Backup space automatically managed?

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by tcolling, Sep 25, 2004.

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  1. tcolling

    tcolling Registered Member

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    Hi -

    I just downloaded the Acronis True Image trial product and installed it.

    Here's what I need for it to do: I want to back up my laptop's hard drive to an external hard disk drive every night. In a perfect world, I would like to do incremental backups (after having first done a full backup as a baseline) and then have the Acronis software execute a scheduled task every night at 1 AM to do the incremental back ups.

    I have figured out how to do the above and have it working now.

    Here's the question: eventually the external hard disk drive will run out of space, as it fills up with incremental back ups. Will the Acronis software take care of this automagically so that I don't have to periodically intervene and blow away the original full backup image and incremental backups and start over again?

    Thanks,
    tim
     
  2. wdormann

    wdormann Registered Member

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    No, it's not automatically managed.

    I think you have at least two options.

    1) Schedule an incremental backup to run nightly or whenever. Note that no "full" backup is required, since an incremental backup that is run when no "base" backup exists is a full backup. Schedule your own housekeeping script through Windows own scheduler to run shortly before the Acronis scheduled job . For example, you could use the following VBS:

    set oFs = WScript.CreateObject("Scripting.FileSystemObject")
    set oDrives = oFs.Drives

    for each oDrive in oDrives
    Select case oDrive.DriveLetter
    Case "D"
    'msgbox oDrive.FreeSpace & vbcrlf
    if oDrive.FreeSpace < 1000000000 then ' Less than 1 GB free...
    'msgbox "Cleanup Time!"
    oFs.DeleteFile("D:\*.tib"),DeleteReadOnly
    else
    'msgbox "You've got enough space"
    end if
    End Select
    next


    What that script does is deletes your TIB files when the amount of free space on your D: drive has dropped below 1GB. Feel free to customize to your liking.

    2) I don't use this method, but ...
     
  3. djmorgan

    djmorgan Registered Member

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    It may be just me but this incremental thing has me a little confused.... :eek: IF it comes time to do a reload and you have done incremental backups your going to have to do the full and then each subsequent increment lets say 7 as you do an incremental each day.

    Now whist the backups are quicker to do the reload is slow.

    Why not just do one full back up each time, this will either overwrite the previous of in enough space will sit next ot the previous, then when you do a reload you only have one file to deal with not 7!

    Some will say that the back up takes longer sure but I back up 10+ gig in 12 minutes and whilst that is being done I can still work with my computer - yes during that time I try to minimise disk activity... :p

    I don't know am I being to simply about this thing o_O
     
  4. wdormann

    wdormann Registered Member

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    No. You don't do multiple restores. When you go to restore, ATI will list all the dates when a backup was performed and you choose which date you would like to restore to.
     
  5. djmorgan

    djmorgan Registered Member

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    As I have never been unlucky enough to do a restore yet, what your saying needs a little more explanation.

    When I played around with ATI early on using incremental it made the original file lets call that A

    Each incremental is then smaller than A and of course has a different time stamp..... lets call the next 3 incremental backups B C D

    Now the alterations in B C D will be different and varied and not the same sectors.

    If I then come to do a full restore using just D will not do it! either me or the program needs to first load the full image A then ALL subsequent images to D if I just selected to restore to C then Full and B.

    Am I wrong with the above o_O
     
  6. wdormann

    wdormann Registered Member

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    Yes, you are completely wrong. As I said, the restore process is done in one step, based on the date you choose.
     
  7. robere

    robere Guest

    Using your example if you restore D it will go and pull all of the data from the previous backups, A-C, and apply what is needed from them along with D to build the full restore to the point that your system was at when D was created.
     
  8. q1aqza

    q1aqza Registered Member

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    Not that I like using it myself but I do believe Ghost 9 can do this.
     
  9. paperwell

    paperwell Guest

    robere,

    if you set the 1G drive as FIFO as above suggest in script, for example: if incremental images A;B;C:D; fills the 1G and you do another incremental which would be E, you lose incremental A. Now, how is TI gonna look at A B C D E increments to pick up on the changes when A is gone?
     
  10. paperwell

    paperwell Guest

    hmm, is it that when incremental A is created(from my example above) it includes the changes from the base image. Meaning the A incremental has the base image and changes up to when A is made. When you do incremental B, it'll include incremental A + changes up to when B is made. When C is made, it takes B and adds in the new changes from when B was made to when C is created. Then when D is created, TI takes C and adds in the new changes from when C was made to when D is created. Then when E is created TI takes D and adds in the new changes from when D was made to when E is created, from which the 1G drive would then delete incremental A.
     
  11. paperwell

    paperwell Guest

    So in essence, when you create a new incremental the previous is no longer needed?

    Is my thinking correct?
     
  12. robere

    robere Registered Member

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    That one you got me on...
    I haven't tested the scenario that script creates so I couldn't tell you. Based on my understanding of how this "works", and that is only from my use of the software not from any input from Acronis since there support is obviously so stellar, that shouldn't work.

    Also the way that I read the script is that when it sees the partition as full it smokes every TIB in it, not just the earliest one. Then TI does not see a full backup so the first incremental that it creates is a full, not a partial.

    Excert from User Manual...

    An incremental image contains only data from those hard disk sectors that changed after the previous disk image (complete or incremental) was created. Thus such an image is significantly smaller and takes less time to create than a full image. However, as it does not contain all the necessary information about disks (partitions), it requires more than one image for restoration, including the current incremental image and at least one previous image or, ideally, all the previous incremental images and the initial complete image. You can't foresee the exact number of images required for a particular restoration, as it depends on how much data changes between image creations.
     
  13. wdormann

    wdormann Registered Member

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    Just a clarification of the script I posted...

    ATI will create images to the specified backup drive until the free space on teh backup drive drops below a certain point. In this case 1GB. Once that threshold is exceeded, all of the TIB files are deleted and the next time the scheduled job runs it will create a full backukp. And the process repeats.

    If it were differential backups, then you could do some more intelligent management of your backups. (Such as deleting specific differential backups, but leaving the full). But since potentially every backup file is needed to do a restore, you cannot delete individual incremental backups without compromising the entire backup's integrity.

    The fault with this method is that when that threshold is reached and the TIBs cleared, that is one point where you may not have backup images if you have not offloaded them elsewhere.
     
  14. Jbmoar

    Jbmoar Registered Member

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    Location:
    San Jose,Costa Rica
    Hello,You have A Great idea of how to delete the incremental Images,Just what I've been wanting to do but I Lack the computer knowledge to write this kind of a file, could you explain to me a bit more detailed how to write this script file ...

    I Have my backup images saved on My D:/Backup Images and C:/ Is my primary as most if this helps to understand how And where I Want the script file to delete from and second, how do I Have windows schedler start this command.
     
  15. wdormann

    wdormann Registered Member

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    Open Notepad
    Copy and Paste the bold text
    Save as "cleanup.vbs" for example
    Go to Control Panel -> Scheduled Tasks
    Add that VBS file as a new task. (Schedule it to run just before your acronis jobs are scheduled)
     
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