Can Drive Snapshot work with DiskCryptor, or something else?

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Enigma83, Oct 15, 2013.

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  1. Enigma83

    Enigma83 Registered Member

    Apr 20, 2013
    United States
    Re: New Drive Snapshot build released.

    So.....I recently found out about DS and decided to try it out as one of my backup strategies. But I've ran into a few issues. I'm not sure if this is supposed to be a support thread for DS, or mainly just a thread for the devs to post updates. This is only my 3rd post on the WS forums and I'm having issues but wasn't sure if I should make a new topic or just post it here. So forgive me if I'm posting in the wrong thread. Anyways, on to my issues:

    1st: Attempting to make a DS USB recovery disk worked, but I had to change its' drive letter to A beforehand, the recovery media creator wouldn't allow me to specify any other letter. And when I tried to boot into the USB it just gave the message "FreDOS" in the top left of the screen /w a black background and wouldn't go any further.

    2nd: Just a while ago I made a backup of my C drive with DS (trial version) and saved the backups to another partition on the same drive. My system is multiboot, BTW (2 Windows OSes and 2 Linux OSes). I should also mention upfront that C is encrypted with DiskCryptor. So I decided to test the backup by going into the DS app and starting restore, it asked for a reboot. After reboot the DiskCryptor password prompt appeared, I entered it and then the Windows 8 logo started spinning, after which DS commenced the restore. But no later than 30 seconds after the process began, it stopped with something along the lines of "An error occurred, return code was 0". I already Googled it and couldn't find a solution. Afterwards I rebooted and was able to get into Windows successfully, although I immediately noticed that my Metro apps weren't appearing at all, and trying to go to the desktop didn't work either. So I tried logging out and logging back in under my other admin account, which worked, but things still seemed amiss.

    Afterwards I rebooted again, and all attempts to get into Windows failed, after the spinning W8 logo it would just sit on a black screen forever, not even a mouse cursor. 15 mins later, still stuck. It didn't BSOD though, or give any errors during this time. It *appeared* that Windows was booting normally. So I reinstalled.

    I'm not sure what caused the error, but I'm still having trouble finding a software, either free or paid, that can back up an encrypted partition. It seems that an imaging solution like Clonezilla is the only option that can be relied upon 99.9% of the time. Every solution I've tried so far has required that I image the entire (crypted) partition and/or drive (including both used and free sectors). I know imaging is always what should be relied upon most, but the time it takes to back up and restore is simply too long for a superbusy guy like me. I'm also checking out Rollback Rx as a halfway solution, but it appears that it might not be suitable, since defragging isn't allowed and it injects itself into the MBR, which would conflict with DiskCryptor. I've already tried before, they cant both live in the MBR at the same time. I'm not giving up on it yet though, my next approach will be to install DC MBR code on 2nd internal HDD, and RBRX MBR code on primary (boot) HDD, test it out, and see how things go. If it works out, I'll pay. I really need to rely on imaging or some kind of hybrid method for long term security, but having snapshots that can be quickly restored would be a nice compliment to my backup strategy. RBRX is the only software I know of that can do this reliably. There are others I've found, but they don't appear to be as good.

    EDIT: So I just tried again, I can't think of anything I might have done differently. Same results as before. But you know what they say in the drug/alcohol recovery meetings, repeating the same actions will almost always get the same results. I just figured it would be worth another shot anyways. So next I'm going to try restoring while unencrypted and see if I get the same error.

    EDIT #2: It's just as I suspected. DiskCryptor (or something else) must be interfering with the recovery process. I reinstalled again, didn't encrypt this time around, and restore completed successfully. I really don't get this, the DC driver must have been loaded, because it even asks for my password before the recovery has a chance to start. Is there any way I can force DS to write a log file somewhere? Or could it be that DC and DS are simply imcompatible (short of backing up every sector, in which case I'm better off just using CloneZilla)? Or may the DC driver shouldn't be loaded?

    If this cant be made to work, then I guess I'll just have to stick with pure imaging as my sole approach. But for the last few yrs I've experienced lots of crashes, malwares, etc, in part due to bad decisions on my part. And just now I'm finally seeing the importance of imaging and backups as the best approach. I thinking that maybe using something like rsync (Cygwin version) or similar might be a better way, since I could just back up my files with all permissions etc intact, then simply restore them to newly create d and encrypted blank partitions of the same size with something like WinPE. My other idea is to either create a DiskCryptor volume/TrueCrypt container (not sure which one would be better) for backup purposes, and then use DS to back up to that space while both DS and DC are running, so that the backups would be crypted on the receiving end, rather than plaintext. Then I could just create blank partitions and use something like WinPE to restore the backups so that it would be fully crypted, then restore the volume header, and MBR (with DC therein), and hopefully it would boot.

    I'm trying to avoid full partition/drive imaging if possible (for a short term/quicker approach), and only reserve it for the long term as a failsafe. I also would like to avoid having to partially/full re-encrypt my partitions every time I need to restore, changing volume headers and passwords, etc.

    If anyone can help with this or give some advice then I'd really appreciate it. And I do fully intend to purchase DS if it proves useful and suitable for my overall strategy/purposes.

    Thanks again!
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2013
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