reason for me to switch the 3 other PC to V5, there Reflect was running fine.

    At this moment, Bits du Jour offered a nice rebate for ATIH V11. I was nicely surprise to see that the recovery media was detecting both Raid Arrays & USB 3 nicely. I also discovered the elaborate backup management it proposes. Since then ATIH V11 has been running flawlessly on my system.

    Granted, I did not have to restore anything yet. To be safe I also run other imaging that are compatible with my system, and my preferred one is R-Drive from R-TT. Very light and powerful.
  2. Gorkster
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    Gorkster Registered Member

    I assume you're referring to ATIH 2011; this is the version I'm currently running on my Win7-64 system. I use their Linux boot CD and have been very impressed with the devices it recognizes on my system; I have quite the hardware setup.

    But trying to use it with the NAS for backup storage is problematic, either via the CD or the Windows application. There are also several other problems with the main program which I won't get into here. I've learned once I finally got things set up to just leave it alone and my backup schedules run fine, but if I need to change anything it's a hair-pulling experience. In order to get things to the point they are at now I had to manually delete registry entries previous ATIH installs left behind, completely delete and start my backup scheme over again several times -- things like that. All in an effort to try to get around bugs in the software.

    If all you do is click on the drives you want to back up and click the button to start, it should work fine. And I can verify I have also restored images successfully. But my experiences over the last 1-2 years indicate going much deeper can be very problematic.
  3. MerleOne
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    MerleOne Registered Member

    Yes, I meant the 2011 version, got confused again by Acronis change of version name.
    And OK, I see what you mean with the advanced usage you mentioned.
  4. Cheighlee
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    Cheighlee Registered Member

    Hi, I'm new here.

    So I've tried ATIH 2012, didn't see much improvement except dumb redesigned GUI so i decided to go back to ATIH 2011. And then it hit the fan, I uninstalled with Revo, and when I tried to install 2011 i got BSOD, snapman.sys etc.

    Restarted, revert to last known good configuration, tried again, no dice, bsod again. Now, the main problem is for me that ATIH 2011 work perfectly for me, well, except this huge problem. I have tried then their Acronis 2011 and 2012 uninstaller, nothing. And everytime I can't find nothing of that stuff in registry to delete, they aren't there simply. In system32/drivers sometimes there is snapman.sys and others, sometimes not.

    (Un)fortunately I made a Backup image ten days ago... which is nice, but with ATIH 2012 :( so now I'm stuck with system image with a program that I can't uninstall, and I don't wanna buy it either becuse it's rubbish.

    So when I restored that image via USB flash with Acronis 2011 i immediately used their default ATIH 2012 uninstaller, and that all went ok I guess. Again, nothing in registry but - in Program Files there is Acronis folder with timounter64.dll and tishell64.dll and I can't delete them because it says that they are running in Windows Explorer. I've checked services, proceses, even used Ultimate Troubleshooter to try to find it and nothing there.

    So now I'm stuck here, wondering what to do and will I be able to install ATIH 2011 or not and how to delete that remaining folder. It's really shame, because I really liked Acronis, fast backup, fast restore, great compression, easy to use and yet, fair number of valueable options as well. Now it's forcing me to find an alternative against my will. I'm on Win7 64bit, using Kingston SSD. I got all admin rights and stuff.

    But first of all, I want to purge my system (without reinstalling Win) from Acronis, but I can't due to issues described above. Sorry for the wall of text but I'm trying to be as much detailed here.

    Hope someone has something useful in mind, I'm out of gray matter on this one :(

    Thanks in advance.
  5. Arvy
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    Arvy Registered Member

    If you can't find any "leftovers" in your registry as described in my initial posting in this thread, then I'm afraid I can't offer much help or advice.

    Generally speaking, it's those registry issues that can cause BSOD problems. A few leftover files, on the other hand, seldom create a big problem by themselves. The exception would be a case where the driver file versions are mismatched with one another and/or their DLL support -- e.g., a version of snapman.sys that differs from the fltsrv.sys version or from the snapapi.dll version. Even that shouldn't cause a problem if they aren't loaded in the registry.

    Whatever you do, do NOT [repeat] NOT manually remove any driver files unless and until you are ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN that they aren't required for booting in the registry. Doing that leads to an almost certain death trap.
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2012
  6. napoleon1815
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    napoleon1815 Registered Member

    The best way to avoid these Acronis leftovers is to just burn the boot ISO and use that offline (assuming you can)...or just don't use them at all. Plenty of other solutions out there, that's for sure! For the record, I was a HUGE Acronis fan for years.
  7. Cheighlee
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    Cheighlee Registered Member

    Eh, thanks, I'll leave it then just as it is and install something better besides Acronis. But I actually don't know what to choose, so much choice and all of them seems to have something short.

    I essentially need:

    - Good Image compression (I got 30 or so GB of System partition + system reserved with high compression and max priority on 15GB in about 20-25min with ATIH)

    - That the image creation process lasts similar to ATIH and that the image can be validated and that it can work 100%. ATIH images absolutely never failed me and backup and restore times were almost ignorable. Not to mention that I use it on mild-regular basis.

    - Creating USB and DVD/ ISO rescue disk/ utility

    - Abilty to choose process priority and compression level

    - Suport for disks and partitions and ability to backup both (also to recognize separately System Reserved partition of Win7 from C: )

    - To have an image browser that is useable

    - That it has GUI

    - ... and that I can freakin uninstall it without hassle :(


    ATIH has all that ,except the last one... gorram it!

    http://themetapicture.com/media/funny-gif-man-jump-out-the-window.gif


    I'm currently reading about Easeus ToDO Backup Free and similar Easeus stuff, they seem to have almost all that, but I would like to hear some first hand impressions here.

    Also, I can use USB to boot and backup but for example now i have a partition that i want to back up on external drive and doing that like that is a drag :S
    ATIH was so and is still super user friendly and economic as hell, but this Windows mutilation-integration (MUTILGRATION!!!!) is unacceptable.

    Thanks again :D
    Last edited: May 1, 2012
  8. MerleOne
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    MerleOne Registered Member

    You could try R-Drive from www.R-TT.com.
  9. Gorkster
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    Gorkster Registered Member

    I'm not sure abut the image compression, but I'm currently testing Macrium Reflect (they have free, paid, and pro versions) and it fits the bill for your other requirements. (It does compress images, I just don't know how the size compares.) Reflect is #1 on my short list and I've looked into all the more popular solutions and tested several of them.
  10. Arvy
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    Arvy Registered Member

    Agree with Gorkster. Macrium Reflect, especially its user interface and documentation, seems to be about the best amongst those I've tried since abandoning Acronis a couple of months ago. It's not perfect. (See, for example, my posting in their forums at http://support.macrium.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=4377 ) But if you find any of them that actually is perfect, please let us all know.
  11. Cheighlee
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    Cheighlee Registered Member

    I've tried Macrium and didn't like it much because it warned me when I installed it that I have ATIH but it's gonna kind of remove it automatically... but it didn't. I guess I'll have to experiment .... and I'll report back then :D
  12. klarm
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    klarm Registered Member


    hi. is macrium reflect a sector to sector (for truecrypt drive backup)?
    does it have a boot cd/dvd option so I don't have to keep it installed under win?
    thanks
  13. Arvy
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    Arvy Registered Member

    Depending on the time of transisition, Macrium (and you and a lot of other people) may have got caught by Acronis's changeover in their drivers set-up. Acronis product removal was somewhat more straightforward, or at least more predictable, prior to their introduction of that sysdrv.sys handler. Even their own "cleanup" utilities don't always work without a few gotchas. So that can't really be attributed to Macrium as any fault of theirs.
  14. oldcoder
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    oldcoder Registered Member

    Ex-Acronis and now Macrium V5 Pro here. 4 user license and pleased to have bought it. Restored without trouble too.
  15. Gorkster
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    Gorkster Registered Member

    I'm not familiar with truecrypt drive backup, but it does have a sector by sector backup option. And yes, it currently comes with a linux boot CD, a WinPE boot CD (for a limited time) and with the ability to create a WinPE boot CD (NOT for a limited time.)
  16. Cheighlee
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    Cheighlee Registered Member

    Well, I've been busy these past days so I haven't got around to check ATIH alternatives. Now, I wanted from the very start to first thoroughly check out EaseUS ToDo Backup Free because of obvious reasons - It's Free :D

    So, I'm in fact pretty pleased with it, I'll go that far to say it's a perfect replacement to ATIH.

    It has almost all that ATIH has, interface is noob proof, it can backup folders, drives, system and it recognizes System Reserved partition. Bootable recovery disc/ USB is almost the same as ATIH's.

    Image creation time is pretty sweet as well, about 16 mins for 33 GB system C and system reserved partitions when set to highest priority and highest compression. Also the image is compressed at almost the same size as ATIH's - 16 GB (from 33 GB).

    Aaand, image browser is there, it works but you have to mount image, which is a no brainer.

    EaseUS ToDo is now also working along with ATIH FKIN! 2012 on my PC and no problems about conflicting or something like that for now.

    The only two things that I haven't tried yet are:

    - image restoring with rescue USB/ DVD. I will though when I get my laptop back (with freshly installed Win 7 that I left at work) so If something goes wrong It won't be so bad.

    - to uninstall it and check if it's all gone from all parts of the system.

    But, hastily though, I can actually recommend this to anyone who has been burnt by ATIH. It has almost all functions as ATIH, It's very familiar to use and It's free for personal use. Yes, it does have some spammy popups to upgrade to paid version, but you can uncheck that in msconfig/ Startup items.

    If recovering and unistalling is flawless as the other stuff is, I plan to use EaseUS and forget that I have ATIH somewhere in depths of my system drive.

    So, does anyone uses this and has some words of advice regarding EaseUS ToDo Backup Free?
  17. MerleOne
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    MerleOne Registered Member

    I use the workstation version (V2.51) on a PC. I like the WinPE environment at boot time that can be selected (like with Macrium) with no recovery media. I am mostly using the snapshot system to keep the system stable. I tried V4.0; slightly faster but which conflicts with FloatLED, a must have for me on this PC.

    I am not sure I really performed a restoration with that tool, so I cannot really help here, but I'd like to mention it's the most important test.

    I once used another imaging tool for months, then a problem occured and when I tried to restore the system, it didn't boot, so there is no substitute for this test.

    Another test I like to perform when I use an imaging software: I mount the latest image after creation and I run a chkdsk (without /f) on it : many times it has helped me see that the image was actually corrupt.
  18. Cheighlee
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    Cheighlee Registered Member

    Well, restoration from USB flash boot was a bit strange.

    It works as a "restore disks and partitions" but if you have saved backup on a same drive, but different partition that you don't plan restoring on, it won't work. But if you select SYSTEM Backup Restoring (or something like that) it work, no matter where backup is (except if it's on a partition that you're restoring on).

    So yeah, restore from rescue USB works, but it was a bit lenghtier than expected... but really not that much, half hour or so for 20GB backup.

    Uninstalled it, it left a folder in Program Files, but only with log files and temps so I erased it. Went in regedit, and tried to find related stuff in search, didn't find any.

    So for now, Easeus todo backup free works for me :D
  19. klarm
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    klarm Registered Member

    I tried Macrium Reflect boot CD (Linux, cos WinPE is asking me to connect to net and DL 1,7gb from MS?). I don't get it, It offers only restore from the boot CD?

    I also tried ToDo free bootCD and it offers only disk clone. Does it ask for image later on in the proces or it's only for cloning from disk to disk?

    I'm totally lost with all this backing-up, imaging softwares around. I just need a bootCD with easy GUI that I can use to do sector-to-sector backup of my TC encrypted drive (60gb). I don't care about other fancy options.

    cheers.
  20. Arvy
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    Arvy Registered Member

    You can create a WinPE boot disc with Macrium Reflect (not sure about EaseUS ToDo) that provides both backup and restore capabilities. Another advantage of a WinPE "rescue" disc is that it can be configured with drivers to support any and all types of storage devices that are supported by the Windows operating system itself. And the user interface will thus be one that you are already familiar with.

    It's even possible to create one that includes multiple "rescue" utilities (e.g. reboot.pro WinBuilder) but that gets a little bit trickier.
  21. Gorkster
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    Gorkster Registered Member

    It offers restores of the SYSTEM PARTITION only from a boot CD, for obvious reasons. It offers restores of other partitions from within the normal Windows install of the program.

    Reflect offers three different boot CDs. 1) The Linux boot cd; 2) WinPE boot cd (only comes with paid versions due to licensing costs from MS); and 3) WinPE custom build boot CD, which is the one you mentioned you have to dl 1.7gb from MS.

    MS is changing it's licensing strategy for WinPE and NO outside companies will no longer be able to offer #2 any longer after their current license expires. We will ALL have to dl the 1.7gb program from MS to make a WinPE CD for ALL software we purchase at that point. Macrim is one of the few who's MS license is still valid for a few months.
  22. klarm
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    klarm Registered Member

    thanks guys.
    If I choose the option with 1.7 DL from MS does it redirect me there , and I have to fill hundreds of forms or it's automatically downloading?
    cheers.
  23. Cheighlee
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    Cheighlee Registered Member

    Well Easeus can create rescue usb, dvd in the same fashion as Acronis. When you boot from it, you get standard program interface with options and ways to restore or backup.

    With Easeus ToDo Free you basically get this same screen as in Windows
    http://i.imgur.com/XYW8E.png

    I'm not sure how you only got Clone disc.

    klarm, what are you actually trying to do? Backup drive/ system with rescue boot disc or restore image with ito_O
  24. klarm
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    klarm Registered Member

    I'm trying to find the easiest/safest way to be able to do a sector to sector backup of my truecrypt encrypted system drive (SSD 64gb with Win7 64bit). I want to be able to do this outside OS, like I did before with Ghost boot CD while I had unencrypted OS.

    I'm still not sure which free applications support a creation of the boot CD to do this. and I need to do this backup on a USB external HDD to image. so I suppose this should be called drive to image (raw). I know it is possible, I'm just not sure which apps can do this.

    I know it will require the same amount of space (~64gb) on the backup drive and will take alot of time to process but I don't really care about that. I would do this backup once per month maybe, over night.

    I would be the happiest if I could use Ghost but it seems that my version (v8.x) doesn't support -ir switch so i guess I can't use ghost. I'm not sure if -ia switch is similar cos that one I have an option to use inside ghost.

    check this link:
    http://www.symantec.com/business/support/index?page=content&id=TECH107956




    for now I found these backup tools and will try to confirm which can do this that I need:

    Macrium Reflect FREE Edition - LinuxCD (can't use for this option); WinPE CD (1.7gb DL from MS needed so for now didn't try)

    EaseUS Todo Backup Freeware - only restore option is offered from bootCD

    Paragon Backup & Recovery 2012 Free - didn't try yet

    Parted Magic - didn't try yet

    Clonezilla - it seems it can be used to my goal, will investigate more

    Trinity Rescue Kit - can be used, doesn't have a gui, typing needed ;-).


    BTW I apologize if this is getting way off-topic. maybe we could create a new thread dedicated to truecrypt backup?

    thank you.
  25. Arvy
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    Arvy Registered Member

    That might be best for your purposes. In fact, there are already quite a few other threads here in this forum that discuss a wide range of other backup software (i.e. other than Acronis) and that might be more appropriate. This one is diverging quite a long way away from its initially stated topic.