Backup Validation

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by markusw, Jan 27, 2007.

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  1. markusw

    markusw Registered Member

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    I've finished a complete backup with acronis true image home version 10.
    Now, there are 7 *.tib-files on a external harddisc (external hdd in fat-format).

    Have I choose every tib-archive seperate for validation of the backup or "know" the software that the 7 files belong to one backup when I choose mybackup1.tib (e.g.) ?

    markus
     
  2. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    Just select one and TI knows it is part of an archive and will validate the entire archive. If you select each one you will validate the entire archive 7 times!
     
  3. Xpilot

    Xpilot Registered Member

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    Of course you could make a rule like mine " only restore to a spare drive".
    I never do any validations. I prove the functionality of the images by restoring them to another drive.
    Working that way makes validations a complete waste of time and resources.


    Xpilot
     
  4. markusw

    markusw Registered Member

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    thx :)
    markus
     
  5. JimmyD

    JimmyD Registered Member

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    And then what? Making sure it boots ok is one step but how can you be sure that each and every data file got transferred accurately? Are you assuming that if it boots, then everything else is ok?

    Exactly how are validations done? Verifying some type of checksum or something like that? If so, I would hardly call that a waste of time and resources, especially when it doesn't take that long at all.

    I think a combination of both methods would be the best. First validate the image and then restore to a spare drive to make sure it boots up ok.
     
  6. markusw

    markusw Registered Member

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    How? Do you change your master/slave configuration of your internal hdd's ?

    markus
     
  7. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    markusw,

    If your concern is the handling of multiple *.tib files for each image, then you can reformat your Backup*HDD to the NTFS system. Then you will get a single *.tib file per image.
     
  8. Howard Kaikow

    Howard Kaikow Registered Member

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    Validations are done with a checksum.
    It makes no sense to not validate.
    If you want to verify that the content of the image has the same content as the files IMMEDIATELY after backup, run the following:

    ReadFile
    GetFileTypeDistribution
    CompareDrives

    Of course, a few files will be constantly changing, but the CompaqreDRives program will list them.
     
  9. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hello Jimmy,

    As far as I'm aware, TI "verifies" the correctness of restored data in real-time by calculating a checksum for each block of sectors as they are being restored against the original checksums that were created and stored as part of the backup image. If they don't match then TI throws up the infamous "image is corrupt" message.

    Because TI deletes the destination partitions just prior to restoring an image one needs to validate it first to ensure that it could actually be restored. However, by carrying out a restore to a spare drive immediately after creating an image then you can, as Xpilot does, do away with this preliminary validation and just rely on the real-time verification done by TI. If the restore failed due to a corrupt image then it doesn't really matter as the original partitions are still intact and you would just create another backup image.

    Regards
     
  10. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

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    It obviates running validations, but does it use any less resources or time? Doesn't the restore take as long as a validation? For some folks, even longer. YOu need a spare disk don't you? That's one more disk than you need if you do validations.

    Doing test restores on each backup that you would otherwise validate is a bit more rock solid than doing validations, you're testing more than just the data bytes -- but I can't see it using less time or resources, actually, a bit more, give or take a disk, give or take a few minutes. . .
     
  11. Xpilot

    Xpilot Registered Member

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    Jimmy D
    Running a validation of an image does not ensure that it will restore the original in its entirety though it reduces the odds of failure.

    Time taken can be considerably longer than restore times because of the quirky multiple validations that are run if one has more than one image.

    Markusw
    I swap one master hard drive for another . They are in removable drawers. There are no configuration changes needed. The master drives are jumpered as cable select and the secondary drive is a fixed slave. This way the computer can still boot with no changes even if the slave drive fails.

    Howard
    I have run for years without using your suggested programs and I have no reason to start using them now.
    However if I run into any problems in the future which I cannot solve by my usual methods I will bear them in mind as a fall back.

    Menorcaman
    As usual your clarity of thought and expression leap from the page.

    Shieber
    With a stock of ten full images in my archive location it would take considerably more time to run the crazy muliple validation process.
    As I do my restores from one internal hard drive to another internal hard drive I have chosen the fastest and most reliable method available.
    Image creation is also from one internal drive to another and is the best way to go IMHO.
    Typical Image creation times are 35 minutes at the present while restore times are less than 15 minutes including the re-boot and drive swapping times.
    Some months ago I ran a validation of my backups just to see what happened. the result was it took about 90 minutes and of course I did/could? not use the computer while this was running.

    Xpilot
     
  12. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    I validate each full image backup (ATI 10) and it takes a couple of minutes less to validate, say 12 minutes vs 14 minutes for backup (15 GB of disk data).

    Yes you can use the computer for other tasks during both backups and validations. There is no time impact for the ATI operations but a slight impact on other computer functions but much less than the impact during anti virus scanning.
     
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