lesson learned the hard way (almost)

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by dwalby, Apr 9, 2009.

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  1. dwalby

    dwalby Registered Member

    Nov 20, 2007
    I always do restores without bothering to validate the archive first, as I never seemed to have any problems with archive files or the restore process itself. But then a few months ago I had a corrupt archive, which was no big deal, I just used the one from the week before instead.

    Yesterday I had a new problem that could have ended very badly, but fortunately worked out OK just by luck. Upon doing a restore of my C: partition the hard drive that contains all my image files started to have problems. Part way through the restore I got the dreaded "can't read from sector X" error. So now my original C: partition had been deleted, and partially restored, so I assume it was gone forever, since I now had unallocated space where it used to be. If the restore hadn't started at all I suspect I could have undone the partition delete operation, but since it had progressed about 25% through the restore I think it had already overwritten a lot of sectors before terminating due to the disk error.

    So now I had no C: partition, and the drive with all my backups was having read problems so I wasn't sure I could successfully restore any of them. Fortunately, the second image file I tried restored OK. I also had an old disk from 18 months ago with XP on it that I could have swapped in as a last resort, but wasn't looking forward to doing 18 months of Windows updates.

    So this time I was lucky, but from now on I think I'm going to spend the extra few minutes validating the archive before actually going forward with the restore process.
  2. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

    Oct 31, 2005
    Your situation underscores two things, apart from the validation issue.

    1. Keep more than one backup of your system. Something can go wrong with stored data for a number of reasons. Disk storage is cheap these days so there is little reason to need to restrict a backup to one copy.

    2. Even if you have 100 backups on an external disk, everyone of them can be reduced to garbage by a single failure affecting the disk.

    I use more than one external HD and rotate them for secondary backup storage. My primary storage is a second internal HD on the machine(s). I do not copy every image to the secondary storage - only when I think I should.

    If you only have one backup, at the moment the partition is deleted on the PC being restored you have zero backups - the only thing you have is the image being restored and if it fails....
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